Trevor Von Eeden's Second Day at Great Philadelphia Comic Con

Last week we ran the story of when Trevor Von Eeden met Jim Steranko at Great Philadelphia Comic Con. But it didn't end there. He writes…

So… on the next and final day, Sunday, I wore all-black: pants, sneakers, and favorite (pre-tested/sweat-proof) short-sleeved shirt (to show off what the past 22 years of daily pushups and sit-ups have done for the ol' ladyhuggers, y'know… Hey, I'm entitled to my moment in the sun, without being unexpectedly overheated and embarrassed before an audience of fans, critics, and never-ever-missing-a-goddamned-thing cameras!… as much as I can get of it, anyway…)

And guess what? I got about a dozen visitors to my table — black, white, male, female, young, old, mothers, fathers, and children of different nationalities — ALL wanting to just shake my hand, and tell me how much they LOVED my panel appearance! A few others just came over after noticing me while passing by — and did the same thing! My very favorite was one of the staff members, a young fellow in his mid-20s, good-looking, obviously intelligent, and as black as midnight — who came over as I was sitting behind my table drawing, to say: "Black man!! I just want to tell you how much I really enjoyed your speech yesterday!" I said, "Thank you." He said, "No… thank YOU, sir!" — and walked away.

There's more…☺

Shortly afterwards, while my Mom was sitting next to me behind my table, a young kid whom I'd met the day before came over dressed as Spidey (without the mask) and asked if he could interview me for YouTube. So unless I had a booger hanging out of my nose that no one told me about, at least I'll have one piece of footage from the convention that'll only be blemished by the particular peculiarity of the features that I was born with, rather than pit stains on a cheap shirt that I'd never worn before…

The kid asked some pretty intelligent questions too, so I got a chance to talk about stuff that I actually did want to talk about — like how I first taught myself how to draw, the importance of truth and self-awareness (which includes the people and environment around you) in becoming an artist, race, racism — and even why I'd stopped posting on Facebook "Martial arts are as American as apple pie, nowadays — and that's directly because of ONE man: Bruce Lee. If he's not good enough for you, then neither am I!" — in reply to the last question about what social media I post on… maybe I'll try Twitter, even though it's been so heavily tainted by that taint of a fake twat, ever since Jan '16…

Right now, I've got MEMORIES to relive! — OF HUGS, AND THANKS — and even a SECOND CHANCE to speak my piece, solo! (I also promised to do another three or four podcast interviews, and got invited to a couple more conventions, during the course of the day…)

But the VERY BEST part of it ALL was when just before that YouTube interview ended, I directed the camera to the left of where I stood, slightly downward, and said "Here's the woman without whom none of this would've ever been possible: My mother, Mrs. Von Eeden." And my Mom got her full 20 seconds of YouTube immortality, as I continued to answer whatever question I was answering in voice-over! I only hope she was smiling…

And now for the bookend that ended our weekend: On the way to the convention that morning, I'd also bumped into Nefessa (THUNDER) Williams's family as they were leaving the hotel — they were staying in the room right across from mine! 😱😳They were all young ladies — her two sisters, niece, and a wee baby being carried in a crib-handbag… and the younger sister was carrying the copy of Boxiana and the Ulysses story I'd given Nefessa after the panel! I introduced myself as the fellow who'd given their sister that stuff, and we chatted very amiably until I had to head off and meet my family in the lobby. The tiniest little one of 'em, the niece, gave me a big smile, as she waved goodbye — it turned out to be a nice prelude to the hugs, kisses, and MUCH LOVE I got later on that day, at the convention!

And our day at the convention ended when we bumped into Marvin "Tobias Whale" Jones III on the way to our limo back to New York! He was standing by the door to the exit, just as inconspicuous as you please — I didn't even notice him until he called my name. I was absolutely thrilled to see him, and as I shook his hand with a big smile on my face, he told he how much he really appreciated the package I'd given him after the panel — then he gave my Mom a BIG HUG!!!

So… what can I say? Right now, I don't even care how sweat-drenched I came across onstage, or on film at the Black Lightning panel — I came home… and I'm sitting here… STILL FILLED WITH MEMORIES OF LOVE, RESPECT, LONG-OVERDUE, HARD-EARNED RECOGNITION… AND HUGS, HUGS, HUGS… AND… EVEN MORE HUGS!!!!😀

Life is GOOD! 🤗


About Rich Johnston

Chief writer and founder of Bleeding Cool. Father of two. Comic book clairvoyant. Political cartoonist.

twitter   facebook square   globe