Career Day 2008 Hillcrest Elementary, My Son And Daughter's School

The talk on career day was not about being a crime fighter but about how I make generic costume parts for those that wish to emulate the qualities of their favorite superheros and dress like them. It was also all about the "Why" not just the "How"

I actually normally do not even own one of my costumes presently so I went in with a just few odds and ends I had layiing around. I had this old Returns bib that is supposed to go with my Returns cowl with the symbol hence the velcro on the chest which I explained to them and made a point with that missing symbol as I talked about generics and staying away from trademarks and what that all means.

Batman coming in for Career Day talk on making costumes. It's a great way to get and keep their attention. My little girl,Ana, is the far right in the maroon with the pony tail.

The first thing I did was talk about the positive traits of Batman and why so many people like to dress up like him and even emulate some of his positive characteristics in our own lives even while not in costumeas well.

I talked about loving Batman all my life and the difficulties to create from nothing a costume over fifteen years ago when nothing existed. I talked about innovation and inventing the cape and the techniques for it when nothing was known on the subject.

I talked about conceiving, inventing and producing the world's generic first full body foam and latex muscle suit available to the general public and why you can not just go to a store and buy a great costume.

I showed how I made parts for all the costumes I make and use and even some that are not Superhero related. I talked about trademarks and how I do not make whole costumes but only generic parts and pieces but when I am in costume personally, I sometimes do customize the entire look for myself including symbols as others can on their own.

I received a lovely handmade folder with individual drawn images in it from Ana's kindergarten class.

That was wonderful.

Ana was thrilled I was there and I took my mask off and let them know who I was and they all laughed and thought that was really neat. They liked the idea I was real and came out of the fantasy comfortably.

I talked about how costuming is fun with those you love and friends and buddies and how many people's girlfriends and boyfriends are getting into it together now that it has been established as what it is by people such as myself and others who take costuming very seriously.

I brought pictures that showed all the hundreds of props and costumes parts I have designed and fabricated and explained the difference between the costumes I make for myself that are done and have symbols and show what people can do with customization and adding licensed pieces to the generic muscle parts I offer to others.

A great group photo and plenty of memories and I'm off.

Here I am in my son Max's class earlier. They all were more interested in the great parts and how it is necessary to have quality parts to assemble a better more believeable character.

Max was a little embarrassed probably and not really sure what was going to happen but he had a great time and everybody was really into it. I am tall and have a loud authoritative voice and that always helps with the character too. People always say you even sound like him. Normally while in costume I only talk during talks like this though.

For Max's first grade class I touched on things like being innovative and developing your own special qualities and using creative thinking and all that is in you to develop your life as you like. I emphasized self Empowerment.

I told them that what we see in Batman that we appreciate and identify with is probably his ability to look after people and protect them and right wrongs. These qualities are very important in all people I pointed out.

I told the class to value creative expression and develop and honor your own special qualities as you develop through you life. I emphasize being honorable and hero like in thoughts and actions.

I talked to them about how caring for others and working hard and being innovative and believing in yourself and not trying to always be like others and giving in to peer pressure can guide them to productive places in their lives.

I have to tell you I have never seen a more captive audience or had more fun. This is the forum for me. My words came naturally and I am definitely not a public speaker so it helps when it is working and right. For me Batman is right.

I explained that Batman is a symbol and he does not need to exist physically in order for his ideals to inspire us and guide us. I took off my cowl and said "I am Max's Dad." I told them I value the qualities of heros just as they do and what that means.

I talked about how creativity can lead to a whole world of wonder. I told them I started drawing and developing creative concepts at their age and they should put their minds to what they are interested in now and apply themselves and believe in the power within themselves.

Another group photo. Lots of fun today was had by all.

And the Fifth grade. I actually am showing the order all backwards here. Each grade received a differently structured talk. For the fifth graders it was all about the strange phenomenon of costuming and how it is impossible to go somewhere and just buy a great suit so an innovator and creator that happens to also love Batman and happens to be an artist and also happens to be into dressing up and even in real life emulating the admirable qualities of a real symbol of a superhero makes a very improbably combination that is so rare there are only a few like me. I told them going your own way to the beat of your own drummer and trusting in yourself can lead to a really interesting lifestyle which is unique and special which is what I really always wanted anyway when I thought I could actually be Batman so it all worked out. I explained that there are only a hanful of us in the world with that type of interest so it makes for an interesting life together as bat buddies.

I also got into why doing generic muscle pieces is important and staying away from trademarked items so that what you do is above board and honorable and worth doing right if it is worth doing. Everyone responded very well and I was glad to have once again used my special place in the world to reach out to it in a unique way that only I can.

I'm just a big goof really. See those superheros on the rocking chair? Those are some of the first toys I bought for my son. This is all about fun people! I'm allowed to be an oddball and love it.

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