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The day I dyed my hair and went to Comic-Con

Enjoy one from Jean Gillette’s archives about her 2010 day at Comic-Con.

I saw Bart Simpson. I hung out briefly with Boba Fett and Darth Vader, a zombie, some large machine-like creature, some very buff centurions, and I even rubbed elbows with Seth Green.

If you don’t know who Seth Green is, well, then you are seriously lacking in coolness. Even I, who has been known to score pretty low on the cool meter, remembered him as the son of “Austin Powers’” Dr. Evil, who got told to “Zip it!”

However, I did lose points because I didn’t know exactly why Green was signing autographs on the Comic-Con exhibit floor. It involves adult cartoons too strange even for me. If you need details, just ask someone between 18 and 25.

Meanwhile, it turns out I have been a Comic-Con fan for years, but just didn’t realize it. The signs were all there. Basically I am a huge fan of imagination and whimsy …. and Comic-Con is pretty much Whimsy Central.

I have been known to find any excuse to wear a costume and am quite comfortable looking a little ridiculous.

I love science fiction and especially science fiction movies. I have been a “Star Trek” fan since the first season, a “Star Wars” fan as well. The clincher is that I was as big a fan of my children’s cartoon shows as they were, from “Rescue Rangers” to “Invader Zim” to “Angry Beavers.”

When my godson gave me the heads-up to buy my ticket months ago, I decided to go for it, before a) I was really too old to walk from one end of the Convention Center to the other and/or b) the rumors come true and the iconic event leaves San Diego for a more spacious spot in Orange County or L.A.

If I am required to drive past that Orange County border to get to something, even Comic-Con loses its attraction.

It was a day full of youthful exuberance and a visual feast. (I try to expose myself to youthful exuberance as often as possible in hopes of absorbing some subcutaneously.)

I’m not sure what tickled me the most. It might have been the street signs outside the Convention Center written in Klingon. It could have been seeing  trailers in serious surround sound. Or maybe it was the two or three adorable attendees who actually complimented my green hair.

Well, sure. You can just go to Comic-Con looking normal, but it’s an opportunity lost. I should have gone as Medusa, who was featured this year, looking very like me before my shower.

But even with my minimal effort, seriously costumed people chatted and joked easily with me. If you are willing to set aside a workday, maybe paint your hair green, and stand in endless lines, you have, apparently, earned their respect.

I loved that the exhibits range from established stars to upcoming creative minds trying to break into the business. And you never really know — either one might be standing right next to you.

Jean Gillette is a freelance writer who will be brushing up on her Klingon. Contact her at [email protected].