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Dreago's DragonCon Report
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Monday, September 1st, 2003
11:56 pm

Home Again, Home Again, Flippety Gibbit

I'm tellin' ya, that's a real nursery rhyme.

Oh My Lord, such a fun time had by all. I'm convinced something horrible is going to happen because it isn't legal to have the kind of fun Kellygirl and I had.

The weekend was filled with humiliation, stalkage, inappropriate singing and much laughter. In fact, my temples hurt from laughing so hard. And I was the one who was being humiliated most of the time. I have a knack for singing about phallus symbols at inopportune times. Mostly right when one of the loveable Tribe kids would walk by. They probably think I'm constantly talking about whores and boobies. Sigh.

I have class tomorrow so I'm going to bed, but keep an eye out...I plan to write a multi post epic entitled: "Oh Sweet Jesus, He's Going to Rap!" or "Well if you dressed like that you should expect people to look" or "this is so wrong but it feels so right." Two of those phrases were directed at me and let me just say that both times I was wearing khakis.


Tuesday, September 2nd, 2003

11:46 pm

DragonCon Friday. In which very little happens.


The day started out with me meeting Kellygirl on time for the flight. Since I am never on time to anything, this seemed like a good sign. I must admit I was a bit nervous about flying out of Logan due to 9-11, but I quickly said a prayer, promising God I wouldn't parade around like a slutty ho, at least not for very long, if he made sure the plane didn't crash. Theologically unsound? Yes. Comforting? Very.

The flight was uneventful or at least I thought it was since I slept through it. Kellygirl, tells me I softly snored throughtout the flight. I knew I was tired since I was having trouble keeping my mouth closed while I slept, but snoring? Turns out that snoring was just foreshadowing to the many faux pas that would escape my mouth throughout the trip due to exhaustion.

What is the point of pre-registering if we're going to wait in a line that mysteriously divides into three, is two hours long and in plain view of the five minute online registration line? I would have started a riot, but the day before I had pulled a muscle in my left butt cheek, and standing or sitting in certain position caused pain. So instead I griped. A lot.

I was wearing my trusty khakis and my "A Watcher Scoffs at Gravity" t-shirt that I had made the night before. I saw two people read my shirt and smile. Either they were Buffy fans or they just liked my breasts. My breasts were a constant source of attention throughout the trip. Much like my hunger and my sleepyness.

By the time we picked up our badges, which were red with a golden dragon on them, we were too late for the meet and greet. Frankly, I had already seen Beth Allen (Amber of the Tribe) in the lobby when we first arrived, so I was much more excited about our interview then meeting fellow fans, most of them whom I had never spoken to, online or personally. But, we did pick up our bags and head to our room.

"Oh, sweet sweet bed, how much I love you!!!" Those were my exact words to the soft multi pillowed goodness waiting for me inside our 26th floor hotel room. However, there was nothing in the minibar, there was no terry cloth bathrobe and the t.v. only got like 7 channels. I guess I was crazy for expecting more for my $150 a night. However, maybe some of the money went to the groovy elevators that shot up so fast up that our ears popped everytime we had to go somewhere. Like Disneyland, we had to wait in long lines for these "rides" and then said experience only lasted seconds. Except, you didn't get to sit next to Mickey in the elevator, you got to stand next to a deoderant-challenged vampire wannabee.

Feel free to flame me because I honestly believe that everyone who dresses like some sort of sexy vampire for the Con are people whom without latex and facepaint would never be laid. I'm sorry, but I never did see one good looking vampire. Ever. I did see a Jack Sparrow and he was quite hott. Send insults to:

As loathe as I was to get off the bed, I changed into my Tribe outfit. Kellygirl suggested I should wear my orange mesh shirt under my black merrywidow and low and behold, it was good. Sexy but not too sexy. And then I wore a black sleeveless kimono top over it with my camoflauge skirt and boots. Since the airport security had missed my tweezers but confiscated my cuticle scissors, I was forced to use my teeth to cut the long orange and pink ribbon that I had threaded through my hair. I tied pink ribbon to the tops of my pink fishnet gloves ($1.99 at Filenes Basement! Woo!) and pinned my hair up in two buns on the sides of my hair, anime style. I looked okay, but I still think I need to lose 20 pounds to truly be attractive.

