May had its good moments and its bad. The good moments included a light at the end of the tunnel concerning the Covid-19 pandemic in America and Pensacon 2021, my first convention since Pensacon 2020 in February of that year. The bad things involved Republicans and racism, pretty much par for the course in my country.
The easing of pandemic restrictions made it possible for my son Ed and I to see Godzilla vs. Kong on a big screen. It made it possible for us to go to Pensacon 2021. It makes it possible for those of us who are fully vaccinated to go without masks to grocery stores and the like. I’m kind of amazed what a relief that has turned out to be. Not that I go anywhere all that often.
Air travel is still pretty lousy, but it was lousy before Covid-19. I know our decent politicians, not Republicans, have a lot of hard work to do as they try to overcome the insanity virus visited on my country by future convict Donald Trump and his demented followers. But, if they get a free moment, could they do something about the airlines constantly shrinking the size of the expensive seats they sell us and maybe give us bathrooms bigger than my ass?
Going forward, I hope to become productive, both as a writer and as a human being. I’ll be a little more thoughtful when it comes to my work and my life. I didn’t survive four years of Donald Trump and a pandemic to give up now. I’m doing Godzilla’s work here.
I’ll be writing about Pensacon 2021 in detail very soon. For today, here are the things that made be happy in May...
May 1: Twitter friend Eva Webb came up with this marvelous phrase for referring to bad people groups: [placeholder for very specific and personal bad thing]. I love it a lot.
May 2: Fatal Fried Rice, the seventh Noodle Shop mystery by Vivien Chien. Restaurant manager and amateur detective Lana Lee is a great character with a great supporting cast. The series gets better with
each new book.
May 3: Preparation for my summer Vast Accumulation of Stuff garage sales begins. I’m scheduling the first one for Friday and Saturday, June 4-5, 9 am to 1 pm. Other dates and hours will be announced as soon as possible.
NOTE: I should never ever predict when my garage sales will start because something unexpected always happens. Right now, my target dates are Saturday and Sunday, June 18 and 19. If I’m ready before then, I’ll give you a chance to schedule one–on-one visits. After the first open-to-all garage sale, I hope to have them every week. Great stuff. Great prices. I want to put a major dent in the Vast Accumulation of Stuff.
May 4: Medina councilperson Jessica Hazeltine. She’s everything we could ask for: compassionate, hard-working, progressive. I’m not fond of elitist Medina politicians in general, but Hazeltine would be a star wherever she served.
May 5: Russell Stover’s Lemon Pucker lemon candy with a kick. For the purpose of today’s thing that makes me happy, I am living in an alternate universe where incredibly delicious lemon candy does not pose a risk to a Type 2 diabetic.
May 6: Joëlle Jones and Jamie S. Rich’s Lady Killer, a comic-book series I have praised on numerous occasions, is being adapted for feature presentation by Blake Lively and Diablo Cody. Start popping the corn because I’m totally there when it opens.
May 7: Black Comix Returns by John Jennings and Damian Duffy. It’s a gorgeous coffee-table book showcasing some of the most exciting talents in Black comics today.
May 8: Mark Millar. I don’t have to like everything he does - but I do like a lot of it - to be impressed by the business savvy this comics creator shows in all he does. I wish I’d been even a quarter as smart in my own career.
May 9: Damon Gupton conducting the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra in an evening of great film scores. The music was wonderful and my friend Damon was an engaging and fun guest conductor and host. Barb and I watched the concert on YouTube.
May 10: Saintly wife Barb had a nice Mother’s Day at Casa Isabella. Our kids are grown and have their own houses, but we get together for family dinner once a week. Yesterday was very special, but, you know, they all are.
May 11: Michael Northrop’s Dear Super-Villains is even better than his earlier Dear Justice League. The writing is witty and Gustavo Duarte’s art is wonderfully amusing. It’s a DC Kids book, but great fun for even us older kids.
May 12: The May 6 episode of The United States of Al was worthy of Emmy nomination. It spotlighted the plight of Afghan interpreters waiting for visas, gave us a realistic depiction of PTSD and still managed to be very funny.
