August 1st, 2005


caption 2005 - Done and Dusted

There's a brown butterfly on the windowsill. Maybe it likes the hell-o kitty. I'm watching it flutter and land, flutter and land and thinking about Caption. Putting up Andy's exhibition, crying. Drifting down to the river, crying. Disappearing into the toilets, crying. And, of course, after it was all over, taking down Andy's exhibition, crying.

Poor old Caption, wee seat-of-the-pants comics thing; had a bit of a quiet one this year, and there were certainly other reasons for this, but one of them was because their resident artist never really got her shit together.

There was a lot good about the weekend; giving the new house its first serious set of houseguests, for starters; knitting and late-night DVD watching, too much booze and showing off my balloon plant, making plans for future festivals and DIY, and long rambles through the suburbs to track down breakfast among the ruins of saturday night in the Cowley Road roadworks (bugpete took fine photos). It was really nice having people round: motodraconis christened the lawn with its first tent, and Mardou psychoanalysed us following an early-morning candy run; picking a curly-wurly makes me complicated and fiddly, apparently.

But, I could have done without hearing the voice of my dead friend across the room just as I was running late on putting up his memorial exhibition, and trying hard not to snap at the people helping me. After a bit I stopped hearing Andy, and started hearing Will instead; reasonable enough as his stall is a regular Caption feature, but this year he wasn't there, so just as nuts. He's in New York, having fun. I'm fuzzy on the details, but he told me it involved bears.

Again with the good times; piles of cardboard robots and monkeys appearing with almost no encouragement, Leonie colouring in my Knight Rider colouring book, unexpected birthday presents, whore-hugs and much catch-up with friends I don't see often enough; introducing concourse to my crazy cartoon world, duck-stuffing and monkey-dressing, scavenging among the bargains and jamming to a background conversation about cock and Peter Greenaway's The Falls.

bring me the head of kurt cobainBut it was also a weekend that crystalized something for me; I need to step back from caption, the crazy comics convention I've helped nurse through 13 implausible years, good times and bad. It's fun, but it's been my playpen for too long; it's someone else's turn now. In fact, it's been someone else's turn for a while now, but I have such trouble letting go of things.

In the meantime I am reading the weekend's spoils, piles and piles of strange comics, full of strange wisdom: did you know that you catch warts by pointing at stars when you're counting them? Or that there's a home for obsolete drawing pens?

Damn. squigglyruth's just called me to ask me if I know where her laptop cable is. Hope she finds it, she worked so hard to get this year's caption done and dusted.

Query: If you picked up a comic called Quimty, what would you expect it to contain?
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