One of the reasons it went so well was that this time I wised up and made dinner plans and restaurant reservations well in advance. Each night I had a table waiting at a nice place, with nice folks to join me. It was great dining with Chip Kidd, Bruce Timm, Flint Dille, Spike Brandt, Tony Cervone, Charles & Rachel Kochman, Alan Burnett, Bill and Kayre Morrison and Sergio Aragones (among many others) over the nights I was in town.
Wednesday, as soon as the doors to the dealer's room opened, I went right to the publishers' tables and stocked up on everything I had been putting off buying for the last couple months - the Carl Barks "Only A poor Old Man" collection, volume three of Floyd Gottfredson's "Mickey Mouse" strips, the collected cartoons of Flannery O'Connor (!) and many others. That way I could retire to my hotel rooms for days at a time and do nothing but read (which I did).
I noticed a surprisingly less number of superhero costumes this year and a surprising increase in Princess costumes -- for men. This year I counted two Supermen, one Batman, and at least twenty guys in full-on tiaras and royal gowns. Anything goes during comic con, I guess. Saw about five Harley Quinns (all girls, I think) and everyone else was the dorky bunny-head kid from "Adventure Time."
I spent most of an afternoon at Trickster, the alternative display and social space founded by Scott Morse and a group of Pixar artists. The setting was nice and relaxed and it was great chatting again with current and former Pixar creators like Jeff Pigeon, Ken Mitcherony and Ronnie Del Carmen.
I played the ukelele a lot. Always good.
I was initially denied a Polly Pocket Harley Quinn doll by the Mattel booth wardens (they refused to sell them to pros, even creator pros), though our podcast wizard Ezra came through like gangbusters and scored me a set.
Best moment of all was seeing my love Misty take part in Mark Evanier's Cartoon Voice panel alongside such talents as Gregg Berger, Fred Tatasciore, Dee Bradley Baker, Audrey Wasilewski and Rob Paulson. Congratulations, love. I couldn't be happier.
I may have missed a few things, but I'll fill them in on our weekly Radio Rashy podcast. I actually had such a good time this year I'm considering not going back next year, and letting the memory of this last one linger a while.