Diner Talk 08.09.04

First off, let me just welcome everybody to The Nexus. All of this happened quicker than a night of passion between me and Jennifer Garner. Over the last week it’s been amazing to see everyone scrambling to put it all together. It’s a helluva thing to see a whole team full of reviewers and columnsts from the various sites push together to come up with names, concepts, etc.

What’s this all about?

So, new site, new column.

I am your host here at Diner Talk, James Hatton. I’ve been a reviewer with these guys for less than a year, but I’ve been told they like me (if they didn’t like me, they wouldn’t accuse me of being a rampant alcoholic). Just so you know, I am the partial creator of a documentary on 24 Hour Comic Day that can be found here, and I write a little webcomic called ‘In His Likeness’ (http://ihl.keenspace.com). I am 25 years old, working as a mortgage processor and freelance host for Open Mics and various venues. I love obscure references, walks on the beach, and my anti-drug is smoking during Truth commercials. That’s the basic ‘me’.

This is what to expect in the coming months from this spot here at Nexus.

There are lots of places that call themselves diners, even a few that are 24 Hour diners. Diner’s in NJ are not just a part of the landscape, they’re part of our heritage, and it’s hard to not live in NJ and not know of at least two diners, and four Dunkin’ Donuts. Most states, though, have no clue of the power that these places possess. Ask somebody from Jersey in their twenties how many hours they have spent at all night diners. A high percentage of people will tell you about trips after the bar, or after clubbing, or movies, or dates, or where they found their first victim… you get my drift. These sometimes neon, sometimes wooden, always smokey resturants are the place that you would go to down a bottomless cup of coffee and solve the world’s problems one Marlboro at a time.

For some of us, it was the nexus that we really needed. (Good way to tie it in, eh? God, I’m sexy..)

Now for the comics part of this. I had decided I wanted to do an interview column a few months back, but there was no chance in holy hell that I was going to do it the standard way. Not because standard interviews are bad, I just didn’t think I could pull it off. So thanks to Ben & Daron, once every week, you will get to come with me to a local Jersey diner, and listen in while I shoot the shit with someone in the biz. I guarantee you we will talk about comics, but when diner conversations get rolling, nobody knows where they will end up. If we start talking about Hawkman and end up talking about Siegfried & Roy.. you’ll know about it here first. I’ll be breaking these interviews up into two parts, so each month you will get two full and complete interviews out of me.

But, Jamie, WHO are you going to be interviewing?

If I told you that my first interview is going to be with Neil Gaiman, you would moisten a bit and call me a frigging liar. You would be correct, I don’t have Gaiman yet. I would love to get Gaiman in a corner booth though, and find out what pours out his mouth after the hallucinatory effects of diner ‘slaw kicks in. I ‘DO’ have quite a few people ready to go with this project, but they aren’t who you would expect. For every person you recognize by name, I am going to go out of my way to find people you DON’T know. Maybe it will be a retailer of a local store or it will be an artist about to break in, or a publisher, or a fellow Nexus staffer, or any number of other things.

I know that idea right off the bat is going to turn some of you off, but these are the people who make this industry. If there was no artists on the verge, there would be no small press. No retailers means no place to buy your funnybooks. No publishers and we would all be reading badly printed ashcans. This, and I don’t know a lot of big names personally yet, so we work up to these things.

So check back next week where we are going to have our first interview with the longtime assistant of someone famous. No really!

Also, if you are interested in this concept, and you think you are interesting enough to take the DINER TALK challenge of putting up with me for an hour or two. You may email me at ‘revvoice@hotmail.com’ and the coffee is always on me.

Til then,
James Hatton