NOTE:This is the text version of the audio discussion between my friend DJ Killzown and myself on the same topic. The link to the YouTube will be provide below.
Conventions are a wonderful place to have fun and let loose with fellow nerds. However, conventions can also be overwhelming for newcomers, lacking knowledge on what to do. So, out of the kindness of my heart (and because I need to clean my public image), here are a few things to do at conventions!
Wanna learn interesting tidbits and facts about your favorite series, gain knowledge that’ll set you apart from your peers, or learn more about your favorite voice actor or creator? Go to a panel! Usually, conventions will have four types of panels: Fan, Interactive Industry, and Guest.
Fan panels are run by passionate and all-knowing fans of a series, sharing their expert knowledge to others fans and newcomers alike.
Interactive panels are panels in which you can partake in the action and/or have an hands on experience in relation to the subject. Examples include sake tasting, sewing tutorials, murder-mystery solving, cooking anime inspired foods, and hypnotism panels.
Industry panels are run by industry guests such as Funimation or Viz Media. Industry panels will host series reveals, news on upcoming projects, and the industry hosts will answer your questions about what’s currently going on in the industry. Sometimes, industry guests will reveal get exclusive news andcontent about a project first at their panels before the rest of the world get the information.
Finally, guest panels. Guest panels are of course hosted by the guests of honor. It’s worth your time going to one as you can learn about your favorite voice actor on a more personal, learn how they got their start, and even learn how they feel about their co-workers that they normally wouldn’t say in front of their face (did you know that a lot of America voice actors hate Vic Mignogna?).
One of the best experiences of a convention is meeting your idol and having them autograph their materials for you! To start, learn when and where the guest(s) that you want to see are hosting panels and autograph sessions and attend them. Did they make your favorite manga? Get that shit sign. Are they a voice actor you really love? Get your DVD signed by them! Do you want to know how your favorite voice actor got their start? Go to their panel! Be aware that popular gusests tend to have a long waiting period for autographs sessions. Be sure to have fully charged cell phone or a book to read on standby while you wait!
Higurashi and Umineko cosplay meet
Met new friends within you fandom and show off your cool (or trash) cosplay!! You can find information on meet ups in the program booklet or on the convention social media and website. Showcase your cosplay or just chill and kick with fellow fans and make new connections.
The dealers room is a hall or room full of offical merchandise, fanmade items, wigs, cosplay materials, etc. They’re open all weekend but it’s best to wait until Sunday for the best deals and discounts on products, as merchants want to reduce the amount of items they have to take back home Sunday or Monday.
Play video games here with other cons goers (or be that one asshole who hog ups the console all day because you couldn’t even make friends at an convention) Setups can range from the old school, current games, arcades, or a mixture of all three. Tournaments (such as Street Fighter, Project Diva, Mario Kart. etc.) are often held here, so you should try to join in a tournament if you’re confident in your skills.
Relax! You’re with like-minded people! Cons are a great place to make new friends and networks that can last for life (or a few years until some petty drama comes up and ruin your friendship)! You are all here for a common passion and love. By networking and befriending fellow comic book nerds, weeaboos and otaku alike, you will build a network that can help you find and learn about more conventions in the area and other cool nerd shit outside of cons. Who know what new connections can lead you in the world of convetions.
For you bloggers, vloggers, etc – make sure that you have a business card if you’re networking with others in your field (thanks for that DJ Kill Zone)
Dress up as your favorite character and join the cosplay gatherings and meet. Take pics taken of you in your cosplay, never to find them online! Cosplay is a wonderful hobby that will bring joy and new people into your life! At least do one cosplay in your life if your curious about it!
That wraps up my “What do do at cons” post! I’ll hope our tips will help you enjoy the con!
NOTE:This is the text version of the audio discussion between my friend DJ Killzown and myself on the same topic. The link to the YouTube will be provide below.
A convention is a wonderful place to meet and befriend new people who share your passive for nerd pop culture. You can be yourself without being ridiculed for who you are. However, just like in the real world, you still have to obey the laws of the land, use common sense and logic at conventions. Just because somebody is cosplaying as a sexy Slave Leah outfit doesn’t give you the right to touch her. Somebody has a cool prop you’re admiring? That’s great! Just ask permission to hold and touch it first. You don’t wanna ruin the con experience for yourself or somebody because you’re on some childish crap. Don’t know what not to do at conventions or need a refresher? Well, we’re here to help! Not Taking Care of Your Personal Hygiene
Look, there’s no excuse for not taking care of your hygiene; both in the real world, and at conventions. You need to shower and take care of other hygiene issues before you hit the con floor. Take a damn hot soapy shower. Use deodorant. Brush your teeth. Comb or brush your hair.. Freshener your breath. People are sensitive to body odor. You are being selfish when you do not bathe. Again, there’s no excuse.