Although I painted my face at record speed, we were still very late to the costume contest. It's okay, because my costume rocked. Or so I told myself. We hung out backstage and discretely looked at the Tribe kids. I was suffering from a severe case of disconnect. I was convinced that since I've only ever seen these actors on t.v., this must be some sort of episode and thus I do not exist. In the immortal words of Oz: "Huh."

We wandered out to a bakery to meet Wisteria, Anniesj, Yindagger and Gwynnega. Much to my surprise, anniesj does not spend her time talking about licking boobies. I know, it's a shock and some might be dissapointed. This may cause several of you to hate me.

All the girls were super nice and super fun and I got a chance to use my costume as a way to pimp the Tribe. I was especially pimping the Tribe to this group, because if anyone can save the godawful state of the fanfiction for this fandom, they could. Plus, I know that Anniesj is a sucker for the apocalypse so The Tribe should be right up her alley, right?

We went back to our hotel room to take a nap and I changed into something a bit more professional. It occured to me that I might not want to wear my "Tribe = Whine and Cheese" shirt that Kellygirl and I had made to the interview, but dammit! We did a good job on our shirts! Take a gander at our shirt designs here: Click Here. Wisteria took a photo of us in our shirts too, you can see me and kellygirl here.

Of course, all the prep work I had done was for naught because the woman in charge of P.R. at the Con was not the woman I had been corresponding with for months. Grrr. But I was undeterred and made sure we were scheduled for the next day bright and early.

Then kellygirl went to bed, but I valiantly stayed up so I could meet my fave fanfiction authors at the NC-17 Buffy fanfic panel. I have to admit I was a bit dissapointed that so much of the talk revolved around sex because I feel that the more emotional and political context of the fics were ignored. I would have loved it if we could have dissected some of the kerfuffles, like slash, mary sueism and RPF. Now I know that people are wincing, but what better place to get it all out into the open than a con? This would have been an awesome time to really get into the finer more controversial points because people are conversing face to face and it's difficult to hide behind a flame in a room. Oh well. I got to meet/see several authors: Harmonyfb, Ginmar, Thenyxie, Jessica Walker, Gwynnega, and Yindagger. The panel was hillarious and little did I know that something Anniesj had chanted over and over throughout that evening would come back and bite me in the ass.

I've said this many times, but after attending DragonCon I can really say it with even more conviction. Buffy fans are far more attractive than the fans found in other fandoms. And none of them have to wear greasepaint to get laid, only if they want to spice things up.

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2003
12:55 am

Saturday: The End of the Snark.

The morning began with The Tribe blooper reel. Most of which I had seen before. But the first time I really got a look at the gorgeous Tribe Actors was in the food court! I was very excited to get a close but discreet look and let me tell you, they just don't get more fresh faced then this.

I was bit distracted though, because these random photographers kept trying to take my picture. Granted, they had tried to take my picture in my hoochie outfit yesterday, but at least they asked first. Since the hubby had warned me of the dangers of an Internet picture, I firmly said "no". But today, even though I was wearing black capris and my black "because it's wrong" shirt, I still had skeevy guys in the food court waving at me and trying to "secretly" take pictures. This pissed me off to no end. I'm not that great looking. In fact, I KNOW I'm overweight (damn you Massachusetts and your fattening influence) so why the fuck won't people leave me be? It's one thing to purposefully dress hott cause then you are in control of the attention, but to just wander about dressed casually and to have to fend off pics while you're eating? Not cool.

