My best birthday! (Since I was five) (August 20, 2012)

My birthday fell on the date of the 15th annual Virginia Vintage Comics Show. It was the best birthday for me probably since I was five years old (57 years ago); what better way to celebrate the occasion that at the show buying, selling and trading comic books!

I was hoping we' have a larger crowd, given the huge crowds at the most recent shows in Bristol and Charlotte. But the people who did attend spent lavishly. Two of the three dealers who talked with me about sales had their best show ever at Salem; add me to the list.

This was not just my best Salem show, or my best one-day show, but the Best Show Ever, surpassing the 3-day Heroes and 4-day Hillsville events. I also picked up a substantial amount of good stuff; in fact, I had to have my son Chris take some of the boxes back home for me in his truck!

I didn't see many collections come through the door, but Banks bought a bulk collection with a few surprises in it, and Rick got a drop dead gorgeous stack of very high grade keys (Iron Man #1, Spiderman #129, Captain America #100) at a pleasant price...how do I always miss out on the great collections at my own show!??!

I had a great staff helping me with load-in, set up, and breakdown, and handling door prizes, ticket sales and photography: my wife Nancy (who made sure everyone knew it was my birthday), son Chris, his wife Daphne, and my aunt Alta.

The show featured the first and only public display of the Crozet Collection, an original owner, war-themed collection, mostly from 1942. I bought the collection in 2011 and had already sold some issues, but the new owners agreed to defer possession until the Vintage Show, so they could be displayed as an entire collection. We got heavy publicity about the collection, and two guys actually attended the show, they said, just to see what such a collection looked like.

The weather was perfect (rained all day the next day). For my birthday, I bought myself a House of Secrets #67, with a never-seen-before Roger the Robot cover (need to make an avatar or t-shirt of that cover).

One dealer gave Chris a tip for helping him load and unload: 20 Silver Age comics, which Chris in turn gave to me as a birthday present.

Some visitors to the show included sci-fi author Ron Rogers, who has published two books in the last three months; one aspiring comic creator, who showed me a script and prelim drawings for a series that could have hundreds of issues; and another aspiring creator, who already has a web comic, which he has just published as a real comic (Rednecks from Space) which he is working on expanding to a graphic novel.

And our old friend Zoomerman (whose secret identity is Jerry Poindexter, mild mannered resident of Franklin County, VA). He auditioned for the cable series "So You Want to Be a Superhero" and got to meet Stan Lee. Jerry - er, Zoomer - invented a weapon (Loop sticks) for his character and had it patented.

This was a fun show, and would have been tons of fun if I'd made half the sales or half the purchases. Thanks to everyone who made it a great day. Tentative date for the next (Sweeet 16) Vintage show is third Saturday (August 17, 2013). See you there!