There are a lot of things that a true geek would love as a gift: Variant cover comic books? Collector's Edition Arkham City Xbox? Leonard Nimoy's signature on a dirty napkin (this means you, Sheldon)? I have been blessed with many awesome gifts that serve my inner geek over the years. My mom and dad were very good at indulging us at Christmas and my Star Wars Collection in the late 70's and early 80's was the envy of many. My beautiful wife is quick to buy a shirt or hat with Batman or a jaunty villain on it as well. Even my mother-in-law has spoiled me with a truly awesome Spiderman Spatula!
But there is one gift that really went above and beyond what I would ever expect to find inside a wrapped box or hidden inside my Christmas stocking.
I am lucky to have a friend and fraternity brother that put his massive talents to good use and has worked in the comic industry for years. Don Kramer and I met back in the late 80's when I was too self-conscious to indulge my inner geek. He was just a year ahead of me at Illinois Wesleyan University and was a great role model in the Sigma Pi Fraternity. Years go by and I was lucky to reconnect with him as I was attending my first Comic Con and still my favorite C2E2. Now Don has done some pretty remarkable things in comics and has drawn Nightwing, JSA and assorted others. But he was chosen to draw for the groundbreaking Wonder Woman #600 and the arc Odyssey, penned by J. Michael Straczynski.
DC Comics 2010
This was all over the news, remember? Wonder Woman wears pants? Wonder Woman's new makeover? It was a national story and people had very strong opinions. And with that #600 issue, Don gave me the coolest gift I have ever received.
Flip that collectible Wonder Woman #600 open to page 45 (or scroll to it on the digital copy - I surprisingly have both). And what do you see there along the wall in the graffiti? That's right. My name! How awesome is that! Most folks probably didn't notice it, but it was burned into my memory.
DC Comics 2010
Now I realize that not everyone will know someone with the connections and talent that Don has and wouldn't be excited by this. But for a comic book nerd who has been reading them on and off for the last 3 decades, this is one of a kind. So a big thanks to Don Kramer! Best Geek Gift Ever!