Anyways, Kellygirl and I get in line to go see Andy Hallet (Lorne on Angel) and James Leary (Clem on Buffy). The con organizers wait untill the last minute to do a head count and we get shut out of the room after we've waited for so long. We are then told that at least we are in the front of the line for Danny Strong (Jonathon, aka Pocket Sized Hottie, on Buffy) and Iyari Limon (Kennedy, aka bratty Potential, on Buffy) if we want to wait another hour and a half. Uhhh, no.

However, we did get back to the Marriot in time for Meryl Cassie's Q&A. For all of you who don't watch the Tribe, Meryl plays Ebony, a scheming opportunist who will do whatever it takes to survive in the nascent tribal society. She's the "Faith" of the show. Meryl is unbearably beautiful. Outgoing, charming and fun - she is nothing like her character. Plus, I got a chance to be smug as kellygirl and I have always argued over Ebony. Kellygirl thinks Ebony is just misunderstood. I think she's evil and I'm okay with lovin' her for being evil. Meryl thinks Ebony is straight up bad so yay for me! I made sure to rub it in.

Because Meryl is so damn pretty (I decided that if I were a boy, I'd totally date her) I asked what her secret to her radiant skin was. Are y'all ready to write this down? She steams her face with a scalding hot washcloth three times nightly. 'Till her face is bright red. This was kinda dissapointing to me. You see, I had just bought a $30 dollar skin moisturizer that was supposed to prevent blemishes and here I am at the con with two massive volcanos on my forehead. Meanwhile, the beautiful Ms. Cassie saves money and looks great. Arrgh! See a pic here.

After the Q&A, kellygirl and I sat through the GirlPower and the Tribe panel. Can you believe that some guy says that two girls he 'knows' were talking about how in the real world," Ebony would be ripped apart because she would be raped so many times." Long time readers can imagine my reaction. I pointed out that this show, unlike other shows with strong female leads *coughBuffycough* doesn't feel the need to degrade their strong female leads with rape. In fact, Ebony not only defends herself with martial art skills, but the only women who've ever had to deal with assault are the more passive girls like Salene and Zandra. And both times the show and the other characters have condemned the attackers. The girls move on and characters like Salene go on to become city leaders. The dude was offended, but he can bite me. The Tribe's strong female influence has always been near and dear to my don't go repeating obnoxious hearsay. I wasn't the only one who was annoyed as one of the panelists was a policewoman and she was not amused. Of course he qualified it with, "Oh, I love Meryl, I want to marry her." My mental reaction was the same one I thought when a local newscaster insisted Brittany Spears did not enjoy kissing Madonna at the MTV VMA's , "That's right dude, she's saving herself for you." Ugh.

This same dude asked a similairly obnoxious question to Caleb Ross at his Q&A. He asked, "what's it like to be so good looking?" WTF?! Of course, I've often thought the same thing about various celebrities. And my husband and I tease each other with the question quite often - our fave variant being "did you beat yourself with the pretty stick?" - but who in their right mind asks this question in public? Holy crap! Shut up! Poor Mr. Ross was like, umm, I don't really think about it. What else is he gonna say?

In stupid guy's defense, Caleb Ross is very damn handsome. I mean, let's all be real about it. And his looks can be very distracting. One finds her eyes wandering back to him during lulls in the conversation. He isn't as startlingly good looking as James Marsters, but he does have a powerful presence. Who knows, in a couple of years perhaps he will cause many fans such as myself to forget their question (the story of my embarrasing run in with James to come later). It's all about honing the charisma. Anyway, he's a musician too and a writer. He strikes me as a kind, patient reserved kind of guy. Exactly the opposite of his character Lex, who for the Buffy fans out there, is like Spike minus the soul and the desire to do good by his woman.

So after posing many a question (my primary concern was about them breaking into Hollywood. These people seem so nice and the cynic in me thinks it is like leading lambs to the slaughter. Seriously, if the pressure to look good in Hollywood can keep a food addict like me thin when I only happened to live in the area, how destructive to the esteem must it be to an actor trying to break into the industry?) kellygirl and I leave the panels full of well wishes for these two.

