Emerald City Comic Con was this weekend #ECCC2015

Mt Rainier over Seattle

Mt Rainier over Seattle

Mt Rainier over Seattle

This weekend in Seattle Washington at the Washington Convention Center was the Emerald City Comic Con. I was unable to post here on M31Publishing due to a technical error with the site and because I was away from home I didn’t have the same access that I normally have and needed to correct the problem.

Thankfully the fine people over at Fangirlnation published my review of day 1 of the con here .

Of course there is so much that happens at a convention that I cannot possibly get it all into a single article. One of the things I should mention that I rarely do are the places we like to eat when we are at the con. On one evening we treat ourselves to a really nice dinner and walk down to The Crab Pot on the waterfront. It’s a bit pricy but so delicious.

There’s a mall called Pacific Place that’s just two blocks away from the convention center. We like it because it’s close and inside are three of our favorite places to have lunch or dinner during the con. It’s close enough to be within walking distance and still provide a bit of a break from the press of the crowds during the day.

Inside we like the Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant, the Mexico Cantina Y Cocina, and for when we have limited time and need to get back for a panel discussion, autograph or some other event we like Pike Place Chowder. I’m sure there are other places that are just as good but these three are the ones we go back to time and again.

I did wear my Mothra cosplay to the ECCC but once again the con photographers missed me. That seems to be the story. Oh well, perhaps one day they will see me in my cosplay. While browsing some of the tables of merchandise I overheard two gentlemen pitching a box similar to a LootCrate but this is called the Marvel Collector Corps. Not as catchy as Lootcrate but all Marvel and Funko stuff inside. In fact the two gentlemen were representatives of Funko.

I really enjoy our Lootcrates, Looters go here to sign up for your own. We got Funko Pop Dancing Baby Groot in one Lootcrate and they are very reasonably priced.

Since we love our Lootcrates we are going to go ahead and give the Marvel Collector Corps boxes a try. If you’re interested in the Marvel box you can check them out here .

Today was the third and last day of the ECCC2015 and I’ve already submitted my review of day two to FangirlNation. As soon as it posts I’ll link it for you.

I’ll leave you with some bonus con pictures. K.

Lilo and Stitch cosplay

Lilo and Stitch cosplay

Starlord

Starlord

Steampunk Storm and Mothra

Steampunk Storm and Mothra

Grant Imahara

Grant Imahara

Alex Kingston

Alex Kingston

Storm

Storm

Westly, Inigo and Fezzik

Westly, Inigo and Fezzik

Greatest American Hero

Greatest American Hero

#Mothra #Cosplay Actual Day 17: Completed in time for #RCCC

Mothra Cosplay Final Form

Mothra Cosplay Final Form

Mothra Cosplay Final Form

That’s right, gentle reader, I got it done and not a moment too soon. Today we are less than 7 days out from the Rose City Comic Con. I also helped stitch the skirt and cape for our Midna (of Zelda fame) that will be one of our cosplayers and then helped with the Godzilla cosplay (although that one may not make RCCC).

As an aside our Godzilla cosplayer has a conflict with the RCCC on Saturday so our plan to enter the team cosplay contest has been thwarted. Maybe we can do something like that when we get to the Emerald City Comic Con. Wish us luck!

I know last week I said it was day 14 but I went back and counted them up and it’s actually day 17 today. My total hours invested in the project are right at about 70. I splurged on two things this week for the costume, pushing the cost for materials up to $110.00 but several of the things I got are not absolutely necessary for the cosplay.

Yeah I got the bluetooth speaker.

Yeah I got the bluetooth speaker.

Perfect example: I picked up a bluetooth speaker (toy of the night when I brought it home) and bought the theme song for Mothra to put somewhere (possibly in the front vest pocket) and play while I’m at the Con. That was $30.00 I hadn’t planned on spending when I calculated the cost of the materials. In fact that little splurge is responsible for me going over my second budget estimate. Totally worth it though.

