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!
Gotta love room parties. Where else can you find a normally socially awkward Uthena cosplayer drunk off shots of Hennessy flirting with other women, a Future Trunks cosplayer high off coke that he snorted off a Hex Maniac cosplayer’s ass, and two stoned Persona fans talk about who’s best girl(s) in Persona 5? (the answer: Tae and Ohya)
Yea, you could visit multiple room parties. That’s cool and all. But, what is cooler is hosting your own room party. You can become the source of otaku debauchery! I’ll teach you how!
To host a room party, you obviously need a hotel room. Make you have booked a room. Location is key. You want to host your party at the primary convention hotel. Hosting at the secondary hotel isn’t bad either, just as long as it’s not too far from the main hotel(s). Ain’t nobody gonna drive 20 minutes to your lame ass hotel party. A suite, a large single king-size room, or two rooms that are linked are best choices for room partying (depending on how the size of the party you’re planning).
If the convention hotel has a dedicated floor/wing/etc. for parties, request a room on that floor. Some hotels will move your room to the party floor for free, while others require an additional fee (around an extra $100 a night).
Anime Nebraskon (Omaha), Anime Midwest (Chicago), Anime Weekend Atlanta (Atlanta), DragonCon (Altanta) , and Archon (St. Louis) are conventions that I’ve personally attended in which they have a select floor or wing for partying.
The job of a host is showing as much hospitality to your guests as possible. Greet everyone with a smile. Show them respect. Make them feel comfortable and welcomed. This means cleaning the room hours before the party and throughout it, having liquor, juices, soda, food, and water available (which I will cover later). Talk to as many of your guests as possible. Be friendly. Trust me, doing these things will net you repeat visitors for future parties.
Spills and party fouls happen. It’s unavoidable, but that doesn’t mean you can’t clean up (plus, you don’t want cleaning fees on your bill). Cleaning supplies will help you in the long run, and plus, cleaning goes hand-in-hand with hospitality.
Here what you’ll need:
Trashbags: Hotel trashbags are small, weak, and will overflow quick. You want something that’s heavy duty, like Hefty trashbags. 3-7 heavy duty trashbags should be more than enough for your party. Tie a trashbag on the door handle for easy access for trash and waifus alike.
Paper Towels: Paper towels are godsend for messes. Get something strong and absorbent like Brawny or Bounty.
Tip: Don’t use the hotel towels. You’ll need them to dry yourself off , after you’ve washed off the shame of sleeping with that Black Lady (Sailor Moon) cosplayer after the party ended. You know, the one who was way into character calling you “daddy” while you were raw dogging her from behind.
Dish Soap: For difficult stains. Plus the best dish soap smells good.
Disinfection Wipes: Great way to kill germs and reduce con pluage from unwashed, unhealthy virgin nerds.
Febreze: Because people don’t fucking shower at conventions.
Having these simple cleaning products will help you in the long run. You don’t need everything on the list, but it’s useful to have at least trash bags, dish soap, febreze, and paper towels on stand by.
Food and Drinks:
What’s a party without food or drinks? A rather boring one, run by a host who’s most likely a freeloader, expecting others to bring things but not providing anything in exchange. Nobody likes those type of people. You gotta have your own set of food and drinks at your party.
Here what you’ll need:
Alcohol (LEGAL DISCLAIMER: DO NOT SERVE ANYONE UNDER 21)
3 Bottles of plain Vodka
2 Bottles of plain White Rum
2 Bottles of Dark Rum
1 bottle of tequila
1 bottle of gin
1 bottle of Triple Sec
1 bottle of Schnapps
1-3 bottles of Liquer (Peach, Sour Apple, Midori, coffee, etc.)
1 bottle of Rumchata
1 bottle/box or red wine
1 bottle/box or white wine
Case of beer (24-36 pack work best)
1-6 bottles of fruit flavored vodka/rum (pineapple, mango, raspberry, etc.)
Sweet and Sour Mix
24-36 case of bottled water
On the food end, pizza and chicken wings work well. You can order 1-3 pounds of wings and 5 boxes of cheap pizza for an entire party. Convince party goers to put in on the food. Don’t let others mooch off your shit.
Nobody will come to your party if they’re unaware. You must promote it. Create a Facebook event. Speak to people at the convention. Networking is key. Now, if room partying is against hotel rules, keep it on the low. Only tell a very select few people that you can trust.
Besides, you don’t want your party shut down because you let the wrong people in.
As a host, you gotta have rules. Yeah, parties can be chaotic, that’s a given. But you need to lay down some rules and have order to ensure a safe and happy party for you and your guests.
My general rules:
Respect the host and host’s room
Don’t be a creep and make others uncomfortable
Don’t fuck/sleep on my/our bed
Don’t steal. You steal you’re getting your ass beat and booted.
Keep noise at a reasonable level to prevent noise complaints.
No smoking unless it’s a smoking floor, 420 friendly hotel, etc. Also match me. I’ll match you too.
No one under 21 (if serving alcohol)
Just simple universal rules that should work. You can add your own rules for your party depending on the nature.
Hope these tips help! Feel free to apply them to your own parties. Be safe and have fun this con season! If you have any suggestions and advice, please post them in the comments section below!
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!