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SPX 2013

Literally hundreds of cartoonists descended on the Bethesda North Marriott Hotel and Conference Center last weekend. This imposing portrait of the Marriott Brothers hung near the ballroom like a stained glass portrait of Jesus and Mary in a cathedral.

I still had a few Dear Mr. Watterson postcards, which were a great conversation starter. It was a great joy telling people that there is a movie about Bill Watterson coming out soon. Everybody loves Calvin and Hobbes. If you happen upon this post during your nightly Googling of your name, Mr. Watterson, take note: you would be welcome at SPX any year. If noted misanthropes Seth and Chris Ware made it out, you can too.

By far the coolest thing to happen was my inclusion in the Library of Congress. Three of my Falling Rock comic strip collections (Great Wave of Falling Rock, Scenic Byways, and Falling Rock National Park 2012) will live forever in the LoC until the Psychlos have driven us from our cities and strip-mined our planet for precious gold.

I was seated at table A1. This, I thought, must have meaning. While I searched for this elusive meaning, I stared across the aisle at Jeff Smith, who signed approximately 5,482 books during the course of the weekend.

A large part of my success at SPX is due to one man: Nick Offerman. In addition to being the genius actor who portrays Ron Swanson on the genius show Parks and Recreation, he built his own canoe and filmed an instructional video so any of us non-Offermans can join him on the lake. BYO Scotch.

I was given a very cool foldy comic about the age-old question of chicken/egg. Which came first? You’ll have to decide.

The day after SPX I made my way into our nation’s capitol, where I saw but was unable to ride one of the Wright brothers’ custom-made bicycles. I think it says something that the guys who built the first airplane were also bike mechanics.

Thanks to the SPX team who put together another great show. A big thanks to my comic book buddies, including (but not limited to) Kenan & Cate, Neil, Tyrell, Jason, Cara, Kevin, Alec, Greg, as well as the new friends I made. Your energy and bone-deep enthusiasm literally took my breath away. Literally, it took my breath. I can’t wait to have a similar yet refreshingly unique experience at the Bethesda Marriott next year.

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