I finished up painting the vest, which is making up the main body of Mothra, and touching up the wings. Check it out:

Finishing the vest

Finishing the vest

Painting the feet on the vest.

Painting the feet on the vest.

It’s a good thing I tried it on and wore it a bit today. I broke one of the dowels in two places just wearing it. I’ll never get one piece of the dowel out of the sleeve I stitched for it so it’ll have to stay. Thankfully the 12 gauge wire was in place and that’s helping a lot. I have to decide if I want to use the dowels and replace one (for a grand total of $0.39) or go with softer wings. I really like the visual I get with the extra support along the leading edge the dowel gives me so I’ll probably replace it before the con.

I really did not want to go with a big elastic strap to hold the hat on. I was hoping that a few elastic loops and some bobby pins would do the trick. Once again, in the trial the hat wasn’t as secure as I had hoped it would be, and not secure enough for me to be confident of it in a large crowd. Because of that I went ahead and stitched an elastic strap on it and I’m very pleased with the result. It doesn’t go under my chin but rather around the back of my head and I like it much better. This will be secure in a large crowd.

Some bonus pictures from the construction and modeling of the cosplay:

Stitching the wings on the vest.

Stitching the wings on the vest.

Set up for painting, with the Mothra model.

Set up for painting, with the Mothra model.

Folded wings

Folded wings

Mothra will debut at the Rose City Comic Con. I am very excited and pleased. Looking at the pictures it looks even better than I imagined it would when I started it lo these many weeks ago. K.

#Mothra #Cosplay Minimalist, Adjusted Budget Holding

Inside of the Left Wing is done

Inside of the Left Wing is done

Inside of the Left Wing is done

With the holiday weekend affording an extra day to work on the Mothra cosplay I was hoping to get the paining finished on the wings. Since I have to mix the colors myself from the available fabric paints I have it takes a lot longer than one might expect. They are turning out beautifully but it is taking such a long time to paint them.

I ran out of blue and orange paint so I had to pick up more. This pushed my budget ever closer to the hard limit of $100.00 for materials. True when I started I was hoping to keep it around $50.00 but that starting budget was quite unrealistic and only goes to show how little experience I have with making cosplays. I should have just started with the more reasonable budget of $100.00, and a more seasoned cosplayer probably would have.

Even with a budget of $100.00 I’m still looking for bargains and using coupons to buy my materials. Goodwill, and store coupons are great resources for getting materials and keeping to a reasonable budget. This weekend there were some particularly good coupons for some of the local craft stores due to the holiday. That’s something to keep in mind when considering starting a new cosplay. If you plan it right you can get your materials during a big sale.

Better planning in general would have helped keep the cost down. I didn’t know how much paint the fabric I chose would soak up so that is costing me in additional paint. I’m sure someone who has been doing cosplay for a long time would have chosen different fabric, treated it differently and planned things out better than I have.

We did get a cheap table cloth, a plastic picnic table cloth to put on the table while we paint. It protects the table and makes it less nerve wracking when we paint on the only good sized surface in the house for crafting.

Outside of the Left Wing

Outside of the Left Wing

All that being said, I still love what I’m doing and I love my costume. I’m learning a lot and having fun. My goal now is to get it finished up within the next two weeks. That includes touching up the paint where necessary, affixing the wings to the vest and stitching loops on the hat so that I can use bobby pins to keep it on my head in a crowded convention hall.

There are some flaws to the costume. I pretty much won’t be able to carry anything, so any tchotchkes or memorabilia I may want to pick up will have to be handled by one of my companions. The cosplay is designed to be portable though. I can roll the wings and vest up into a compact bundle to transport. The most difficult piece to transport will be the hat, due to the feathers.

Both Wings

Both Wings

We got our tickets to ECCC (Emerald City Comic Con) today and I’ll be wearing it there for certain. I’m still looking to debut it at the RCCC (Rose City Comic Con) in three weeks. We will see how well it travels then. K.

