Sunday, September 30, 2012

Final Dragon 2012 recap

Dragon, the final day.

                So I have survived everything Dragon had to throw at me but then I came to Sunday, which was the game changer. After Saturday I was just glad for a chance to breathe. The convention was not nearly as crowded as it was on Saturday which was a huge relief. I could no longer afford to tip all the people who had their hands all over me. It is terrible when you go broke from giving tips to people for a service you basically did not need. Of course many of them commented that I have so much tension built up all over. I’m not sure how to take that.  Any way I take it is probably the wrong way.

                I was leaving the next day so I call this my last chance day, my Hail Mary day, my day to run around madly and try to get everything done. Like most things in my life, I failed at this too. After lugging around Ted Naifeh’s books (to get signed) for two days and not seeing him I decided not to bring them today. Guess who I ran into on Sunday?

                I was there for the big Marvel shoot which was the biggest photo shoot I saw over the weekend. Hundreds of people dressed up as all kinds of Marvel characters from the popular (Spider-Man and Avengers characters) to the lesser-known ones (Squirrel Girl and Frankie Raye).

At the end two men came out to get married. As I watched it occurred to me that this looked just like the wedding of Northstar in an “X-Men” comic recently. There was a reason for this. They were recreating the whole tableau.

During the ceremony there was a pop and another photographer spun around. “What was that?” he asked.

                “Dan Cathy’s head exploding” I replied.

                During the large photo shoot, Brandy (she goes under Lucid Cosplay to the general public) approached me and asked me to hold her purse. All the other photographers began to giggle and smirk while some even had the audacity to make snide comments about my masculinity (of which I really don’t have any so the comments had nowhere to go). Since I was among strangers (well, no one is stranger than me) I decided to turn the attack on them.

                “Hey, at least I have a woman’s purse to hold. What are you all holding?” I said loudly. Several of my mockers just turned away and stared down in shame at their cameras. I showed them.

                During the shoot, I looked around and saw a lot of Rogues at the X-Men subgroup. Rogue is my favorite Marvel character and some voice (I don’t know whose but I do know it was not mine since I don’t hear things) told me to call the Rogues over. I obeyed the unknown voice (as I am wont to do) and they listened (pardon me, I need a moment as I work my way through my Rogue bliss/overload. Next year I swear I am going to try this with Zatanna even though I fear several Zatannas in one spot will cause my head to explode). I had all these Rogues to myself and, out of nowhere, other photographers showed up, cameras at the ready. I was forced to share but I didn’t want to! Anyway, I set up several shots (which many people also have now). My directions were okay but Allan Hanserd has provided me with several ideas on how to make better shots, which I will utilize next time.

                All the other photographers now snapping away required (okay, it did not really require me but it seemed like the best thing to do) me to do something I had observed at photo shoots over the weekend. The person leading the shoots would set up a pose and after people had been taking shots for a bit started counting down. At the end of the countdown people stopped taking photos and allowed the models to relax. This also allowed for the next shot to get set up. So this is what I was forced to do. When I had my shots done I started counting down. The amazing part (besides the Rogues listening to me which I still weep in joy over) is that the photographers listened as well. I see this as an indication of the high level of respect for everyone who was there. That is probably the greatest thing I am taking away from the convention.

                One down side occurred when a cosplayer turned me away. I have known this one cosplayer (call her  -R- ) since last year told me that her eyes were hurting from all the flashes and did not want me to take her picture. I think she did this since she knew me. “Fine,” I said and walked back to my spot but what should I see when I turn back around but her in the middle of groups taking photos with her.

                What the what? My self-esteem just plummeted into a puddle on the carpet. Not that I had much before but that really did not help.
                That is when I ran into Thing 1 and Thing 2 or, as they like to be called, Sherri and Mae.

                They were walking around the Marriott looking at all the costumes. My submissive (shut up, I am) nature obeyed when the two of them (forcefully) demanded a picture. Then they MADE me walk around with them (just like they MADE me try sushi). They really did not give me a choice. You may not believe that but it is the completely varnished truth. We continually walked in circles around the hotel looking at all the people and what they had on.  

                And so, as all good things do, my three days came to an end. I got back on the bus to return to my hotel. As the bus pulled away from the curb a crowd of all the people I had met over the course of the weekend formed outside the main hotel. I was touched. I thought they were coming to see me so I announced that I will return next year, swearing this loud enough for them to hear me. In unison (once I completed my oath) every one of them held up a sign reading “The Hell you will.”

                I’m not sure how to take that.

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