May 13: For the first time in over a year, Barb and I were able to see my mother in her apartment. We had a wonderful visit. Thanks to Emerald Village for keeping her and the other residents safe enough to allow this.
May 14: I was happy to see my friend Dave Cockrum and my frequent collaborator Don Heck on this year’s Eisner Hall of Fame ballot. I voted for them, and Max Gaines and Gaspar Saladino.
May 15: I ordered Zorro Flights #1, a new comic book written by the legendary Don McGregor. Buying a new McGregor comic is something I haven’t done in too long a time and I hope it’s the first of many more to come.
May 16: Cassidy’s Secret is a new comics series written by Charles Holland, Head Writer and Executive Producer of the Black Lightning TV show. If he writes comics as well as he writes TV scripts, this is gonna be amazing.
May 17: My anxiety about flying for the first time in over a year was alleviated by seeing three bomb-detecting dogs being trained as we waited to board. It was a cool thing to witness.
May 18: Seeing Mike Ensley, Julio Diaz and Maria Landy when Eddie and I arrived at Pensacon’s base camp. Though the event had to deal with Hurricane Sally damage and the pandemic, they and the rest of the team were magnificent.
May 19: Pensacon Transportation Coordinator Maria Landy is also an incredible artist. Knowing of my love for Godzilla, she made this and gave it to me on my arrival.
May 20: Taylor’s Breakfast and Lunch in Pensacola. Home of the best breakfast sandwich I’ve ever had. It’s a ten-minute drive from the usual Pensacon hotel, but I’m pretty sure I need to eat there again in 2022.
May 21: Pensacon. My Creators Alley spot couldn’t have been better. Legendary monster artist Mark Maddox was on one side, world-class comics artist John Dell was on the other. It was great hanging out with two of my favorite people.
May 22: Pensacon. For the second year in a row, I was honored to be a judge of the Pensacon Short Film Festival. There were some truly excellent entries this year. Kudos to fellow judges Corin Nemec and Mark Maddox.
May 23: Pensacon. Getting to spend several moments with the great James Remar, who played Peter Gambi on Black Lightning and is one of the best actors of our time.
May 24: The series finale of Black Lightning was almost everything I could have asked for. A fitting end to one of the finest super-hero series ever to air on television. My profound admiration for and thanks to all who worked on it.
May 25: Salim Akil called to chat about the finale and thank me for creating the character. I thanked him for the show’s adherence to my creation’s core values. We’re staying in touch with the hope of working together someday.
May 26: Pensacon panels. I had a blast talking about stupid super-villains and horrible comic-book stereo types with the Long Box’s Thomas Strange and fellow panelist Emily Whitten. Looking forward to more fun like this in 2022.
May 27: More Pensacon Panels. I did panels on Star Trek and Super Heroics with Melinda Snodgrass, Peter David, Keith DeCandido, Barry Gregory and Marion G. Harmon. Such distinguished panels...and me.
May 28: Pensacon. My Godzilla Hawaiian shirt was a hit. Even so, I think I have to seriously consider that I own way too many Godzilla shirts. I’ve got to downside a bit.
May 29: Marv Wolfman and George Perez voicing characters named Marv Wolfman and George Perez on Teen Titans Go! Sometimes the world is both crazy and wonderful.
May 30: Pensacon 2021 was a wonderful event. Old and new friends. Terrific crew and fans. Great restaurants. And the best thing about it was sharing it with my son. You’re the man, Eddie.
May 31: My Golden Anniversary Tour, celebrating my fifty years in comics. It starts at Pensacon 2022 in February, ends at Pensacon 2023, with eleven other cons in between. Two of those eleven spots are already booked.
Coming next in the bloggy is my Pensacon 2021 trip report. I don’t know how long it will run because sometimes, when I love something the way I love this convention, I just go on and on.
Thanks for stopping by. I’ll be back soon with more stuff.
© 2021 Tony Isabella