Taking it Geek Easy

I am forever on the hunt for lady-friendly comic shops, not only in Orlando, but around the world. There is no worse feeling than wandering into a comic shop and having one of two immediate responses from the staff and patrons alike: either gratuitous eye-rolling with the “here we go again” mindset or the dehumanizing oogling because there’s a chick in the boys’ tree house! A Comic Shop has upped the ante for all comic shops in the U.S.A. as I had one of the best comic book consumer experiences in my life, and it only took ten minutes.

Flying Cauldron Butterscotch Beer (Cream Soda) is delish!

When Kim and I entered ACS, the clerks broke their conversation to see if we needed help which always scores points in my book. There is nothing more infuriating than walking into a store and being completely ignored by those being paid to provide customer service. Personally, when I am visiting a shop for the first time, I enjoy having the opportunity to explore on my own without having hover clerks smothering my shopping mojo. We were able to browse the stacks in peace, with ample opportunity to take in all the nerdly goodness. I truly love the set up with display shelves, so everything is facing out. I find boxes and boxes of comics overwhelming (blasphemy, I know), as more often than not, I visit comic shops without a set agenda. I do not regularly collect comics as with a transient lifestyle, they simply become one more thing to worry about finding precious real estate for storage.

Unlike some stores, where those calling themselves “the gods’ gift to comic consumption” remain firmly entrenched in their perches behind the counter, staring down would-be shoplifters like vultures, I was pleasantly surprised to find the clerks circulating without being obtrusive. When I finally stalled out in front of a section of gorgeous covers which caught my attention, my hero swooped in and let me pick his brain a bit.  He enthusiastically raved about the FABLES series, so naturally, I took his advice to heart, and purchased volumes one and two. Don’t get me wrong, I love all the superheros and their complexities, but my creative appetite craved something a little different.

I adore the fractured fairy tale genre!

Our primary purpose for visiting A Comic Shop was the promise of a booze-infused trivia quest of epic proportions because I could not believe that a bar was tucked into the back of the comic shop. We arrived a bit early, so the door was still closed, but it didn’t stop me from peeking through the window of The Geek Easy.

The journey begins with a single step…

Talk about sensory overload! What could be best described as walking into one of the best basement rec rooms ever, The Geek Easy does not fail to impress. With a custom bar that has an amazing collage of everything a nerd could love, one could spend an evening marveling and guessing the names of all the references encased. Besides the ample bar seating, there were plenty of tables and even some rather swank wing backed chairs and sofas! From silhouette mural to the Pokeball and “?” Brick (Super Mario Bros.) Pendant lamps, sincere thought and care was taken into consideration for the design scheme.

Ophelia: The quintessential good girl gone mad!

The menu of comfort foods and beers was surprisingly diverse, but what I loved was they opted not to have the biggest names, but smaller, off-beat breweries in their cooler case and on draft. I’ll admit, Untappd came to my rescue as most of the names I was completely unfamiliar with, so a little research was necessary. Instead of opening a tab, I opted to pay each time I went to the bar. Turns out that if you make a purchase inside the comic shop, you get a $1 off if you show your receipt. Three trips to the bar and I forgot to bring my receipt each and every time. Some may poo-poo upon the pricing of the beers, but for quality, less-known beers, it is unavoidable. The grilled cheese is quite standard, but what broke my brain was their grilled s’mores sandwich. Yes, you heard me. If you order nothing else at the Geek Easy, make that ooey-gooey dream yours!

20140424-092745.jpgSoaking in the Serenity Brooklyn Brewery‘s Dry Irish Stout

Trivia Night With Awesomelab Industries was by far some of the best fun I’ve had in a while that required flexing my brain. I can honestly say that I was in genuine fear that I would have my geek card revoked as I am certainly not current with all that is geek and nerd culture. Our team, The Vatican Cameos, set out with merely one goal: Not to finish last! I was a bit offended that in the wake of the disappearance of MH 370, two teams elected to poke fun at the situation with their team names. I was a bit disappointed that they were not encouraged to select different names because it gave me chills every time the scores were released.

Having never attended a trivia night, I had no clue now competitive and how serious people take their trivia. For sake of fairness, all electronic devices need to be turned off and put stowed. Made me feel like I was back at work, so I smirked a bit. We did our best to hunker down and take the game seriously, but when we simply didn’t have a remote clue, we elected to write and draw stuff to make the hosts laugh. My geeky confidence was redeemed when I managed to provide the correct answer about the dice used in the table top RPG Vampire: The Masquerade (d10, baby)! Although Dungeons and Dragons has been my long running jam, I remember picking up and flicking through Vampire when I was in college.  When all was said and done, we finished third… from the bottom! We went home happy as we achieved our goal of not finish last! The final multiple part question of Sagan versus Hawking was incredibly taxing for this English major, but we squeaked out the right answer! All in all, I had a great time, and I hope to ride in with a bigger posse next time, so we can clean house!

{Personal Yelp* Review}

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