Disrespect Personal Boundaries.
People attend conventions to have a good time. They don’t want it ruined by some creep or somebody breaking their props. It should go without saying, but think before you act. Keep your hands to yourself; cosplay is not consent. People have worked hard for months on their costume and props. They don’t want it destroyed by some touchy grabby idiot. Please ask for a picture before you snap one. Don’t become that one creepy photographer that gets talked about within the community.
Ghost the convention Please, support the convention. If you want the convention to flourish, you must buy a badge. Ghosting hurts the convention as they lose money to stay afloat. Every penny counts. If you want better and bigger guests, convention to expand, and an overall better home con, supports the convention. Buy a badge.
Consume drugs/alcohol beyond your limit
Partying is not a secret at the convention scene, so I’m going to say this: please know your limit when consuming drugs or alcohol. Don’t consume drugs or alcohol on the convention grounds. Leave that shit in your room If you smoke trees in an illegal state, spray yourself down or cover the smell with tobacco smoke. Be aware if law enforcement catch your ass with that shit, you’re getting locked up, no tolerance. Do not drink if you’re underage. Do not serve underage people alcohol. . It’s not worth it.
I hope our tips will help you improve the quality of your experience at conventions. We wish you a great and happy convention season!
Please! Check out our audio discussion on the topic on YouTube!
Audio collab between my boy DJ Killzown Jones and myself. With the convention season well into the summer season, DJkillzown and I figure we will be nice and give nice audio guide on NOT to do at cons.
Cosplay is NOT Consent
Respecting Personal Boundaries
Creeping on Women
You know what’s awesome? Having a Hilton Hhonors membership. A Gold tier membership at that. I don’t have to pay for breakfast as a perk. And goddammit, I need the early morning fuel. Can’t make fun of weeaboos on an empty stomach ya know. I mean, I could, but I’d pass out. I’d wind up in the hospital or something . That’ll be an unfavorable position; giving the weeaboos and the ACEN community the power to make fun of my dumbass mistake.
Can’t have that. No I cannot.
I’ll spare you useless details about my breakfast and jump to me meeting up with my boy “Alan” at the Hyatt.
Alan is one of my closest and bestest friend in the whole wide big ass fucked up world we call planet Earth. We’ve been buddies since high school (or about 13 years). Honestly, he’s somebody I can call a brother. Not a lover (I doubt his girlfriend would like that) but a brother. Check out his blog and give him a follow.
Alright, fuck this sappy heartwarming bullshit.
Alan needed to use my room to prep for his cosplay. There was time left before I had to check out from my Hilton room. However, he wanted to get stoned first before working on it. I like his idea. Smoke some trees and get right before we start the day. Funny enough, my new homeboy “Bill” wanted to smoke as well! Kill five birds with one stone. I, and I alone, can perform such a feat because I am Benjamin Snow the Greatest.
(I’m so full of it it’s not even funny)
As we waited for Bill’s arrival, an Incident Response Team (ACEN’s volunteer security team, or IRT) member approached me. Goddammit. It’s only a quarter to nine, and already, I’m in trouble. And fuck, I must be in deep trouble. Like I’ve done something illegal (not yet) trouble.
“Are you Benjamin Snow? I’m here to beat your ass for runnin’ your mouth online.”
I never imagined that somebody forreal would take my offer to confront and fight me in real life. Honestly, I was shock. I didn’t know how to respond. As my mind process what I should do, he followed up with
“Nah, I’m just playing. I’m Orion’s Belt, a Facebook friend of yours.”
Whew! Okay, I don’t have to assault an IRT member today. Not that I would actually do it any other time. Perhaps I will in a few years down the road when I have mental breakdown phase due to my B-list celebrity status.
We spoke briefly about my online persona, refering to me as the (in)famous Benjamin Snow to his teammate. (I kinda sorta hate it when people say I’m famous in the convention scene because I’m really not). He praised my legendary trolling skills are (they’re nowhere near legendary).
Look, I get that that you, the fans, admire me and everything, but please; stop calling me famous and legendary.
After exchanging farewells with Orion, Alan brought up that I have at least one IRT member in my network. That’s something huh? Being somewhat known in the community, I have a personal IRT acknowledgement. May it be one guy, but still my network is slowly becoming diversify.
Still waiting for Bill and wanting to pass time, Alan and I decided to create a cosplaying drinking for the convention. I think it’s a very easy game, take a shot for X cosplay Y series you spot at the convention.