Honestly, as I told Kellygirl over dinner (in a very loud restaurant with a very loud woman singing badly) I don't think I can ever ogle the kids of the Tribe again. I know, we joke about the boys constantly taking off their shirts for no real reason, but now that we feel like we "know" them, how can we objectify them ever again? The Tribe has its cheesy moments, okay, it's mostly cheese, but I can't mock the way I used to, even when those poor kids are farmed out to preform at shopping malls like failed pop stars (maybe they don't have this shopping mall stigma in New Zealand?). So, I have to admit, that a bit of my Tribe Love has died because I just can't snark the way I used to. The cast is just adorable and would be awesome friends. In fact, I told kellygirl that they are so neat they couldn't be my friends as I would be too dysfunctional. I mean, I'm pretty neurotic and all of the Tribe kids were very down to earth.

That's just the thing. The kids were not "on." They might be a bit more reserved around the young kids in the audience (toddlers in the audience and stupid guy is questioning them about their alcohol preferences) but they were so real. Get this, they were actually a "bit put off" that James charged for his signature! No joke! I was put off to, but that was because I didn't have $50 to spend. It makes me sad because it seems like New Zealand is a wonderful place full of elves and nice people and I'm stuck here in Bush's America. *sobs*

Friday, September 5th, 2003
11:48 pm

sunday, Sunday, SUNDAY!!!! The Tribe Interview (Recap not Transcription)
This day was the day of our Tribe interview! And let me tell you all, WE ROCKED.

So the night before, Kellygirl and I decide to put our questions in an order so that it flows. I'm more of a keyword type of girl. Just give me a piece of paper, I'll write some key phrases and I'm set. But it did help to word the questions exactly with Kellygirl. The next day we were completely prepared and not nervous at all.

For a girl who was suffering from sleeplessness induced verbal diarrhea all weekend long, I am happy to report that I didn't make an ass of myself at the interview. Mostly because I like to think I'm a grown woman and beyond all that rubbish. Plus, I did want to make a good impression because as I've said before, it seems like one could really be good friends with these folks. Nope the assiness came later. Whoo!

So, back to the interview. It is always important to set up a rapport. And it is my personal philosophy that a good interview isn't stilted or scripted, rather it should be a conversation. It's okay to tell people about yourself because that makes the "interview partners" trust and open up to you. There is no subject and object. Rather an egalitarian discourse that flows between the two participants. Hee. Can't you tell I was trained as a postmodernist anthropologist? Seriously, all pomo babble aside, be yourself and be frank. You can never be truly objective, there is no such thing because as in interviewer you influence your subject's answers. Best to just have a conversation. That's my two cents anyways.

So, the first thing I did when Calebwandered in looking exhausted (but not in the picture I linked to) was to comment on how sorry we were that we were the reason that he was being hauled out of bed at 9 am. I joked around with him because no one likes a grumpy subject (my run in with Iyari Limon to come later). He wanted to know the theme for the day and I told him I didn't know but that our personal theme was being fabulous so I hoped that answered his question. It's the truth, you know. Kellygirl and I had decided months ago that we should be fabulous girls. Join us in the Fabulous Revolution!

Then the other cast members came in. Once again, I apologized for the early hour and introduced myself along with kellygirl and BlackRose who filmed the interview. (click that sentence for piccies) I opened up the session with the statement that we represented fan clubs that were older (Undead Tribe and such). They could be themselves and not worry about offending the children. And then we launched into it. First question: What stupid question were they sick and tired of asking. Answer: Who's the best kisser? I tried to keep it flirty, light and quickly paced. Start the morning off laughing you know? We haven't transcribed the interview yet, but I'll post it when we get to it.

