maxwrite: (misc - t-shirt - i <3 nerds)
[personal profile] maxwrite
So, Fan Expo: it was pretty awesome. It was four days and I went for all four of those days. I'm still recovering. I'm still sore in places for some reason, my feet still hurt a bit and are kinda swollen and my big toes are kinda tingly (that's what cheap, ill-fitting shoes'll do), and I'm still catching up on sleep. But it was all worth it. I had a good time, so this got kinda long.

Day 1 was Thursday. I traveled downtown on public transit with my suitcase, my laptop in its bag, a large purse thing full of toiletries, a backpack full of crap and my handbag. I really should've taken a cab down there. It would've been seventy to eighty bucks but it would've saved me all kinds of headaches. I kept stressing about the possibility of accidentally leaving a bag behind on a bus or train. I didn't, thankfully. Well, going on bus and train was helpful at any rate; it let me know exactly where the subway entrance was in relation to my hotel, which stop was mine, etc., so I already had that worked out by the time I dropped off my stuff and headed to the con.

Get to the hotel. Big mix-up checking in. First my key card wouldn't open my door. Head back downstairs and I met a woman and this dude en route who had a slightly different problem: people were still staying in the rooms they'd been assigned. They'd opened their doors to find people's stuff just hanging out inside. Yeesh. I was glad that hadn't happened to me.

Ah, but it did happen to me. Went down to get my key card sorted, went back up and - BOOM - people's stuff inside my room.

So back downstairs, get the room thing sorted. Apparently the hotel's computer system was spazzing out for some reason, hence the mix-ups. You could see the frustration on the staff's faces. Well, everything got cleared up and the next room I was assigned was just fine. And the rest of my stay was uneventful. If anybody was assigned my room by accident while I was still staying there, I have no idea.

Dropped off my stuff, freshened up a bit, put on my Hot Fuzz t-shirt and headed out to meet up with Karli (Karlimeaghan), a girl from Tumblr who, until that day, I only knew online. Went into the con to wait for her. We texted back and forth for maybe fifteen or twenty minutes trying to pinpoint where to meet each other. The Metro Toronto Convention Centre is a big place, there's a North building and a South building. Apparently I was in a part of the con that she didn't even know existed. XD It was kind of a clusterfuck, but we eventually found each other. Although by the time we did, we no longer had time to grab dinner before the movie we were going to. We were seeing The Cornetto Trilogy - Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, and The World's End - at a tiny little theatre in Toronto (and the show was A-MAY-ZING), and Karli wanted to quickly head back to her place to change because she wanted to cosplay Gary King for the show (he's Simon's TWE character).

So, I went with her to where she was staying so she could change (and her costume was awesome), and then we went to the theatre where they were giving out these lovely bottle opener keychains as keepsakes:



Before Shaun started playing, our host for the night, a total Cornetto fanboy, did some trivia and gave out prizes. He did the same before Hot Fuzz (and later before TWE), and Karli got a question right and won a little goodie bag with a t-shirt and other things. She knows HF best, as do I; I like Shaun, but I always preferred HF. The Nicholas/Danny friendship is so epic, and also Simon looks amazing as Nicholas Angel. Shaun's cute; Nicholas is hot like fire.

We were in that theatre for, what, six hours I think. I thought I'd be dying by night's end, but excitement and sugar kept me going. I was so excited to see TWE and I was not disappointed (all my feelings about the movie can be found here on Tumblr). It's just so good. Gary King tugs at my heart something awful. I've heard grumblings about the ending, but I think the ending is my favourite part, and not just because Simon's sexy as hell ... although there is that too.

So, I didn't see much of the con on Day 1. I saw the sports nerd section, because that's the part where I entered the building, but after that I was waiting around to be found and then had to hurry out. I could've gotten there earlier if I'd wanted to lug all my crap around with me; check-in at the hotel isn't until three p.m. so I had to wait until after that to get to the con. There was no way I was dragging all my crap around that busy place.

