Comicpalooza Day 1: Men’s Rooms, Thor, & Lumbar Support

We’re in Houston for the screening of David’s short-short animated video, “Blood Bank.”

Before most trips, I stay up half the night doing laundry, but last night I stayed up cooking pot roast. The fixings had been around for several days–I’d told David to buy them and I would cook, but then life got in the way, some of it legitimate, like not having enough cooking oil–and the roast was almost to the cook-it-or-freeze-it point. I would have frozen it but the carrots, potatoes, and onion wouldn’t have frozen well, so I cooked and froze the result.

On the positive side, that roast was absolutely delicious. I know because I tried it before going to bed. A darned good roast. Even if I did forget to put in the potatoes until late and had to let it cook for an extra hour. Or more.

On the negative side, I am absolutely wiped out. I thought I was doing pretty well on the drive over until we stopped for gasoline and trail mix and I followed David into the men’s room. And couldn’t figure out why he was waving at me so vigorously. Sort of flailing like a windmill.

I used a men’s room in Paris with David as lookout–the other ladies’ restroom at the Musee D’Orsay was closed, and I got tired of standing in a line that stretched down the hallway–and nobody said boo. But Americans are more sensitive about those things than are the French.

Anyway, we got to the hotel around noon and had lunch and then I crashed. Then we had dinner and went to the screening. Then we went back to the restaurant because I wanted glass of wine.

I don’t drink–at least, that’s what my doctor said when I told him how much alcohol I imbibe per year–but I am so tired that I was afraid I wouldn’t sleep. I thought a medicinal glass of wine might knock me out.

So David ordered a Stella Artois for himself and ordered me a glass-and-a-half of Fleur de Mer. That’s nine ounces as opposed to a glass, which is six. I don’t like most wine, but rosé isn’t bad. A dessert wine I had at a Greek restaurant years ago was excellent, but I’ve forgotten what it was, so I’m stuck with rosé.

I would have had Dom Perignon if it hadn’t been $350 a bottle. I’ve been trying to remember if I’d ever been in a restaurant that had Dom Perignon on the menu. A restaurant we went to for Valentine’s Day a couple of years ago was serving some kind of steak for $150. I guess that’s the closest I’ve to Dom Perignon that I’ve come. David said it was a joke and no one would order steak for that price, but I pointed out you never know what some men will do to impress a girl they aren’t married to.

The glasses our beverages came in were just this side of mammoth. David took pictures. It was rather gauche of us to notice the glassware, but that’s just the kind of people we are. Furthermore, I’m from the country.

I’d been gauche once earlier in the evening: I asked (had David ask) for catsup. Fried catfish was on the buffet, but there were no condiments, and I’m sorry, but I grew up eating fried catfish on my grandfather’s front porch, and I know that with catfish, catsup is a necessity, even if Conrad Hilton doesn’t.

I used to think that staying at a Hilton meant I had to arrive looking like I’d made an effort, and I guess back in the ’50s that was true, but judging from the other guests wandering in from the parking garage, it ain’t true any more. So I’ve given up trying.

No, that’s not true. I do try. It’s just that nobody can tell it.

Anyway, we sat in the restaurant, and David drank his beer, and I drank my wine, and then I got into the wheelchair and David wheeled me to our room. I can walk just fine, except when I haven’t had enough food or enough sleep, or when someone is watching, and then I stagger, and I don’t go too far too fast under any circumstances, so on our film weekends, I get wheeled a lot.

My fault. I was forced to be sedentary for a while and liked it so much I just kept a-goin’. I’ve been walking more lately, though, and am doing quite well. If no one is looking. I’ve also registered at a gym.

Sad to say, however, I’ve come to enjoy being wheeled around. It was embarrassing at first, but I’ve gotten over that. Why walk when you can ride? Only at huge film festivals, though. Comicpalooza is huge.

Tomorrow we’ll wheel around the George R. Brown Convention Center, looking at people dressed like their favorite comic book characters. I think some will dress however they please. They’re all entertaining.  If I had my old Davy Crockett outfit, I would wear it, if it weren’t too small. I got it for my birthday a million years ago. The coonskin cap was especially nice. Somewhere there’s a snapshot of me wearing the outfit and holding my pet hen, Dickie.

There will be signs saying to ask permission before taking pictures of people in costume. I cannot for the life of me figure that one out. When anyone over the age of eighteen walks around in public around dressed up like Buzz Lightyear, he shouldn’t be surprised to see flashbulbs going off. Although I’m not sure we have flashbulbs any more.

Last year at lunch, we sat very near Thor. He told the man he was with that he needed lumbar support. I didn’t take his picture because I knew just how he felt. But the experience dampened the thrill of being only yards away from a Germanic god. Too much wielding of that hammer, I suppose.

But when I want a photo, I do ask. Rather, David asks. I’m shy. I wait till they walk away and and then take pictures of  their backs. I got one tonight. “Cat Lady Squad.”

Well. That’s my day. Thank you for asking.

