Friday, July 26, 2013

The Con of San Diego and the Panel Blues

Conning the Comics Out of San Diego - Day Two

The second day of Con was our earliest day. Tea Leaf and Celluloid Girl were going to be dressing in costume for the day, so they needed to be up bright and early to get dressed. For the official record, they were freaking adorable in their matching Avengers t-shirt/nightshirts. 
While they got into costume, Lendell Prime and I did our best to sleep in. When that ultimately proved hopeless we got up, dressed, and went down to breakfast. 

Kudos to the Quality Inn for offering a complimentary continental breakfast, plus some. Most such breakfasts offer only half-stale pastries, watery coffee, and equally watery fruit juice. The Quality Inn where Tea Leaf had booked our room (more on that later) offered decent pastries, plus a waffle station, plus eggs, sausage, and bacon. They get high marks for variety, an "A" for effort if you will. If you sense a "but" coming here it is, "but" they get a big old FAIL for eggs, sausage, and bacon which were an abomination. The meat in particular looked like warmed over roadkill. The waffles were good, though, and the coffee was dark and strong, so I can turn a blind eye to the steaming health hazard representing the rest of the "hot" breakfast.

When they were done Tea Leaf and Celluloid Girl were dressed as Jamie and Cersei Lannister from the Game of Thrones. They had gone to a lot of trouble for a really authentic look and the results were incredible

The drive to the con was easier than the drive to the hotel. Mostly that was due to a good night's sleep and a cup of coffee to lubricate the reflexes. We arrived at the con at roughly 9:30, just in time for the floor to open. 

We went our separate ways pretty much right away. I left to get in line for the big Legend of Korra: Book Two panel, Lendell Prime went to a two part panel on The Anatomy of a Fight Scene, and the "Lannisters" left to walk the floor. 

What came next for me was a taste of the authentic convention going experience. I stopped to use the bathroom and check my schedule on my way to Ballroom 20, where the Korra panel would take place. Checking my schedule I remembered that I had put a star next to the same panels Lendell Prime was going to be attending. For a moment I thought, "there's no way I'm getting into this panel, I should just catch up with [Lendell Prime]." I shrugged that off as pessimism and went to get in line anyway.

To say the line was long would be like saying parts of Colorado are kind of bumpy. It definitely wasn't the longest line within line of sight. The line for Hall H, where the days biggest panels of the convention would take place (including Game of Thrones but more on that later) could be seen behind the convention center along the harbor. The Korra line wasn't that long, but it did go out side the convention center, and down the steps halfway to the path by the harbor. 

The line for Korra was moving fairly well and there was a decent chance of being able to get in. Even so there was a family behind me whose mom was less then optimistic. I'm being too generous. I should call things like I see it. She was being a whiny, unbearable brat and her bellyaching was about to drive me bugfuck. Still I persisted. Eventually we got back inside the convention center. Once inside the convention center the line stopped moving quite as well and we had some waiting time. after fifteen minutes or so it started moving again as some people cleared out of the previous panel. 

As the line moved I got closer and closer to the doors for Ballroom 20. The anticipation was so strong I might have peed a little, had I not stopped to use the bathroom before getting in line (but more on that in a moment). As a group we got to the front of the line where we could see the doors to Ballroom 20, and that's when the people managing the thing closed it off and announced there was no more seating. 

Honestly this was the worst part of the con for me. Standing in line for over an hour to have the panel closed in front of me was not fun. Not able to get into the Korra panel, and not really caring about the other panels taking place. I decided to go to the floor. The funny thing is if I hadn't stopped to go to the bathroom I would have been able to get into the panel. It would have been tight, but I'd have made it. 

More on the second day of Con is to come. 

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