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?

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