My Life as a Comic Book Reader Chapter 4: Are you a Little Kid?

High school fades away, college starts, you become an adult and you make your own true decisions, balance tuition, classes, bills, work and girls. Yep, the glory days are done the rest of your life has just gotten started. Sure you stay true to yourself and your comics continue to follow you and you look forward to your local comic book store and summer conventions (more on that later).

Yeah, welcome to college, some kids bring pictures, some old toys and creative memories when they move away to college. I bring the latest issue of Flash, Savage Dragon or X-men. Shouldn’t be that much difference than some freshman bringing their old teddy bear they’ve had since kindergarten, right? Well, at least that’s the thought process and we all know nothing is ever that simple.

When you are in college, you make new friends and some blossom into more but when you bring a girl to your place or they ask you what is your guilty pleasure, you tell them “comics”. All of a sudden its like the signal watch goes off and they look at you with a look that would make Superman stop in mid-flight. “Really?” they respond. I would say: “yeah.” “What are you? A kid?”

Through the heart like a stake into a vampire. “Well, no it’s just I enjoy reading comics.” “I mean there are TV and movies coming out based on comics is that so hard to believe?” You then see the other look that tells you that was not the answer they were looking for.

Just like a low selling title, the relationship is over before it can really begin. I soon found out that it was going to happen on a regular basis after that. The next thing I know it’s three years later and I’ve barely had a relationship longer than a month and it really wasn’t anything more than some hand holding, a few dinner and movie nights and maybe some cuddling and making out at best. “It’ll get better” you tell yourself. Right? Someone will eventually accept you for who you are just like you always accept them.

Yeah, not going to happen and before you can say: “Well that is a defeatist attitude.” We all think it’s over when you are in your early 20s. I thought those exact words during that time. I remember the hardest blow came about a year after I finished my undergraduate degree. When I was seeing this younger girl and things started off pretty well. She found me to be this sweet caring guy and the first couple of months were great. However, she had a previous boyfriend who had a video game love equilvent to my comics. The difference was I kept my love for the books to a past time and not a daily interaction (of course she would probably disagree with me today).

After a couple of months our relationship ended but we stayed friends but that wasn’t the hard part. No, that came about a year later when we were together with some friends and we were all bringing up current relationships and I said I hadn’t had one in a while and I also said how it was kind of depressing. She shot back with a: “Well, maybe if you didn’t read comics some girl might actually want to sleep with you!” Everyone stopped in their conversations and I don’t think I ever felt a more personal string to my very being than that moment.

Now, let’s face it, everyone has that love for something that is so entangled into who you are. Granted we all move from the minor to the extreme and while I’ve considered myself in the middle stream. That doesn’t mean others view it as such. What happens next when you meet someone who has a motorcycle or car love? Isn’t checking out motor magazines or tuning your bike up every other weekend just the same? How about a girl who has a Harry Potter or bad TV drama obsession? Looks forward to everyone edition or a fan blog, is they’re much of a difference then?

The answer is “no”, but what really brings out this “anti-love” is the fact that they can’t identify with the same love you have for something you enjoy and vice versa. Before you know it, words are said in a very hurtful manner and the damage is done. Now, you think about everything I just said and I am willing to guess this chapter has made you think about a moment that exact thing happened to you.

I always was about giving someone my heart and excepting them for who they were. I was involved with one girl who was totally in love with a type of product and genre that was equal to my comic love. They even had fan made clothes, pjs and even a collectible DVD player and when all was said and done. She considered me to be a little kid with my love of comics. So what is wrong with that picture?

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