This past August 28 was International Read Comics in Public Day. In the past, public readings I’ve organized have been very popular and largely successful, so I did not want to pass this opportunity up. There was one problem; I was in Montreal, and it’s not like I was going to take comic books out into a foreign country and sit in a public place to read comics. Ohh wait, it’s an internationally recognized event? Shoot! Well, I didn’t want to, how about that?
So I had a make up day. That make up day was September 9, 2011, the Friday before 9/11. It doesn’t get any more American than that!
Part of the challenge of organizing something like this is finding a venue that could acommodate the event. I had it narrowed down to three places, spun a magic wheel, and that wheel indicated that Flavour Cafe in Troy, NY would work.
As a matter of fact, Flavour Cafe was perfect! They even have a stage that could be utilized for the reading.
To make it even more perfect, Flavour makes some pretty tasty coffee concoctions, and has cupcakes to boot. I ordered an iced Almond Joy® latte and Boston Creme cupcake.
Let’s get this out of the way, since that’s what many of you are here for.
The latte was the standard quality for Flavour, which is to say mediocre but yummy. It’s basically coffee-flavored milk and flavor syrup. The Boston creme cupcake was close to the end of the freshness cycle; the cake had a cornbread texture, and the creme was on the thick side, but it tasted good enough. Their stuff is priced a little high for the quality they serve, but, for an event like this, who is going to complain about price? Who’s going to complain about anything?
My buddy, Metalfrog, technical wizard for derryX.com among other internet addresses, a human being I met through the internet, came with me, and we let the crowd gather while we had our snacks. Each of us brought a stack of comic books about the size of a phone book, but we had some trouble deciding which book to showcase.
We let someone in the crowd pick what I would read on that little stage, and, ironically, it was Amazing Spider-man # 666. It could have been random; It could have been because it was stored in a protective polyethylene bag with a cardboard backing while none of the others were. We will just never know.
I actually am really bad at reading from a page in public. Give me a presentation that I wrote or ask me to speak to people off the top of my head, and I can get by and not sound silly. Hey, I realize my weaknesses and strengths. I’m not great at reading off a page, but I went at it because it had to be done.
I had fun with it.
I kept at it.
And I read that whole damn thing! It took almost 12 minutes. Almost.
I was really appreciative of the people who came to Flavour that night and put up with that. The very least I could do, the bare minimum, is express my gratitude to them. They didn’t need to hear any of that. But they did, and they had fun. I could never say this enough to a supporter: if you were there, Thank you!
For an added bonus, I left that copy of Amazing Spider-man 666, complete with polyethylene bag and cardboard backing, which you will remember from the above link showcases another Troy business, in Flavour Cafe for one lucky person to find. If you find it, it’s all yours! I left a derryX sticker along with an address that the lucky person can use to email me so that I know (hopefully) when it is found and who finds it. Good luck!
Back to that night, being that it was a patriotic weekend, I saw the American flag hanging in the restaurant and decided I needed a picture in front of the flag.
It was a fun night.
And, if, somehow, the idea of public readings or comic books upset you, here’s what I have to say to you…