Friday, June 30, 2006

Social event of the season

You see, I know I've arrived as a mover-and-shaker in the genre literary scene because I get invited to all the swankiest soirees. Case in point: Last night the Missus and I, along with Orion, ventured forth into the heart of San Antonio to partake in the festivities marking the release of Cover Story: The Art of John Picacio. Let me tell you folks, it was the place to see and be seen. Probably a hundred folks--some of whom I actually recognized--packed this gorgeous old turn-of-the-century two-story house of which San Antonio has in spades. An in between glasses of wine and some spectacularly awe-inspiring strawberries dipped in chocolate (amongst other deli-style goodies--the stone ground mustard was the absolute best I've ever had. Period) the gathered throng oohed and aahed over the stunning collection of artwork contained within the covers of Picacio's new book. And I took pictures.

Above, we see the man of the hour down his 27th glass of chardonnay as the audience cheers him on. This actually started off as a drinking contest like that one Marion Ravenwood won early on in Raiders of the Lost Ark. But when his opponent passed out, John kept on drinking. Shortly after I took this picture, he put on a propeller beanie, shoved two no. 1 artist's pencils up his nose and jumped around the room shouting "I am the walrus!"

John's parents, above, were visibly proud of their son's accomplishments. Surprisingly, however, they weren't disturbed by his shoving pencils up his nose. "He shoved a lot worse things up his nose as a kid," said John's father. "Oh yes," said his mother. "Little Johnnykins started off with fire ants, and just went downhill from there."

John's lovely fiancée, Traci, also in attendance, was positively beaming. She too, took John's antics in stride. "He's a big Beatles nut. Loves Lennon, Yoko not so much," Traci said by way of explaining the walrus thing. "I'm just glad he settled for putting pencils up his nose, and didn't go for the meat or veggie tray. He got ahold of a head of broccoli once, and it wasn't pretty."

Orion did his best to disrupt the festivities when a toast to John (Picacio, not Lennon) got particularly loud. Orion was startled by all the noise, and started crying. Loudly. Lisa had to take him upstairs to calm him down. In any event, he proved the adage that babies always steal the show!

Before we left, I took some books up for John to sign. Two copies of Cover Story--one for me and one for Orion--and a copy of the 30th anniversary edition of Michael Moorcock's Behold the Man, which was the first cover work John ever did for a book.
John: You just want me to sign my name?

Me: No, sign it to me.

John: Why? You're just going to put it up on eBay when you get home.

Me: Am not.

John: Who are you kidding? This has eBay written all over it.

Me: Does not.

John: And look--Moorcock hasn't even signed it yet.

Me: Well, I haven't seen him for three years. He's not in Bastrop much these days.

John: So, just my name then?

Me: Fine, whatever.

John: I knew it!

And we made it all the way home without John or any of his family suing me for libel!

Now Playing: The Police Message in a Box

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