So there I was, at a Party City, minding my own business, when all of a sudden I spot a section that is devoted to Mermaid themed parties for little girls… as well as, weirdly enough, kitty themed parties.

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Are there parents/kids that are having serious debates on if they want a nautical/mermaid themed birthday or one with cats? Whatever.

I then saw this… which is clearly a take on pin the tail on the donkey, but with mermaids and sea horses?20180122_172150

I personally feel weird about this one. Why is it sea horses, and why are they being stuck on the mermaid? True, it’s not as bad as say… a fisherman’s hook or net… but shouldn’t it be having to stick legs on her tail? Or shouldn’t it be having to stick mermaids onto Prince Eric?

Anyways, so what do they aim for? The end of her tail? or maybe different sections get different points? It’s weird. We all know where a tail would go on Eeyore. Maybe this game should have been put a mermaid tail on a human girl?

I’m not sure… needless to say… I was amused by this. Seriously though… Kitty party vs. Mermaid? Maybe that should be a whole thing? Happy Mer-Monday Everyone!

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MAGFEST 2018

cold conOne week ago I went into the blistering cold and risked my health to go to MAGFEST in MD… or what I’m dubbing cold con. Not because of the frigid temperature thanks to the huge winter storm that happened right around the same time, but because it felt like they left many of us out in the cold, hotel wise. After getting a badge ASAP online, and making my roommate get the room while I was at work ASAP, I ended up 19 miles away. I spent over $60 in Lyft expenses over the weekend. I would have done better in not trusting MAGFest, and getting a hotel room on my own months before. Their system needs work, because I want to do this convention correctly… but it seems like it wont unless the venue changes. but on to the actual convention it self.

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Thursday? I skipped. Apparently there was a sick party up on one level of the floor, but my flight was in mid afternoon, and I was just sort of exhausted. If I had had a room at the Gaylord… I’m just saying… I’d have been there, easy.

The rest of MAGFEST was a blast. Like previous ones, there were signs and maps everywhere which is great considering that The Gaylord can feel a bit like a maze. The only location that ever seemed to really ‘disappear’ was The Arena. The Arena was the space where my roommate went for a circus training class, and he being a juggler… well it was right up his alley. I learned a clowning routine, reluctantly, and that was kind of awesome. For pictures of that, see the gallery below.

P1160324The cosplay was pretty top notch this year, which is what you would expect from a convention at The Gaylord. I believe Katsucon, which is an anime convention that happens in February at the same venue, might have more, but there was some great old school game costumes, such as the one to the left, which is from Skies of Arcadia: Legends. You might think that she is a Garudo from Breath of The Wild… like I did. But she is clearly Bellena. She won a bet when she asked me who she was cosplaying as, and I guessed a Garudo LIKE A FOOL! In my defense, the game costs $160 on Gamecube. Come on Sega! Still though, really cute, and a great cosplay.

P1160342So what else was there? Enough video games to choke a donkey… to death… and anyone who witnessed the event. From my time at 2016, The arcade room and the console room swapped places. Indie-cade is between both of them. The arcade might have been a little smaller this year due to weather preventing some items being shipped to the convention, but not 100% sure.

P1160440It’s hard to really judge this convention. I had a blast, but I do not know if I want to go again the next year. Improvements at this point are just not plausible. More hotel rooms? Let us order them at least before getting our badges? I guess I can stay 4 miles away down the road at a cheaper hotel on Oxen Hill… in an area my  previous years bus driver and uber driver both explained was not safe for a white guy to walk around at night but on the plus side that red roof in has a lot of prostitutes staying there? *sigh*

For more cosplay photos, visit my flickr album here, and here are some of the highlights from the convention below!

 

 

MagFest’s hotel predicament

The way MAGFEST handled hotel rooms for their 2017 convention was not great. It seemed like many who had registered way early did not get to stay at the actual hotel the convention was at. This was largely due to how quickly the badges were selling. While things like this happen, it doesn’t change the fact that I had to stay 19 miles away, despite registering ASAP and then waiting a while the day hotel registration became available to try and get the coveted $200 a night hotel rooms at the Gaylord… or one of the few hotels around it in the area.

One person thought the situation was pathetic enough to make fun of it in the following image:

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2 years ago I took matters into my own hand and registered later and reserved a hotel closer. This whole thing is bad, and I do not really know what to say. As things are now, do I even want to come back next year? The convention was fun, but it’s not like I can just say ‘Gaylord or I’m not going’ if I have to buy the badge first just to get the e-mail link to try and get a hotel which I have very little control in getting.
Can I just pay today, Sunday, for my badge and get guaranteed a hotel room? That really isn’t that great of a situation though… now is it? I believe Dragon Con has a similar policy to that though.
*sigh*

Here is another photo… I’m going to go to the convention in a few hours.

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Seeking Senpai

Seeking Senpai

kunoConventions often look for new panels that provide an experience that will be both popular and unique. In this aspect, my panel, Seeking Sempai* was a success. Ultimately though, this panel was poorly thought out for multiple reasons. I’m getting ahead of myself, let’s start at what it was supposed to be.

