Each year at San Diego Comic-Con, Sunday comes so quickly. At this point I’m excited to go home, sleep in my bed, and hug my husband and my cat. But at the same time, I don’t want to go home, because that means not being around these awesome people. SDCC really is like summer camp – it’s the best thing ever while you’re there, but inevitably it has to end.
My only must-do Sunday was Kelly Sue DeConnick’s signing at 10 am. I decided to be lazy and not dress up, so I put on my “the entire cat population is my best friend” tank top paired with my cat print sweater instead. I kinda love cats.
Diego and I went and had a REAL BREAKFAST. Like went to a restaurant and SAT DOWN AND ATE FOOD. This happened before 3 pm! This is a SDCC miracle. The breakfast tacos were pretty damn good too! After we headed to the convention center and split up on our different missions.
I found Kelly Sue’s signing booth really quickly and was super excited cause no one was in line…until the line guard told me “we can’t start the line til the talent shows up.” Um, ok. Not really heard that one before. So I go into the middle of the Sails Pavilion to hover and wait, but of course another guard person tells us we can’t loiter in the middle of the room or on the sides, so we need to “move along.” Sooooo we can’t get in line, but we also can’t wait in view of the booth.
Of course, right as I’m being told this, a group of four people approach me and say “walk with us!” They had arrived and been told the exact same thing, so we proceeded to walk laps in the Sails Pavilion and complain about how ridiculous the whole situation was. Within two minutes, there was a whole crowd of people obviously waiting for Kelly Sue, so we just walked in small circles around each other chit chatting less than 40 feet from her booth. We were trying to be incredibly obvious and it worked! The original line guard went and told his boss, who let us in the line! Victory!
Kelly Sue arrived not too long after and was obviously the sweetest person ever. She greeted everyone with a cheerful “hi friend!” or “hey beautiful!” She was super enthusiastic which was just lovely on the last day. I brought alone this cat filled cover of Captain Marvel, because CATS. I love cats. And Captain Marvel is the best.
I thanked Kelly Sue for being an incredible writer and bemoaned her husband’s inability to make it to the con after all (Matt Fraction wrote Hawkeye aka my favorite comic ever). She appreciated my dedication to being all about cats that day. Diego happened to come by right before I got to talk to her, so he snapped this pic.
After the signing we weren’t entirely sure what we should do next, so I suggested heading over to Nerd HQ. Sarah W was at the Marvel Nerd HQ panel with Clark Gregg, Chloe Bennet, Hayley Atwell, and James D’Arcy, and I just had this incredibly strong gut feeling that they would do a photo op after. Sometimes getting those Smiles for Smiles requires being at Nerd HQ already, and since the panel would end in less than 30 minutes, we headed on over to hang out.
Sure enough, when Sarah W exited the panel, she texted us to get in line right away. A certain someone who will not be named hinted to her that it was likely so we hopped straight in line. So did a lot of other people on the sheer hope it would work out. After a few minutes it was finally announced on the app and Twitter, and there was much celebration!
The line moved slowly but surely. Eventually we were in sight of the door, but all of a sudden a guy appeared and told us no luck, they had to leave, we needed to disperse. Sarah asked the guy who announced it if they were gone already, and he said yeah. A whole bunch of people in front of us left. Sarah, Diego, myself, and two new friends Corinne and Lisette were super bummed, so we didn’t move for a few seconds wondering what we should do.
That was when I noticed there were still about five or six people in line at the doorway, staring inside. If the cast had already left, then why were they staring inside like it was a really great day for them? I casually wandered up, glanced in, and spotted Clark Gregg. Racing back to my friends I tried-to-whisper-but-probably-failed “they’re still there!” We made it look like we were getting ready to leave, but just scooted up a little more, before FINALLY, another volunteer popped their head out the door and called “Marvel gave us 10 more minutes, quickly, no chatting, just go!”
We hopped right up to the now MUCH shorter line and excitedly cheered at our luck. AND LOOK AT THESE WONDERFUL PEOPLE
The four of us went and grabbed lunch after (still at a reasonable time whaaaat) before again going our different directions. I headed back to the convention center to go to a panel or maybe just wander the floor. I’d never actually stayed all the way up until the closing minute of the convention, and I really wanted to do that this year. Partly for feelings, partly because everyone always says that’s when vendors really make deals, and I wanted to see these deals.
I went to a panel on Queer Imagery in Gaming for a bit before getting a text from Sarah G, so I ditched the rest of the panel (it was perfectly good, they were just talking about queer characters and less going in depth about the imagery, which was more what I was expecting) and we hung out for a bit. We wandered onto the mezzanine level, which gives you this amazing view of the floor. This was less than 30 minutes from the end of the convention hours.
When it hit 5 pm, all of the vendors started cheering and clapping, which is ADORABLE considering there’s no clocks anywhere, so they just all were waiting for the exact minute. I couldn’t stop grinning cause the camaraderie was adorable. The lights suddenly dimmed a little, the convention telling us all IT’S DONE GET OUT but the best part was no one did anything different than normal. Sure, there were a good number of polite, following-the-rules people who left, but most people kept walking towards wherever they wanted to go.
I wandered in the direction of Jenny Parks’ booth (the lady who makes the cat drawings), in case she had any left over for cheaper that I liked, and ended up at the booth right next to hers and bargained my way into getting this super cool Avengers drawing on METAL. Actual metal. A picture doesn’t quite do it justice to how amazing the color looks and how it shines as you move it. No clue where I’m going to put it yet but it’s pretty awesome.
After that I said good job, time to get out of here before there’s a mass exodus and it’s hard to cross the street. Well haha, jokes on me, because OH MY GOODNESS WAS IT STILL REALLY HARD TO CROSS THE DARN STREET. I ended up giving up trying to cross at the convention center where the tram runs and walked down to the Marriott to cross there.
