Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Random Celebrity Sighting: Matt Groening


I got home from work and thought I'd bring my recently-acquired Macbook Pro from work to the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf on Fairfax and try out its Wifi, and possibly catch up on my Harry Potter reading. On my way though I had this urge to stop by Meltdown Comics on Sunset to see if they might have any of the vinyl Ugly Dolls left.

Nope. But everyone seemed to be gathering in the back gallery for some reason. A-ha! An exhibit of artist-painted Bart Simpson dolls. Cool! A DJ. An unattended bar with signs reminding people not to bring the drinks outdoors, yet no alchohol in sight (Darn!) Lots of cool mutations of Bart Simpson and a decent number of people snapping photos of them. Then, the back of a green-shirted man in a corridor blocked by people, including a little girl and her mother. "Can I have your autograph?" spoke the mother. "Surree... for you?" spoke an oddly familiar voice. "No, for her please." I looked down and saw the girl smiling, holding a sketch of the face of Lisa Simpson on a Post-it™ note. Oooh!

So I pondered my options. I did not happen to have my sketchbook (which has autographs and sometimes sketches from people like Joss Whedon, Ray Harryhausen, Weird Al Yankovic, Stan Winston, Brian Froud, the creators of Making Fiends, et al.) Doh! I snapped this quick shot of Mr. Groening as he admired the work of a particular artist (whose name I neglected to find out). Briefly considered having him sign some random flat piece of paper or brochure... Naaa. I calculated how long it would take me to walk back home and get my sketchbook and come back -- would Matt still be here? Debated whether I could live without the effort and just go about my evening plans, but as I left I decided I would give it a go.

Made it back in the nick of time! Matt was nearly at the front of the store, while about eight people were in a nebulous line near him holding things they'd just bought for him to sign. More people were in line at the counter buying things behind us and presumably going to enter this line, so I jumped in with my sketchbook. Matt gratiously took photos with and autographed stuff for folks, though about two people in front of me he mentioned to his security guard that the "guy in the hat" would be the last one (somewhere behind me). Phew!

So I got to shake hands, congrulate him on his successful Simpsons movie and mention my eagerness for the Futuruma DVDs I heard him talk about at Comic Con. "Oh yes, they're going to be really cool," he said while drawing a Homer Simpson head in my sketchbook, signing it. Whohoo!

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posted by Brian at 10:58 PM 1 comments links to this post