Hey, Mom! The Explanation.

Here's the permanent dedicated link to my first Hey, Mom! post and the explanation of the feature it contains.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #712 - Motor City Comic Con

Predators at Motor City Comic Con 1705.21
Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #712 - Motor City Comic Con

Hi Mom,

Happy Father's Day to all the fathers. I guess that includes me? Sort of?

This is long overdue, so it's time I just sucked it up and write what I am going to write and if I don't write it all, then, oh well.

I went to the Motor City Comic Con on Sunday May 21st.

Wow, That's basically a month ago.

My goal in going was to spend time with some friends as I was asked to join my friend John Kasdorf and his friends. We then added Randall Davis to the mix, and it was a good time.

I planned to catch some panels, most notably Wil Wheaton's, as I will describe in the forthcoming.

Other than that activity, I was not planning to buy anything. Rather I was shopping prices on things and collecting cards of people who might buy comics as I am getting rid of the majority of my collection because Liesel and I are moving to Washington state, near Portland, OR.

I am not unloading my collection before the move in August. But I do plan to sell it off a chunk at a time over the next few years.

Given that I had promised my wife that I would not come home with anymore stuff that we will have to pack and move, imagine my consternation when I walk in and see a huge T-shirt booth.

For those who do not know, I "counted" my t-shirts over a year's time in 2013-2014 in a blog called 365 T-shirts as a way to see if I did indeed own a different t-shirt for every day of the year (yes, I did and do). So, obviously, this was a temptation as a person does not buy or accumulate over 365 T-shirts and not have an obvious weakness for T-shirts.

And then, it's not even any T-shirt sales booth; it's the TOWER of T-shirts (my last name is Tower). I mean, COME ON, MAN.

But I resisted the T-shirt spending urge. I did not buy a T-shirt. In fact, I did make it through the whole con without buying anything.

Donuts was the order of the day before we left Battle Creek.

We had to walk through some rain from the parking lot to the convention center, but I didn't want to carry an umbrella.

Upon arriving, we went straight to Freaks and Geeks reunion, featuring John Francis Daley (Sam Weir) and Martin Starr (Bill Haverchuck), both of whom have productive careers today. I am always sad when I see icon of Geekdom celebrities at these events whose only claim to the fame is the one great role that they are known for in geek fandom.

John Francis Daley had a great run on the TV show Bones, co-wrote the script for Horrible Bosses, and just finished co-writing the script for Spider-Man: Homecoming. Martin Starr has followed his Freaks and Geeks years with a great career, including films with Seth Rogen and the film Superbad, but has been a regular since 2014 on the HBO series Silicon Valley. He also has a role in the upcoming film - Spider-Man: Homecoming.

I did a walk around after the Freaks and Geeks panel by myself. I didn't stop to chat or get autographs from any of the celebrities. I priced some comics. I took the picture above of dark storm trooper.

My main goal was to see Wil Wheaton, and so I got there a little early, but so did a lot of other people. Had I really wanted a good seat, I would have skipped the walk though.

I have some crappy pictures of Wil. Sorry, best I could do in the circumstances.

For me, seeing Wil Wheaton speak was revelatory, and so most of my content in this post is about that talk.

I should explain that I am a big fan of Wil Wheaton's. Like most people, I enjoyed Stand By Me. I was thrilled when he became a regular guest star on The Big Bang Theory. But my main fandom comes from enjoying his audio work for books, mainly by John Scalzi, though he recently narrated a character for Cory Doctorow's Walkaway, which I finished reading not long ago.
I know he does many other things, including the You Tube show Tabletop via Geek and Sundry. Apparently, he does a podcast called Radio Free Burrito, which I have to guess is a reference to his ongoing burrito debates via Twitter with John Scazli. Wil's Internet presence was not fully on my radar, so I did not have an rss feed to http://wilwheaton.net/ before the con. But now I do.
So there.

I did know that Wil is quote famous for the motto (or "Internet axiom): "don't be a dick." 

Okay, what else? I am restricting myself to 16 minutes for this set of comments before I get back to work, and then I will give myself more time later today to get this done, a day later.

I was glad the "don't be a dick" thing came up in the Q&A of his session. One guy tried to use the microphone for his own free promotion and marketing, and though Wil did not invoke, "don't be a dick," he did reference the poor, socially awkward guy's self-promotion.

I liked that the audience had many non-Star Trek, non-Wesley Crusher questions. He talked about Star Trek just enough without it dominating the session, and he managed to talk about other things, too. People even gave him gifts. Apparently, Wil loves Owlbears, so someone gave him a little Owlbear figure. He was very enthusiastic about it, which I have to think is being gracious. Wil did stress that the corollary of "don't be a dick" is "be kind to each other," which is really another way of saying "be nice," which is the adage for which I have argued many times.

Two minutes until I have to suspend action for now, not that this matters to you as you are reading it all at once.

Wil is very open about his mental health issues. Someone asked about this, and when that happened, Wil remembered he had forgotten to take his meds, which were in his pocket, so he took them, commenting on how he is not ashamed to take his meds in public.

He drew two analogies that really stuck with me about mental health issues, but I have to get back to work, so for me this will get picked up some long period of time later, but for you, it's instantaneous.

And then for me, it's the next day now, and this entry is two days late. See how time works? It's astounding. Madness takes it's toll...

Anyway, I liked Wil's analogies about mental health. He said if you saw someone with a broken leg, you would not encourage him to walk on it. You would take him to the ER or at least a doctor. If someone told you she had Diabetes, you would not dismiss it and tell them not to treat that disease, or act as if they can choose to not have it: "Hey, have less Diabetes, you know? Sure, you can do it. You don't need insulin. What's the matter with you?"

Wil was warm and engaging and wonderful. It was the highlight of my trip to the con.

I would tell Wil's Stevie Wonder story, but it's his Stevie Wonder story, so for that reason, and in the interests of being done, I will leave it for Wil. Go see him speak. Ask him to tell his Stevie Wonder story.

I also spoke to Howard Chaykin. He was bitter and angry, but he's also a New Yorker. I complimented him. I have always liked his work, especially American Flagg, which was seminal and which influenced so much of what's happening today in comics. He agreed and is pissed off that "no one knows who the fuck I am." I walked right up to his table. There was no line.

But there was a TON of Deadpool everywhere you turned. I mean, okay, I liked the movie, but the character? I just don't get it.

We ended the day at this cool brewery because that's what adult comic fans can do.

Here's some more pictures. Some of them I "stole" from Earl... :-)


Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

I miss you so very much, Mom.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.


- Days ago = 714 days ago

- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1706.18 - 10:10

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.

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