Last time I wrote about a few of the travel-esque items I’d knocked off my list. This one, I’ll tackle a bit of reading and a bit of comics. I’ve been into comics for a while and moving back to the US kicked it into high gear as I was able to go to actual comic book shops. The pandemic, however, kicked it into overdrive as I started to seriously collect and sell (though to a lesser extent).
I found a few Facebook groups that sell comics (I’m both ashamed and not ashamed to admit that buying comics is literally the only thing I use Facebook for anymore). As such, I started to learn more about comics, key issues, how to grade or determine the grade of comic (based on its condition), and average prices, etc. One of my goals then became to sell at least 5 comics and to buy a comic worth over $100.
I’ll begin with the smaller goal of selling comics. I wanted to sell at least 5 and while it was a slow start, selling on eBay picked up rather quickly. I wasn’t selling high value items, but made sure I provided as accurate as grades as I could and packaged them the way I’d received comics. I ended probably selling several hundred comics and it’s one of the few things I truly miss whilst being abroad (I can still buy…🤪).
As for buying? At the time…$100 felt like a HUGE purchase. I meant enormous! $100 on a single comic? No way, couldn’t do it, just couldn’t. But I figured I’d save and go ahead and see what I could find. I ended up buying one that cost significantly more than $100. I had purchased some that are now worth well over $100, but got some great deals on before their prices skyrocketed. I ended up purchasing Thor #165 – it’s the first appearance of HIM, a person who later becomes Adam Warlock (featured in many different series, but most notably in Jim Starlin’s Infinity Gauntlet, of which much of the last two Avengers movies were based on). He’ll be debuting on screen in the Guardians of the Galaxy movie.
Anyways, this was a big and exciting purchase for me! I had saved and used money from my comic sales to fund this and I found the copy I wanted from a seller I knew to be reputable. I also love Thor comics. It’s my main focus when collecting, though I do collect others as well. Aside from the early Journey Into Mystery – Thors, this is probably the most valuable Thor out there though there are a few to give it a run for it’s money. I don’t, however, fork out the thousands of dollars I see people spending on single issues (first appearances of major characters have that effect – like Wolverine). Anyways, here is my comic in all its glory!
Since then there have been other bigger purchases, but I won’t go into those. Along with buying and selling a few comics, I wanted to read and/or reread a few.
I’ll start with this book as it’s in the news everywhere right now because some morons (in Tennessee I believe) have decided to ban it from their schools. Art Speigelman’s story, Maus, is a two-fold story of him speaking with his father and trying to get a story from him and the story he does get: his father’s life as a Polish Jew before, during, and after the Holocaust. It is one of the best books I’ve ever read. Funny at times (when it comes back to Art and his father in modern day), but mostly moving, terrifying, and powerful.
The Nazis are represented by cats while the Jews are represented by mice. It details the horrors of the Nazi concentration camps, but also the life people led leading up to being sent – the fears, the worries, the traumas endured. It should be mandatory reading in every high school English/Lit and Social Studies class.
I don’t know what else to say about this book other than…if you have not read it, please do so.
A few graphic novels
I was also looking to reread a few older graphic novels I’d read many years ago. The first was Watchmen – Alan Moore’s dark tale of a world in the throes of the Cold War, heroes who might not all be heroes, and violence and racism. A great read if you have never read it and the HBO series with Regina King, which takes place AFTER the book is also amazing and really touches on racism in the modern world. Pretty sad there won’t be a season 2.
The next was V for Vendetta, a book a read after the movie came out in 2005. I LOVED the movie (I still enjoy it and watch it every November 5th), but getting back into the back was a bit more difficult. I remembered the characters differently, but it’s still a story worth reading. I remember in 2005 after reading and seeing the movie that everything that was happening politically made the book feel incredibly relevant, but that pales in comparison to the tumultuous nature of US politics right now. As with Watchmen, V for Vendetta is a must read, even if you’re not a comics fan.
Until the next post, where I’ll be covering a few random things from reading Lord of the Rings to getting my back waxed for the first time to staying home and watching movies all day!