Keywords: Hills. Nice People. Fun. Generosity. Sha Nazir. Honest. Life-loving. Craft beer heaven. Hills. Z Hotel. Dun Fun. T-Rex.
A surprisingly upright city despite being built on the side of a hill. If you want something in Glasgow, the city makes you work for it. It takes no prisoners and makes no apologies for its passions, impurities and the soul-plundering reckonings it bestows on its visitors.
Like the feeling of conquest that washes over you when you reach the top of that calf-burning, heart-hammering climb that leads to the Art School, equal and in opposite measure is that feeling of loss when you cross Hadrian’s Wall back from whence you came only four days previously. Four wonderful, sound-of-music-esque days…
The Apes were parked at top of said lactic acid-inducing climb in the modest but cosy Art School. Sitting opposite the heavyweights of Aces Weekly, we had David Lloyd’s presence to thank for increased footfall (and the foresight of the organisers – Black Hearted Press – to put him there!) There was no shortage of Scottish Independents (or should that be Independence?) in the venue with Neil Slorance (How to be Suave), Colin Bell (Dungeon Fun) and Adam and Lisa Murphy (Corpse Talk). Oh and the bar. A bar. 20 feet away from our table. With NICE beer on tap. The Comic Gods are hell benevolent.
We spent Saturday evening in the CCA watching the SICBAs (proper awards for proper comics like) and I even treated myself to an auction piece courtesy of Colin MacNeil that pillar of art that regularly frequents 2000AD. We had the good fortune to cross paths with Ed…. Fortune, of Starburst Magazine before tango-ing over to Mango to round off the evening.
Mark Millar proved the big draw on Sunday (rightly so) and we made some new friends we hope won’t be changed too much by their future fame. We got to hang out with Neil Slorance for a couple of hours (who is fast becoming holder of my title for “Nicest Guy in Indies”) at the after-party. I got to offend Barry Kitson by not knowing about “that Obama cover” (but we kissed and made up) and John McShane proved a revelation in the art of name-dropping. I laughed long. I guffawed hard. I even snorted beer through my nostrils a couple of times. It was a great end to a craic-filled weekend.
Sha Nazir and his BHP team represent the beating heart of belief in the Independent comics scene and when it comes to bringing people together, he’s got a knack for it that would put Costner to shame. It’s passion like that that will keep us coming back year on year (if they’ll have us that is.)
And of course we won’t forget Michelle – the Convention’s savviest and coolest volunteer who looked after the creators with the same sort of care that Florence Nightingale would have bestowed on wounded soldiers. But took no crap from no one – Man or Ape alike. The girl will go far. As we hope the GCC will too.