But I can tell you my impressions. Micheal(Jack, the "Xander" of the show) is hillarious. He speaks a bit quickly, but as a motor mouth myself, I followed along. He's the youngest and he is full of enthusiasm and animation. Tom(Ram, he's the villain, very much like the Mayor on Buffy) is the most outgoing. Whenever there was a pause or silence or I wasn't filling in the silence with snarky comments, he jumped in. He's working on a rap album in the vein of De La Soul and Tribe Called Quest. I was tempted to ask for a demonstration but we only had 40 minutes and I didn't want to make anyone go into performance mode. He's very influenced by hip hop culture because he was always muttering things like, "yeah! Pimp Daddy!" and other things of that nature. Mostly this would annoy the fuck out of me as I have many an opinion about cultural appropriation but coming from Tom it was adorable. He strikes me as a party animal. I've already talked about Caleb and since I interacted with him the most throughout the weekend, I'm sure you'll be reading more about him in my other journal posts, just not here. BethAllen (the Buffy of the show) is the most intellectual and serious one. She's older and a bit wearier of the constant fangirls. This is probably due to the fact that although she was pivotal to the first season, she has a smaller but very influential role throughout the other 4 seasons. So, the fans are constantly looking to see and hear more about her. She is used to a University setting as I think her and Micheal are the ones who are trying to balance school and acting. I think the stalker fans and the constant "Bray + Amber= 4EVA!" she puts up with jars her more laid back self. She's really nice and I think she has more of a dry wit. She seems very smart. I like smart people. She talks like a feminist but didn't outright label herself one. And it was nice to discuss Amber's girlpower in grown-up terms. I flove her. And finally MerylCassie. A giggly, sparkly girly girl who is very motivated to break into the pop music scene and continue acting. She's very charasmatic and quick to laugh. She's all smiles and pleasantness. Really, all these poeple are freakin' pleasant. Maybe it's something in the water. Anyways, when the show is on hiatus she likes to drop by her mom's beauty salon and braid people's hair. She had a lot of questions about me and my marriage and my life in general. I think someone wants to settle down! I'm sure I said something stupid in return as I am a tad embarrassed/sensitve about my youthful marital status. But that's another post.

We asked questions pertaining to role model responsibility, nudity, musical asperations, crazy fans and the craft of acting. I don't think anyone has really grilled them about their art. I got my start in interviewing in high school when I covered the Fine Arts School for the school paper and have acted in the past. In college I directed art festivals and I married a musician so I found that artists are passionate about what they do and how they do it and are always happy to talk about it. And jocks are always willing to slam it and make asses of themselves. Don't mind me, I'm having a bitter high school moment.

Of course, it wasn't all seriousness. I asked fun questions. For example, I asked Michael why he liked "mexican phrases like Lolita and Roberto" because they're just names after all. I don't crack up when I hear someone mention Chuck and Bob, ya know? He says it's cause he really likes Speedy Gonzalez. I laughed and told him there was a lot of cultural offense behind that cartoon but I wasn't going to get into it. I figure Michael comes from a different culture and doesn't view the cartoon through the same racist framework. Really! Sorry, since my last name is Gonzalez and I'm latina, you can't imagine the crap I put up with growing up. Don't get me started on how the show portrays Mexicans as lazy and helpless and that only a "super" or freak mexican can achieve anything postive.* Ahem*. Sorry. Kellygirl asked why the Tribe Diarist was obsessed with food. I asked if they ever fed their Tribe Tour chronicler. I think the acutal writer was in the room because she got a tad defensive. It's all good because this achieved one of our goals. We were mentioned in the Tribe Diaries! Click here!

They insist that because New Zealand is so small there is no racism or sexism. I don't believe this but I do think it is cute of them to think so. Of course, 5 of 6 of them were white so that might have a lot to do with it. Personally I think crap like that is worse in small towns but Micheal mentioned that when everyone is in everyone else's business people are more careful about what they say. They also insist that there are "no subliminal messages" about the fact that the girls stay dressed and the boys are running around topless at the least provocation. Caleb says it is because boys can take off their tops but girls can't; it's like the beach. And Tom pointed out that the fans seemed to enjoy it even if he has a bit of potbelly. Which proves my point - there is a strategy about boys losing their shirts for various excuses. Oh, is there a fire? Let me take off my shirt and put it out! Oh, are we going to fight? Let's pull off her shirts and get started! Oh, am I having a nightmare? Let me toss around shirtless in bed! Oh, am I chillin' in the afterglow? Well, sense my girlfriend is still wearing her leather corset post coitally, I'll just rub against her topless! Beth said that although she never felt the pressure to look a certain way she did say that the producers did wonder if they had to cover up Bray (he's the "Angel" of the show) since he was so hairy chested. It was on the tip of my tongue to wonder why they didn't just wax him since this is what the Fab 5 do to all their straight guys, but I didn't. Good for me.

