Saturday, May 31, 2014

Monday, May 26-Thursday, May 29: Houston, TX


5/26/14- 7:30 p.m.

This afternoon Marcos and Julius Espana, Jan, Alexa and Carolina Vazquez, and I caught a ride with Mario to the Houston Convention Center to attend Comicpalooza.

It was a smaller event than the Dallas Comic Con, which was reflected in the ticket price, but it was nice not to feel so crowded like I did at last weekend's convention.

One major difference that I noticed between the two cons was this one had a lot more artists selling prints of their work. In Dallas the artists were in the minority while vendors of other merchandise had the most booths.

I started out my exploration of Comicpalooza over in the autograph area. I saw several celebrities, including Lou Ferrigno, TV's The Incredible Hulk, a few of the Power Rangers and a few of the men who have played Dr. Who throughout the years.
I was most excited by the presence of Jason Mewes, better known as Jay from the team Jay & Silent Bob in such films as "Clerks", "Mallrats", "Chasing Amy", "Dogma", etc.

The line to meet Jason was very short, but I figured it would be too expensive to get an autograph and a photo with him.

I started walking up and down the aisles of vendors, but my brain kept nagging at me to go back and see how much it would cost to meet him.
Finally I relented and went to stand in line at Jason's table. I heard the folks in front of me talking, and I found out that it was only $20 for an autographed picture and a photo with Jason.
Considering I am a fan of his work, that seemed like a heck of a bargain to me!

I only had to wait a few minutes, and then I went up to get my photo and autograph. Jason was very nice, and I didn't feel rushed at all with our meeting.
I didn't want to come off as a babbling fan, so I simply told him that I always enjoy his work.




The only other celebrity in attendance who I would have liked to have met was Cary Elwes, who played Wesley in "The Princess Bride". Unfortunately, the line to meet him was ridiculously long.

While walking around and exploring, I ran into my friend, Ronald McDonald!

Of course I know him! It's a clown thing.

Ronald was even nice enough to let me pose in his awesome shoe car!




Later on I saw a very rare sight: Grimace, Birdie and the Hamburglar all hanging out with Ronald. The three of them almost never make an appearance, so I made sure to get a photo with the McDonald's gang.


There was a whole section of the con devoted to robotics and inventions, and we got to see a 3D printer in action.
The printer lays down plastic layer by layer to create seamless, three dimensional objects. It was amazing!

Here are a few more shots from Comicpalooza:








It started raining during our time at the Convention Center (there was even a tornado warning!), and it continued to pour until showtime.

We spent the show feeling wet, sticky, and generally disgusting. The humidity was killer! The velcro on Ryan's tear away jumpsuit did not want to stay stuck together, so his pants almost came off prematurely in the vacuum gag.

Since it was raining, and outside the tent (and under one side of the bleachers) had become a lake, Ryan and I had to take a long walk under the bleachers on the dry side of the tent to make our entrance through the seats for the vacuum gag.

Despite the headaches, the audience for the show was really good, which was quite surprising considering crowds are usually more reserved during bad weather performances.

After the show I went by Ryan's trailer to have a piece of birthday cake for his mother's belated birthday party. She is leaving in the morning, so I made sure to say goodbye as well.


5/27/14- 7:30 p.m.

Today was another rainy day. I decided to just stay indoors to watch movies and play video games.

The parents of Jermiah, Christian, and Daniel Cook from Kelly Miller came to see the show this evening.


There is a company sponsoring Vazquez's Houston engagement, and every Intermission they hold a raffle. Mr. and Mrs. Cook entered and won $200!
I told Ryan that we should have said we rigged it for them to win, and then we could have asked for a cut.

Our clown friends Luigi, Silvia, and their son also were in the audience for tonight's performance.


I would have liked to have visited with them, but after work David Confal, who performs the diabolo act in the show, his girlfriend, Maria, and I jumped in my truck and raced to the nearest movie theater to catch a showing of "X-Men: Days Of Future Past".
The movie was a lot of fun, but the film started at 10:30 p.m., and it was almost 2 1/2 hours long, so we were all nodding off by the end.

The movie theater was gorgeous, and there were a lot of nice restaurants and shops in the same area, so I will have to visit it again when I am more awake.


5/28/14- 7:30 p.m.

Today started off rainy, but then the sun came out by the afternoon to give us the lovely gift of heat to go with the ever present humidity.
I spent another lazy day at home, praying that my air conditioner would stop popping its breaker.

On to tonight's performance:
Ryan and I spent the first minute and a half of the water gag in the seats while the motorcycle rigging comes down.
Tonight, the motor that lowers the bike popped its breaker (there's a lot of that going around), and Martin had to race outside to reset it.

Due to the delay, the bike wasn't completely down by the time Ryan and I were ready to start our gag.
Luckily there was a man with a tub of popcorn sitting front and center, so we had a prop to play with while we stretched and waited for the motorcycle to be out of the ring.

Luckily we didn't have to improvise for too long, and if I can get indulge in a moment of back patting (when do I not?), I don't think the audience was any the wiser that something had gone awry.

Unfortunately after that things kept happening that bugged me more and more, so I ended the show quite irate.

I was able to cool down and blow off some steam at a birthday party for Govian, who a member of the Espana family, and just recently joined the show.
Not content to simply shove his actual cake in his face, the Espana men also pelted Govian with eggs and flour, two of the ingredients of cake, while he was sitting and talking with folks.



Remind me to not tell the Espana family when my birthday is....


5/29/14- 7:30 p.m.

Today I drove to Webster, a city south of Houston, to check out their Half Price Books.
Other than that, the only thing I did today was watch the film, "The Usual Suspects", with Ryan.

My trailer and the show's bunkhouses are on the same breakers in one of the power boxes, and there was some kind of issue this afternoon that shut our power off about an hour before the show.
Because of that, I wasn't in a very good mood for the start of the show, but a little boy in the audience made me laugh and lifted my spirits.
When I was exiting from the water gag, the boy ran up and gave me a big hug, forgetting that I had just gotten soaking wet. He pulled away after that realization set in, he looked down at himself, and then he let out a long, drawn out, "yuuuuuuuuuuck".
It was very funny!

Our local clown friends, Stephen and Sarah, watched the show tonight, and after it was over they treated me to dinner at Chacho's, a 24 hour Mexican restaurant near the lot.
It was similar to Taco Cabana, but I thought the food was much better.

Us with Sarah

1 comment:

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