The rules were as followed (taken from my original Facebook post):
‘ACEN COSPLAY DRINKING GAME. Take a shot for:
*Sailor Moon. Triple for Galaxia or Saturn or any evil Scouts. Take a Molly for a Molly (Naru) cosplayer. *Dragon Ball. Triple for Merged Zamasu or outside of Z/GT *Virgin Killer. Wendy’s. 4x if they work at that place. *Dragon Maid. Triple for male characters. Attack on Titan. Triple for Titans. *Touhou. Triple for actual female cosplayers *My Hero Acamedia *Overwatch *Final Fantasy 15 *Star Wars. *Street Fighter *Undertale *Pokemon *Rick and Morty. Nigga you may as well cosplay as Rick. *Soul Eater *Fate/Zero 5x for Saber cuz she’s the worse girl unlike Rin *Disney’
I, Benjamin Andrew Snow, do not claim responsibility for any idiots who may had die from this during ACEN. I’m just simply cleaning out the gene pool. Following the creation of the game, Bill finally arrived! About time nigga! To the smokers’ circle we go!
Anime Cental’s infamous smokers’ circle. A grey and stone grey circular structure, divided into 4-6 separate “pocket” spaces . It winds itself around Hyatt tower, supported by featureless pillars. Early morning, it’s pretty mellow. People tend to just chill, smoke, and drink coffee while reading the news, may it be old media (newspapers) or new (cellphones).
Nothing exciting happens around this time. I like it like that. I like the peaceful mellowness of a morning smoke.
We encountered Alan’s friends in the circle, inside one of the smaller pockets, cut into the support pillar. They were pregaming since Wednesday night, and claim they had broke into the convention center late that night. Jesus, maybe I should do that next year. Day -1 drinking and partying. However, breaking into the convention center for fun and exploration? Nah. They’ll shoot my black ass.
Real shit tho, Day -1 sounds like a great idea for exploring Downtown Chicago.
Once Alan and I got our minds right off the demon grass and devil’s wax, we marched back inside to the Hyatt, meeting up with two of our other friends. These friends, I’ve known very well through a secret Facebook group chat.
Our friends “Miku” and “Scotch”.
Miku is rather well known throughout the ACEN community due to her shitposting efforts (her level of shitposting isn’t as superior as mine) and unfortunately, drawing in the (creepy) thirsty fucks towards her. Thirsty fucks, she often has to reject on the daily. People lack personal boundaries. She’s an all-around cool girl.
Scotch, as his name implies, is a huge fan of scotch liquor, and has an expansive knowledge of top shelf liquors (thanks to getting me hip on that $40 whiskey fam). He does a commission work for cosplays. He’s pretty short, and looks about 20 despite being 30. That’s dem Asian genes for ya.
Since Alan and I had most of our crew together, we decided to check into our respected Hyatt rooms. However, our rooms weren’t ready yet. More sitting and looking awkward stupid! Go us!
Speaking of looking stupid, get this; I’m looking around my surroundings when I spot this dude with a red hat, white lettings, and a certain front and format. You get where I’m going with this right? No? Its okay readers, I didn’t expect you to get it.
I’m straight giving this white boy this vicious look. Like, I can’t fuckin’ believe this alt-right edgelords are forreal wearing these hates at the cons. Great. Trump supporters at muh SJW left wing ACEN. As I’m giving the guy my infamous death stare of doom, Alan was like “Dude chill, it says ‘Make Konami Great Again!’.
I want a hat like that now. I mean, Konami will never be great again, but I want it! Granted, I would probably receive some strange looks, and black people coming up to me and asking me if I’m on some coon shit. Ah well. Thanks Trump. Thanks Obama. Seriously thanks a lot guys.
Since neither Alan nor my rooms were ready, Scotch requested if Miku and I could help in carry some drinks form his car into his room in exchange for beers and shots. I’m down for free alcohol! Plus I was getting bored.
Look, if you want me to help you out, you gotta give me great shit. Alcohol. Weed. Food. Money. Sexual favors (18+ only). Or all five! I do not care! Just pay me in alcohol and I’ll help ya out things for ya.
Well, off we go! A black man, an Asian man, and a white chick together in harmony. Racial unity at ACEN (sans my racist comments and jokes)!
A wistful tone sat in as we walked thorugh the skybridge (it connets to multiple hotels and the convention center itself). Years ago, the skybridge was decorated with creepy, disturbing surrealism paintings. The hallway hosted eerie paintings; humans starring you down and unsettling landscapes. You felt at unease walking through the humid corridors, questioning if the painitngs are watching you. It wasn’t a great place to walk about intoxicated.
Today, the Hyatt’s skybridge is bland, just like your sex life.
As we trek through skybridge, we caught a glance of the enewly located, enormous, and dully illuminated game room. We didn’t see much of it, since Miku didn’t have her badge yet.
“I do not have my badge. I wish I could get inside, but I can only look.” Miku lamented.
