I was trying out pens of different thicknesses. Usually I draw with a pencil, and I found the pens gave me weebly-wobbly lines. I hope I'm not already manifesting signs of the essential tremor that runs in my family, but I don't think so.
So there were about seventy exhibitors at MeCAF this year, all in one big room. No one was doing a land-office business, and one of the tables next to us didn't sell a thing all day, so I am satisfied with my day's take of eight sales and two trades. Mind you, I earned these by six straight hours of relentless huckstering, like Walter Freeman at a neurologist's convention -- he got people's attention with noisemakers. I didn't do that, but the oddest thing happened to me when I got behind that table. I became aggressively outgoing. This happens to me sometimes when I'm put in a situation in which approaching strangers is normalized, I get kind of hypomanically social, but it had never happened to such an extent before. I did everything but lunge across the table and grab people by the arm. "You made eye contact with me, that means you have to come listen to my pitch!" I would call out, or "You look like a guy who wants to read a story about a guy so whiny God makes a fish swallow him" or "Hey, guy with the ear plugs! People with ear plugs love the story of Jonah!" Try imagining the stix version of me with a big triangular grin, doing this for six straight hours.
And it worked! People came over and talked to me and some of them gave me money. More people than came to the table on either side of me. And I enjoyed it! I want to do it more! Especially the part where people give me money. A religious Jew bought a copy and we talked about how Jonah is swallowed and spit out by a male fish (dag) but prays from within a female one (dagah), and a couple of clean-cut Christian kids bought a copy to share with their youth group (ADORBS). I talked to some people about how Jonah speaks to me as a depressed person and to others about how it speaks to me as an outsider. The Christian kids seemed to like it when I said we like Jonah because he reminds us of our own flawed selves. I hope their youth group likes it too.
But what possessed me to pitch so aggressively? Simple, says Jeremy: he possessed me with his spooky mind powers!
"You don't have spooky mind powers. I would know if you did."
"But I'm the outgoing one. You're as outgoing as a plate of porridge. So how do you explain it?"
"I must contain multitudes, like Whitman."
"So you believe Whitman can possess people with spooky mind powers, but not me?"