To address the Chicago Whiz concept, it is quite correct - i am never setting up at a Wizard show ever again. A ba-zillion reasons, a few being:
1) a few years back, over night burglaries perped by a janitor there in Rosemont
- i had $20K worth of stuff stolen out of my booth during Saturday night close down, like the room was closed down for the night
- and the Whiz-Kids do not give a flying spoon
- same show saw Al Stolz More Fun Lost Valley copies stolen, Harley got hit, others
Next Year Same Oh Same Oh - janitors were still cleaning at night durign close down - and some of us saw thru the window all the rent-a-cops gathered in a corner, not watching all the wares in the facility like they were paid to be doing
2) two years ago a local comic book store dealer-type (name eludes me right now) set up next to me who had stolen a full 4 feet of my 20 foot booth prior to my arrival - he went so far as to move the back drop curtain rods we all get to hide the deed as best he could
- and it took hassling with the Whiz-Kids all day Thursday to begin for them to straighten it out -
and me with my damaged hip joint, my son WIlliam and i had to move my two tons of stuff four times -and still could not get set up cuz the A S S H O L E next to me STILL stole one foot even afte rit was supposedly all fixed, so i missed all day Thursday, ALL the set up time for Friday and was still trying to get my stuff on the A-Frames from Dan & Gary (NJ) cuz my booth is configured by me at the warehouse and then we duplicate it setting up at the big shows i do
3) last year i was moved from next to Eric Groves against the wall, and their map had me at a 2nd spot and i was actually far away from there in a 3rd spot
- many many regular friends and collector customers did nto find me before all their money was spent and my sales were 25% of the previous year -
and these A S S H O L E S at Wizard magazine want to get mad at ME when i voiced this by Saturday evening of the show? That such a three way whammy was a bit much amidst all the chaos of human energy flow - simple math
then there was their LA Long Beach (their 2nd one there) where Brenda Cook moved me from where i was supposed to be near Graham Crackers and Coop (Maryland) (Jamie does my credit cards with his satelite up-link - Jamie is one of the Good Guys in this hobby in my book)
I was moved unbeknownst once i got there next to some local toy guy with cages to display his wares with an opening in the back we "shared" - i had a $50 change fund in ones stolen that could only have come thru that interior opening -
plus the guy's wife bent over thru the curtain to change her baby's diapers, the down side of that wonderful chore in human continuity was her rear end kept bumping rather forcefully into my 90 degree angle A-Frame displays which caused a lot of the books to by bumped off, the A-Frame closest to her actually fell over - causing books to clatter to the floor rather hardly
- the Human Torch #2 (#1) i had then for sale was in its CGC holder - that one hot so hard the plastic cracked & broke off in the corner
A CGC'd Pep #1 was stolen in the short term ensuing confusion brought on only because of the stupid side ways move they made of my booth space pre-arranged prior to that event
stuff just kept building - started with that Pep #1 getting stolen etc
i am planning on coming to the show, and plan on quietly buying books at Chicago for my web site and eBay stores as well as bringing a few boxes for sale trade
but can one see why one might not wish to stick one's hand into that fire any more?
life is too short and with my damaged hip joint brought on from being a passenger in 3 traffic accidents back in the 1970s, coupled with all the driving - 100s of 1000s of miles over the decades to comic shows since 1968 (first one i took a bus to in 1967, i was 14 when i hit the show, turned 15 at that Houstoncon - but that is another story, in that galaxy far far away)
Plus I am going to be a grand father and i am helping my youngest daughter getting thru it all
still getting used to being back - i think it feels OK
anyway, the guys have showed up to unload my van from another successful San Diego venture - 38 years in a row have i been to that Mecca of Culural Media Conglomerates it is moving towards as the popular culture of this country continues its ever forward evolutions
Get the newer form of hip replacement surgery if it's at all possible. Don't wait. Do it while you're still relatively young and can handle it. It's too bad that this hobby atracts so many thiefs and rip-offs as to make convention going a blood sport.
**Disclaimer** Remember, I'm a chat board performing artist- so take everything I say with a grain of salt. "If it's not disclosed...you're being hosed." Who coined that phrase? Me, damnit! And it's still true.
