Torgo Tuesday is Debbies Manos blog day, but for this week we'll call it Wobbly Wednesday. I'm off kilter only because all the things I've worked so hard to bring to fruition are coming about at pretty much the same time and it's a challange to keep up.
This week is about a fantastic trip where I was a guest at Cinema Wasteland in Strongville, Ohio just outside of Cleveland. It's a small but very mighty family run show that's been going on for about 12 years. The organizer, Ken, and his crew were so gracious and attentive, that I really felt spoiled and kept teasing that they were ruining me for other events. I imagine myself walking into another event with my chin up and saying "Do you know who I think I am?"
My sense of humor runs to the bizarre and odd, so my experience upon arrival in Cleveland cracked me up. As the plane was landing, a conversation began with the man sitting next to me and we realized we were going to the same event. I told him that I was to call the organizers upon arrival to be sure a shuttle from the hotel would be there to pick us up and if he waited at baggage for me we could find the bus together. I made my way there and while watching the bags go around, thought I spotted the guy so walked up, leaned over and said "The shuttle is on it's way". His head whipped around, he looked at me and said "What?" So, while still watching the bags go around, I said again in a conspirital way, "The shuttle is on it's way" and without another glance, I slowly moved away. As I looked toward the crowd in a different direction, I saw the actual guy I had been sitting next to.
Now it dawns on me that the one I spoke to is completely puzzled and probably thinking that I am either a spy talking code or maybe I am completely nuts and saying the shuttle from space will be here soon to take us away. I do hope he came up with a good story to tell and that maybe it made his trip to Ohio a little more interesting.
I was especially thrilled for Michael Berryman to be there as a guest as well. I had met him when he was at Crypticon Seattle a couple years ago and where he took time to advise me and talk about guesting at conventions. Now, two years later, I have been taking his advice. Was really great to have an opportunity to let him know how helpful he had been and how much I appreciated that. He also has agreed to interview soon, for my Jackey's Hand of Horror Podcast . He is one of the most genuine celebrities I have met so far and so interesting to talk with. Can't wait for our interview.
I also met Dee Wallace and got her to agree to an interview as well. Another very sweet and gracious person that I feel so honored to be able to connect with. She has written a few inspirational books and I just ordered this one on Kindle. Bright Light: Spiritual Lessons from a Life in Acting
The show ran Friday afternoon/evening, Saturday and Sunday. Although the event was small, it was really well attended by fans of film, and especially more obscure type film so I fit right in. Seems most who came were aware of Manos The Hands of Fate and the ones who weren't familiar were interested in learning more. I literally drank a gallon of water on Friday because of talking to fans so much. It was a blast.
On Friday evening, I headed to the hotel elevator to go to my room. The was a group of young men having an enthusiastic conversation while waiting for the doors to open and they were clearly having a great time. A couple of them had on some costuming including one with a wig and bloody lab coat. When the doors opened, they crowded on and then scrunched together to make more space while waving me on. 3rd floor for them. 6th for me. Somehow, the 3rd floor button didn't get pushed so the ancient slow elevator made it's way all the way to the 6th floor. When the doors opened, one of them said "Would you like us to walk you to your room?" Hahaha. They were adorable.
On Saturday, a friend I had never met but known for seven years drove several hours to come meet me in person. Joey Basford Founder of Manos The Hands of Fate fan Club of Facebook. I have met facebook friends a few times at various happenings and it's so interesting to me how when we finally meet, it's not so very different. It is that you already know them. Loved seeing him and and having a little time to visit.
Derrick Carey, editor of our new film, Manos Returns also came to meet me in person and to bring some friends with him. He did an incredible job on the film and was wonderful to get to meet him in person finally.
This was the first Con I've been invited to where it was farther than I could drive and I wasn't sure how much stuff to take with me for the table and to sell. The books were the bulky thing and I didn't want to carry a bunch home if they didn't sell but apparently I miscalculatred because I sold most of them on Friday and the Manos screening wasn't until Saturday afternoon. Fortunately I had a stack of large envelopes with me, so had the buyer write their address, and mailed them when I got home Monday. Now I know to ship the books to the hotel in advance so I'm not carrying them. Learning!
So many great experiences. Met a whole lot of appreciative fans, made connections for screenings of Manos Returns in some independent theaters, was invited to participate in some upcoming independent film projects, got to do Q and A with the audience of a Manos: The Hands of Fate screening sans robots and Joel and had some professional studio shots done with a beautiful Doberman named Zelda. Cannot wait to see those and share them.
It is these experiences that keep me feeling so deeply Blessed for the collaborations and friendships created along this unusual path my life follows. Thank you for coming along on this journey.
The next phase begins...