Autograph book

I don’t have an autograph book.  I did one time, in the 2nd grade, when my aunt took me to Disney World in Orlando, Florida. I walked around all week getting signatures from Mickey and friends.

It’s funny to imagine those poor sweaty teenagers fumbling with those giant gloves trying to scribble out a signature for some dumb kid in a mouse-ear hat. I had to dress up in one of those giant costumes in high school (I was playing the role of Casper the Friendly Ghost for the Special Olympics) and I feel their pain.

"I don't have a photo of me as Casper, but it was just like the Lambchop suit. And no, that's absolutely not me on the right."

Once I got back from Disney, I didn’t fill up the book anymore. Future encounters with  celebrities were all by chance, so I had to think on my toes and have them sign something that I had on me. When I saw Fastball a couple years ago, I bought an album for them to sign, since I wanted the album anyway.

But when I was going to meet photo/video master Vincent Laforet, who I swooned over last year, I wanted to bring something more unique for him to sign. Since he was a big inspiration for me, I thought it would be neat to have him sign my clapboard. At first it seemed like a nerdy idea, but now I really like what it’s turned into.

Instead of his signature sitting on an album or photo that will stay on a shelf or in a box somewhere, this clapboard comes out with me whenever I’m working on a movie. So every time I slate a shot, I see a reminder of a time I met one of my idols, which is pretty inspiring.

So I’ve decided to make this clapboard my official autograph book. If I fill it up, I’ll have to retire it and start a new one, but that won’t bother me at all.

I’m just getting started with it, and got my second signature a few weeks ago when I saw Henry Phillips in Mason City. Although his main thing is music, he also has a hilarious web series on YouTube called “Henry’s Kitchen,” and just produced a movie called “Punching the Clown.”

Since he is active in filmmaking, and “Henry’s Kitchen” was the thing that hooked me as a fan, it made sense to have him sign my film-related “autograph book.” I also had him sign a copy of his movie, since I purchased it at the show.

Now that I have a practical way of collecting autographs to keep me inspired with my filmmaking, I feel like I need a better one for music. I can go back and look at all of the signatures I got from bands on ticket stubs and scraps of paper, but I don’t see those while I’m playing the piano.

I’m wondering how hard it would be to yank a key off of my keyboard at home and get signatures on each one.

(Artist's rendering. I didn't actually sign my own piano)

I wouldn’t get it on the top where it would smudge off, but I think it would be cool to have one on the side of the key, that would be revealed whenever I played the adjacent key. It’s something to think about, and I’ll definitely post a photo if I ever decide to follow through.

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