Wednesday, November 12, 2003

Now We Know

The Husband and I spent the evening at Sci-Fi City, meeting the members of the local NERO group. A good friend of ours is involved in running the group and has invited us to join in several times. Now we are going to do so. We bought the book and everything.

There are stereotypes about gamers, in particular live action gamers. A lot of them are true. There is a large part of me that says I've grown passed these sorts of things, and these kinds of people. They tend to be the ugly, the clumsy, the socially inept, the outsiders and fringe dwellers who don't flow with mainstream society yet aren't part of the group who make a point of rejecting that society. They are squished and scrubbed somewhere between. If you consider yourself reasonably cool, sophisticated, intelligent, culturally aware, and fashionable (or desperately want to give that impression to other people who are all those things), then you wouldn't talk to any of these folks -- not in public, at least.

I look at these people and I don't want to be like them. But it's too late. I'm already like them, and I have been for years. I've just grown painfully aware of what "they" are and how "they" are seen by others. We are people who happily wear costumes at any given opportunity. We speak in coded languages. We own dice with more sides than you've ever seen, and we know how to use them.

So, in a little less than two weeks' time, I shall be running around in the woods in costume and makeup, pretending to be something medieval and fantasy, until I am embarrassed into more mundane behavior and go home. I suppose if I just put on a short dress and went to a club, got drunk and sang karioke with groups of people I don't know until someone sent me home in a cab, I'd be a lot more "cool, sophisticated, intelligent, culturably aware, and fashionable".

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Sci-Fi City used to be the best gaming/comics/SFF/Anime store in all of Orlando. It also used to be called Enterprise 1701 (guess why!) While we were there, we went shopping (of course). Bought the Nero Book. Husband picked up some comics titles he'd missed while I cruised the graphic novels. Found the first two of the Kabuki series.

There's only one reason I know anything about Kabuki, and that's because I've met David Mack. Only thing is, I ddn't know he was David Mack or that Kabuki was quite as big as it is. Here's the tale.

One of the shows we work is called Fantasm. Last year, one of our favorite artists, Andy Lee, was there. (I adore Andy Lee and wish there was time enough at these shows to actually sit and talk and -- well -- get to know people. He seems like such a tremendously sweet person, and I *so* adore his artwork.) Across from Andy was another artist, whom Husband and I called "Muscular Arms Artist Guy" - "Arms" for short -- because of his beautifully muscular arms and broad chest. He was a fairly short guy, not typically handsome but very pleasing, obviously a weightlifter, and he had sheafs of beautiful pictures on his table (the significance of which eluded me then). At some point during the show, Husband did some massage work on his shoulder and, in trade, he gave us one of his prints on which he had done some enhancement. He also seemed like a great guy, but he had to leave the show early and, well, when you are working your booth all day, it's hard to get to know anyone, and at night you just want to crash.

So, while cruising through the graphic novels, I noticed that the print we had was the cover art on one of the books. Inside was a photo of Muscular Arms Artist Guy, with his name underneath. So we bought the book, and if I like it, I plan to buy the rest of the series (as the artwork looks wonderful).

And now we know.

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