Friday, we drove to New York, where the buildings are taller than the ones we have in Chestertown.
As is my habit, I packed way too many boxes of books. I am riddled with optimism.
For the second year, the Museum of Comic and Cartoon Arts Festival (that’s MoCCA Fest, for those in the know) was run by the Society of Illustrators, who did a great job in making it feel both fun and professional.
Case in point, the enormous Macy’s float Charlie Brown that hovered above the proceedings.
It was kind of wonderful. And kind of eerie.
Things that felt less professional? Robbi. Robbi who was defeated by tape. Repeatedly defeated. This is just one instance.
Did I mention that the woman has a college degree?
We set up our booth and waited for the crowds to arrive.
Actually, the crowds were already there, waiting patiently for the doors to open 11:00am.
In deference to our dual identity, we got two tables, one for Idiots’Books and another for Bobbledy.
At the appointed hour, the doors opened, and the aisles filled with comic enthusiasts, including our friend and former student Jen Oswald (red shirt, gray sweater).
The Bobbledy table was a hit with the families in attendance. More than one spontaneous reading broke out.
One of which resulted in a brand-new club member.
She graciously agreed to be photographed with Robbi.
The Idiots fare got it’s share of browsers.
Including quite a few who stopped to admire the Sex book.
If you are not familiar, our mix-and-match book of sexual possibility, Sex to the Third Power: 1,000 Ways to Get it On struck the collective funny bone of the MoCCA crowd.
People often ask us to sign our books and sometimes even to dedicate them. When one is dedicating the Sex book, one digs deep, trying to come up with something worthy of the occasion.
I felt compelled to document the dedication below with a photograph, as it is probably the first of Robbi’s dedications to contain a particular word (twice).
We did a two-day residency at MICA this past fall, and several of the students we worked with stopped by the booth to share their book projects with us.
Apparently, Battle Vixens and Warlords was quite popular with the MoCCA set.
As was this book cleverly concealed within a custom case made to look like a cassette tape.
2:00am is a quiet and beautifully drawn record of observation.
Portraits of the Notably Interred details the various spirits not living at a particular graveyard.
Perhaps my favorite title of all, Sloths are Bad at Things details, not surprisingly, various activities for which sloths are not well suited.
Delivering pizzas, for example.
For a great idea and gorgeous illustrations, I recommend The Opposite Zoo.
This spread shows the difference between big and little.
Here’s the back cover, a fitting bookend to the front.
It being MoCCA, were also selling our Super Hero Squad book, which caused quite a stir among some of our younger fans.
We met the granddaughter of comic legend Sheldon Mayer, creator of the Sugar and Spike series, published by DC Comics from 1956-1971.
She had honored her grandfather by tattooing his face on her back.
We stayed with our friend David in the West Village, and on Sunday morning, walked back up to the 69th Regiment Armory, which is only a few blocks from the Flatiron Building. I think we take this same shot every year. We keep getting older, but the Flatiron remains just as magnificent.
Note to the observant: that’s my Subway sandwich. Robbi has much better taste. She ate Pret a Manger.
I love how everything is jammed together in New York, the old buildings dwarfed by the new.
On Sunday morning, we had a surprise visit from Robbi’s Aunt Mimi, who lives in East Chester, north of the city.
And not long after, a surprise visit from Bobbledy mom, Melissa, whose boys Conrad and Beckett are regular contributors on the Bobbledy Blog.
We were also pleased to meet this fine person, who did not share her name, but who does have excellent taste in music.
If you have kids and do not yet have a copy of I Don’t Wanna Brush My Teeth by Drew Bunting, then you are missing an excellent opportunity to cultivate excellent taste in their young minds. If you are an adult without kids and do not own a copy of this album, you are simply living a life less wonderful than the one you might enjoy were you to buy yourself a copy. Truly, it’s great stuff, fun for folks of all ages.
By the end of the day on Sunday, we were beat.
Even Charlie Brown was starting to flag.
Emergency Medical Services were brought in to keep his massive foot from crashing to the ground.
Right before we left, we met Aedan Roberts, who shared his accordion-fold sketchbook with us.
And his accordion-fold, plexiglass-bound, custom, handmade book with us.
Each one takes six hours to make.
But my favorite of his creations was his pack of Nudtendo cards.
That’s right, 18 of your favorite Nintendo characters caught in that awful moment from your worst nightmares when you find yourself suddenly standing naked in the front of the classroom.
They are hilarious, and so well drawn. You can check out the entire series here.
At the end of the day, we packed up our still-far-too-full boxes and headed back home.
Through the canyons of Manhattan back south again.