In the middle of roundsing at 10 am, this text message from Agent Orange Larfleeze: I’m already in Mega Mall for the Comic Convention. Ako pa lang ang tao. Can you refresh me on the story of The Orange Lanterns?
This got me rushing things, which is not advisable while roundsing—you get confused, you write all sorts of incomprehensible turd, you order all kinds of stuff for which you can get sued months later. And for more agitation, more updates from the already ongoing comic convention from Agent Orange: Parang maganda ang Orange Lantern T-shirts. Meron din red and blue.
Orange Lantern T-shirts! For the uninitiated, this boring catch-up: There are now Red, Orange, Yellow, Blue, Indigo, Violet, and Black Lanterns in addition to the already iconic Green Lanterns. Indeed, ROYGBIV + Black. Each one operates on a specific emotion, and my favorite is the Red Lantern of Raaaaaage. Upon receiving the message I started having weird facial tics, fearing that by the time I get to Mega Mall all would be left are the T-shirts for the Indigo Lanterns of Compassion or the Violet Lanterns of Loooove.
Apparently not too many people were interested in them t-shirts, because they sort of suck, obviously made from simple silk screening. The Orange Lantern of Avarice shirt was too thin, the Black Lantern of Death too thick, so I just got myself the Red Lantern of Raaaaaaaaage and Blue Lantern of Hope shirts.
A huge crowd was already in frenzy by the time I got there, some in costume which I happily did not recognize because I know zip about mangga and Japanese comic books. With so many toys and comic books I sort of panicked and I kept on bumping violently into people. I turned to apologize at one of the dudes I bumped and he just smiled a dead smile to match his bleary eyes, flashed me a peace sign, and droned, “duuuude”. Welcome to a drugged seventies hippie convention!
While crouching and rummaging through huge box of DC Direct figs at 70% off I heard a familiar voice amidst the noise, looked up, and saw Warburger. Warburger was a high school classmate geekazoid who was into collecting all sorts of things back then—X-Men comic books, Bong Barrameda trivia newspaper clippings, weird words, and such. While having a regular conversation with him back then he would suddenly blurt out of nowhere: “SPIZORINCTUM!!!!”–he did that sort of thing. I had a long fight with him back in 2nd year high school because he promised he could get me a ticket for the 1995 WWF Manila Tour, but he ended up getting just a ticket for himself, then went on to regale everyone with stories of how Bret Hart beat Owen Hart to a pulp the day after the event. I haven’t seen him in 10 years.
“Warburger!” I yelled. He stared for 15 seconds before recognizing me, and I noted that in his hands were bags and bags of toys and comic books. I had in my hand two cheap shirts. He now works in some oil company and is totally rich.
“Hey haven’t see you in years!” he screamed amidst the crowd noise. “I now collect all sorts of things—stamps, comic books, statuettes, coins, action figures, and they are all in my room, which is not quite organized, my room is still a work in progress!!!” he continued. “I’m meeting someone who would sell me Marvel Universe figs, which are inferior to the 2004 Marvel Legends mind you—but the Red Hulk is so rare so I’m getting it—but I can’t seem to find this guy!!! And I haven’t seen him before!!!”
I proudly wore my Red Lantern of Raaaaaaaage t-shirt the next day while roundsing. JDpoop saw me in it, and asked why I was in a pambahay garb. One of the Red Lanterns is called Atrocitus, and he constantly vomits boiling blood to represent the uncontainable rage within him. He can also clamp his fangs around an enemy’s head and tear it off its neck. Ya hear that? Raaaaaaaage!