In walks a tall, handsome Irish man with short, lightish hair, followed by a strikingly beautiful blonde woman.
The hostess says, "This is Garth Ennis and his wife Ruth."
Our jaws just about hit the floor. I shake his hand, tell him how much I enjoyed Preacher and congratulate him on the HBO deal. He seems very pleased about the deal, much more so than he was about a feature film version. Jeff and Tony thank him for writing what they refer to as the best comics series in thirty-odd years, then go on to talk about how awesome Ennis' Punisher run is. He takes our praise graciously without fleeing in terror from three fully grown fanboys.
As usually happens with me, the conversation soon turned to television. We talked about The Wire (his fave!), the U.S. version of The Office (he's a big Jim and Pam fan), the new Doctor Who, Spaced and a bevvy of other shows. Then we told stupid jokes and later had one of those "What's your favorite movie?" conversations that people have at parties but treat really seriously because they've had too much single malt. Anyway, here's one of the jokes he told:
A guy goes out to a bar, gets extremely drunk and throws up all over himself. Then he starts crying. One of his friends asks him what's wrong.
"My wife bought me this shirt," he says. "It's expensive silk, and now I've ruined it. She's going to kill me."
"Naw," his friend says. "Just stick forty dollars in your shirt pocket and tell her a drunk guy ran into you and threw up all over the shirt, then gave you $40 for the dry cleaning. Tell her there was nothing you could do."
"Brilliant!" he says, then continues to drink well into the wee hours.
The next morning, he wakes up to find his wife holding his ruined shirt. "You drank too much and threw up all over this nice shirt I gave you!"
"Naw," he says. "Look in the pocket. There's $40 in there. Some guy threw up on me and gave me the money for dry cleaning. There was nothing I could do."
She fishes in the pocket and pulls out some bills. "But there's $80 in here."
"Oh yeah," the guy says. "He shit in my pants, too."