Tuesday, August 14, 2007
david petersen sent a nice condolence note and in it called mike, todd and me the "3 Musketeers of the East Coast cons".
whether or not anyone else felt way, we certainly did... at any conventions we were at, we were practically joined at the hip, usually laughing at an in-joke that wasn't really funny to anybody else (although, given enough time we managed to get a few laughs... just ask his sister-in-law suzanne about some "bitty"). most of those shows, we'd also get together early (and make a side-splitting road trip down to heroes) and stay later, just to have the chance to spend time together. as much as we enjoyed spending time with all of our friends (and of course, mike had a LOT of friends... that's the kinda guy he was... just read the hundreds of messages being posted about mike) at shows like this, we'd selfishly just try and go off by ourselves for a meal or two. these shows were the only times we got to spend together all year (of course we'd spend hours on the phone talking about comics, tv, movies, sports, politics, life in general... but it wasn't quite the same), and i know we looked forward to these times for weeks beforehand... and talked about them for weeks after.
which isn't to say mike wasn't at the shows for the fans. from the start of show until close of day on sunday, there was always a line of fans waiting for mike, and he'd make'm feel like he was the lucky one to meet them. he'd sign stacks and stacks of books, talking all the while, never complaining... and rarely even getting up for a walk. he (mostly) stopped sketching at the shows because he never had the time to put pencil to paper with all the fans waiting for an autograph or a handshake.
i made no bones about the fact that mike and todd were clearly the superstars of the trio (the sting and stuart copeland to my "other guy in the police"), i was just happy to be along for the ride with my friends. humble to a fault, mike always made me feel like an equal, when i never even felt in the same league.
much has been made about mike being a nice guy (and he was... easily one of the nicest and most generous guys i've had the pleasure of knowing)... which made his wicked sense of humor even more funny (he could tell jokes that'd make bob saget blush)... often soft-spoken, he'd let loose with a joke that'd have the whole room howling and gasping for breath.
we felt like we were brothers... not by blood (we each have our own brothers that we're very close to), but by choice....
comics lost a truly great talent. we'll never get the chance to see more work from a true modern master.
i lost a brother... and my other brother lost a best friend.
and we lost our third musketeer.
we'll miss you, brother.