#Mothra #Cosplay Day 8 Still On Budget

Mothra Hat/Fascinator

Mothra Hat/Fascinator

Mothra Hat/Fascinator

This week has been extremely busy so cosplay Sunday is going to be brief this week. I’ve been contemplating how to affix the wings to the vest that will be the structural part of the body. I do not have leather needles which would be an additional cost.

Leather is tricky to work with. Not only is it a heavy fabric but also since it is hide and not woven any holes put in it by a needle are permanent and are not easily hidden should a mistake be made. A friend suggested a substance, an adhesive called sugru. The purist in me doesn’t trust an adhesive to be as durable and reliable as stitching but maybe I’m just a little bit more old-fashioned than I thought.

My friend insists that sugru has been successfully used to repair rafts, shoes and kayaks. I asked if it is pliable when set as I would be affixing fabric wings to leather at the arms and it would need to move like fabric. I was assured this would be the case. I still have my doubts.

Either solution would require a small additional cost: Either I am getting leather needles or I’m getting something else to affix the wings, sugru is a contender. I’d feel better about it if I stitched it but I may not have the skill or components.

I confess that I find myself very much looking forward to the next comic con I can get to. I’m looking forward to trying out the new cosplay. And I’m already looking for my next cosplay project! How crazy is that? I can’t imagine topping Mothra though.

One thing I’ve learned about cosplay while working on this project is that it truly is a labor of love. I mean I could always tell when others wore their cosplay but as my first real cosplay (not counting my steampunk cosplay which I assembled more than made) I’m finding that the choice of subject is something that can only come from a true love of the character. I never would have guessed I’d put so much time, effort, money and love into making a Mothra cosplay. Then I had the idea and the more I thought about it the more I liked it. Now I’m over half way done with the costume and I’m excited about wearing it. I’ve always enjoyed the variety of cosplayers and costumes at cons, I consider them an equal attraction to any panel discussion or star signing autographs but in making this Mothra cosplay I am coming to appreciate their efforts on a deeper level.

Here are some of my favorites from previous cons:

RCCC Star Wars Cosplayer

RCCC Star Wars Cosplayer

Captain America cosplay Portland Comic Con

Captain America cosplay Portland Comic Con

Dalek Wheelchair FTW

Dalek Wheelchair FTW

Harry Potter Cosplay ECCC2014

Harry Potter Cosplay ECCC2014

Wonder Woman ECCC2014

Wonder Woman ECCC2014

 Portland Comic Con

Portland Comic Con

#ECCC2014 Day 3 Emerald City Comic Con: More pictures, #Godzilla, #Dwight Schultz and #Karen Gillian

Harry Potter Cosplay ECCC2014

Harry Potter Cosplay ECCC2014

Harry Potter Cosplay ECCC2014

Day 3 of ECCC is bittersweet. We have had so much fun and this is the final day of the con. The urge to squeeze every ounce of fun out of this day is stronger than any of the other days of the con. We are weary from lack of sleep and overstimulation from all of the sights and sounds yet we wish it would never end.

I so wanted to see Karen Gillian but her line was capped by the time I got up there. I’m very happy that so many other people wanted to see her. I did get to meet Dwight Schultz and get his autograph. He was just as delightful as could be. I had a difficult time selecting the right photograph to have signed for a very reasonable price. I was very tempted by the one where he was wearing the full aviator costume he wore in the A-Team because I really loved the character of Howling Mad Murdock. Finally I settled upon a photograph of him with Dirk Benedict because I had gotten Mr. Benedict’s autograph at last years ECCC and it appealed to my sense of temporal symmetry. I hadn’t realized he’d done some voice acting for Princess Mononoke or I might have had something intelligent to say to him.

From there I went to John de Lancey’s autograph line, which was right next to Dwight Schultz’s line. He was also very gracious and we chose the photograph of Q sitting on the throne, of course we did. His autograph was also reasonably priced.