“I wonder how many guys have said the same line about you.” Scotch replied in jest.
We all laughed at his diss towards Miku’s creepy fanboys. Poor Miku though. Can’t imagine how she has to deal with the creepy dudes on the ACEN groups. Seriously, ya niggas need to learn personal boundaries.
(By the way I’m totally stealing Scotch’s joke. I’m getting rich off that one when I start my comedy tour in 2020.)
Eventually, we reached Scotch’s car, which surprising wasn’t a rice burner as I was expecting it to be(goddamit Ben). We grabbed the goods (cases of Monster, Root Beer, and Pepsi), and headed to his room. Miku was struggling to carry the cases, due to her props and cosplay. Some nice young, dude came along to help her out. An extra party member to help us! What a nice fellow! He did depart after we got to his room. Kinda like in Final Fantasy 2 where the fourth party member is just a temp.
(In her words : “He probably saw a cute girl struggling, and wanted to help her out, in hopes he’ll hook up.” Something like that I don’t fucking remember.)
For my peerless efforts of the Great Soda Case March of 2017, Scotch rewards me with beers and a Bloody Mary! Thank you, Scotch! I needed the 1:00PM pregame, and an excuse to support my undying alcoholism. Alright! Got my mind right for the day. Alan hits up my line, telling me that his room is ready. I end my mission with one last beer (for the time being), and proceed towards Alan’s room for a nice, warm shower. Besides, I’d be a giant hypocrite for mocking unwashed weebs, yet I am unwashed myself.
As I head back to the Hyatt lobby , my eyes caught an offensive sight. Such a sight that will even enraged even more the most chill person.
“Ya crackas are really this bold this year, huh? Blackface? Really whiteboy?!” I’m infuriated. It’s 2017, and we still have people think it’s okay to wear blackface.
“This white boy is out in public, forreal in blackface. This cracker’s really fuckin’ using blackface for his cosp- wait it’s actually a black guy with an obvious skin condition. My lord I’m a piece of shit I need to stop doing this!”
Whew boy. Ben, what is wrong with you today? You know what, just go take your shower, because you need to wash away some shame, boy. Just go!
Alright! I’ve arrived at Alan and his fiancé “Emerald” room at last! Finally, I can take a shower, and after that, belittle all the other weeaboos who refuse to! They can’t say shit, because they smell like shit, and I won’t. Besides, I gotta smell good for all the fine ass kohai who want Benpai to notices them. I can’t disappoint them at all. Okay, maybe in bed, but that’s another story.
I gather my body wash and soap, hop in the shower, and got the Drake and Big Sean bumpin’ off the Bluetooth speaker. Drake and Big Sean are my biggest motivators for the convention (besides making money), especially with their song “Blessings.” I’m at ACEN for a goodtime and not a longtime. Get my networks right, make money off bartending the homeboy’s engagement party, have a cute, shy, quiet kohai get super happy I noticed her.
Hopefully one that’s cosplaying as one of my waifus (Rin from fate/zero, Misato from Evangelion, Sailor Saturn from Sailor Moon, or Sabrina from Pokemon to name a many, many few) take her back to my room, and fuck brains out from behind while she is in said waifu cosplay, moaning out my name in a hentai-like voice.
…A nigga can dream. Sigh. My luck with women is low despite my confidence (I’m so oblivious to flirting my lord.)
‘K. Out of the shower Benji. I get that you wanna be fresh and all, but that Irish Spring soap and bodywash gotta last you the entire weekend. But hey! Do you smell fresh as fuck, Ben! I’m feeling good. Finally, I can make fun of smelly weebs, and not be a hypocrite. To the con floor!
Or not. My phone start’s buzzing, the T-Moblie jingle plays off the speaker, and I pick up the phone.
“Eto…Moshi moshi. Benyamin Yuki des.” I answered in my most faux Japanese accent.
“What?” The hotel clerk responded. “Mr. Snow, you’re room is now ready! Please come by to pick up your room keys!”
“Please stop sir. You’re not Japanese.” The clerk hung up.
Damn. I was hoping to impress her with my fake Japanese accent, and butchering of the language. She sounded cute. That what I get for trying to flirt with everyone, including hotel clerks. Well, my room’s ready. Adrian and I need to drop our shit off, so off I go.
I enter the check-in line. Thankfully, it’s short. Good. The quicker I go through the line, and get into my room, the quicker I can make fun of nerds, to build my massive ego and arrogance up. Alright, finally it’s my turn! . I step up to the clerk, a cute woman with a purple wig. Awesome! Purple’s my favorite color! And hell, she sounded just like the woman whom I was failing to impress over the phone. Maybe if she notice how handsome and fresh I am, she’ll be sworn by my fake Japanese.
