Thursday, April 7, 2016

My Comic History

     It takes you a thirty second visit on my blog to see I do not post often. Oh, I have all the intent in the world to give this regular attention. To share my ideas, thoughts, hopes and dreams on an internet blog. Who doesn't want their ramblings to be inspiration for others. Alas, in the mix of adulthood that makes up my life, I just do not give any time to a blog.
    Here we are more than a year since my last post and my sweet sister has given a nod in my direction, for the photos of comic covers I offered her. The resulting traffic has obliged me to post something new. So, if you are reading her A to Z Blogging Challenge for the month of April on Comic Book/Graphic Novel Covers, here is my little behind the scenes for you (without spoiler pictures).

    In high school, while rummaging through boxes in my parents musty and damp basement I ran across an issue of Uncanny X-Men. Like most kids in the 70's and 80's, I watched a good amount of super hero cartoons. X-Men included. So, I read the comic. I'd love to tell you the issue. Or at least the storyline, but it honestly didn't stick with me.
    Fast forward to my very earlier thirties and I still hadn't picked up another comic book. But, my boyfriend at the time, was an avid reader. A few months into the relationship he took me with him to the comic book store. Wednesdays are big days in the comic book world, its new release day.
    Ten years ago, before comics had gained the mainstream popularity they have now, a fairly attractive girl walking into a comic book shop was a big deal. Silence and stares is what I got. I quietly followed behind my guy as he looked through all the titles displayed on the wall. After a time he hands me the three issues he has decided to buy, while he leans down to rifle through some others. I had been prepped on comic book handling. Its like coin handling. As little as possible and very gently. So, I held these three issues, stacked, with a thumb and two fingers. Within a few minutes, I can feel that middle issue slipping. Internally, I start to panic! What do I do?! If I grab the slipping book, I could risk wrinkling it or worse BENDING the cover in my efforts to save it! If I move it from hand to hand, I'll be touching it more! What do I do, what do I do??? Maybe, if I just let it fall, it will glide gently to the floor, landing on the back cover and lay flat. No folding, bending or damage of any kind. And so, it happens. In the split second of panic in my head, the comic slips from between the two I am holding, changing my light grasp of the other two and all three comics FALL TO THE FLOOR!
    Here is the proof that everyone was watching me with every step, as we walked around the store, because the moment those books touched the floor, the entire store gasped! Collectively. I could not have timed something like that had I wanted! My companion turned on me, betrayal in his eyes, "What did you do?!"
    Despite this dramatic first visit, I was invited back. As comics obviously played a big part in my guys life, I decided to sew him a Spider-Man quilt, his favorite character. But, as I knew so little about the webbed crusader, I had to do some research. With movies and mainstream media, we are now all aware that super hero costumes change, frequently. I needed to know what costume I was going to design onto the top of this quit. So, I went to the internet and started my research. The more I read about Spider-man, the more interested I became. And thus began my relationship with comics.
    I started off reading Midnight Nation. Next, was House Of M. And if you plan on going to see Civil War, you might want to read this first. After that, I was hooked. I was at the comic book store every Wednesday picking up the issues from my pull list, buying variant covers and looking at all the new stuff I hadn't previously known existed. A female in my thirties, for the first time in my life, I was reading comics on the regular. I loved it! I devoured certain story lines. Reading as many back issues as I could in one setting. Spider-Man The Other was a favorite and became a pivotal point in my current relationship. But, thats another story for another time.
    Fast forward another ten years and I don't read comics with the enthusiasm as I was before. Although, I will, when prompted get out my many boxes filled, pop them open and start rifling through, as I did recently for my sister. It was like a stroll down memory lane. Pulling out the variant Michael Turner covers from Civil War was heartbreaking. My favorite cover by my favorite artist, which I won't share, just in case Jackie does later in the month. Along with titles I had forgotten about  and set aside with the intent to read again. There were titles, like The Other that marked milestones in previous relationships. I even have the individual issues of Midnight Nation, still bagged boarded and one of them graded, that were sent to me from a date, in lieu of flowers.
    My small, personal comic book archives are somewhat of a scrapbook to me. I just love that in the simplest form, you will be able to see snippets of this at Bouquet of Books this month. And thank you to my sister, for prompting me to read again. <3

1 comment:

  1. I love this! Thank you for sharing how your love for comics began!