I know I'm in LA. We drove a block and a half to the grocery store. Drove
I'm still digesting the gigantic bolus of the San Diego Comic-Con. My body hurts almost as much as my mind.
Blade Runner Redux (my title). There are two sets of the characters, which works because they're replicants.
I liked having the opportunity to have the opera performed again. It premiered in Portland last September. San Diego flew the cast down for a bunch of performances. When the barista sings of her desire to be a super-hero, the audience burst into applause. A volunteer for the convention, an ex-Marine blue collar from Jersey, dragged his 10-year-old son away from the television to see the show. The next night I saw the the kid again. I asked his dad if he had to babysit again. Nope. The kid loved the show so much that he wanted to see it again. Holy crap. There couldn't be a better review than that. Course, when the kid goes to see La Forza Del Destino as his second opera he's going to wonder what sort of screwed up bait-and-switch happened to him.
The downside to doing the opera is that everyone asks when I'm taking it on the road. It was so hard to produce the show, it was like I had managed to steal a brick from the Great Wall of China from under the nose of the Red Communist Army and now, I suffer the suggestion that I should steal the whole Wall. People are well intentioned. They're trying to be nice, i.e. roadworthy. I suppose my complaint falls into the category of "things you can't complain about."
The Comic Convention was great. Not only did I have the glory of an opera but I had a brand new book. Selling to old fans was easy, especially selling to the hot girl with the Too Much Coffee Man tattoo. They'd see my new work and drop $12.95 before I could even begin a sales pitch. Others would pick up the book because the title, Screw Heaven, When I Die I'm Going to Mars, made them laugh. It doesn't have the same instant catch as Too Much Coffee Man, but it's a close second. People told me that they were buying a copy because it had such a good title. They meant to pay me a compliment but it's a little back handed. Again, "things you can't complain about."
Tomorrow, I'll drive from L.A. to Berkeley and I'll talk about my personal driving games:
â€¢ the Birthday Game
â€¢ I-5 Bingo (hint, it's the same 5 items over and over and over again)
â€¢ the France Game
â€¢ the Two Lane Game
÷ ÷ ÷
Shannon Wheeler is the creator of the long-running comic strip Too Much Coffee Man and he currently writes and draws two weekly strips: "How to Be Happy," which runs in several alternative weeklies, and "Postage Stamp Funnies" for the Onion. His most recent book is Screw Heaven, When I Die I'm Going to Mars, a collection of short cartoons that takes a somewhat sweeter look at life's bigger issues. He lives in Portland, Oregon.