Day 2, Friday, was a better day. There were things I wanted to do but didn't get to because of awful time management, but I did see more of the con. I picked up the bag o' goodies that you get when you purchase a premium ticket package, which had a bunch of stuff in it that I didn't really want, and an Expo t-shirt:

Here's some more pics:

Stuff I got myself - a pin and a necklace:

Some Doctor Who peeps:

Some Lego Dwarves:

Some Ghostbusters:

A print of Michonne from The Walking Dead that I bought:

Norman Reedus's autograph (OMFG):

Yeah, I sort of met Norman Reedus. It was all of two seconds, so it's not like I have an amazing story to tell. He was very sweet and soft-spoken, but it was early and it was Day 4 of the con so he may simply have been tired. Oh, I should probably mention that I was dressed like this:

That's my Michonne cosplay, which was a last-minute thing. I wasn't planning on cosplaying anything at all. I brought an arsenal of nerd tees to wear for the four days, but on Friday afternoon, during some downtime when I went back to my hotel to chill, I got this brain wave. It seemed so freakin' obvious to me that I should cosplay Michonne, I don't know why I hadn't thought of it before. I had a couple of hours to kill before I had to meet up with Karli again, and another Tumblr girl named Rehanna (Itsgottabemagic), so we could all go see TWE again. So, I ran around, going from store to store, looking for bits and pieces for my costume. I hit up an artist supply store first, because I needed a sword. Got some cardboardy stuff and some paint and some white tape and an X-Acto knife (which I did not injure myself with, shockingly) and some other things. I went to a couple of other stores and found the headband. Then I hurried back to the hotel, dumped all my crap and headed off to meet the girls. We grabbed a quick dinner and then went to the theatre.

After the show, we went down the street to this little pub that was giving away free TWE t-shirts when you showed them your ticket stub. So we got free tees WOO:



Then it was back to my hotel to throw together a cardboard katana for my cosplay. Which I'd love to show you pics of, but I accidentally deleted them. And I don't have the sword anymore. I figured if I did that again in the future, I'd just either make another one or buy one. So, oops. My bad. But for something that was a last-minute idea and took me between two and three hours in the middle of the night (or morning depending on how you look at it) while I was dead tired, and having never actually made anything like that before, it turned out pretty damn good if I do say so myself. I used the white tape to mimic the leather on the real katana's handle. I sat there twisting tape for I dunno how long. The next day my finger tips hurt. Worth it. :D

Saturday morning, the day I was to debut my cosplay, I went out early to grab a few more things. I still needed the perfect tank top, a vest and some shoes. Found the perfect purple tank at a store that was right across from my hotel, so that was cool. After that I had to head over to Queen Street to go to Black Market, a thrift store in Toronto. Found a cheap pair of black boots there (although I don't think Michonne wears boots, but I had very little time and had to improvise). They are the single most uncomfortable things I've ever had on my feet. After walking around in them a while, I had to leave the con and find a drug store to purchase some insoles, which helped a bit. Those are the shoes that left my feet a little swollen and tingly to this day.

At another second-hand store I found the brown leather vest. I already had the jeans and the belt. And the hair lol. And that's it. That's my costume. I thought I did a decent job, not spectacular, but apparently I did better than I thought I did, because at the con I had people coming up to me saying it was the best Michonne they'd ever seen. A couple of people said that they'd had to do a double take to make sure I wasn't actually Danai Gurira, the actress who plays Michonne, which is crazy because she is gorgeous and in such amazing shape. I don't think I'm a troll or anything, but I don't really look much like her. Ah well, I guess it's safe to say the cosplay was a success. So, yeah. There are many strangers with pics of me floating around. I dunno how to feel about that. XD

While I was waiting in line on Sunday morning to get into the con, this guy saw me and started going on and on about how Michonne's sword is not a very practical weapon for a zombie apocalypse. I love nerds. ♥

Sunday was the big day for autographs and photo-ops for me. I ran into a few more TWD cosplayers, mostly kids; one little boy was dressed as Daryl and his dad took a pic of me and him together. And I saw another little boy dressed as Carl. We sort of nodded at each other from across a room. And I met a guy who had been dressed as The Governor the day before. Anyway, it was that day that I got Norman's autograph and he said he liked my costume. :3 While waiting for Norman, I met this dude who's like a con veteran. This was his tenth Fan Expo, I think (have there been that many? Whoa.). He had a book full of autographs he'd gotten in the last three days. He'd gotten fifteen that weekend. FIFTEEN. He was hardcore. He had a lot of good advice and info about cons, he was able to direct me to where to buy those plastic sleeves you put photos in to protect them, 'cause I'd had no idea. Getting autographs was sort of a spur of the moment thing for me. He was able to tell me when to chill out if I was panicking about time issues and stuff. I met up with him again at the Karl Urban autograph table. Yes, I got Karl's autograph, but that was a gift for someone else. I had my own Karl moment coming up. Photo-op. Yup.

