Friday, May 31, 2013

This is my lot in life. It's not a lot but it's my life

This is what happened to me at the grocery store today. I wish I had embellished or embroidered for comedy's sake but sadly the exchange went precisely like this.

First a bit of background: yesterday a friend posted to YouTube this video about, well, watch it.

I messaged Laura, the friend who posted this, that this happens to me all the time (minus the actress's awesome and hilarious comeback) Fast forward to today after I'm done grocery shopping. I'm pushing my cart and I see an Indian man (Asian not native) leaning against a wall. He's staring at me then he says something that I can't hear because of my earphones. I pop one out and here's our conversation:

Nosy Stranger (rubbing his cheek): What charming colour you have.
Me: Um. Haha. Thanks, I think. I've had it all my life.
Nosy Stranger: Where are you from?
Me (I know full well what he means but I play stupid): Montreal
Nosy Stranger: Originally
Me (Sigh): My parents are from the West Indies
Nosy Stranger: Guyana?
Me: No, Dominica.
Nosy Stranger: I see... Charming, charming skin.
Me (starting to get a creepy Silence Of The Lambs vibe from this guy): Yeeeeeah, thanks. Have a nice weekend. Bye!
I push my cart away, grouchy that I let that exchange go on longer than any sane person would have. I swear if I keep this up I'll end up in someone's basement preparing my charming hide for tanning. Ugh.


Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Oh dear.

I think I'm suffering from a mild case of post-con depression which is actually a thing, people. Well, kind of. Anyway, I knew something was up when someone asked what I did on the weekend and my answer was "well, there was no Con... ummm... I can't remember." Yikes.

On that note, I'm going to post the last couple of things about Comic-Con and then I'll let it go. Promise. Well kind of.

On the first 2 days I took notes on my iPod as I walked the floor. Here's what I have:

-Lots of compliments on my tee. Naturally, it was a Doctor Who. Here's a photo and if I have to explain it you don't watch it so you won't care much. But trust me, it's adorable.

-Within an hour, won a draw. Where else but at the Doctor Who booth, the first place I stopped? I put my name in a draw and it got pulled. I won the novelisation of an episode about the Silurians.

-Lots of Finns. There were a lot of people dressed like this guy. He's a character named Finn from an excellent cartoon called Adventure Time. If you are in the market to watch a new cartoon, this is my suggestion. It's weird, random, funny and touching. I call Henry EB (everything burrito) because of this clip. Long story.

-Eavesdropping is fun. I heard two people talking about the DC vs. Marvel Comic universes, saw an argument between a guy who built a remote control life sized Dalek and a dad who let his kid sit on it for a photo and watched as a kid dressed as Harry Potter hid from his parents behind a garbage can. I saw Superman and the Flash pushing strollers, Kids dressed as Yoda and Sith warriors and Bane trying to carry on a conversation with a volunteer who couldn't understand a word he was saying until Bane had to lift his mask. Too funny.

-"Evan, please meet your mother at the Batmobile". I overheard this over the PA system. Where else but at Comic-Con?

And this one last little story:

On the Friday night of Con weekend, I got a text from a co-worker who was out to dinner with some friends. She texted me at 9:30 which was weird since we rarely text and it was kinda late. Her message... "I think Wil Wheaton is here." ACK! A few minutes later she texted a photo. Dammit! It was him and she wasn't even that interested. Colour me green with envy.

Fast forward to today after we all came back to work after a week off. She tells me the story again and adds that she spoke to him after. Ugh, woman, I'm dying already. You are literally killing me. Then she goes on say that she mentioned me to him. I rolled my eyes thinking that there's no way he'd have remembered me but after she described me to him he said "she smelled her pits!". Gaaah! I wanted to be remembered but not like this. Oh, who am I trying to kid? This is frigging awesome! Well kind of. To me anyway.

So... how was your weekend?


Wednesday, May 15, 2013

I wasn't gonna but I gotta

So I apologise to my Facebook and real life friends who heard me talk about this every day since I got home  from Ottawa Comic-Con Sunday night. For those of you who think they've heard the whole thing, there are some interesting tidbits that I haven't divulged until this post. So sit back and make a tea, folks, this post is a long one, chock full of links and photos.

First, a little background. I went to last year's Comic-Con only on the Saturday (for those who don't know, these things usually run Friday to Sunday) and had such a great time that I swore to go back the following year. Flash forward to the fateful day in January where I clicked on the button to buy the 3 day weekend pass for the 2013 event.

