Dallas Con.

Mr. Austin here. Went to the Wizard Universe Texas Convention in Arlington, TX last Saturday. Boy oh boy am I glad I showered.

Let's face it, I'm a geek. I like Star Wars and Lego and comic books and movies about all of the above, but I will admit that I in no way consider myself a Fan Boy. You might ask, what is a Fan Boy? You might also ask for your 5 minutes back when you're done reading this. You might also ask for pie. To me a Fan Boy is a human being that lives, eats and breaths comic books. They know all about each and every creator under the sun, they know all the story lines, they know all the histories, and they are intimately aware of all news and events surrounding comics.

Most genres of entertainment have similar creatures. Groupies, buffs, 'heads, stalkers. Call 'em what you like, for comics it's Fan Boys.

The main difference between myself and an average FB is I posses some measure of talent. Not to say all FBs are talentless hacks or wannabes trying to schmooze up to any and all creative geniuses they ever meet. Well, yeah that's exactly what I'm saying. I know most artists and writers have had inspiration and a reason that they got into the field, but I've never heard of a true Fan Boy making it big. Likewise I've heard of very few movie critics that have made feature films.

The other difference is that for the most part I just don't care who did what on which issue. I'd like to be entertained by the story, but that's about where my loyalties end. I could really care less some times about the guy inking for Green Arrow or the guy who took over on a back up story of Batman because the main guy had a heart attack or whatever. I mean, there are characters I like, and books I've read that I was blown away by the story telling or art or something, but my life just doesn't end there.

I guess it's different for everyone. I don't mean to harp on the guys and girls who read religiously and follow their favorites and go to cons to get signatures and sketches and press the flesh with the almighties. I wandered around Arlington Convention Center in a daze. I wasn't with anyone for most of the time, and I didn't have any plans other than get a few sketches from the people I knew from Penciljack, so my time was spent searching for books that were recently out, something I never found. I shook hands with and got a signature fromPeter Mayhew, very nice guy, and got a Ray #1 and #2 signed by Joe Q. That's about the extent of my Who's Who.

So you can imagine how humbling it is to come home to a wife who wants to be involved in what I do, but is finding it harder and harder to give two craps about it. All she wanted was to put a sink in, not listen to me go on and on about how Noah Hathaway was in a car wreck and couldn't be there to sign autographs. I don't consider myself a Fan Boy, but I'm sure others would.

So while I was considering leaving early because, frankly, I had no business being there, I realized that no matter how cool I thought I was, or how dorky I thought everyone else was, I paid my $20 to get in. I stood in line for an autograph of an E&C. I seriously considered buying loads and loads of books and figures and toys and shirts and art. So while I can actually claim some Fan Boy Holy Grails such as having sex or owning a home or getting paid pretty decently, I can't claim I'm 100% removed from that life, because like it or not, I made the choice to be part of it. I can either embrace it, or get rid of my pencils altogether.

Completely unrelated note, Mrs. Austin and Little Mystery (as we'll refer to the latest offspring until such time as they reveal themselves to us) are doing fine. Yes there's the typical uncomfortableness and irritability that can only be found when a woman is with child, but Mrs. A is handling it with aplomb. She IS a little worried, though, I mean, look at the size of this kid. Keep in mind this is 3 months.

Kid is laying on it's back sucking it's thumb, probably. If they're anything like LMA, they're picking their nose. But you can see the head, body, toes, elbow. There's a video of the sonogram where you can see the heart beating very strong. Reason we're worried is right now the kid is more than twice LMA's size at the same time. I hope for Mrs. Austin's sake this isn't a large child.

That's all.

And for those requesting New York pictures, you can email us if you want to get copies, but trust me, it's nothing spectacular. Bunch of buildings at night, mostly out of focus. Probably better off watching Letterman or doing a stock photo search of Midtown.


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