Monday, June 23, 2003

2003 Toys and Collectibles Convention
SM Megamall Conference Hall

I was invited by Hobbyzone guy Azrael (yup, his real name) to join them at their booth last Saturday, alongside Gerry Alanguilan (Wasted, Superman: Birthright), Lyndon Gregorio (Beerkada, Stricken), and the young indie comics folks. Because the Conference Hall was packed to the rafters, I didn't bother going around to check out the merchandise. But I finally got to meet MTV Ink's Bernie Sim and the lovely lass who wrote that flattering Zaturnnah review on (I'm sorry, but I'm terrible with names. Was it Abby?) Jac Lim was also there doing her caricatures and earning her keep.

There were other superstars like Wilson Tortosa (Battle of the Planets) and the folks of Culture Crash. I thanked James and Taga-Ilog for including a good review of Zaturnnah in Culture Crash #11.

(Gerry, was that John Toledo? The guy in the white shirt? If it was the John Toledo, I will melt from shame. I believe I've never met him personally.)

There were hardly any kids at the event, and a great majority of the attendees were male. My guess is that majority of the guys there were over 20 years old. The big boys who love toys. An interesting advertising opportunity right there.

After signing a few books and selling a few copies, I decided to leave to get my first meal of the day. I left the place at around 4 or 5 pm. I heard that other local comics big shots dropped by. What I do enjoy about events like this is the atmosphere, a strange fellowship among those who love toys, games, comics, etc. It's a geek thing. Geeks rule.

(Thanks, again, Az, for the invite!)


That night, the gang decided to break its convention by having dinner in Makati's Rockwell Center. Dean mentioned that Fully Booked, the former Page One, has three shelves worth of graphic novels and trades for sale. We decided to go there first before heading to ñ.

I almost collapsed when I saw the shelves upon shelves of perfect bound comics. This kind of spectacle almost always prompts me to check my wallet, which I did. I could only afford one.

Then I saw it -- Volume One of Katsuhiro Otomo's dark future epic Akira. I already bought Volume Two from ComicQuest months ago, and it wasn't certain when they'd get another Volume One. I grabbed the red-cover tome and held it close to me as if it were a life jacket. There was no question in my mind that I had to get it. I checked the rest of the shelves if there was something else of interest. Good thing there wasn't any at the moment, save maybe for Dave McKean's Php 3000 Cages. Ummm... maybe next time.

So now I've added a couple of trades to my growing collection. Last week at ComicQuest, I got myself the classic V for Vendetta by Alan Moore and David Boyd. Then there's Akira. That's over two thousand bucks worth of comics happiness in less than a week. Happiness don't come cheap.

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