PCCers Assemble … 50 Years Later!

I spent an enjoyable couple of hours yesterday (Saturday, August 13th) on Zoom, one of those technological “marvels”—along with Slack—that helped convince me to retire. While I vowed to never go on Zoom again for any kind of work-related reason, I was very happy to join my fellow Pittsburgh Comix Club members to reminisce about the club fifty (WTF! 50!!!) years later. Memories were shared, stories were told, artwork and photos were shown, as we all caught up with each other. It’s hard to believe 50 years have passed (evidently it was 50 years and one day since the very first meeting in August 1972, and we also met on the second Saturday of the month, which was the PCC’s normal meeting day). Fondly remembered were Ben Pondexter, the soft-spoken, comics-loving founder of the club, and Greg Eide, whose store was the main spot for meetings, both sadly since gone to that big comic shop in the sky. We talked about our experiences as club members, including with the PCC conventions, comics superstar and PCC-friend, Len Wein, club member Howard Bender’s career in comics, and how we all came to be a part of this magical club when most of us were either still in our teens or just barely out of them.

Ben had a somewhat-awkward, but nonetheless heart-warming saying: “Comics are the good times.” That we’re all still talking to each other a half-century later proves he was right. Hopefully we won’t wait another 50 years to hold another get-together.

Thanks to all, but especially Jim Turoczy and Elmer Harkema for putting this together.

(I wrote a long piece on my personal history with the Pittsburgh Comix Club and how it (unknowingly) prepared me for my later career with San Diego Comic-Con. Click here to read it or click here to read my entire “My Life in Comics” series, which includes my Pittsburgh years.)

(Up top: Hollywood Squares, PCC-style. Top row: Jim Turoczy, yours truly, Howard Bender; second row: Mark Lerer, David Zema, Tom Hegeman; third row: Neil Renton, Jack C. Harris, Rich Marcej; Bottom row: Elmer Harkema, Rich Yanizeski, and the always moving, never still Tim Kupin.)

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