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The last time I posted, WordPress had a spell/word check on the toolbar. Tonight it seems to have disappeared. So if this post is riddled with errors, talk to WP about it. I proofed and proofed but that glass of wine is beginning to kick in and standard usage is falling by the wayside.

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“Tor’s Fight With the Giants” by Marten Eskil Winge, public domain, via Wikipedia

I Is for I Like Alien Resort: #atozchallenge

 

About a zillion words into a post about ifferisms, I discovered I was so bored I couldn’t go on, and if I couldn’t go on, neither could anyone else. So I abandoned it. That left a void in the topic area, but the only I word I could think of was I.

Well, they say write what you know: I like these books. I like these movies. I like chocolate.

Then  David gave me permission to write about Alien Resort, a cartoon peopled–or, more accurately, aliened–by visitors from outer space.

Creator, writer, and illustrator, Earthling David Davis, is aided by the four ETs pictured below: Coy, Plucky, Deadpan, and Lmao. Coy founded Alien Resort after crash landing on Earth. The others arrived later. Read their bios here.

Alien Resort. © David Davis.

The cartoon appears in newspapers from California (Alameda Sun) to Brooklyn (Canarsie Courier) to Cumbria, UK (Egremont 2day ) to Australia (Dunoon and District Gazette), plus a number of other publications along the way. They’re listed at the Hall of Fame.

Here’s a sample of what you see at Alien Resort:

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In 2015, David’s submission won John Kelso’s Funny Christmas Card Contest (Austin American-Statesman).

His short film Invisible Men Invade Earth has been screened at a number of festivals. It was named Most Original Concept at the 2016 Houston Comedy Film Festtival and Judges’ Choice at the 2017 What the Fest in Dallas. Read more about it and watch it on vimeo.

Bloggers: Interested in Writing Guest Posts? Joining a Group Blog?

Used with permission. © David Davis

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A group blog I write for is seeking bloggers to write one or two guest posts next month.

We’re also looking for bloggers interested in posting once or twice a month on a regular basis.

If you’ve published books or stories, or if you aspire to publish, blogging with us is a good way to publicize your work and to show readers what you do.  Other members of the group will share your posts on their social media, so there’s the potential for hundreds, maybe thousands, of readers to see your work.

We’re family friendly, but aside from that, topics are up to you.

If you’re interested, leave a comment and I’ll get in touch.

 

 

Dedicated to the kindness of strangers

Alike and Different
Alike and Different

In June, David’s “Alike and Different,” a video “dedicated to the kindness of strangers,” won the Out of This World Award at the Lionshead Film Festival in Dallas.

The emcee who introduced the video said–and I wrote this down so I would get it right–“Not much I can say. Four minutes.” And then, to the audience, “We’ll see what you say.”

But he was half grinning/half giggling, which said a lot. And the audience laughed in all the right places.

When people you don’t know, and who don’t know you, laugh in all the right places–well, it makes you feel darned good.

Afterward, the emcee said David’s video shows what can be done using just a few household objects. I assume the household object to which he referred was my vegetable steamer. It does make a stunning spacecraft.

David @ Lionshead Film Festival, 2016
David @ Lionshead Film Festival, June 2016

When David told me the festival would be held at Valley View Center, an old mall on Preston Road, I said, “I know Preston Road.” And that is true. Sort of. I know approximately two blocks of Preston Road. Or, I knew two blocks of it. My knowledge peaked sometime between, oh, 1957 and 1965.

Consequently, as a navigator, I was hopeless. I read the big green exit signs and said things like, “There’s Walnut Hill Lane. I know that.” And, “There’s Belt Line. I know that.” I’m just a bit hazy on how all the streets I know fit together, like on a map.

  • [Typical on-the-road conversation:
  • David: The mall is in the Galleria area. Do you know where the Galleria is?
  • Me: Yes. It’s in Houston.]

Fortunately, David had performed due diligence and we reached our destination without having to depend on the kindness of strangers.

The Lionshead festival was smaller than others we’ve attended: all fifty-two films were screened in one small room. But I was impressed by the quality. “Call for a Good Time,” was one of my favorites. It was named Best Student Comedy Micro Short. The director, a student at Baylor University, said it was inspired by Baylor’s Moody Memorial Library, which serves as an unofficial social center. He said you have to get pretty deep into the library to study, which is what his characters do. Sort of.

My other favorite was a comedy titled “Hard Broads.” I can’t explain. You have to see it for yourself. It was named Best Female Directed Short. I didn’t see a Best Male Directed Short on the list.

Two days before the festival, the Dallas City Council voted to tear down Valley View Center to make way for the Dallas Midtown development. It seems it’s “a dead mall on life support.” Dead, maybe, but I liked what I saw of it–art galleries and studios and kiddie rides and a train. I’m a sucker for trains. And stuffed animals, and a store displaying the most well-endowed mannequin I’ve ever seen. I snapped a few of the highlights.

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For more out-of-this-world experiences, check out Alien Resort.