Friday, August 02, 2013

Fandomfest and Stan Lee

Last weekend, my wife and I attended Fandomfest in Louisville, Kentucky.  The con tries to combine anime, horror, science fiction, gaming, writing and celebrities together into a single weekend.  But the main focus is really on the celebrities.

We went because we wanted to meet Stan Lee.  Stan is a legend in the comic book world.  His writing career at Marvel spanned many years, and his creations include the X-Men, Fantastic Four and Spider-Man (among hundreds of other characters).  Now over 90 years old, Stan continues to write because he's doing what he loves, so there would be no point to retire.

We splurged for an exclusive meet and greet that took place on Saturday.  I asked Stan which character resembles him the most.  His hearing isn't the greatest anymore, so I had to repeat part of it.  He replied, "All of them.  All of their good points, of course.  Uh, probably Tony Stark, 'cause he's so glamorous and intelligent, and the girls love him... I guess I used myself as a model.  And if you believe that, I've got a bridge in Brooklyn I'll sell you."

Stan and me

Another fan asked about his use of adjectives like "Amazing Spider-Man," and beyond the question itself, Stan said, "I love adjectives... I'll never say one word if twenty will suffice."  It made me laugh because in today's writing world, we seem so concerned with conciseness.  I think we're losing something in our zealousness for brevity.

We met other celebrities as well, including Norman Reedus (famous for his role on "The Walking Dead"), Alan Tudyk and Adam Baldwin (from "Firefly"), and William Shatner.  The photos were a quick ten seconds with the celebrities - pose and go.  I decided I also wanted Shatner's autograph (just for a bit more face to face time), so we went to his booth on Sunday.  After getting his autograph, I asked if I could shake his hand.  The pen seemed locked in his right hand, so he shakily extended his left hand.  I put my hand over his fingers and gave a light shake.  Some people frown when I tell the story, but he looked tired; I don't think he was up for a full handshake at that moment.  But hey, I touched his hand, so that counts for something.

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