If you’ve clicked the link to this page one of two things happened – you either hit it by mistake or you really want to know why this website exists. The Blog of Oa is a very personal thing to me and it’s my attempt to give something back the character and the hobby that has given me so much throughout my life.
I don’t easily share my story to strangers on the Internet just because people tend to be less than respectful sometimes, but if I’m going to have this blog then I’m going to be open and honest with anyone who might visit it. I’ve been reading comics for over 35 years and Green Lantern was always my favorite. While my life more resembled Peter Parker’s, I found Hal Jordan a character that I could relate to for another reason. While Hal was certainly a great physical specimen, his real strength came from his ability to rise above any situation by using his will and intellect. To me that was something that connected with the core of who I am.
I was born in 1964 with a very rare birth defect called Esophageal Atresia/Tracheo-Esophageal Fistula (EA/TEF) – in a nutshell the upper part of my esophagus connected to my trachea instead of the lower half. I’m one of the oldest people in the US to have survived having the defect since it most often went undetected, leading to catastrophic results. Additionally the corrective procedure wasn’t well known. Needless to say, I spent a lot of time in the hospital and I was easily prone to illness throughout my childhood. Comics were my escape and something inexpensive enough that my parents could provide me with a ready supply of them.
One side effect of EA/TEF was that the scar tissue that resulted from the corrective surgery causes me to choke on my food quite often. In those days prior to 911 and the common knowledge of the Heimlich maneuver I can tell you that I had a lot of close calls in my youth and there were many times when I nearly choked to death. Pretty scary for a kid – and in those moments when I wasn’t sure of myself I looked to my hero for inspiration. I’d ask myself, “what would Hal do?” – and Hal helped me find the strength of will inside myself that I didn’t know was there. And if my hero could get out of tougher situations just on his sheer strength of will and courage, then I could too.
I was with Green Lantern every step of the way for a long time and only left the book a year or so after “Emerald Twilight” because I just couldn’t accept what was done to not only Hal Jordan but the entire Green Lantern mythos. In fact I left comics altogether and only picked up issues when Hal would show up until finally returning to the hobby during DC’s “Day of Judgement” event when Hal was returned to the land of the living, well, sort of anyways.
2009 marked the 50th anniversary of the modern Green Lantern mythos and it was the year I celebrated 45 years of triumph over my birth defect. With the renaissance of Green Lantern and all the new ways the character is being promoted in different forms of media, I felt the time was right for me to start a site and give something back to the characters that gave me so much. And beside, the way I figure it I owe Hal big time!
In Brightest Day!
– Myron Rumsey