Then was the issue of costume. Because on that Saturday last year, I realised that my Con experience wouldn't be the same without wearing the trappings of my tribe. This posed another problem. What to wear? Luckily there were tons of options because this thing isn't only about comics but pop culture so I would be okay in anything from X-Men's Storm to Tyler Perry's Madea. I love Steampunk (very short explanation: it's science fiction/future as imagined by Victorians) and baking so what better costume than combining them both (even though baker isn't quite a Steampunk "character". They're usually pilots, pirates, lords and ladies...)?

I was given advice that it was all about the details. I incorporated a bag into my costume that wouldn't wreck the look and a whisk on a drill that looked like a gun. Loved it.

Day 1 Friday

I had to work so I only wore my geeky tshirt that day. No costume. I wanted to check out the Con floor and the other costumes. Plus I was alone so I didn't want to be wearing a costume with no wingman. I'd scheduled a couple of photo ops one with Felicia Day (love!) and Wil Wheaton so I wanted to just ease into the weekend. Plus I did some shopping. And when I say some, I mean lots.

For the Photo Ops, you literally get 5 seconds with the person you want. You walk up to them, smile hello, the photographer snaps a shot and you are herded along. I really wanted to steal a few seconds with each person so with Wil who was first, I walked toward him smelling my pits. I can't believe I did it but it was the first thing I could think of. He gave me a look, laughed and said "shouldn't you have done that before you came in here?" AWESOME! When I approached, I asked him if I could touch him and he laughed again. Then we proceeded to take a photo that looks suspiciously like the world's dorkiest and awkward prom picture.

One last thing. All day I had a song stuck in my head (Cracklin' Rosie by Neil Diamond. Why, God, WHY?) and on my way out I asked him how to get rid of an earworm. He yelled "anything from Led Zeppelin IV!" as I was herded away. I loved that he went for an album that came out a year before he was born. He's even cooler to me now. So Black Dog it is.

With Felicia Day I was far more starstruck. I walked in and couldn't stop babbling. I had changed my tshirt to one that had a quote from Dr. Horrible and here was our dialogue: 
Me (stretching out the shirt so she can read it): Look what I wore today!
Coolest Geek Ever: I see that! It's great!
Me (shooting out my hand for a shake): I love your boots! OMG, They're so cool!!
CGE: Thank you. (I didn't give her time to put her hand out... I suspect that they don't usually shake hands before the photo is taken... so I just grabbed it and started pumping. She starts laughing) You are so cute!
Me: You think I'm cute? You are beautiful! I'm officially dying right now. (We start giggling... I'm sharing a laugh with Felicia Day, people)
CGE (still laughing): You are so funny, I love you!
Felicia Day just told me she loved me, people. I'm picking out china patterns as soon as I'm done here. 

Then it comes time to take the photo and the dumbest thing happens. I'm short so she scrunches down. For some insane reason, I scrunch down too so she scrunches again. I had to crop the result since both of us look like question marks at the bottom...

Later I ran into an old friend Mike who was waiting in line for an autograph from Billy Dee Williams (Lando from Star Wars). When Mike got up to the front, I was standing there looking on and when Billy Dee was done signing, incredibly, he looked me up and down then winked at me. The sane side of my brain says it was because he was reading my oh so clever tshirt but there's the other part who's ickily flattered that I'm still hot even though the man is nearly an octogenarian.

With Cracklin Rosie rattling around in my head (Black Dog didn't work, sorry Wil), I walked by an autograph line featuring Nicholas Brendon (Xander from Buffy). Sadly, there was no one in his line. For some reason I felt really bad for him so I just waltzed over and asked what he does for a cure. His publicist suggested Wannabe by the Spice Girls and the man himself suggested that another Neil Diamond song might just do the trick. Then (and this is the most fantastic part) he started to sing "I Am... I Said". Loudly. So loud that his publicist joined in. As I looked on in amazement, a few people milling around joined in. Then, in the spirit of if-you-can't-beat-them-join-them-ism I did too. Friday was a good day. I couldn't stop grinning. I could have died and gone to heaven.

So that was Day 1. Oh and this was my favourite costume of the day. Fifties Housewife Robin.

Only at Comiccon can you ask to take a picture of someone you met in the bathroom.

Day 2 Saturday:

Elliott came with me this day and I was grateful that he was there to identify all the video game references and costumes there were. We went to Felicia's panel (I call her Felicia now that we're besties) and just walked around enjoying the atmosphere. I discovered a new (to me) graphic novel (Chew) and re-discovered an old one (The Tick). I bought Elliott a tshirt for his birthday Monday and he bought me one for Mother's Day Sunday. Aside from a terrific nerdy day, I had a fabulous mother/son day with my firstborn. Favourite costume(s) of the day: The Weeping Angels from Doctor Who.

