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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

WINTER 2011 TOUR DIARY Part Seven

I woke up Thursday morning, in Waltham, Mass.  Packed up my stuff, and headed out early.  I was going to try to make it all the way to Cleveland, where Kevin Czap's luxurious couch awaited me.  Out west on I-90, there was snow.







Crossing the Berkshires



I thought about stopping in Albany to visit Porter, but he had pneumonia.  Above, the river.






Made it to Cleveland, no problem.  Met up with Kevin, jabbered a bit, and then ZZZZZZZZZ.

Next morning there was snow on my car, the first of the tour.  I had been worried the whole time about running into bad weather, and it was in the 50's and 60's until my last day.

Entering the Chicago Skyway.

Home.






* * *

Lo and behold, the day after I arrived home was the Milwaukee Zine Fest.  So I stocked up on comics and made my way down 43.

The Spit and a Half spread, MKE Zine Fest

S/H Auxiliary Box and table.

God, I love the midwest.

Another Satisfied Customer™.

- - -

MANY SPECIAL THANKS TO:  Kevin Czap and the Cleveland crew; John and Michele; Jim Rugg and Bill Boichel; Julia, Sarah and NYC homies; Brent at Ada; Cara Bean; and Tony at MYP.

I'm going to sleep now!

John P.

Friday, January 13, 2012

WINTER 2011 TOUR DIARY Part Six

I left New York Monday morning for the trip up north into Providence.  I had a signing that evening at the great Ada Books.


Make that a thousand-and-one.

You know you're getting into Providence when the highway bends and all of a sudden it looks like the cover of Animals.

Ada Books storefront

I went inside and said hi to Brent, the shopowner.  I unloaded my stuff and headed into the streets in search of Chinese food.

"Like sands through the hourglass..."






I liked that hook.



Sunset window.



10¢ a ride.


The signing went great.  Ada is a lovely little bookstore specializing in small press, comics, poetry, zines, used books, and other worthwhile pursuits.  The shelves are all custom made and wrap around the cozy space organically.  And always good music playing.  I picked up a copy of Charlotte Chandler's I, Fellini on my way out.  I was driving up to the Boston area for my next couple signings.

Made it up to Waltham, where I was staying with the artist/educator Cara Bean.  Tuesday I dropped in to her "Comics Club," at the nearby high school where she teaches.  I talked to the kids about finding your way as an artist.  And they actually listened.  I think.

That night was a signing in the local indie bookshop, Back Pages.  Cara had rallied the troops and a lot of folks showed up.  It was a great little event.

Lo and behold, my old friend Dan, from Kilgore Books and auteur behind the upcoming King-Cat documentary turned up in the audience!  We went up to Cara's afterwards and had tea.  A nice surprise.

Everytime I saw this bear under the table I thought it was cat.  That's my knee in the foreground.  Cara has gessoed her tabletop and has visitors add little drawings to it when they come through.

Just so you know folks, this is the kind of thing I have to put up with on the road.  It's not all just fun and games.

The next evening I drove to Harvard Square in a DOWNPOUR for the last signing of the tour, at Million Year Picnic.  Owner Tony Davis is one of the coolest dudes in comics, and it was fun hanging out in his kooky amazing shop while buckets fell down outside.

Then, to bed, for an early rise in the morning.  I was heading back home, and it was about time.

NEXT:  The Long Journey Home


Monday, January 9, 2012

WINTER 2011 TOUR DIARY Part Five

After our trip down the Greenpoint Nature Trail, Julia, Gabrielle, and I wandered south a bit to look for the last wooden cobblestones in Brooklyn.  This is what we saw along the way:









I liked this "Night Regulation" sign.

The East River


"Under the paving stones...

the beach."


Hey, wait a minute...


Down at the Ferry Launch was a colony of cats.  There was a guy there feeding them and watching them, and he explained that they were TNR (Trap, Neuter, Release). 




The cats take shelter in these boxes, lined with cedar oil-treated straw, which keeps fleas away.

Meow

I liked this art-door.







Wooden cobblestones.



Goodbye, New York!

NEXT:  PROVIDENCE, BOSTON, ETC.