I had to laugh at myself. Not only are we getting a wonderful collection of Star Trek actor and actress autographs but I’m also picking up the A-Team while I’m at it. I wanted to get Karl Urban’s autograph but the timing just didn’t work out. Every time I tried to get up there to his signings I got distracted—usually by Godzilla. Then by the time I remembered I was trying to get an autograph the time was up. Totally my bad but I got some cool Godzilla stuff.

What I love about the con is that if you plan your day out right you can see the sights and when your feet get tried and you need to sit for a bit you just go to the panel discussion of some star you want to hear speak or a workshop. There are panels that have advice on how to create cosplay costumes and how to write or market your own comic books.

I found Heather Hudson’s table. She’s another artist whose work I really like. I’ve played Magic: The Gathering since The Dark was released so I know some of the work of a lot of artists. She was just pleasant to talk to. She had a Cthulhu poker deck that I just had to pick up. Apparently I’m collecting unusual poker decks now. What I love about them is that they contain a lot of art for the buck.

So ends another Emerald City Comic Con. We had such a good time I’m already looking forward to next year. Please enjoy some more photographs. KZ

Wonder Woman ECCC2014

Wonder Woman ECCC2014

ECCC2014 Steampunk cosplay

ECCC2014 Steampunk cosplay

ECCC2014 Dalek Cosplay

ECCC2014 Dalek Cosplay

ECCC2014 Space Battleship Yamato model under construction.

ECCC2014 Space Battleship Yamato model under construction.

ECCC2014 Guyver Model

ECCC2014 Guyver Model

ECCC2014 Loki & Black Widow

ECCC2014 Loki & Black Widow

Day 1 of the Emerald City Comic Con #ECCC #NichelleNichols #PacificRim

T. Walpole's Drizzt
T. Walpole's Drizzt

T. Walpole’s Drizzt Do’Urden cover

Friday, March 28, 2014 and the #ECCC opens at 10 am.  At 9:30 the Starbucks, which had a line out the door on day 3 last year, was full but not out the door.  Some 10 minutes later, coffee in hand, we made our way to the convention center.

Last year we were directed through the convention center, out the back side, around the block and through a park to the end of the line.  This year they mailed the badges out early, which is good because all three days sold out long ago.  So we went in, up the escalators, showed our badges to the friendly and helpful volunteers and were inside to the next line.  That line was mercifully brief too.

Shortly we were ushered into the massive vender room where rows upon rows of tables awaited us offering everything from leather corsair hats to My Little Pony plushies.  The mass of humanity waiting to go in flowed like a tsunami of people looking for that perfect item to take home or that final piece to complete a costume.

I saw some spectacular Scharazade corsets side by side with Lego box sets of the 12 Doctors.  There were swords and daggers next to booths offering T-shirts with just about every anime, manga or super hero on them you could imagine.

The artist’s tables were equally varied and plentiful.  Brian Snoddy was there and very friendly.  He told me that other Magic: The Gathering artists were also around, like Phil and Kaya Foglio and Franz Vohwinkel.  We met Magic: The Gathering artist Brom and he was extremely nice.  He asked if anyone in our group was an artist and showed a real interest in them.

Let me say that I’ve always loved Phil and Kaya Foglio’s art.  I’ve met them once or twice at Magic: The Gathering conventions and they are gracious.  What really impressed me about them though was here recently when they boycotted Dragoncon because the co-owner was an accused child molester.  They actually gave up on income for the sake of real principles.  We need more people willing to make a stand like that in this world.

I really enjoy browsing the artist’s tables.  I love art and I like supporting artists.  Without exception artists I’ve stopped and chatted with have been friendly, passionate about their art and happy to talk about it and even give tips to others about how to improve their art.

At one table a series of gorgeous prints of Drizzt Do’urden holding Twinkle and Icingdeath drew me in.  I named them and said I was seriously tempted to purchase one.  Artist Tyler Walpole was sitting right there, it being his table and his art on those prints and he smiled and said, “I think you should go with that feeling.”

