Observations on the Road to...

Monday, February 25, 2008

WonderCon 2008

So WonderCon has come and gone once again, and once again, I got to hang out and talk with a few Caballeros/Castaways. Last year, it was Triggerman that I hung out with most. Unfortunately, he's back home on the other side of the Atlantic. The same with Nick I.. And of course, Old Man Harris. But not all was lost. This year I got to hang out with fellow Castaway, Kedd. Also another change was the fact that I don't live in San Fran anymore, so my buddy James and his roommates put me up for the weekend.

Anyway, now for some of my Personal Highlights

-Meeting Darwyn Cooke on Thursday night at the Isotope and finding out -among other things- that Cooke and I are both Clash fans, and that his New Frontier character design of Captain Cold is based off Grant Morrison.

-Getting Darwyn Cooke to John Hancock my Absolute New Frontier, as well add a sweet image of the Spirit to the noir sketch book.

-Having a blast at the Get Smart panel.

-Visited Carrie and Stephanie's table, and picked up some of their awesome work.

-"My father doesn't love me."

-Finding out the main reason why Kedd's is able to maintain such a high post count.

-Being present at the DC panel that Kedd made Didio momentarily speechless as well as the moment Bagley called Kedd a trouble maker.

-Watching DC's New Frontier

-The Iron Man movie panel.

-Getting a helluva lot of new reading material throughout the weekend.

-Conversing with Mikie from the 'ol BKV Board. (He has yet to register onto Harris' new board.) Talked some really good stuff with him at both shin digs first at the Isotope on Friday, and then especially good stuff on Saturday.

-On Saturday, I went to Trad'r Sam for the first time since May of last year. This time with James (guy w/darkened Raiders cap) and crew. For Arvin (far left), it was his first time ever at Trad'r Sam, and he didn't listen to our warnings of just how strong Trad'r Sam drinks are. Yeah, he got messed up. But I on the other hand, am happy to report that I actually did a good job of getting a real good buzz, and yet, not getting defeated by the dreaded Scorpion Bowl.

-Getting a couple Tiny Titans posters from the DC Booth. Some of them are for my nieces and nephews, I swear.

-Here's a quote from James Sime's Twitter that best describes the mass of people from Saturday night.

-Seeing so many Castaways (unfortunately except for Capntightpants and Christopher)

-And getting Mark Bagley to add an utterly bad ass noir Batman to the sketchbook.

Good times. Good times. Good times. I usually take a lot of pictures when out on the town, but for some reason, not all that much in the span of four days... Probably because I "feel" more photogenic, and camera trigger happy when I have more than just a good buzz. Oh well.

Here be the rest of the weekend's photos.

EDIT on Weds. Feb 27: Forgot to add the highlight of chit-chatting it up with Brian Wood, and getting him to sign my first two issues of DEMO, and vol. 1 of DMZ. Awesome guy.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

The Castaways formerly known as Caballeros

So last week, when Brian Vaughan hinted that we Caballeros should get our Cabal related affairs order, I wanted to post an entry say just how deflated I felt about it. Moreover, that the reason I felt so heart struck was because the people that inhabited the board are just damn good people; some of which I have had the pleasure to meet and hang out in real life. And in the years that Brian has had the board up, our little community of Caballeros have become extremely tight-knit.

Case in point: Most of us Caballeros registered on Tony Harris' original Jolly Roger message board via ezboard, as well as on the Caballeroslove freeforum that NothingFace and Michael Heide (high fives go out to them).

I had a film professor that described that what made Jean Renoir and his films so great was that in each and everyone of his films included practically every aspect in life: love, family, war, death, youth, everything. And not only am I inclined to agree completely with that, but also I believe that to be one of the reasons why the Cabal was such a fun destination to hit each day I got on the internet. We had threads on comics (obviously), movies, politics, sex, and the birth of nnnnn, and a helluva lot more of course.

