September 19, 2018

Mid-Atlantic, 2018

Dear Diary,

Last week we were at MANC, and boy, did we have a swell time! MANC stands for Mid-Atlantic Nostalgia Convention, in case you didn’t know, and it’s held every year at a place called Hunt Valley in Maryland, not far from Baltimore and Washington, D.C. We flew in to Baltimore-Washington International Airport, and I thought maybe we’d be able to see the lights from the monuments while we were in the plane, since it was at night, and we were up high in the sky, but I guess we were still too far away. Either that, or we were looking out the wrong side of the plane. Oh well, maybe next year!

This year wasn’t like the other two years we’ve been here. Those times, we walked around the hotel, looking at all the vendors and the things they were selling—really cool things like old TV Guides and DVDs of old shows and old toys and other old things. Hey, that’s OK—we’re old too! Ha! We did some of that this year, and I bought six old TV Guides—wait, I already said they were old, didn’t I? Anyway, six TV Guides, and a DVD set of The Green Hornet! I don’t remember watching it when I was a kid, but it sure did look like fun!

But the real reason we were at MANC this year is that I was giving a talk and selling copies of my new book, The Electronic Mirror. Isn’t that a cool title for a book? I thought it all up by myself! People seemed to like it—but I’m getting ahead of myself. Let me start back at the beginning.

Thursday was the first day of the convention, and the first talk was by two of my friends, Jodie Peeler and Kevin Doherty. They were talking about the Today Show, which is that show that’s on early in the morning, and the Tonight Show, which is on real late at night, and the Home Show, which isn’t on at all anymore, but when it was on it was in the middle of the day. Boy, was their talk good! I learned all about Dave Garroway—he was the first host of Today—and Jack Paar, who was the second host of Tonight; and Arlene Francis, who hosted Home and was a nice lady. They were all really interesting people. So are Jodie and Kevin, and real nice too. I’m lucky to have them as friends.

There was another talk after that, and then it was my turn. I was talking about “TV Guide: America’s Time Capsule,” and I had some pictures of old TV Guides—I already said they were old, didn’t I? I was showing people how reading TV Guides could tell you what the cultural world was like back then, and I think it went pretty well. People seemed to like it, and they asked questions that I could answer, and they all clapped when I was done! It made me feel good all over! Later on, people came up to the table where we were selling books, and told me they enjoyed listening to me talk. I didn’t even have to pay them to say that.

In fact, a lot of them bought my book! And they paid me! How cool is that? There were a lot of nice people who stopped by, even the ones who didn’t buy my book. There was a guy who used to work for Marvel Comics, and another guy who acted in Star Trek movies, and a retired doctor, and a retired lawyer, and a nice married couple—well, they were all nice!

And then there was our friend Carol Ford. She’s nice, too. She wrote a book about Bob Crane, who played Colonel Hogan on Hogan’s Heroes. He was a nice guy too, although some bad things happened to him. But he was still nice, and I’m glad Carol wrote about him, so everyone else could see that he was nice too. We only get to see each other once a year, which isn’t often enough. We need to see Jodie and Kevin more often too. That means we have to travel more, and that costs money. My wife said something about winning the lottery; maybe that would help us to travel more.

There were other neat people there too, and they all looked like they were having a swell time. Except for one lady who seemed really mad while we were checking in. She said the hotel people couldn’t show her to her room. She said some bad things, she was so mad. My mom used to tell me that sometimes people would act this way when they’d had something to drink. Boy, that must have been something really bad, to make them act that way. I wonder why anyone would do that? I guess I just don’t understand adults, even though I am one! Ha!

There was this other neat guy named Martin. He’s the guy who puts this all together. He isn’t very big, but all weekend he wore a shirt that said “Security.” I wouldn’t want to tangle with him! Anyway, he did a great job. There were some famous celebrities there too—Robert Wagner and Stefanie Powers and three people from a show called WKRP in Cincinnati. They weren’t in Cincinnati this weekend,though. Maybe they flew in. Boy, I’ll bet their arms are tired! That was a joke—did you get it? Ha! Kristy McNicol was there too, and so was Morgan Fairchild, and the guy who played the Creature in the Black Lagoon and Diahann Carroll, and Geri Reischl, who was "Fake Jan" and seemed as excited to be there as the rest of us. She was always taking pictures on her phonealk past us each day while we were sitting at our table, so we got to see them all.

It's all over until next year, but we had a really great time. It was one of our best weekends ever! I’m glad I know such nice people—it was a fun time! I could go on and on! But I’ll have to wrap it up now, Diary—it’s time for me to go to bed, because I have to get up early to go to work tomorrow. My wife says If we don’t win the lottery this is the only way we’ll be able to go places and buy old things, and I guess she must be right—she’s really smart. She married me, didn’t she? Ha!

Talk to you tomorrow, Diary!

Mitchell TV  


  1. The fact that you nailed the tone of this so perfectly is both impressive and slightly disturbing. :)

    1. Oh, when it comes to me I'm way more disturbed than impressed... :)

  2. I'm glad it went well. I'm sorry we couldn't make it this year.

    1. Me too - we had a great time with the two of you last year! Maybe next year? Gives us something to look forward to!

  3. Enjoyed every moment of the show. Celebrity panels were top-notch. Listening to Ricou Browning talk about making the Creature from the Black Lagoon before the late-night screening on the big screen was F-U-N. Watched silent Fu Manchu cliffhanger serial from Britain 1921, complete with black spiders, scorpions and a pit of green plague. Bought too much stuff. Came home and framed my autographed now hanging on the wall. I stopped going to other shows like Comic Cons and Chiller because those are all about the money and not much to do but walk around the vendor areas. Nostalgia Con rocks and my wife and I will be there every year!


Thanks for writing! Drive safely!