|Matt Dow & Dave Sim|
2004 Small Press Alternative Comics Expo (S.P.A.C.E.)
photo by Gerhard
As Cerebus entered it's last year of publication, Dave referred to his upcoming retirement numerous times. After reading one of them, I got the idea that it would be funny to buy him a gold watch and give it to him when he and Gerhard appeared at S.P.A.C.E. 2004. (Somehow I got it in my head that the Fantagraphics crowd would also send Dave a watch for his retirement. Sort of a "Well Dave, you said you were retiring, here's your watch, don't let the door hit you on your way out..." kind of thing.)
So, I drove to Ohio, and with my good friend Derrick (whom I introduced to Cerebus) got in line to give Dave his watch and get a bunch of stuff signed. The box in front of me in the photo had every Cerebus item I had that I hadn't had Dave and Gerhard sign at the Graham Cracker Comics signing in it. I also had brought Melmoth, Flight, Women, Reads and Minds which I was going to surprise Derrick with... right as we got to the front of the line.
As we got to the front of the line, I asked Derrick to hold the phonebooks. And as he was handing them to Dave to have Dave sign them to me, I said, "Surprise! They're yours!"
Dave and Ger signed them, and then I handed Dave the watch and said, "You kept saying in Cerebus that you were retiring, here's your gold watch, thanks for all the hard work!"
Dave thanked me profusely, and had Ger take a couple of photos, and then signed everything I had in the box.