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    It may seem weird for a guy who has already passed his 30th birthday to be collecting comic books, but it seems that the comic collecting crowd is a lot older lately. I have been collecting comics since I was a little kid of maybe 5 or 6 years old. I went from buying comics as something I enjoyed reading to buying them as an investment back to just getting them for a little enjoyment once a week. As I've gotten older, comics have changed and there is a lot more to them. You see them address issues you never would have seen before and you see a lot more character growth, not just a hero vs. villain fight every issue.

    My tastes in comics have changed as I've gotten older and as the characters have changed. I used to be a solid Marvel Comics supporter, but now find most of my favorite titles are my DC Comics. I've always been a fan of team titles. Some of my favorites are Avengers, JLA, JSA, Legion of Super-Heroes, and (Teen) Titans, although I used to also avidly follow the X-Men and Defenders (the first series). I've never gotten stuck on the big title characters like Batman, Superman, or Spider-Man. I like characters like Starman (Jack Knight), Green Lantern, Flash, and (on & off) Iron Man. The recent (but sadly cancelled) Vertigo series Codename: Knockout is funny too, with the main character's gay sidekick, Go-Go Fiasco. But there is life beyond the "Top 2". There are a number of independent comics that I've always loved like John Sable, Badger, and Mage. When time allows, I will create pages dedicated to some of my favorite comics and heroes.

Not Just For Reading
    My interest in comics hasn't been just in reading them. I've always enjoyed the artwork and drawing stuff from it. I was never a great artist and didn't have the skill and creativity to sit down and draw right from images in my mind, but could draw well if given a picture to work from. I enjoyed finding some of my favorite pictures or pages and trying to duplicate them. When I was in college, I even took some of my favorite covers, photocopied them, and used colored pencils to duplicate the original colors and looks. I used these to decorate the walls of my dorm room. More than a few times, I scared fellow comic collector friends who saw them and thought they were the original covers until they looked real close and discovered they were just copies. I also spent a lot of time creating my own characters in the hopes of one day using them in comics of my own creation. In my head, I created enough histories and storylines to fill years of series and mini-series. I have even scripted one issue of a non-super-hero comic book designed to be the start of a 4 issue mini-series/story arc. Like everything else, that is sitting in a file box somewhere, enjoyed by a few people who know me, but otherwise unused. (If anyone is ever actually interested in working on a comic, I can dig out out sometime. *hint* *hint*) I don't know if I'll ever get to use any of these things in real life, but they have given me enough happy and creative moments to enjoy on my own.

'Toon-ing In
    I may not be a little kid any more, but I still like watching some cartoons. I am a fan of anime and my interest in it has increased through my time hanging out with friends recently. Some of my favoite current animated shows are Justice League, Yu-Gi-Oh, and X-Men Evolution as well as come of the Sunday night Adult Swim cartoons. Some of the anime I've come to enjoy via other venue are GTO, Lupin III, .hack//Sign, City Hunter, Serial Experiment Lain, and Card Captor Sakura. As far as older stuff goes, I like the Super Friends cartoons, X-Men, Transformers, G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends, and Dungeons & Dragons.

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