Everything I say here, comes from the mouth of a fictional character in a book I'm writing.
one of the main reasons i am curtailing most all shows the rest of the year - too much damage from Wizard-Induced Confusion as one has to be able to rebound up & down showing customers stuff as well as running tackles with shop lifters on occasion
There is that place near Mombay (formerly Bombay) India which pioneered this new form of hip replacement surgery - i have indeed been looking into the concept - last year i blew my San Diego gains which saw those gains falter due to BS in Wiz-Chicago
My initial post here was brought on thru remembering previous Wizard events when Billy Parker posted to my Jerry's All Stars Thread whether i am bringing them to Chicago
Then all these things welled up from the back recesses of my overworked brain - suppressed memories too recent - and what gets me is they do not seem to care
waaaaaay diff than say the expert staff at San Diego who help out dealers in & out when they have a pile of stuff - i like the way they do business
guess if i participated in those 1/2 nd zero special isssue show exclusives they would treat those who do not differently
- then again, i once got a phone call many many years ago late 1980s from Gareb S with him asking me about my displeasure with some of the tactics in their then "new" monthly price "guide" which jacked stuff up to many dollars even before it got published - many times back in the day -
being in this business now for over 40 years i take umbrage with manipulation of the comic reader customer base
I simply spoke some simple truthful history - i would say response time to situations was lacking, there were losses sustained,
but i guess or does one also sign away any rights of liability when entering into booth contracts?
i think a large percentage of what i describe above was the direct action fault of Wiz-Chicago upon cold post fact analysis of the math involved leading to situations which should not have been there in the first place,
if one laid out one's booth area better from the get-go like San Diego does, i would not have sustained a 25% loss of my direct selling time vs cost of booth
I count when i hit the door till i box up the last stack of comic books and place it into the van as selling time
- the year that Chicago creep stole four feet of my booth with his wooden magazine racks taking up the entire back wall area of his booth as well as 4 feet of my 20 feet backdrop, they should have been right over like flies on the Sh*t-Head he remains attacking him into letting me set up pronto instead of the dargging it out which ensued
- seems to me pretty cut & dried -
that type of behavior is not to be tolerated and there should be consequences to such perps
yet they let him in back to the show last year
standards are pretty low, if you ask me,
i hate having to think I have watch the dealers like that around me more than the customers in front of me
- a few bad apples can have the potential with regards to the spoiling of the entire barrell, so the millenia time-honored saying goes
but does one have any rights when there is a pattern of failure to address their actions (or lack thereof) caused direct consequence financial loss?
any opines welcomed
- heck, even from Wiz-Kids putting on Chicago
i have questions and seek some answers
otherwise i would want to put Jerry's All Stars in a Chi-Comicon booth(s) along with my other stock and the piles of cool stuff i picked up in San Diego as well as collections scored all the time
- is the internet for sales is the wave of the future in this business river?
i think so
can any one prove me wrong?
San Diego will hold its own for me, and the hardy souls who traverse the country to the Media Mecca it has become with us dinosaurs just a sub-set there these days,
and i sold a lot of 20 to 50 dollar books in all grades - gobs of them, quite pleased with the year's festival - picked up a lot of good stuff there as well, i was quite pleased.
San Diego is so much more secure, any other larger show like Wiz-Chicago and/or NYComicon, the new upstarts who have yet to work out a deal with the Freeman guys who stalk us during set up
why is it (rhetorical query actually) the West Coast Freeman guys & gals at San Fran or San Diego are so helpful, they come out to you to help load your van even, they ask you if you need help
NYC Freeman on the other hand prey upon us indiscrimantly only because they still can
will that scenario never be addressed in NYC - is it impossible to solve?
the cost of doing the major shows is climbing - certain things need to be addressed and solved
This has been my way of life for over 40 years now, started as a hobby which got way out of hand many moons ago.
Hauling boxes of valuable comic books to a show which had demonstrated a lack of control over night time security is something i am unconvinced of to risk this year based off previous Wiz-Burns as i call them.
To be normally in one spot, then move to another and have the comicon fold out map say a 3rd all in one show led to a tremendous drop off in my business on-site with that one. Customers could not find me - we all have regulars at each of the shows, those who have done the comicon circuit know what i mean - the ones who come to you first, or early on, cuz they know you take their want lists and pick up stuff at other shows for them, developed over years
then, with the room being large, regular customers could rightfully assume the dealer who isn't where the comicon map says could easily have not set up and there are so many booths of competition
- and i had plenty of gusy say "Bob, jeez, could not find you based on the comicon map they handed out, but now i have spent all my money"
Reasonable Peace of Mind (RPM) at night is paramount to me these days, so is competent logistics with regards to booth-thieves leading to direct financial loss
so are over night burglaries - and then not addressing the problem for ensuing years
I have set up at over a thousand comicons since my first one in Houston June 1967
There are a few basic requirements necessary - and i think Wiz shows could use some improvement - is this just me?
P.S. Take a free consult with a lawyer, plunk down the down payment, and turn the tigers loose on those guys. Revenge is served best by being cold.
Edited by King_of_Batch (08/04/0711:13 AM)
_________________________ TRANS GLOBAL TRANSGLOBAL COMICS AND MAGAZINES, INSTITUTE FOR ADVANCED MAGAZINE STUDIES, DELTA D GICLEE GALLLERY AND DESIGN ATELIER, MONSANTO WESTINGHOUSE, CARSTAIRS BAGLEY, JR., & LOUIS COOK JAMES, JR., (WITH SHOTGUN SINCLAIR)