Thursday, July 29, 2010

2010 San Diego Comic Con, Milo Manara and Haunted Hotels

I've finally pulled my thoughts together to write about this year SDCC. It was great!

But when has it never been so.

There was the usually
variety of vendors but there were less items from Japan. A lot of it was DC comic action figures going for anywhere from $10 to $12 each. Bargains to be had if you were willing to walk the entire room. I did manage to pick up a nice "New Gods Mr Miracle" and a "Batman Selina Kyle" modeled after the animated series.

The studios weren't there in force as in past years. Aside from the War
ner Bros tower, there wasn't any huge displays worth oohing over. Lots of monitors showing trailers and previews.

I attended a few of panels for the first time. On Thursday, I went to "Robotech: The First Quarter Century". Friday I attended "Spotlight on Chris Claremont". I originally went because Milo Manara was going to be a part of the panel though he ended up not being in it. It was still good. I especially loved watching and hearing Chris' wife coach him with answers from her seat in the audience. What's that song... "Happy Loving Couples Make It Look So Easy"...

The highlight for me was on Saturday when I finally got to meet and hear Milo Manara! I've been collecting his art books and comics for years. I think this was the first time in my life that I can say I was a fanboy at a convention. I sat right up front, watching him and listening to his interpreter. Took some pictures with him too!

Mentioning panels, I heard there was a stabbing with a pen at a panel over seats. Doesn't surprise me. As I mentioned, this was my first year attending panels and I have to say the seating is horrible in these rooms. When was the last time anyone actually looked at the size of the average person. Especially convention attendees. More often than not, one person needs a seat and a half to be comfortable but yet they are forcing people to sit one chair per person right next to each other and in some cases someone may not had bathed.

I actually took a picture with a girl who commented how clean I smelled and we laughed about it but she was serious. She said I wouldn't believe the body odors on some of the people who asked her to take a picture.

I seriously think the convention folks have to look and address the seating issue before these kind of attacks become the norm. And I know you can't make someone take a bath but still say it in the list of convention guide lines.

Another interesting development that is occurring not so much at the convention but in the neighborhood is at night. Women are coming out dressed in some incredibly sleazy outfits. I thought Halloween was crazy but what I saw on the streets in the gaslight area made Halloween seem tame. A cop even gave a girl a ticket for her lack of clothing. Personally, I love sexy, but there's a time and place for it, example, "The Adult Expo". This is comic con and there's children everywhere.

I didn't know this in advance, the hotel which I stayed in was haunted!

I stayed at the Horton Grand Hotel. I did noticed the look. It immediately reminded me of the hotel in The Shinning". The paintings and old photos on the wall add to a very strange look. At night though is when the place really comes to life. Quiet halls and areas where there's no lighting. You immediately get the feeling like you shouldn't go down into those areas.

There was one at the bottom of a stairs which stupid me decided to play a joke on someone and walked down into. Nothing happened but now that I know a little more about the place, it's not likely I'd ever do that again.

Over all, it's a great hotel, perfect for an event like this. And I plan on staying there again.

So now I've had my appetizer, I am ready for the main course...


Sunday, July 18, 2010

Peter Fernandez

It's weird. This past week, actually a couple of days ago I had a dream or feeling that I was going to lose a friendship at San Diego's Comic Con. You know that feeling almost like spider-sense. I couldn't figure who or why so I started thinking about what I was planning to do out there and with whom. And what behaviors would create problems.

Some crazy thoughts came into my head. None of which really made me feel too worried, lately they almost seem normal, which is scary. For the last few months just about all my thoughts usually boarder on stress and nightmares. The only real happiness has been going to all these drawings sessions, there I could lose myself in a happy place.

Where am I going with this, well a week ago I meet a couple of people who reminded me what it is like to make new friends. I started believing. Believing in what, I don't know, but it made me feel good. And that feeling carried into this week even stronger. It also helped that I finally finished updating my website. But then those feelings came.

So I got the news this morning. A friend, Peter Fernandez died a couple of days ago. He was someone I met a few years ago at the New York Anime Festival. I was one of the people who presented him with a Life Time Achievement Award in Animation and over the years we'd see each other at conventions either in New York or LA. He even helped me out with some video I shot at a New York Anime event. A great guy. I was looking forward to seeing him next week.

He was the last person on my mind in terms of losing a friendship and this was a harsh way to lose someone at that. But he's gone and I will miss him.

Now the questions for me are, is it over and what do I do with all those "crazy" thoughts that have been floating around in my head? I don't hope or wish for any more deaths.

I really just want to have fun next week minus any drama.