I laughed.  He laughed too and added, “Of course I might be a little biased.”

He was very charming and I did indeed go with that suggestion and got a beautiful print.  He kindly signed it for me and though I was tempted to chat for a while I didn’t linger because there were other paying customers right behind me.

The only thing I didn’t see a lot of, much to my dismay, was Godzilla merchandise or art.  Oh there were a couple of old action figures in one booth but with a major motion picture about to be released I had hoped to see much more representation of the king of the Kaiju.  I did find one booth that had some pretty choice Pacific Rim merchandise that made me happy.  Still, I had hoped Godzilla would have a larger presence

Nichelle Nichols at ECCC

Nichelle Nichols at ECCC

I must confess that the highlight of the day was meeting Nichelle Nichols.   There’s a funny story about that too because I expected her autograph line to not only be super long but also to be starting an hour later than when I got up to the room where stars were signing autographs.

You see, I went to get Richard Dean Anderson’s autograph as a gift for my sister.  When I got there the autographs were $85.00 each!  I’m afraid that’s a little rich for my blood.  Shoot that’s more than I paid for Sir Patrick Stewart’s autograph, and I got a great story to tell out of that brief encounter.  Plus the line for Richard Dean Anderson was huge.

So I browsed around the room to see who else might be there and almost right next door was Nichelle Nichols.  Not only was her line shockingly short but also her autographs were a very modest $40.00.

Let me just say that she is as warm and gracious and absolutely beautiful in person as she is on the big screen.  She found something to say to each person who got an autograph and even spoke briefly with fans who just wanted to say, “Hi.”  She is a generous and truly lovely person inside and out.

We went from there to sit in on her discussion panel.  Of course she was asked to tell the story about how she met Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  Most Star Trek fans have heard the story but not the way she tells it.  When she tells that story she really makes it come alive.

Nichelle Nichols said she was nervous to meet such an icon as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and he was nervous to meet such an icon as Lt. Uhura from Star Trek.  Apparently they were quite good friends before he told her she could not leave Star Trek.  She said one of the things she loves about having worked on Star Trek was that she could go anywhere and she could always tell who the Star Trek fans were within a few moments of meeting someone and because of that connection she always felt she had something she could talk about with people.

She went on from there to tell the story about when she met Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson.  The way she spoke, her facial expressions and her candor were so engaging and she was so generous with herself that it was a joy to just listen to her speak.   She said she was told this Doctor wanted to meet her and she thought she’d set up a time to meet, give herself a chance to prepare but no; he wanted to meet her right now.  So she was nervous.  “Then,” she said, “This gorgeous man walks in, and I’m thinking–alright!”  She was so funny, just absolutely charming.

Steampunk Hat

Steampunk Hat

I don’t know what tomorrow will bring but the Emerald City Comic Con is off to an excellent start if you ask me.  Oh! The Cosplay has been fantastic.  I’ll get into that more in a later article.  KZ

Updates And Forward

Hubble Image of Magellanic Stream courtesy of NASA

Hubble Image of Magellanic Stream courtesy of NASA

Hubble Image of Magellanic Stream courtesy of NASA

As you well know, gentle reader, I took a short break from blogging. What happened is that I started a new job and it’s been tough getting used to the new schedule. It takes a surprising amount of time and energy to craft quality blog posts and I’ve been just mentally and physically exhausted for the past 6 weeks. The shorter blog posts you have noticed have been my attempt to post something that might be of interest. I thank you for your patience and I will be blogging once again.

For a brief update on my plans going forward: I intend to keep up with the Golden Age of Science Fiction Authors series as well as reviewing an assortment of movies. When it comes to movies, do keep in mind that I am a fan not a critic. Astronomy is a subject I adore and will be keeping up on.

As for my writing, I’m still working on the sequel to In The Flesh but I’m going to set that aside for a bit. What I want to do is start outlining my NaNoWriMo project for this year and it’s going to be the space opera I promised myself I could write. I’ve got a lot of ideas and I’m trying to narrow them down to the ones I really think will work best.