“Hi! I’m here to pick up my keys to my room!” I don’t know how to say that in Japanese, so I went for the English route instead.
“Here’s your keys Mr. Snow! You’re in the Executive Wing rom 2432! Enjoy the con!”
She hands the key over to me and send me on my way.
Wait, did I hear her right? Executive Wing!? As in, the exclusive large rooms only reversed for the most balling of niggas? And I only paid low tier room pricing for it? Fuck yea, this is gonna be a great ACEN! Let’s make it greater by flexing on niggas on Facebook (even though I didn’t pay full price for the room, and I had to stack, invest, and save money for the convention with extreme discipline)
Hooray for lying like I got it!
I’ve arrive at my room. It’s slightly larger than the normal rooms. The room featured two queen size beds, a nice marble table, an Eazy-Boy type chair, and shelves. Hey, at least the area is quiet; it’s not too far off from Alan’s room. Plus, I don’t have to deal with the infamous congested elevators of the main wing. I take this unexpected upgrade and it’s benefits!
My phone goes off again. It’s Adrian. He informs me that Alan, Emerald, and he were off to some store I don’t care about, and that it’ll take them a while to get back. Oh. I was hoping they’ll come with me to the liquor store. Guess I go myself. Back to theworld of weebs and normies.
I leave the building, ready to walk for twenty-four minutes for booze. Hold up! That black Nissan mini SUV parked out front with the Punisher logo on the back. Don’t tell me that’s…nah. That can’t be my boy “Punisher” (I’m running out of fake names to protect my friends). Holy fuck, I can’t be that lucky!
“Hey Ben what’s up man!” Yes! It’s my boy Punisher indeed! Cool country white guy from my home area. Man, I really am lucking out this year. If I can just throw him some gas money, I can totally not have to walk in the rain like a sad, lonely alcoholic nerd, and have him take me to the liquor store!
“Hey bro, could you take me to the liquor store? I’ll throw in some gas money or something!”
“Sure man, I didn’t want you to walk in this rain in the first place!”
Thank god for great friends.
Back to Rosemont Liqour. Now, common sense would had your boy to get all, it not, most of my alcohol when Joe had took me up there the day before, but I was waiting for extra money that I was owed to me from various people. Plus, I didn’t wanna spend any cash I had in my bank from the other day (just in case ya know).
Time to go shopping!
I have a main quest, and two side quests. The main quest requires me finding the indigents for an fishbowl-type drink Alan and Emerald requested me to make: Mermaid Water, a cocktail created by popular YouTube bartender “Tipsy Bartender”.
Here’s the details of the drink from his website:
‘The Mermaid Water Cocktail is the type of drink that will have you asking if you ever feel like a pirate. If you want to feel the gentle breeze of the ocean punch you in the mouth, then this is a drink for you. It is basically a bunch of delicious alcohol mixed with delicious juice. The exact sort of thing that pirates need when crossing vast seas of water in search of various forms of plunder.
Main quest easily completed, sans Punisher and I having difficulties finding Blue Curacao (which was in front of us, just on a lower shelf). Alright! Now onward to my first side question: the indigents to my new cocktail creation: Sailor Saturn.
Prior to ACEN, I planned to create a cocktail based off the Sailor Scouts from the anime and manga series “Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon”. I already made one based off my second favorite scout; Sailor Mercury (UV Blue Vodka, Blueberry liqueur, Sprite. Might throw in Blue Cuacao next time I make it. BTW OC dough nut steel), so I figure why not make one based off my first fictional crush favorite Sailor Scout of all time?
With the Sailor Saturn cocktail, I was thinking of going with aesthetic look; I needed either a purple colored liquor or liqueur to match her visual design. Next, I wanted to play off her powers of death and destruction, so I need liquors that represented destruction perfectly: 100 Proof Vodka and Hennessy.
(I was originally going to go with Everclear, but I also didn’t want niggas to think they’re a Solider of Destruction. I get that Hennything is possible but I didn’t want people dying off my shit. Ya can’t rebirth like Saturn)
Unfortunately (or fortunately), the store didn’t have 100 Proof vodka on stocked. Goddammit. But they had Hennessy! Go me…or I would say that, if I didn’t saw Martell Cognac for under $27 (special deal), as opposed to the $40 of Henny. Hennything is possible, including a discount on a competitor’s product! GO ME INDEED! I love saving me money and acting like a cheap ass! Plus, I never tried Martell before.
You gotta try new things. It’ll get you far. Trust me.
Next, was finding a purple colored liqueur. I wanted Hpnotiq Harmoic, which is an uncommonly known version of the original Hpnotiq. If you never had Harmoic, it’s congac, vodka, mixed berries, and I think lavender extracts. The lavender (and possibly mixed berries) provides Harmoic it’s purple color, which would had been perfect for the Sailor Saturn cocktail. Sadly, they also did not carry that version. Fuck. Looks like Saturn won’t be destroying anyone soo- hey what’s that beautiful purple glowing bottle with the white swirls liquor over there in the vodka aisle?
