This is sort of unique picture of me. No glasses, big, legitimate smile. Oh, and one more thing... what was it...hm...
Oh, yeah. I'm kneeling next to the Hardcore Legend and New York Times Best Selling Author, Mick "Bah Gawd" Foley.
Once again, thanks to my friend Dave, I got to meet one of my wrestling heroes. But actually, and no offense to Chris Jericho, I'd go so far as to call Foley one of the few people I admire, as far as celebrities and famous people go. Normally, I'd have prefaced this post with "reader beware! I'm going to talk about sweaty men pretending to hit each other," but a few years back, Foley stepped out of the ring, and wrote an absolutely amazing autobiography called "Have a Nice Day: A Tale of Blood and Sweatsocks," which despite being almost bible-sized even as a paperback, was one of the few books in my "carry around" bullpen in high school and early college, an "honor" reserved for... Kerouac, a handful of poets, Fitzgerald, Thompson, and Tolkien.
Foley turning out to be such an amazing [and unassisted - no ghosts here] writer was always very encouraging to me. I guess I'd compare it to someone who was a Michael Jordan and a baseball fan, only instead of ole MJ choking he wound up leading the White Sox to a World Series.
Or something. I've never been much of a sports guy. And I don't think anyone's mentioned His Airness trying to play baseball in quite some time.
Anyway. This was a fairly big deal to me, and though I hate speaking ill of my fellow wrestling fans, since it was Foley on tour for his newest book, "Countdown to Lockdown," as opposed to appearing for TNA, or at some indie show or comic convention, a short reading actually took place, and he even took questions, which meant thanks to yours truly I got the former World Heavyweight Champion to ruminate on Martin Luther King Jr. and Ghandi. And I will admit, even though I had met him before, actually talking to him for a short while as he signed my book was nice, even if what I mostly wanted to do was just thank him for the amazing showing he had with Ric Flair a few weeks back on Impact! which, as a kid who grew up on southern wrestling, really meant a lot to me, in a way that someone not raised on grown men making each other bleed probably wouldn't be able to understand. And it was all in a rather nice, apparently recently renovated lecture room at Marshall University, which, from what little I've seen of it, seems to be a rather pleasant campus.
But I'll save my recently returned collegiate pangs for another post.
Anyway, Foley was a wonderful, charming guy, and it was nice to meet him in a forum I was a bit more comfortable with. Which feels odd to say, since generally I consider things like wrestling events and comic book conventions my stomping ground, but I guess to no one's surprise our old buddy Randall feels just a little more at home some place that panders to his intellectual side.
Good times. And thanks to Dave for telling me about it. It was a very spur of the moment kind of trip, but that really made it all the better. And along with the picture, I also got him to sign his new book, which, if you can't see up there, here's a nice little close-up for your trouble:
Yep. Still a nerd.
And in case someone is wondering, yes, I sort of struggled with whether or not to take my shades off for the picture. Considering even a little fluorescent lighting is all it takes to give me a migraine [though not always... funny, that], I tend to keep them on no matter what the occasion. But this just felt sort of special to me, like something I'd want my eyes in, and also a way to show the man a little extra respect [which is also why I took a knee -- I didn't want a picture where I looked taller than Mick]. So Foley joins the ranks of my mother and one girlfriend for catching me out of my specs for a picture.
In work related news, I polished off another book review, but there's always another on the way. The website I did copy for should be going live in the next week or so too, so I might show that off when I get it. All and all, I was pretty pleased with how much I was able to do for the client in such a short amount of time, even if it has knocked my sleep schedule for a loop again.
I have a couple of ideas I want to work on, and I recently saw Justin and he now has a new drawing bench [and a fiancée! Congratulations Staci! I contemplated gushing here like I did for Dave and Carrie back in the day, but I thought since I see you guys so often I'd just save it for all in person], so I imagine you'll be seeing new Calamity Cash pages soon. There's only a handful left until the book's finished, and then I'm not sure what we're going to do.
The oft-linked Eric M. Esquivel of Modern Mythology fame is putting together a zine, entitled "Normal" and my current plan is to get something submitted for that. Right now he's got a deadline set for content by the end of November, which is making me think I might re-work "New Hooverville" and try and get that in there. My first thought was to put a mini-comic together, but between writing the script, finding an illustrator who'd want to work with me, and making sure the artist has the time they need to get the job finished, November just seemed like too tight of a deadline to swing. Which is fine, actually, because "New Hooverville" is really something I consider to be like an artist's statement about my own work, and a manifesto about a lot of my frustrations with the world and how it treats creative-types, which from Eric's description would probably fit well with his theme.
There's also a part of me that just feels like... there's something in that story that's a little bit bigger than me, that I want more people to see. I have... a limited reach here, there are people who come to this pulpit or soapbox, and take in the things I do, but for that piece, not as many as I'd like. Certainly not buried back, forever in my archives. And I think there's something in "New Hooverville" that will resonate with people, and I just want to get it into as many people's hands as possible, warts and all.
...though if some of you have read it, and seen a few warts, and maybe have some suggestions about excising them, or just tightening some other stuff up, it'd be appreciated. I certainly don't want to offer Eric something that's exactly like what's on the internet, and more than that, I just imagine the story is a bit long for a zine. So if you get a chance, and have any suggestions, just e-mail me, or hit me up on Facebook or Twitter. I'd appreciate it.
And since I have until the end of November, I reserve the right to change my mind. In which case, you'll just have helped make something that really matters to me a lot better. So no wasted motion there.
Have a nice day.