Monday Monday

That is what today is. So nice, we named it twice.

Either that, or we are really tired.

Here are a bunch of random updates. Enjoy?

++ VARIANT EDITION: CHAPTER TWO

As you all probably know by now, Variant Edition is moving in a few short days.

As you’re reading this, Danica and I are probably painting the new space. I say probably, because it might be super late at night when you get around to this, so we might be sleeping, or it might be midday, in which case, one of us is probably at the old location, selling comics on the cheap. Who knows!

Anyway.

As we get closer and closer to the relaunch date (August 31st!) we can feel the excitement rebuilding inside of ourselves. The past year has been difficult for several reasons, which caused us to realize that we need to take more of a direct approach to our life, grabbing as much control as random happenstance will allow and steering where we want to go. Whether or not we make it? Well, that’s pretty much up to us now, and us alone. It’s both terrifying and exciting, but no matter what, it just feels better. So there’s that.

++ EVENTS

We took the summer off from planning events at the store, partially because we knew the store move was coming up (although we didn’t know exactly when) and partially because it’s foolish to try and plan a summer event when there’s already so much happening in Edmonton over the summer. But now that August is coming to an end, it’s time to get right back into things, and we’re starting with one of our signature events: a Community Clothing Swap.

The rules, as always, are simple: drop stuff off and/or pick stuff up. It’s all free, and everything left over at the end gets donated to a charity. The only changes this time are the location (now at our new store – 10132, 151 Street) and the length of time the event will run (all opening hours on Sat Sept 10th and Sun Sept 11th).

We’re pleased to use this event as an introduction to our new community, and we’ll be continuing to announce more events in the days and weeks to come. Our goal, as always, is to continue the hard work we started – to build a place that doesn’t clandestinely build a secret community or clubhouse, but one that actively invites all inside to experience the joy of pop culture without barriers.

++ HIP

I don’t think I’d be able to post this batch of random updates without at least acknowledging The Tragically Hip concert that CBC aired this weekend. I want to start off by saying that… I’ve never really connected with The Hip before. I could recognize their ubiquitous presence in my life, but for whatever reason, be it the specific batch of chemicals that make up my brain or whatever, their importance never quite sunk into my heart and mind.

And then, there was this concert.

Admittedly, Danica and I were at the new location, doing some light space redecoration in advance of next week’s big opening. We didn’t have the internet, so we didn’t get a chance to stream the show at first, but we brought a radio, and listened to the event on CBC Radio One here in Edmonton. As we started to build something new, we had a soundtrack of pure Canadiana. Songs that we grew up listening to, that had somewhat inadvertently become a part of our life. As we built, those songs became a part of a new foundation. It felt… it felt right.

We managed to make it home before the concert ended, and treated ourselves to the live stream. CBC did a exemplary job of presenting this concert to the country, taking no opportunity to advertise in any way, shape or form. Olympic coverage on their main channels were halted in full for this presentation. Everything about this presentation said that this wasn’t about The CBC – it was about The Hip, and providing this moment in time to Canada.

Seeing the love, and hearing the words that had lingered in the background of my life float through the air, something inside me finally switched. “Yes,” it said, “This. Always this.” Of course, it took an ending to discover a connection, but everyone comes to things in their own way – and none of it is bad. It’s something that Danica and I try to build into the shop – we don’t judge where you’re going or where you’re coming from, and as long as you’re in our space, and as long as you’re not, say, disparaging others for their own journeys, you are welcome. You are home.

Others will be able to say what this moment in time meant a whole lot better than we ever will, but… I felt that it was important to share what it mean to us, regardless.

A great way to start a new chapter… even as one is drawing to a close.

++ TO BE CONTINUED…

Obviously, there’s a lot to be done. New store prep continues, as does wrapping things up at the old shop. Doctor Whooch’s 100th Episode is fast approaching, and we’re still attempting to get our voices out there in general, letting people know that we still exist, despite all the work that needs to be done.

More updates in the coming days, but for now, a very (all too quick) thank you to all of you who have helped us out during this crazy time. We can not express how much your support means to us, and how much it has carried us through these days. We love you all.

Talk with you soon.