This walked me right past the Assassin’s Creed obstacle course which Corinne and I nearly did earlier in the day, except the guy told us two people had broken bones on it EEK. The last runner was going, someone who is a big enough fan of the video game series that he has the symbol tattooed on him. Of course, just because you love playing as an assassin doesn’t mean you’re prepared to make the leap of faith (where someone of course had broken their ankle GAH).
So here I am, planning to walk right on past, when I realize everyone is heckling this guy, who is OBVIOUSLY scared of heights. I hadn’t actually seen anyone do the leap of faith, so I decided to see how this played out. I was there for at least five, if not ten, minutes just hoping this guy wouldn’t chicken out entirely. After multiple chanted count downs, loud booing, and some creative insults by someone who was clearly a close friend, it finally became obvious HE WAS GOING. Everyone started cheering loudly and finally, he jumped off and executed the landing perfectly. It was worth the wait.
I met Diego at the Omni hotel and we headed off to Harmontown. For those who don’t know, it’s Dan Harmon (the creator of Community)’s podcast where he basically talks about anything and everything he wants and they always play something like Dungeons & Dragons at the end. I’ve heard one or two episodes but Diego is a faithful listener.
It was a ton of fun, though I totally disagree with Dan’s opinions on having a favorite color (he thinks it’s silly, I love blue and green to death). 😉 You can listen to the taping of the podcast online somewhere. Maybe once Diego reads this he can send me the link.
Afterwards we hung around for pictures and general chatting. Dan’s wife Erin is the best, so I just HAD to get a picture with her as well.
After the podcast we headed back to my hotel room to meet up with Sarah W, Sarah G, Joe, and Justina. What proceeded was one of the nicest nights I could’ve imagined having at a convention.
Like I’ve said, I’m not a partier. I’m not big on loud music, excessive drinking, dancing (like why? It can be fun when I feel like it but that means only when certain songs happen, and that’s not likely at a dance party), and having to shout at each other to talk. I much prefer hanging out, being able to hear each other, maybe watching a movie or something, but mostly just enjoying each others company.
THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT WE DID.
We hung out for a bit, comparing our days, just laughing and relaxing and not worrying about how this was the end of the event. We were just friends who were happy to get to spend time with each other, even though we live in different cities and different states and different countries. When we realized we were hungry at 11 pm, we just marched on down to the nearest grocery store to grab some snacks and some wine to split. When I got tired, I just laid down in the bed so I could relax while we talked. Every single minute with some of my favorite people on this planet was lovely and I wanted to enjoy it forever.
Of course, the evening had to end sometime. It came time for people to go to their own rooms to sleep. This was the hardest part of the convention for me. Even though we’re all Facebook and Twitter friends and talk all the time, it’s really hard to say goodbye to people you rarely get to see.
(This is where I’m gonna get sappy for a minute.
No, even more sappy than I’ve already been.)
I only get to see the large majority of my con friends at San Diego Comic-Con. I’m fortunate enough to live in the same state as Lindsay, and since Jordan also lived in the Houston area I usually see her around Christmas time too. But people like Sarah G, Justina, Joe, new friends Brandon and Riz, I only really get to see once a year at this great event.
Sarah W I’ve gotten to see four times now, thanks to her visiting me for about a week this past December. She’s lovely and we share a lot of interests and our personalities mesh so well. We randomly met in line three years ago and at this point I couldn’t imagine not having her in my life.
Diego is one of my best friends. Sure, we only communicated through typed text for four years before meeting in person at SDCC in 2012, but by then we knew each other incredibly well. Since then, I’ve only seen Diego in person twice – when he visited a friend in Austin and hopped on a bus to Waco so he could have dinner with me and Jason for a 5 hour visit, and this year at SDCC. It makes every minute we get to be together in person so much more meaningful to me.
And it was especially great to get so much time with Diego and Sarah W at the same time, because the three of us spent most of SDCC 2012 together and hadn’t been able to be all together since then!
So even though I know we’re in constant communication – like, it’s rare a day goes by where I don’t talk to Diego – it was really, really hard to say bye to him.
Like, he might not know this until now, but after he left, I started crying hardcore. Joe was super concerned that something was horribly wrong, but Sarah W understood. I basically got one huge group hug as I rambled to them everything I’d just said in that last paragraph. Besides, it was waaaaay past my bedtime so I was tired and emotional, alright? (Alriiiiiight.) (Points if you understand that reference.)
Monday it was time to pack and head home. I got all of my stuff together pretty quickly, only to find out my flight was delayed by a few hours. Perfect, enough time to get ANOTHER ACTUAL BREAKFAST WHAAAAAT. There was an iHop Express really close by, which isn’t open 24 hours by the way grr. I went to grab food and Sarah W joined me yay! We got to have one last meal together before we had to go back to our coasts (east for her, gulf for me).
I said one last goodbye to everyone I could and headed off to the airport just in case something crazy happened and my flight got undelayed (it happened to me and Jason in June going to Portland, YOU NEVER KNOW). Lo and behold, Lindsay ended up being on my flight to Houston! We got to spend our delay recapping our weekend, since we never ran into each other the entire event.
And that’s how my SDCC ended this year – boarding a plane to Houston. Well, the effects of the event only ended just recently for me. I thought I got con crud, the usual cold that plagues a large number of people who attend, but it turned out to be strep throat. When the nurse asked me if I’d been around anyone sick lately, I was like, “You mean 100,000+ of my closest friends? Why yes!” After two rounds of antibiotics, lots of coughing, and four or more tissue boxes later, I finally feel good again!
And yet getting sick for a month because of Comic-Con is still totally worth it. Sure, I’m probably crazy. But I like this crazy.