“Viniq? Oh wow, you’re so pretty.”
Yeah no, I’m using this for the cocktail. If you do not know what Viniq is like, here are some details from the official website (please sponsor me Viniq I’ll be your spokesman for the alcoholic weeaboos niche): ‘Sweet refreshing, and glamorous, VINIQ’s purple shimmer cathes your eye before you hit your glass. Bursting with peach, berry, and citrus flavors, it’s the perfect complement to any occasion’
(Viniq has mosacto wine infused with it, but the website forgot to mention that. Thought I throw that lil tidbit in there)
Cool. I’ll take it. Throw it in the basket with the rest of my booze and onwards to the second and final side mission: Dirty Princess Peach, a drink I created at ACEN 2015.
Dirty Princess Peach, (as the name suggest), is named after Nintendo legendary princess, Peach. Ya know, the woman who has a thing for giant Koopa cocks, had both kidnapping and imprisonment fetishes, and enjoys wearing, and showing off her lacy thongs while playing Tennis. There’s a reason why I’m calling her dirty.
I’m just going to post a link to the cocktail repiece below because I’m wasting time and I wanna get to the next scene asap.
Alright, got everything I need for the weekend. To the checkout line! Let me tell ya something; If you have a cart full of booze at the liquor store, you’re gonna get some looks and question. No lie: I love this part.
“Are you guys planning for a wedding party?” One guy asked in the check out line.
“Nah. Planning a party at a comic book convention.” I replied.
”Wait what? Comic book convention? Ya drink and party at those things?” The dude was bewildered. I blew his mind, man! I love it when people are surprise that us nerds party and drink heavy. I can’t lie; When I first got into the cosplay and convention scene, I was shocked that nerds drink, smoke, and party. The revelation changed my entire point on view on the nerd community.
I legit enjoy explaining to non-nerds how there are after parties, and many crazy shit that goes down during the conventions. Things that people would not associate nerds with. It legit get people interested in what we do.
Hey, if I can change one person’s bias about our community, then I guess I’ve done some good.
After paying for our stuff, Punisher and I headed back to the Hyatt. He had to go do something, so I was left alone with a heavy box of mixers and booze. Fun. I get to carry around a box of booze throughout the convention hotel with thousands of eyes on me like I’m 2pac. All eyes on me. Me and my box-‘o-debauchery!
Yes, I want all your attention! Watch me be Mr. Stongman carrying this heavy box with no effo- okay ouch there goes my back. And my legs are cramping up. Fuck I’m old. Oh great! Service carts! This will be easy! Just place this heavy ass box down and…
“Sir. We are a full service hotel. We have to carry your things for you.” An older black gentleman looks over at me as I attempted to lay my booze box on the cart.
‘Fuck.’ I thought to myself. I don’t have cash to tip him, but this is super heavy. Oh well.
“I can help you carry your alcohol up to your room if need be.”
“Sure.” Sigh. He’s gonna expect a tip, ain’t he? Don’t get me wrong, I tip service workers. Just that I don’t have cash, and I’d feel like a piece of shit if I didn’t tip him. I let him carry the cart through the hotel to a secret exclusive elevator for ballin’ niggas like myself (stay jealous). We hit the elevator from the bottom floor to the main lobby.
“So, how much this all run ya?” ‘Make up a complete lie Ben.’
‘Benjamin, you’re fucking stupid. He’s gonna press you for a tip you know how this game works.’
“I see you got Martell . That must have run ya .” Yep. Here’s the begging ass nigga asking for a tip in a few. Sigh. Broke niggas I swear.
“Yep.” I just replied back. Here we go.
We reached the main lobby. He took me over to another attendant. Before he took me over to him, he finally pop the question. I’m the luckiest man in the world!
“So, you gonna tip me?” He begged.
‘Nigga. What kinda bullshit is this? If I was a white boy you wouldn’t be on this crabs-in-a-bucket shit.’
“Yea…where’s the ATM?” He just points behind me towards the ATM. I follow his finger to the ATM, and withdrew a $20. 10 for him and his coworker, an older white gentleman.
“Ya got change?” I asked. The white attendant had change alright. And by change I mean some bands. Like 1s, 20s, a few 50s. I take it he gets all the tips. I doubt he’s on some begging shit. He gives me two 10s, allowing me to tip them both the 10. The second attendant helps me to my room with the booze.
“Which room are you in?” He asked
“2432”. I replied back.
“Ahh, you must have a party room huh? No wonder you have so much alcohol.
