Coffee Run

My morning routine is to hit the drive through on my way to work. I grab a large black coffee and then struggle drinking for the next 10 minutes as I navigate the bumps, turns, starts and stops all the while trying to take sips of the piping hot coffee. You’d think by now I’d have come up with a solution but I haven’t. My favourite coffee is close to home and I enjoy coffee the most when it’s piping hot and the lid has to be off as I like slurping it over the rim of the cup. Pulling over just past the drive through is really the only solution but that eats into my work time. So, I continue to weave and bob and steal sips when I can; thank God for red lights! Trying to do something you enjoy while doing something you need to do just to save time gives you limited returns. I have to try to carve myself out some time to enjoy my comic collection, I need to block out some time just to have fun and surf the web looking for books that interest me, I have to physically separate my PC from the work environment. A few small adjustments, that’s all.

On the last episode of Comic Culture Chris and I talked about my love of collecting the November 1971 issues from Marvel. I mentioned how much fun it is to hunt down Where Monsters Dwell, My Love etc. but later it dawned on me that the anchor to that whole collecting strain is the plethora of great issues that have all those great heroes we all know and love to collect. Way back in the late 70s, when I was really young and just starting to pick up good stuff, Avengers #93 was a massive book. It was the big Neal Adams Giant Size issue, same goes for Thor #193, another fantastic Neal Adams cover, same goes for Amazing Spider-Man #102 with the Morbius story arc. It was these and the other anchor title books that really ignited the desire to collect them all; it’s only later that I began to appreciate that “other half” of the set. I think it’s a good example of taking a path that leads you to your favorite spots but along the way you discover that there are other great vistas to enjoy.

This week’s “going to eBay auction” pile had some real gems, check out this gorgeous cover to Dime Comics #8 by Hamiltonian Edmond Good. This Canadian White, or WECA book as Ivan Kocmarek correctly likes to call it, is going up on our Canadiana auction which now has an official start date of Sunday October 29th. It’s not too late to consign if you have anything interesting to offer up.

Our ad of the week comes out of Avengers #11, you know, the one with Spidey on the cover. For only $19.95 you can get an RCA shortwave radio with world-wide reception. How enticing was this? You figure in 1964 America there were not many avenues to get news and info. I think there were only 3 TV channels at the time and your local radio stations were deep into the payola cycles of playing the same old tunes. Here was your chance to discover the world, sort of like the internet I guess. I wonder how many kids sent away for these and I wonder how many kids dove into the world of shortwave radio. Is shortwave radio still a thing? I think those survival groups are into it but I wonder if it is still widely used now that we have our phones.

Our good pal Chris Owen was in for a visit and I happened to be hunting for pics for this very post. Not liking to see Chris sitting around while I’m working, I asked him to find me a good splash page. He was digging deep and hard when a few minutes later he shouts, “wow, what a great splash page!”. Chris then hands me a copy of X-Men #244 from 1989, where Marc Silvestri draws this … splash page. The first thing that came to mind was the old adage that if you want something done right you have to do it yourself, but then I thought I’d get my revenge and shame him right here on this page. Though, I’m not going to lie, I kind of want to see what unfolds on the next page.

Last night’s edition of icecollectibles weekly eBay auction finished with some interesting results. I was watching the Brave and the Bold #1 CGC 2.5 with interest, it sold for $430 which is a bit below the crazy covid high but compared very well to a recent 5.0 sale. Early Silver Age DC is holding vale better than the early Marvels at the moment.

Walter Durajlija
Walter Durajlija

Walter Durajlija is an Overstreet Advisor and Shuster Award winner. He owns Big B Comics in Hamilton Ontario.

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Chris Meli
Chris Meli
7 months ago

Good lesson to the kids about driving around with one hand on the wheel and the other holding an open piping-hot cup of coffee. In the next post tell us which stop signs on the course of your commute you consider optional.

Avengers #93 is one of my grail books that I’ve sort of lost hope for. Kind of a “so expensive nobody buys it anymore” Yogi Berra book. Not rare, not quirky, just an awesome key. Sigh.

I am going to get ONE Canadian White someday. I am biding my time and girding my loins (don’t watch). It is going to be a good one. Just have to find the right time and place. This is in line with your point at the end of the first paragraph – you have to be in it _always_ to win it. The only way I am going to get this is track hundreds, bid tens, and be lucky enough to win the one when others are caught flat-footed.

I survived on shortwave (especially BBC) when I lived for a short while in Germany, because my German was not even rudimentary. The range is what makes shortwave cool – I could even listen to stuff from Spider’s neck of the woods – if I wanted to, that is.

Silvestri. One of those tattoos from your youth that you now regret.

B&B #1 is not far from Skippy. Showcase #1 is similar – firemen? If I want a firemen, book, it will be Emergency #1. (Okay, “paramedics”, you hair splitters – so what?) Vikings? Then of course it’s Thor. Now a book about cowboy gunfighters shooting vikings – that’s for me – why didn’t Charlton make a “Viking Western”?

7 months ago

c’mon brother, I’ll tell you how to live; buy yourself a beautiful espresso machine, get trained by a professional, then every morning you produce 2 cafe lattes – delivering one to your beautiful wife who is still in bed. This is the way.