Some time in the early 1990s, I was fortunate enough to meet Neil Gaiman at DragonCon in Atlanta. He was super-cool and was kind enough to really speak with the fans that were waiting in line for his autograph (not just the lip service some famous people provide). At one point I recall he halted signing autographs so he could smoke a cigarette. He sat there at the table smoking and took questions from the people in line, an impromptu interview session. How cool is that?!?!?
Once it was my turn, I had him sign my copies of Sandman #1, #8, and Books of Magic #1. In line with me was my good friend Ravenface. Ravenface tends to fly by the seat of his pants, so he didn’t have any books prepared for Mr. Gaiman to sign. Instead Ravenface whips out a $1 bill from his wallet. He explains that he didn’t realize Mr. Gaiman would be there and all he had on him was this $1, and would he sign it? Neil said something like, “How surreal” and gladly signed the dollar bill. I thought this was really cool and I was terribly jealous.
The next year I was fortunate enough to meet Neil Gaiman again at the Diamond Comics Retailers Summit. Like Ravenface the year before, I had nothing prepared for him to sign. So I whipped out a dollar bill and asked him to sign it, briefly mentioning the encounter the previous year. Mr. Gaiman was kind enough to sign the dollar bill, but I got the sense he didn’t recall signing one a year before. Given the number of signatures he does each year, I’m not surprised. Regardless, below is the $1 bill that Neil Gaiman signed for me. You can see he wrote in gold paint pen, “Shag – Sweet dreams”. Then he gave George Washington psychedelic eyes and signed his name. Click the image to enlarge.
Remind me to tell you some time about John Byrne’s refusal to sign one of Ravenface’s dollar bills.