Comic store establishes new Frontier

Patrick McMerty                                    (Contributed)

Patrick McMerty (Contributed)

HALIFAX — Patrick McMerty’s words reveal a man devoted to his work. The comic store owner’s conversation cackles with nods to sci-fi and superheros.

Scoffing at the North End’s tough reputation, for example, McMerty tells how safe he felt recently walking in the neighbourhood.

“No villain jumped out and tried to eat my soul. I’ve got a better chance of losing my soul in the mall,” he says.

Clearly, this man reads comics.

McMerty’s store, Quantum Frontier, is the latest comic and games store to pick the peninsula as a home.

Quantum Frontier is on one of Halifax's busiest corners.

Quantum Frontier is on one of Halifax's busiest corners.

He is happy with his Robie Street location. McMerty says he considered Dartmouth and Bedford, but lucked out by finding a property at the corner of Young Street being managed by an old friend. The intersection is near two schools and plenty of university students, the kind of people who would be his customers. Three buses stop outside and he’s directly opposite the “biggest, busiest” Tim Hortons in Atlantic Canada, he says.

McMerty, 37, was in the Navy for two decades before launching his business in November. He’s wanted to run a comic store since he was 16, but stints on the HMCS Toronto, HMCS Glace Bay and HMCS Halifax intervened.

“My creativity and my desire to read comic books faded into the very intense world of the military. It’s deploy, deploy, deploy,” he says.

“You are always training, you are always doing something. I’d sort of lost track of the creativity part of my life. But since I’ve been out [of the military] it’s been slowly coming back.”

Now he’s surrounded by Magic cards, Dark Night comics and Zombies. He’s regaining his thirst for the impractical. Judging by the steady stream of browsers who dropped in on a recent weekday morning, he’s tapped into other people’s thirst too.

McMerty is not surprised. He says comics, and playing board and role-playing games with people face-to-face, will always be popular.

“How much time do we all spend in front of a screen? Too much time. Right? So, you get that feeling of being in the world itself,” said McMerty. “You get four to six people sitting around, having a few drinks, eating a pizza, goofing around. Really, I can’t see what’s better than that. You have to be creative, that stimulates the imagination.”

Directions: Quantum Frontier Games and Comics, 3087 Robie Street, 446-8233

© Copyright 2008-2009 North and Agricola

1 Response to “Comic store establishes new Frontier”

  1. 1 Annie Tulloch August 8, 2009 at 11:44 am

    This is a great article I am very proud of you!

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