“Heh heh yeah! I’m just having a smallish party with some friends, nothing major.” I replied with a sly smile. Boy, I’m helping my friends host a rager old man!
Back on the trek to my room! We head to another secret side elevator, pasting the mess of the overflowing elevators. An older white IRT lady caught a quick glance of my box-o’-debauchery, and gave me the most “I fucking parties like you” look I’ve ever received from a con staff. I dunno if it just she was jealous she had to work all weekend, or she thinks I’m gonna get caught slippin’ with my party, but holy that bitter white woman death glare man!
Bitch you’re getting mad! I’m having fun!
Finally, after that bullshit, we arrive at my room! I thank the guy and we went our separate ways. I pull out the Viniq first. I want to taste this alluring, enticing, sparkling violet liquid. I take a small shot. My lord, the taste of Viniq is astonishing. Delicate and sweet like Hotaru Tomoe. And yet, destructive and dangerous like Sailor Saturn.
…My weeaboo ass just fucking compared alcohol to a fucking Japanese anime character. Whew lord I need Jesus. Or another shot of this Viniq, this is good as fuck. Wait hold up, it’s almost 6:00PM. As much as I wanna get a little tipsy, I gotta meet up with some very old friends from my first Anime Central. My day ones from my first cosplay group: The Umineko and Higurashi cosplay group.
I’m gonna save that for the next post. Eleven pages and nearly 4700 plus words is more than enough for night. Day 1 will be split into two parts (with this being part one of course). Stay tune in the future in which I take a short delicious food detour before meeting up with the Higurashi and Umineko cosplay group! Following that, I will introduce ya to one of my favorite Chicago citizen and I’ll treat ya to my wild partying lifestyle! Oh and the part on how hard I really had to chill out before killing somebody who I thought was my friend.
All that, plus not that much more, next time! I’ll post a link the Part 2 once I am finish with it! Be good ya’ll!
With the spring/summer con season rolling, there’s something goofy I’ve noticed within the community recently: online con season drama. I know online con drama is a long running thing. It’s nothing new but I feel like this season, it gotten out of hand. People are getting way too bold with their beefs and shit talking.
This morning, a Facebook friend did a live video on how there’s so much silly ass drama prior to the con. One topic she touched upon was that on how niggas love to talk that good shit on convention groups; talking about meeting up to fight con and cause conflict.
Yet, they’re super quiet and scared to do to their target. At most, they’ll just give the person they don’t like a dirty look, or come up to them with that fake friendly (as if they weren’t on any childish shit prior). I just simply told her that I agreed, given I’ve noticed this trend for a while.
Like, folks plan all year to go to an event for 3-4 days to chill, network/do business, showcase their cosplay, party, etc. Nobody (sane) wants to meet up at a con just to fight and cause conflict over something pitiful. People invested way too much money, energy, and time into goin to a con, just to fight. Just to start drama. I don’t know how or why this trend got started but I just find it goofy.
I mean, I have a theory: ever since nerd culture and social media got popular and blew up, folks egos grew with it. I’ve also noticed for about the last five of the seven years I’ve been in the cosplay and convention community, people love to talk that good shit online about meeting up.
It’s kinda sad because back when I was younger, if you were caught talking shit online or in person to start drama, you got your ass beat and/or blacklisted. Simple as that. Or folks will make fun of you, and tell you that they’re not your personal army if you were trying to rally against somebody for no reason. Nowadays people support this sorta thing in the nerd community. Supporting physical fights and clowning on somebody over something minor or silly they said online.
That’s my little rant for today. Just something I wanna get off my chest. Ya need to chill out this con season.
With the 2017 convention season starting (and me still angry with people whom won’t shower at these things), I figure that I’ll be nice and give some helpful advice to survive the convention year. These tips and advice come from my own personal experience such as budgeting, taking care of me, and saving money. I hope you’ll apply these tips for your convention plans.
Generally, the convention’s social media page(s) and website will post booking information such as the start date of booking for hotel(s) blocks (reversed sections of the hotel for the event staff, guests, and attendees) . Once the reservation dates are revealed, mark your calendar. The night before hotel reservation begins, set an alarm up to an hour early than the time the hotel will accept reservation. Have your credit/debit card information ready. If you’re a rewards member of the hotel company (I.E. Hilton HHonors), have that information ready as well. You may gain points or a discount for being a rewards member.
If booking by phone, please note that everyone and their moms are going to do the same. You may get put on hold, and there is a chance you may not get the room. Please, please, PLEASE, do not go off on the operator if this happens. It’s not their fault. Be kind to them.
Some hotels may require an one night deposit upon reservation. This is to prevent last minute cancellation and people hustling and flipping the room(s) to others at a higher price than the average (although the latter is still possible. Make every dollar.). You best be fully committed.