This panel was supposed to be speed dating for friends. This was done, partially because speed dating at conventions never has enough women in order to actually happen.

The attendees were to be split up into 2 groups by age, kohai (younger) and sempai (older).  The normal rules of speed dating were supposed to apply, however I had no tables and limited space. I had name badges, pens, note cards for writing down names, and the expectation of only 12 people showing.

uyrLZpBMy largest fears were that a bunch of 14 year olds were going to be going over to creepy 40 year olds. Maybe someone walks off with a child, I don’t know.. everyone told me that this was a very bad idea, and while I understood their concerns… I believed in humanity. So what actually happened?

Mass Chaos! The ages were split, but I abandoned rounds immediately, and allowed the kohai to mingle with the senpai at their leisure. There were a lot of people.  during this time, the kohai barely mingled with their senpai, and the senpai really had no interest in mingling with the teenagers. Except for one amazing teen, but I will get into that in just a second.

The stats for this panel were very interesting. Not counting the audience, there were 34 people ranging from the ages 12-26. There were 20 people over the age of 18, and only 14 people under 18. The largest age represented was 19 with 9 people, seconded by 20, with 5 people. There was only one 12 year old.seekingchartage

When it came time to pick a winner, there was one thing that became apparent… the entire point of the game was lost on everyone. They were supposed to pick their elder or younger, because the sempai has a lot to offer knowledge wise to the younger kohai, who this might be their first second or third convention ever. What happened? almost everyone voted for the 17 year old going by the name of ‘Smith,’ regardless of their age bracket. What did Smith put down, instead of the 3 names? EVERYONE!

Even if the entire panel went flawless, and it surely did not due to this being my first time running this panel, this made it impossible to actually tally anything. I laughingly told everyone that I hated everyone, and the panel ended a little early due to people needing to leave early too.

What will be different NEXT time? I will most likely break this into 2 or three panels. One will be an 18 and under meet and greet, while the other will be an 18+ panel. The name badges will have however many conventions attended on the badge as opposed to splitting people up into ages, and it will mostly be a meet and greet with a popularity contest at the end.

bulmaconfusedLouisianime did not post descriptions of panels in their program, so without that, it is really strange that this panel was as successful as it was. People, apparently, came to it to either a: find out what it was, or b: because it had the word Senpai in it. Wow!

So, when everything is all said and done, I just have to ask one question: Who is ready for next time?

*Even misspelled, the word Senpai attracts crowds.

Unhappy Fem Friday :(

wildcats.pngMy High School made the news for the wrong reasons yesterday. There was an assembly at Humble High School who alienated and offended many of the girls. When some of the girls were talking amongst themselves, when the speaker snapeed at them offensively implying that they would be raped and that she will not feel sorry for them.

This was an all female attended assembly.

I agree with one of the girls, who said that this shouldn’t have been an all female assembly. Guys should be taught this too. Just because girls post images on social media, that doesn’t give you the right to slut shaming them for the way that they are dressed or posed in photos. There shouldn’t need to be a wall between the genders when it comes to telling people that certain things are okay or not. Period.

The assembly for the 9th and 10th grade girls was ended short, and the one for the girls in 11th and 12th grade that afternoon was canceled. The district delivered this message afterwords:

“The intent of the assembly was to keep students safe by educating girls on texting/sexting, teen dating violence, sexual assault awareness, and healthy relationships. Parents were informed of the assembly and permission slips distributed. The assembly was part of a variety of special campus activities planned by students through service learning in conjunction with International Women’s Day.

Some comments addressed that one’s clothing and social media activity creates impressions. As students asked questions, school staff members noticed that some students were upset and so they stepped in and ended the assembly about 15 minutes early. The school did not repeat the assembly in the afternoon as planned. We never want any student to feel uncomfortable and will be meeting with those who have concerns so that we can prevent future misunderstandings.”

For more inofrmation, here is the link from KHOU on it: http://www.khou.com/story/news/local/2016/03/11/teens-upset-after-school-assembly-rape-domestic-violence/81627516/

The Black Swallow of Death

Eugene_Jacques_Bullard,_first_African_American_combat_pilot_in_uniform,_First_World_WarDuring my lunch break at work, I read about Eugene Bullard, this bad ass African American military pilot from World War I who was nicknamed The Black Swallow of Death.  He fled to Paris, France in his teens for a better life due to the racism in The United States, and fought in WWI and WWII in The French Foreign Legion. Every single time he tried to be a pilot for The US, he was refused because we were only accepting white pilots.

In WWII he owned a popular night club that the Germans seemed to really love. It’s a shame those Nazi’s didn’t know that he was fluent in German, and was thus spying on them for The French Freedom Fighters.

Sadly, he came back to America, and well… he lived an interesting life. He got beaten up in the Peekskill Riots, was an interpreter for Louis Armstrong, and  working as an elevator operator near the end of his life, he eventually died at the age of 66 from stomach cancer in 1961.

Yeah… America sort of sucked then, like a lot. France made this HERO a chevalier (knight) in 1954. In 1994, The U.S. posthumously made Eugene Bullard a Second Lieutenant in the United States Air Force…. …. ….