 Day 3 Sunday Mother's Day:

Scott came with me that day and honestly I didn't even notice it was Mother's Day at first. I was too busy having um... "issues" from both ends. The famous "con crud" caught up with me. Lack of sleep, crappy eating habits, not enough water, stress, nerves and excitement all combined into a nasty stew in my system. I was really worried that I wouldn't make it to see Captain Tightpants Nathan Fillion but after a wobbly moment in line (I actually felt claustrophobic and had to rush out for air), I was fine and the panel was so worth it. He made lots of goofy faces and brought out Firefly co-star Jewel Staite so that was a nice surprise.

Later was the best thing ever. I was chasing down an idiot cosplaying Toothless from How To Train Your Dragon who wouldn't stop walking away so I couldn't get a decent shot.

I was running ahead and waiting for him (or her) to get closer and noticed that I'd stopped in front of the Steampunk Canada booth. I caught eyes with the coolest woman dressed in a top hat, leather bustier and floor length skirt. She was even holding a parasol, people. A parasol. She looked outstanding. Then she smiled at me and told me that I looked amazing. After mentally looking around to the amazing costume behind me, I realised she meant me.

Me! In my Salvation Army shirt and Sears shapewear on the outside. With my Lululemon workout capri pants and home-sewn bag. We talked for ages and I was shocked that she genuinely seemed to like what I had done. She called me very creative and even took my photo. Others from the booth gathered around and we had a great time talking about where we got our finds. Turns out that the Sally Ann is a very popular place for Steampunks to shop. Having had only had the internet and my own interpretation of what a Victorian sci-fi baker would look like, it was such a huge compliment that real live Steampunks, the first I'd ever met, were so nice and encouraging to me. I felt so validated. They invited me to several events that they're having over the summer so now I have to finesse my costume. So happy.

Dig his sweet moustache!

So all in all I had the most amazing (I feel like I'm saying that a lot) weekend. Including the vomiting/other thing, I'd do it all again in a heartbeat. I wish they'd have Cons on a weekly basis. Failing that, I'll definitely be going to one of those Steampunk Picnics to extend the glow of this weekend.

So how was your Mother's Day?


Monday, May 6, 2013

What is happening?

Full disclosure (is there any other kind?). There's a cute boy who works at the grocery store. I usually find myself at his checkout lane every Friday where we conduct small-talk about the weather or weekend plans. A couple of weeks ago he told me he was about to take a personal training exam. Did I mention also fit?

Last week he wasn't there and God help me I noticed. But what happened Friday is when I careened into the territory of humiliating cougar stalker.

As I lugged my cart filled with hundreds of dollars worth of merchandise, shamefully looking for Nicolas (that's what his nametag says), I was shocked to see that he was manning the 8 items or less checkout. Damn. Now at this point, any other normal, happily married woman would have just taken the hit, checked out, gone about her day and waited until next week. But here's where I tell you what you already know. I'm not normal.

I went out to the car with my stuff, dumped it in the trunk then marched right back into that store. I ran to produce, picked up a bag of pre-cut salad and 3 oranges and headed straight to his cash. There we had a 3 minute chat (I only had 2 things, people) about, I don't know... zip-lining or something and I left with a huge smile on my face. Plus 3 oranges. So there is that.

There's no fool like an old fool, obviously. All that's missing is a handbag full of hard candy and a heavy hand at the MAC desk.



Friday, May 3, 2013

What to do?... What to do?...

Through a series of unfortunate events, I find myself with an extra hour this morning. Usually I slavishly run through the park every morning. Yesterday I forgot my running shoes at work after an aborted attempt to use their gym. My clouded with sleep mind couldn't think of anything else to do this morning but get ready for work anyway. Here are the options I should have entertained:

  1. Go the eff back to bed. D'uh...
  2. Go to work early and get some classroom programming done
  3. Go to work, pick up those gym clothes and work out at the gym there
  4. Do some laundry
  5. Work on my Comic-con costume
  6. Read quietly
  7. Meditate
  8. Make a leisurely hot breakfast instead of my usual nasty protein shake
  9. Dust
  10. Give myself a manicure
The list goes on and on. What did I actually decide to do?
  1. Go online.
We have a winner, folks.

So what would you do with a bonus hour? Please tell me you'd me more productive than frigging Candy Crush...