Friday, July 31, 2009

Somewhere a Sofa in Mom's Basement Weeps for Joy

I encountered a person today with whom I have a nodding acquaintance, as literal as it is figurative, who was pretty 'stoked to be back', and wondered if I'd missed him. Not since I had the scope repaired, I replied, as I always do just to see the blank look of zero comprehension in his eyes, knowing he doesn't get the joke but won't ask me to explain.

And then it was my turn to look blank as he shared with me, unbidden, that he'd been at Comic-Con 2009 in classy San Diego (thanks to 'Glory Hole Productions' because this could have been so much worse if you hadn't helped? Does the video war crimes tribunal have your address?). There have been forty of these annual get togethers (ka-ching!)-he may have mentioned that as he went on about a lot of stuff I can remember feeling odd about, since I thought all this time he was a grown-up. A little strange as a grown-up, but a big person in a big person's body, if you know what I mean. I didn't realize I actually knew one of these parodies of a person, with the dark and greasy hair, the small, nervous eyes and the sweaty palms who lives on a couch in his Mom's basement because to my knowledge, none of that is true in his case and yet.....

I dug around a bit on line, of course, and learned distressingly I think, per google, after typing in "comic con 2009", there were 40,900,000 entries located in 0.08 seconds while there 61,700,000 entrees for President Obama's health care plan located in 0.20 seconds. Two thirds as many entries, at three times the speed of thought for so many. The President doesn't have a cape, but we do live in a universe with a yellow sun. Jor-el would be so proud, I guess, though he really is the generation BEFORE mine and two before the President.

I enjoyed comics, when I was a kid. I am far more often childish now than childlike but sifting through the websites trying to understand the difference between graphic novels and comics and the thousands of shades of meaning between them, I was overwhelmed with the sound of commerce, as in big business, I was tempted to lie down. That was when I realized that was the purpose for the couch in the basement.

Thanks, Mom, for gathering up the Archie and Jughead comic books all those years ago and getting rid of them. Was Archie hooking up with BOTH Betty and Veronica? What was the deal with Reggie? And what the heck was that thing on Jughead's noggin? Here at Life's Rich Pageant, it's always worthwhile to pack an extra napkin and use it for the spot next to your mouth. On trash day, I'll drag the couch down to the curb and help load it onto the truck. Should be a hoot.
-bill kenny

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