As you know, I started a new job earlier this year, and the week of October 16-22 was Homecoming, the biggest of all the big-deal events on the calendar. Especially because it was the first full, in-person Homecoming they've been able to have in three years because, y'know, COVID. All of us in my department were deputized to volunteer and, despite normally being on a three days in the office/two days at home schedule, were told to pretty much be on campus every day during that stretch.
Dutifully, I did so, and it was a blast! And the following Monday, I went to the office ... and then the next day, my boss came into the room I share with the other person on our team (the boss' office is on another floor) and mentioned how quiet it was around the building on Monday because there was an unspoken rule that people take the Monday off after Homecoming(!).
So I said, "I wish someone had spoken about that unspoken rule before now!" And, being the cool boss that she is, my boss immediately said if I want to take a day, go ahead, but it would have to be this week. So I said, "How about Friday? It's my birthday." She said fine.
Not only was Friday my birthday, it so happened to be opening day of the Baltimore Comic-Con. So I went. It was a blast!
I don't regularly go to comics conventions; I went to Blerdcon earlier this year, and the only previous time was at the Baltimore Comic-Com maybe 10 years ago. So it was fun to wander around, see the vendors and their various wares, play spot-the-comics-creator, and break the bank buying all the cheap comics I could carry.
I also had surprise encounters. One was with Andrew Aydin, who collaborated with the late U.S. Rep. John Lewis on the graphic novel trilogy March and its sequel, Run:
Another was my longtime friend, cosplayer extraordinaire Bill Johnson, who appeared in the Halloween spirit as Prince Mamuwalde. (He told me he had just returned from paying a visit to Edgar Allen Poe's grave, which is in a churchyard about six blocks away.)
(By the way, if you look closely at the symbol on my shirt, it is not a bat; it is a crab.)
Oh, and afterward, I hung out with my wife and son at Main Event, an indoor amusement palace in the Dave and Busters vein, which offers arcade games, billiards, bowling and such like. Didn't get birthday cake, but instead got a giant chocolate chip cookie (so big, it was in a baking pan!), so it's all good.
I won't be posting much this week, as I am tied up on an urgent case of my own: my wife and I are vacationing in Hawaii.
Oh, man, I was at the con on Saturday! Next time, if I'm able to get down there, I'll drop you a line to see if you'll be around! And happy birthday!
I had a great time, too -- caught up with Andrew Aydin for a bit as well, and got to meet other favorites too, like Jerry Ordway, Jamal Igle, Ron Marz, Bob Ingersoll, John K. Snyder III, Greg Larocque, Afua Richardson, Louise Simonson, and Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez!
When JLGL signed that issue of DC Comics Presents for me, he said, "This one's tough to find." I told him I'd had it since it was published, and that I bought it from a neighborhood drugstore where I'd eventually work part-time when I was in high school.
Very cool to the both of you. I'm super jealous.
And belated happy birthday, CK! Enjoy your vacation!
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