Last year at WonderCon, Brian signed my copy of Pride of Baghdad:

Joey JP-
Long live the Caballeros.
Brian K. Vaughan

While we are to still be Caballeros at heart, alas, we are now Castaways (at least I think that's the name that has been settled on). I guess it's kinda like when Zach de la Rocha left Rage Against the Machine, and Tom Morello, Tim Commerford, and Brad Wilk joined up with Chris Cornell and formed Audioslave.

Awesome new digs, right? (It's been said many times, but it's worth saying again: Mucho props to Tony Harris, Michael Heide, and NothingFace)

Friday, February 8, 2008

Peope are Fascinating

By far and away, what fascinates me most in this world are people. We are all different in our personalities, our wants, our dislikes, our geography, education, religious affiliations, ethnicity, history, everything. The people that I've met in my life so far are inspiration for what I'm trying to do with my life, which is write.

Last month, there was a week in which I encountered three situations that interested me to no end. I can't exactly remember in what order these instances happened, but the first instance to mention was when I was waiting outside the restroom in the food court in a mall here in San Jose. The janitor was already in the process of cleaning up the men's room, and a couple other guys came by after me looking to use the bathroom as well. One of them some teenager. First thing I noticed was his uniform; he worked at the mall's theater above the food court. Then he asks me if "this the line?"

I look at his face, and his left eye is absolutely red. As if he popped a blood vessel within the last day or so. I was taken aback, but I quickly answered that it was, or is, in that instant. Then he walked back into the hallway meant only for mall employees, and came back a minute or two later. As he walked by me, he whispered, "Have fun waiting in line."

I wanted to slap that kid upside the fuckin head.

Then I wondered if he was acting dickish because that's who he is, or if it was because he noticed my surprise when first I saw his eye. Either way, I hope his eye specialist/doctor overcharged him for treatment.

Another instant was when I was an a comic shop, and overheard a couple looking for two issues of a particular Star Wars comic series for their son or nephew.

"Two-ninety-nine?" He said to the girl. "That's cheap!"

I smiled, and tried so hard to keep from rolling on the ground, and laughing out loud.

Then that leaves a time when I was an another comic shop, also in San Jose, and the employee at the shop was talking to a friend of his, and not a minute after I walk in, the friend blurts out the fate of a character in There Will Be Blood. And I assumed the character they were talking about was "character x." I hadn't seen the film yet, and I wanted to wring out both of their necks. Fast forward to today. I finally got to see the film.

I walked into the theater anticipating the fate of "character x." Low and behold, "character x" was not who the employee and the friend were talking about, but another character. Even though everything turned out okay, there's still a little part of me that feels the same way that I felt that day in the comic shop: there are people in this world that just don't have any common courtesy or sense of urgency. The two people in the shop that day likely have more courtesy than most, but damn if I didn't wanna call the two of them a pair of asses when I left.

All in all, people are fascinating.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

January's Picture of the Month

I've decided to do something similar to what some have done, including Alisha, which is to taking a photo a day, or week, or whatever. But the hell if I'm gonna remember to take a photo a day for 366 days this year (it's a leap year this year remember). Well if any of you out there know me, you know that I take a lot of photos. Case in point, my previous entry. And I doubt I'm actually ever gonna get to all of the Hella Photos I originally wanted to post here, so like I kind of mentioned in that entry, you may as well check out my Flickr.

Anyway, in all the photos that I take throughout the given month, I'll end up picking the one photo that stands out to me, and declare it the photo of the month. That said, here's January's photo of the month, Paulie Bleeker:

If you've seen Juno then you should instantly get the title's meaning. Late last month, as I was getting ready for bed, I took off my Livestrong and Don't Sweat The Small Stuff wrist bands onto my desk, and it landed on near the little basketball. And me being me, I didn't wanna go to bed right away, and started fiddling with it, and eventually got what you see above. Ridiculousness, I realize. But in the background you'll see my Frank Sinatra box set, Grant Morrision beer glass from the Isotope, The Office day calender, the box of my Dan Johnson- Sacramento RiverCats bobble head doll (the actual bobble-head doll behind the Morrision glass, and behind the box is my 10-inch Ray Palmer-The Atom... all of these "toys" reaffirming the fact that I am one huge dork.