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JMS at Joe's Pub

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  • #16
    Hey there, hi there!

    Yes, your faithful correspondent has now gotten some sleep! That was as whirlwind a trip as I've made in a long time. Orlando to New York to Orlando in 35 hours door to door.

    I was able to meet up with Ranger29 outside of the venue and also Connie, a long-time fan from (iirc) the usenet days searched me out. Chatted with them both before going into the appropriately named Joe's Pub to indulge in some *very* expensive drinks and nosh. But it was to support the programs that House of Speakeasy puts on so that was cool.

    While I'll admit right off that I wasn't terribly interested in the other speakers, I was pleasantly surprised to find that all of them were entertaining.

    As stated (I think) upthread, the theme was 'This is not the end' so not unexpectedly JMS talked about how he periodically blows up his career. A couple things he said that struck me were (heavily paraphrasing here):
    - He told how his family had moved many times when he was a kid and that if he had anything that wouldn't fit in the two boxes he was allowed, it was left behind. Because of that, he said he has a lack of fear about losing everything.
    - People talk about the states of 'fight' and 'flight' but there's a third state: 'freeze' and that many people 'freeze' in their lives figuring they'll put up with whatever situation they're in as it's better than the unknown.

    Funny moment was when he talked about having announced he was leaving comics so there's no backsies and then got some great ideas...too late. (NO! It's not, JMS! Honest! )

    I had a chance to say hi to him after the event and introduced him to Ranger29. We (Ranger29 and I) went back to my hotel and talked for a while longer about B5 and Sense8. SO nice to hang out with somebody who loves them as much as I do!!

    Did I leave anything out, Ranger?


    "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization we're seeing now.


    • #17
      I don't think you left anything out, Jan. A few comments/reactions of my own.

      It was a pretty small venue--abot 50-75 people I'd say. We were seated comfortably at cocktail tables where we were able to gladly nosh on nibbles and consume overpriced drinks knowing that we would be seeing JMS and that the profits would go to a good cause (aside from its shows on writers and writing, Speakeasy is also the organization that puts on the free Shakespeare plays in Central Park each summer).

      JMS came on after a woman spoke about a biography she wrote about John Aubrey, an early advocate for preserving antiquities (including Stonehenge!). The transition was a little odd, but by the end it worked because it was all about writing and beginnings and endings. As far as I can recall, JMS didn't talk about any of his past, present or future projects in any detail. It was more about the beginnings and ending in his life and his career. The other two speakers were novelists.

      He also said (somewhat to his surprise, I think) that the show was being taped. It appears that other shows in the talk series are later made available online, so I will be checking the website periodically to see if/when a video is available.

      It was my first time meeting JMS. After all those years thinking about what I would say or do when I met him, when the time came I didn't utter exquisitely-worded praise, but was mostly rendered speechless --definitely the "freeze" response!

      This was also the first time in a long time (~20 years) that I'd been able to interact with walking and talking fans of JMS, which made it a little surreal--like fans really do exist in real life and not online! Jan made it all better.

      I also bought a copy of Superman: Earth One, but I'm glad I didn't have it signed, as I left it in the cab on the way home.


      • #18
        The video for JMS's appearance at the House of Speakeasy has been posted.

        JMS' section is from about 18:30 to 32:30.

        The background noise you hear is people eating and drinking. It was a fun night.

        "As empathy spreads, civilization spreads. As empathy contracts, civilization we're seeing now.