Mindy Newell: Shopping For My New Comics Shop

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So yesterday afternoon I turned on the TV to watch the live Global Citizen concert and caught one of my favorite artists, Yusuf Islam – formerly known as Cat Stevens – performing songs “Wild World” and, joined by Eddie Vedder, “Father and Son,” both from one of his best albums, 1970’s Tea for the Tillerman. I was singing along and getting back into my ‘60s groove when, all of a sudden, right as he started to sing another song, fucking MSNBC went to commercials!!!!

C’mon, are you kidding me? And to make it even more frustrating, the network did one of those “little boxes” so that you could see Mr. Islam singing, but you couldn’t hear him. AAAGH! Global Citizen’s mission is to end extreme poverty around the world, so I found it extremely disturbing and in incredibly bad taste to have a concert meant to raise awareness and encourage support interrupted by “come-on’s” and enticements to buy something.

I changed the channel.

I also went by my local comic book shop to pick up my “reads” and found the door covered with “To Rent” and “For Lease” signs. I didn’t bother parking. Now I have to search out a new place, one that’s close and easily accessible. I could go over to Forbidden Planet in Manhattan (where I believe my friend and fellow columnist Martha Thomases picks up her reads); it’s not far, and it’s in on of my favorite areas of the city, just south of Union Square on 13th and Broadway and it’s a really easy commute for me. I’m really tempted to start doing that, because Forbidden Planet has what I think is the best inventory anywhere – with Jim Hanley’s Universe, aka JHU Comic Books, on East 32nd running a very close second. Jim’s original store is on Staten Island, and it’s still there, on New Dorp Lane, but construction and traffic make that drive a nightmare.

Just did a search, and found Carmine Street Comics on Carmine Street in the West Village, which is even closer than Forbidden Planet, a few blocks south of Christopher Street, the first stop in Manhattan on the New Jersey PATH train. Really like their website – hmm, Carmine just doesn’t sell comics, its an “interactive” store with their community. They have a storefront studio with an Artist Space for illustrators and writers (though watching a writer at work can be pretty boring, if you ask me), plus podcasts, a video talk show, and a webseries. And for comics consumers they have a deal with ComiXology so that you can reserve comics weeks in advance and then pick them up at the store. This is a really interesting place. Definitely checking it out – next weekend, fer shur!! (And I have to talk to Martha about Carmine – I have a feeling she already knows about it.)

There’s 4:00 left in the Giants-Redskins game, Giants are up by 1 (27-26); I’m getting that sick feeling in my stomach I always get with my Big Blue. (Never an easy win with them, and they tend to beat themselves.) Washington has the ball, and is moving the ball down the field with their running game. Now the ‘skins are in field goal range and we are at the 2:00 minute warning. Fuck, fuck, fuck! Defensive line held them to a fourth down. But Washington just kicked a field goal. Now they are up by 2. 1:51 left. Fuck, fuck, fuck!

I gotta go watch this, guys.

Fuck! Fuck! Fuck! Eli’s pass was intercepted.

Game over.

Ah, well. It’s a long season…

And next weekend, a visit to Carmine Street Comics. I think I’ll call Martha.