About six months later I attended a Portland comic convention. Bendis made a surprise appearance and shared a table with the co-creator of Powers, Michael Avon Oeming. I actually brought a couple of Powers books with me for Oeming to sign, but now Bendis was there too. So I got up to the table and he said, "Mikey, good to see you!" I nearly shit my pants. My hero remembered me. He asked me how my writing was going and if I checked out some of the things he recommended to me (I had). I handed him my books that he signed. I told him our conversation last summer meant a lot to me. As I was saying this he was signing a copy of his $25 script book that he handed to me. I told him I didn't have enough money for it. His response was (and I swear I'll never forget this), "pay for it by sitting behind one of these tables one day. Keep writing." So yeah, my head basically exploded. I met my hero and he not only talked with me, remembered me, but encouraged me to take the plunge into the crazy world of comics.
I know, it's cheesy as hell but it's true. I don't know where I'd be without all the canuckle heads in my life. I've been thinking about it a lot lately and I have so many different kinds of friends. It's almost like the list of my friends is as diverse as this beautiful country. I'm fortunate enough to have friends from every demographic imaginable with numerous backgrounds, experiences, view points, and lessons to bestow. When I say friends I'm not talking about all the contacts I have on Facebook or Myspace. I'm talking about whoever is reading the ramblings of this chubby guy rocking out in his basement to Bayside while he opens his heart out. That's right. YOU!!! You guys make every moment of my life worth living.
A lot has happened as far as friendships go over this last year. I've made a lot of them and I think I've drifted from a lot too. I've also drifted closer to people I've drifted from. Friendship is weird like that but I know if any of you called with a problem or showed up at my doorstep needing a place to crash I'd totally be there for you (I think I'm done lending TV shows and movies though. Sorry).
After Pat died it was a big wake up call to me that we need to make sure we've got each others backs. More than a year passed since I saw him, and although I thought about him and wondered what he was up to, I never reached out and now it's too late. I never want that to happen again. I make it a point to try and drop a line to everyone, even if it's just through Facebook so I can let you all know that I still care and I'm still your friend. I measure a good part of my success by the amount of kick ass people I have around me. I'm lucky that number's high because it means I'm richer than Bill Gates. I know I say it every blog, but thanks for being there for me and supporting me.
1. My Brother, Darian
It's true. I love my brother. He's easily the single greatest person I know and I've never really told him. Today's my bromosexual's birthday and I'm writing this to tell him he's not just my brother and my comic partner, but my best friend and he has been for years. This guy went from kicking my ass as a kid to holding my hand through every big moment of my life. I never told him but he's actually been the light at the end of some dark tunnels. When I had no idea what the hell was going on in my life he's been there to tell me to suck it up and be a man. He's been there to talk to about anything from comic books to love.
This guy got me my first job. He was there for my first shot at Sam's. He was there when I got my call from Dark Horse saying they wanted to interview me. He always gave me a couch to sleep on when I was afraid to go home. He got me my first comics (or did I steal them from him?) He taught me to take a joke but not be the butt of one. He's encouraged me more than anyone in my life when it comes to chasing my dream. More than anything he taught be how to persevere through the shit storms of life. We talk all the time and it's never enough. Minutes turn to hours. It's like we're in our own little world and the laws of time and space don't exist. We can fight like brothers but connect like the most mythic of friendships.
So you've now read my most valued things in all the world. I really hope you guys have put some thought into yours because this is one of those top 5's that really helps define you as a person.
Speaking of which I'm formally declaring my wishes to the universe about what I want out of life. I want to be a successful comic book writer and teacher. I want to find real love and I want to share all my joys with my nearest and dearest. I'm going to will this into a reality and one day I'm going to be so successful that I'll have the money to build my replica of the Shire where there will be hobbit holes for all my friends to stay in when they visit. This is my future and it's what's going to happen no matter what anyone else says. I see it, I believe it, it will happen.
I love you all and thanks for reading,
P.S. Dan Jones, Brandon Wolfe and myself are currently building and creating content for a website. We're hoping to have stuff up by Halloween but in the meantime favorite our site and we'll let you know when it's live. www.chroniclesofthenerds.com.