I’m pretty pleased with the work I did here, the more so since Flo didn’t carve it up as I was expecting she might. She may be closer to Joel’s life experience overall, but the sensation of coming home full-handed after a convention is one I know very, very well.

I was also getting to a point where carrying our wares home after every show was more of a struggle: in the early days of my career, I could tote all my leftovers to the car in one go without much effort. Of course, that has as much to do with changes in what our merchandise was (bigger books and more accessories than the flimsy floppy comics for Fans and the tiny digests of Penny and Aggie) as it did with my aging body, but the point is, I felt for Joel’s choice in panels 1 and 2.

Full disclosure: in the course of my life as a whole, I’ve committed a few determined follow-ups that others most likely considered stalkerish, though not this elaborate, not out of malice, and certainly not with the implied threat that will mark this and many other interactions JJ has. Knowing where the lines are can be hard if you’ve got a bit of social awkwardness, especially if the “scene” seems to exist somewhat outside the spaces of normal etiquette. But even at my worst, I would’ve balked at doing this.