I have tickets to the Rose City Comic Con and next years Emerald City Comic Con so look for those updates too. It’s going to be a fun and exciting next few months. K.

Comic Reviews: B.P.R.D. Hollow Earth An Oldie but Goodie

B.P.R.D. Hollow Earth and Other Stories Graphic Novel

B.P.R.D. Hollow Earth and Other Stories Graphic Novel

B.P.R.D. Hollow Earth and Other Stories Graphic Novel

Comic Reviews: B.P.R.D. (The Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense)
Hollow Earth and Other Stories

Mike Mignola is perhaps best known for his creation Hellboy published by Dark Horse Comics. One of the spin offs of Hellboy is the B.P.R.D., which features Abe Sapien and others who seek out the strange, paranormal and fantastic all over the world. Personally I like the B.P.R.D. better than Hellboy for reasons of personal taste, which is that I tend to like science fiction more than fantasy or horror so the more it leans towards science fiction the better I like it. The series kicked off in 2002 with Hollow Earth.

Mignola has a very distinctive artistic style that I find suits his stories very well. I was pleased to get to meet Mr. Mignola at the 2013 Emerald City Comic Con this last March and I got a signed book of his artwork.

B.P.R.D. Hollow Earth and Other Stories was penciled by Ryan Sook who helped ink it along with Curtis Arnold and it was colored by Dave Stewart. These men did a superlative job of creating the tone of the story. The shadowy, muted colors and odd angles with very little crispness speak to the hidden, otherworldly dimensions that exist within our own and might even be more real than what we know as reality. The artwork hints at things we cannot see clearly without being out of focus. This works well with stories that mix hints and whispers with myths and legends to create a world where nothing is quite what it seems and what we take for granted as normal is a veneer that hides what lies beneath the floors, behind the curtains, always under the surface.

The story, written by Mike Mignola, Christopher Golden and Tom Sniegoski is one of my favorite B.P.R.D. stories because it introduces Johann. Talk about a wild back story, Johann is just out there, even for the B.P.R.D. and we get to see Elizabeth too and she is brought in. The story starts out with Elizabeth in a monk temple and we are given a backstory that would do H.P. Lovecraft proud. This is the kind of thing I love, where an author makes their own mythology, plays with what has become embedded in the stories of different cultures and makes it new.

I know it’s been out for a while but if you’re looking for a good read, or just want to revisit an oldie but goodie I really think this is one to go to. It’s also a pretty quick read. It’s good to feed your imagination but sometimes hard to find the time to do it. This graphic novel, or these comic books depending upon what you can find, are pretty excellent. K.

Recollections of the ECCC Pt. 4 Dirk Benedict

Battlestar Galactica was one of my favorite shows when I was young. It never bothered me to see that same poor Ceylon get blown up in every space battle. I loved the crew, the adventures and the ships. I also loved The A-Team when I was a teen. The common thread and the characters I loved best in each were played by Dirk Benedict. So when I heard he was going to be at the Emerald City Comic Con I was delighted.

Dirk Benedict kind of dropped off the face of the Earth after the A-Team and unlike so many other celebrities I follow there wasn’t much I knew about him. I’ll admit to feeling a bit of trepidation about meeting him in his autograph line and dragging everyone to hear him speak at his panel discussion. I wondered if he would be one of those stars who are so full of themselves they are disagreeable. Although I should have known better. I have never met a star at a con who wasn’t gracious and open and just lovely.