I swear I am more attractive than that. I realize these things have to go quickly because there are a lot of people to get through but it would be helpful to have a little coaching beforehand. Just someone to maybe give us a few pointers while we're waiting in line, like "Hey, buddy. How ya doing? Nervous? Just try to breathe, relax. It is okay to touch him, he will not punch you in the face if you do. In fact, you probably should, because he will put his arm around you, so you should do the same. Do not freak out. Everything is okay. Breathe. Remember to actually look at the camera. You look great, by the way. Did you make that sword yourself? Good job. You're doing great. No, you don't look like a dork, you're fantastic. He's a really nice guy, so just chill. BREATHE."

You know what I'm saying?

Just ... he's touching me. And I'm touching him. And he smells amazing and OMFG. Again, these little moments went by in seconds, so I don't have anything exciting to say about them except that they happened. And I know they happened almost solely because I've got photographic (and autographic, heh) evidence. If it wasn't for that, I'd doubt my own memory; that's how quickly this stuff goes by.

So, after that, I met up with Vanessa ([ profile] pumpkinqueen144) at the Doctor Who Society table, someone else I'd never met IRL before. We only got to talk briefly because of a) tiredness and lack of time and b) her adorable and impatient little girl, Sophia, who was wearing a cute little Firefly Jayne hat. Sophia could not have been more indifferent to my presence as I am not that interesting to begin with and also she loves Doctor Who and there were life-sized Daleks in the vicinity. They'd been rolling around the con floor, screaming at people, as Daleks are wont to do.

On Saturday I went to Zachary Quinto's Q&A, but I was slightly late and there were no seats left so I was standing way in the back. I also went to Karl's Q&A on Sunday. Both Zach and Karl talked about the whole Neutron Cream thing, which, if you are part of Star Trek Reboot fandom, you probably heard about. Heh, Karl swore vengeance on Simon for his role in pranking Karl, citing the payback that he got on Viggo Mortensen ten years after whatever Viggo did to him as evidence that Simon would pay one day. I think I'm a little afraid for Simon now. XD

Tried to get into The Walking Dead panel but that didn't happen 'cause it was full. I also did not get to see Gina Torres, Nichelle Nichols or George Takei, although I did spy George from across the room when I was waiting for Karl's autograph. I also saw Norman again as he, Michael Rooker and their people were walking through the building on their way to TWD panel. Saw David Hasselhoff. Saw Dean Kane. Saw a couple of Batmans and lots of Deadpools. And lots of other people I probably didn't recognize. A Batman stopped me to tell me he liked my cosplay. :)

Oh, on Friday night I went to a screening for Karl's upcoming show Almost Human. It was really cute. He and Michael Ealy have great chemistry. I loved seeing it with a big crowd, because everyone laughed and cheered and went "aww" at the right times. So much more fun than watching it alone. Looks like a good show, I hope it does well. I think there was also an Almost Human panel at some point, but I missed that too. Actually, my favourite Fringe podcasters, Golden Spiral Media, are going to do a weekly podcast about it like they did with Fringe, so I'm excited for that.

Heh, funny story: On Saturday morning as I was walking down Queen Street looking for the last pieces of my Michonne costume, someone tried to stop me to talk about a charity. Some child sponsorship thing, you know how it goes. I waved him off, but I was wearing my TWE t-shirt that I got from that pub and the guy was quick and he called out as I hurried away, "Well, can we talk about the movies of Simon Pegg then?"

I am not exaggerating one single bit when I say that I was physically unable to continue my retreat. My legs just stopped and my head turned back toward the guy. My body literally betrayed me. Because of Simon Pegg. God. Dangit.

So, I went back and we chatted a bit about the Cornetto trilogy, which he actually did know a lot about, and a bit about Fan Expo and lots of nerdy things and he was very knowledgeable about old school Doctor Who, and long story short I may have sponsored a child in China. Or some place.

Yeah, I'mma have to sort that out later.

Oh, also, I ordered a Cornetto t-shirt a couple of weeks ago from, but it didn't arrive in time for me to wear it (actually it arrived, like, the day I left for the con, but by then I'd already left and there was no time to sit on buses and trains for three hours to come home and get it and then go back again). Here it is:

I love it so much!

I think that's everything. I can't remember anything else. It's all a blur of four days of running around really fast, coming to abrupt stops and having to wait in lines or shuffle along in large groups of people trying to get places, meal replacement bars and bottled water, getting poked by cosplay weapons, poking people with my cosplay weapon, overpriced everything, waking up sore and having no idea why, having to get up and go after four hours of sleep. It was great.

That's all.
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February 2014

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