The Beta Test

THE LAST TIME we posted to this blog, Sadiya filed her rundown of Comic Arts Brooklyn. She survived her first solo assignment as camp counselor for the Secret Acres table, wrapping up another comics year that saw us drop Joakim Drescher’s first installment of his Motel Universe trilogy, Sean Knickerbocker’s Rust Belt collection, Keren Katz’s sophmore graphic novel, the Backtstage of a Dishwashing Webshow, and Glyniss Fawkes’s memoir of everything, Persephone’s Garden. Sadiya dedicated the third act of her first Scuttlebutt to the then-upcoming Marchenoir Library from A. Degen, and the second installment of Motel Universe. She signed off with: ” See? The world ain’t so bad. Happy holidays, everybody (and many thanks for sticking with us through this year of total, global meltdown). And we are outta here like Brexit! See you in 2020…” So we ended our comics year of 2019.



Talk about famous last words. We really made ourselves into total liars, since, in fact, we did not see you at all in 2020. We admit to faking optimism back in 2019, and not just because people started whispering the word pandemic before the virus even had a name. A week after that last post, we lost our friend, Tom Spurgeon. A week after that, sometime during the fifth Democratic presidential debate, we started thinking it could be another four years of Trump rule, and it might be a really good idea to get the fuck out of America, so we got tickets. About forty-eight hours after landing in Germany, Trump closed the borders, for what was supposed to be six weeks. It took that long to get a safe flight home.



We made it back home, and back to this blog, and now, finally, we’re back at MoCCA this weekend, two years late. These last two years took a lot out of us. They took a lot of our friends, parents and grandparents, our jobs, marriages and homes, our peace and supposed democracy, our health and sanity, our sense of history and community. Like everyone and everything, we are back at square one. It fits, being back in our hometown, and heading into MoCCA for our first show, with no idea of what we’re doing, of what to expect, of what this community feels like, or what community feels like, period. We did exactly this, fourteen years ago, at MoCCA, our first show ever, and now we’re making rookie mistakes again. At least something feels familiar.



We owe too many apologies to too many people to make them all here. We want to make good on those promises from the old world, back in 2019. We do indeed have Motel Universe 2: Faschion Empire and the Marchenoir Library for you this weekend, after releasing them into the ether of lockdown. We have Zak Sally’s astonishing Recidivist IV, after releasing that one accidentally. We have a sneak peak of Adam Griffith’s Washington White, which you can actually pick up and hold at the MoCCA table. We even have a new addition to the Secret Acres gang, Gabe Howell, but our site’s operating in beta, so you’ll hear more about him when we get back from MoCCA. You will hear from us when we get back from MoCCA, that we promise you. Meantime, please forgive us, and if you’re in New York this weekend, please come by and say hello because we’d love to see your faces. We really missed you.

Your Pals,

Leon and Sadiya

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