Now that you’ve booked with the hotel, it’s time to pre-register for the badge! If possible, buy the badge as early as possible when pricing is at its cheapest. It’s a smart investment.
Think about it: Would you rather invest that $45 on the badge right now, when it is at its cheapest and not worry about saving up, or would you want to stand in line for hours, and pay $75 for the at-the-door prices? That was $75 for extra food, a cool ass Mystic Gohan figurine at the dealers room, or at least two top shelf liquor for a room party.
If you cannot afford the badge right then and now, stack up and budget for the next tier price. If the next tier price is $50 in about two months and a week, put aside $10 aside each paycheck for five pay periods, or $25 aside for two pay periods. Then, once you got your money straight, buy the badge.
Seriously, you do not want to buy at the door. You’ll lose more money and time that way.
The 3-6-1 Rule
Three meals a day. Six hours of sleep. One bath a day. You think something as simple as taking care of your hygiene, eating, and sleep are easy tasks. Indeed they are! However, you have those few who don’t follow this rule (especially the bathing part). To those who will follow these rules, I’ll break it down for ya. 3 Meals a Day: It’s that simple. Have a healthy breakfast to provide energy until lunch time. Toast, yogurt, eggs, nuts, grains, etc. If your hotel offer free breakfast, take advantage of that, even if its food you do not enjoy. Your favorite food is free food.
For lunch, I tend to go with something between a light and heavy meal. A sandwich with chips and another side is a nice go-to lunch meal. It’s not a bank breaker and it doesn’t leave me feeling tired or sluggish because I ate more than I could handle. Dinner is where you want to eat something heavy, especially if you’re going to be going to a room party with alcohol, the rave, or doing many night time convention things. I recommend pizza, pasta, fried chicken, etc. Do not eat too heavily though.
Another helpful tip: Snack between meals such as fruits, nuts, and those fancy multi-grain bars. Drink plenty of water as well. The key is to have energy and not feel like shit because you haven’t eaten at all. Ramen and pockey does not qualify as meals.
Yes another helpful tip: If your hotel has a full kitchen (stove, oven, fridge, etc.) and you know how to cook, cook your own meals. It’s a money saving tactic and you’ll have leftovers throughout the day.
Six hours of sleep: Please, get some rest. You should sleep for about 8 hours a day, but 6 hours isn’t too bad. If you’re running a panel or event, get as much rest as you can. There is no shame in resting up and missing out on a few things at the convention to keep alert and active.
Sleep Tip: Powernaps are wonderful. If need be, take at least 30-45 minutes every couple of hours to powernap. If you’re doing something major such as hosting or partying, try to get at least 1-2 hours of sleep. Your body and energy levels will thank you.
1 Bath/Shower a Day: There is absolutely no goddamn reason for you not to shower or bathe before going out in public. A convention is not exempted. Nobody is trying to smell your nasty ass because you did not want to shower and use hygiene products. If you’re a cosplayer, plan on changing clothes, or sweat a lot, please take a shower before and after an outfit change.
It’s 2017 and we are still debating if people should shower and take care of their hygiene. Yay for human evolution.
Showering Tip: Beer showers are fun. And an early sign you might be an alcoholic. Go me!
But seriously, fuckin’ take a shower and use deodorant.
Ah the fun part for us adults: budgeting for the convention. In general, the plan is to stack up save up, and split funds for the event. No one’s budget will be alike from the other guy. This is normal. Here’s an example of my budget for Wizard World St. Louis:
Hotel: $217 ($73 for my share between three people)
Misc: $200 (Not required. For things such as dealer room, liquor/mixers for room party, “vices”, etc.)
Total: $383 ($183 if I removed the miscellaneous items)
Paydays until Wizard: 2
Friend owes me $66. Use that for the badge
Save $51.14 per check. Since I’m using the money I’m owed for the badge, this isn’t a huge blow to the budget. Take another $51.14 from income taxes.
Simple budget, yes. Admittedly, my math may not be right and I’m too lazy to whip out my calculator to get the correct total amount. You get the picture here. Just manage your money correctly and save up.
If you’re splitting hotel costs, pay up. Nobody likes a mooch.
Let me say this: If you cannot afford to go to a convention, don’t go. If you have needs such as bills to be paid, medical expenses, etc., take care of that first. Skip out on the convention if your money isn’t right. It’s not worth going broke or screwing up your money just to go to a convention.
The convention ain’t going anywhere soon. Wait until your money is right and go to the next convention.
‘Let me tell you something: You gotta find the balance between having fun and having funds.’ –Nino Brown (American rapper)
I hope my tips will help you in this convention season. If you have anything else to add please feel free to state them in the comments section!
Have a fun and safe time at the convention(s) you’re going to this year!