In the midst of all the costumed heroes and pretend fantasies, tonight I experienced what it means to be a hero, every day of our lives. When I say hero, I am not talking about a hero that wears leotards or has X-Ray vision – I am talking about the heroes that make up a family. One family in particular springs to mind. A hard-working family who has made amazing things happen in just three short years, putting together a spectacular event. An event that allows those who still dream, to continue to be dreamers, an event that gives individuals a platform of expression and creativity- in the midst of an often cynical world. And the event that I am speaking of? Comikaze Con.
As I was leaving the Los Angeles Convention Center, the night before the opening of the event, talented men and women were still hard at work setting up their booths so that audiences of like-minded dreamers can have a place to come and experience a different world. Here in the heart of the bustle of downtown LA, fellow geeks can all gather freely and unite. At Comikaze everyone is liberated of the burden of the everyday life that says “it’s about time you take your life more seriously.” At Comikaze, you are free to dress-up like She-Ra, Jungle Girl or Wonder Woman, without the glaring eyes of those who seem to think that beauty is not one of the gifts that come from God.
During the preparation for this event, I saw many things. I saw the Carpinelli family who worked hard this whole year, to make this event one of the best Pop Culture events in Los Angeles. I saw Regina and the whole Comikaze team putting all of their energy into ensuring that everyone has a great experience. I saw Corey running around helping everyone, making everyone feel important and special – making it so that we want to come back and do the same each year.
This event is filled with all ages, including children. Children spend so much time looking up to these superheroes when, to see a real hero, all they have to do is look in the mirror. It made me think about my own children and how heroic they are. Like my son Gregory, who was standing beside me as I worked long hours to build what God has assigned to me, or my daughter Alexandria who still laughs and smiles at the smallest things as though every day is Christmas. Or my son Temuijn who, even when I was late and missed the parade, was glad to see his dad, and held my hand as we left school for the day. The other heroes in a family are the mothers, like my wife Kim, who, over the years of me being lost, never gave up hope, never stopped praying and never regretted that she married someone who continues to be a dreamer.
Now, just 12 hours before the doors open for this year’s Comikaze event, and the eyes of children both young and old can immerse themselves in a place where art, science and technology all amass together – I remember the real-life heroes that God has sent us.