I waited in line for a few minutes to meet Dirk Benedict and of course said the stupidest fan girl thing, which I’m sure is just what he wanted to hear from a middle aged overweight chick but he was so kind and gracious I didn’t get embarrassed until later. Of course I said, “I had a crush on you way back in the day.” What a moronic thing to say. Bless his heart he just smiled and sad, “but you got over it, right?” And just because I never do anything half way, even being an idiot, and I didn’t want to hurt his feelings I said, “not really.”
At the same time Natalia Tena of Harry Potter fame was signing autographs and my daughter really wanted one. Sadly I had to tell her that I had spent all of my money on Dirk Benedict. She got in line anyway to shake hands with Natalia Tena and when we got up there my daughter explained that we couldn’t get an autograph but she wanted to say hi and shake her hand. Well Natalia Tena grabbed a post-it note and wrote down the name of her band and website for my daughter which totally made her day. Seriously, I’ve yet to meet a celebrity who wasn’t just as gracious and kind as can be at a Con.

From there we hurried over to find seats for his panel discussion and caught the end of Felecia Day and Will Wheaton’s discussion which I wrote about yesterday. They were awesome.

Then Dirk Benedict was introduced, preceded by a local military band playing the theme and reciting the intro for The A-Team. It was very cute. They gave him a cigar. This was the moment of truth, Dirk began to speak.

He told us about how he wound up divorced and raising his sons by himself. That’s where he’d been all these years. As a child my father abandoned me so I found this very touching. Not only did Dirk Benedict leave a career in acting to move to the backwaters of Montana to raise his children, you can tell by listening to him that he loves his sons and is so proud of them.

He talked about how his one son wanted to play football (soccer) in the UK because that’s where all the best teams are. He said that some people told him not to take his boy over there because it was just setting him up to fail. And Dirk told us that he took his son (who was not only very successful but a catalyst for a more healthy lifestyle for the other players) to try out because even if he failed, the seeds of success are sown in failure. You can’t have success if you never fail, he told us.

He’s just a lovely, lovely human being.

Then he told us how he got into acting. He said back in college he was in a band and one day they were walking past the theatre, which in the country culture they were in was this mysterious place where strange perhaps sinister things happened. Kind of like a house of I’ll repute, he said of their perceptions at the time. There was a poster advertising try-outs for a musical and being college age guys it came about that he said he could go in there and one of the others dared him to go in and try-out for a part. He didn’t want to do it. But they said they’d give him $5.00 to go in and try out so he did.

He said he went in and he didn’t know what to expect and it was this dark room. He didn’t know if people would descend on him and whisk him off somewhere or what. So he went in and suddenly this voice out of the darkness asks if he has his instrument with him, and he says no. So the voice says, “that’s ok, just sing from one of the pieces here.” They hand him some sheet music. So he does and then he has to read some lines with another person. They thank him and he leaves, collects his $5.00 and forgets about the whole thing.

He continues the story saying that one day they saw the big wig amongst the theatre students walking across the campus and he never spoke to them because he was an actor and they were not. “Well he saw me,” Dirk said, “and started to detour over to them”. He walked right up to him and said, “congratulations.”

Dirk said he looked around to see who this guy might be talking to and it was him! He was wondering what was going on when the guy continued, “You go the lead.”

“What?” Dirk asked still not getting it.

“The lead for the play, you got it.”

“And that’s when I remembered that silly try-out.” Dirk told us, expressing his disbelief even to this day. “So I went over to the head of the theatre department and told him it was a big mistake and to give the part to someone else. They wouldn’t let me out of it. I had to do it. That’s how I got into acting.”

He said a lot of other things, wonderful things about the A-Team and how he liked the good hearted nature of Battlestar Galactic when he was on it. He doesn’t so much like the dark and almost nihilistic nature of the newer version and personally I have to agree with him. If I want to see the darkness in human nature I just look at things that are happening right now in our world. Things like human trafficking, the gang rapes in India and South Africa and Steubenville, Ohio. There is enough darkness in the real world. When I want entertainment I want something that has a goodness to it, something that speaks to hope.

Anyway I’ve nattered on for far too long and I hope you don’t mind, gentle reader. Tomorrow to top off my week of ECCC recollections I’m going to write about meeting Patrick Stewart and how I redeemed myself by asking him a great question. K.