for being (mostly) awesome, for putting on a great convention, and for being a great place to spend some time. I absolutely did not want to leave on Monday.
Good things that came out of the convention experience include (in no particular order):
- meeting Wil Wheaton, purchasing two of his books, and getting him to sign the aforementioned books (as well as one of my TNG DVDs). He wrote in Dancing Barefoot about how important it is to him that the convention-goers that come to talk to him/get him to sign autographs have a good experience when they're with him, and that absolutely bore itself out. He was a spectacularly nice guy, who even remembered us when we came back to his table on the second day (had to tell him how much we loved his books - they're fantastic), had great conversations with us, posed for pictures, and even indulged me in a little story-telling of my own (plus, Tim got him to laugh by proxy. That's got to make Tim feel good).
I think I've developed a man-crush on Wil Wheaton. Wesley Crusher. I don't know how I feel about that.
- meeting Ed Brubaker. Captain America's been my favorite superhero since I was quite small (I think it initially had something to do with the shield, but who knows after 20 years), and the fact that Brubaker's writing great issue after great issue means a lot to me. More than I can say, really. Even though he killed the Red Skull, killed Steve off, brought Bucky back from the grave, turned Bucky into Captain America... He's just written it so deftly, and with such palpable enthusiasm, that I just get sucked in and can never escape. Brubaker's "Captain America" is spectacular, there's no other word for it.
I told him all of this, and he listened quite intently, and actually reacted pretty well to my ramblings. Turns out we have a favorite superhero in common. What a surprise.
I got to meet a guy who's basically a hero of mine, and he wasn't a dick. That was a big deal, my dream not getting shattered.
- discovering "Sheldon," a phenomenal comic strip about a 10 year-old Internet billionaire (the titular Sheldon), his grandfather, a talking duck (boy genius Sheldon's doing), a pug (who does not talk), and a lizard that thinks the talking duck is his father (who only says, "Squee!"). It's geeky at times, drawn very nicely, and exceptionally funny. Plus, Dave Kellett (who writes and draws the strip), is one very nice guy. He drew us sketches of the pug and the duck.
- purchasing a shit-ton of really awesome stuff, and for not a whole heck of a lot of money. A lot of guys were selling off prints of their artwork for cheap, or bundling a couple of prints together, or made up a bundle on the spot (thanks again, Mike Hampton and Dexter Vines). As Vanessa says, "The awesome room keeps getting more awesome." President Evil, Hot Zombie Chicks, ROM the Spaceknight, Batman's gallery of foes, Iron Fist, Mouse Guard, Tiny Titans, the Goon, Usagi Yojimbo, Monster Commute, and more... all will adorn the walls in the new apartment. Oh, and the Blue Sun t-shirt. And the Invaders mini-mates (Cap, Bucky, original Human Torch, Namor). And the Blue Beetle action figure.
- seeing Bruce Timm draw Harley Quinn.
- watching Vanessa work her short/cute magic on all of the people we met, with the exception of the guy who drew cartoons for Playboy. That's all right, though, because the conversation she had with Howard Chaykin afterwards was priceless.
- winning a can of Nite Owl coffee (organic!).
- being surrounded by so much joy, so much overwhelming happiness, for two solid days. Does the spirit wonders.
- rekindling my desire to break into the comic industry some way, somehow...
- meeting Aaron Douglas, and discovering that the Chief isn't leaving television soon.
For all of this, the great music, and so much more, thanks, Seattle.