So that should give you a glimpse at what we discussed. We laughed, we talked and I think we got to know each other a bit. They even thanked us for putting together a bunch of good questions. Really, they thanked us! I'm telling you, nice people are strange. As kellygirl mentioned, this put us on "head nod" basis. In other words, when Tom would walk by, I give him a nod and he'd nod back. Yes, I'm trying not to have a fangirl moment. And the next day, Meryl and Caleb said good morning to us of their own accord. Shut up.

I only wish that my casualness about the whole thing continued throughout the day, but alas I had shot my wad. Because, I, the fabulous Dreago, she who has interacted with many celebrities though her college and event planning years with ease, was about to meet James Marsters and it was all going to go horribly wrong.

That and waking up early for the interview meant that I started repeating everything that popped into my brain because I was sleepy/giddy. But more on the phallic fishies later on. After all, this post only covers one hour of the day that was sunday, Sunday, SUNDAY!!!

Saturday, September 6th, 2003

Faeries Make Me Hot

You know, I've read several fantasy and sci-fi books. The hubby likes to play online role playing games. I keep a livejournal. I'm in a fandom (or two, or three, shut up!). I watch the sci-fi channel even though their stuff is usually beyond crappy. So, although I never expected to fit in exactly with the more involved denizens of the Sci-fi world at Dragon*Con, I had a certain amount of expectation.

( Yes, I was kidding about faeries making me hot, kellygirl! )

You see, I associate science fiction and fantasy with a certain level of intelligence. Yes, mostly white and middle to upper class and most certainly some sort of higher education. I thought that since sci-fi is so closely linked to the Internet, a medium where people regardless of their physical looks can bond with each other on a mental level, that sci-fi, with its mind towards the future would reflect a more open minded and liberated society. After all, at the Con I saw many an open attitude towards S/M, fetishism and the nude form. So, I was completely annoyed by the terrible and objectifying attitude towards women reflected at the Con.

It wasn't just the art. No. But, I do feel that art is often a barometer of the cultural norm. Now, it could be that I am a puritanical feminist in my heart, but to me it seemed that the only place for women in sci-fi was that of sexual objects. Don't get me wrong, there were plenty of warrior women to be found- they were all just scantily clad. There were "curvacious maidens in distress, scantily clad slave girls, aroused fairies and bodacious battle babes" - and that was just one guy's business card. It seemed odd to me that the same genre that brought us female leaders like Capt. Janeway, the Bene Gesserit of the Duneverse and the women of The Tribe seemed to focus on what women brought to the table sexually. Yes, you could be a "geeky" girl, but you must be hott. In fact, I saw many an advertisement for the geek girl calendar. Penthouse had a booth there, though I don't see what Penthouse honeys had to do with anything sci-fi.

Now, I get that since sci-fi often embraces a more liberated attitude towards sexuality that it is only natural that it celebrate it without traditional puritanical restraints. But it's depressing to see that in many ways, this genre is even more confining to women than the mainstream. Although I saw a lot of obese women participating in the con, I did not see one unideal woman reflected in art. Hell, I didn't even see one regularly beautiful woman. Nope, all the women reflected in the comic page, the art page and in film were unnaturally curvaceous. And all were aroused, waiting for the viewer (presumed to be male) to ravish them.

The nude form is beautiful and I don't mind lithe faeries cavorting in a garden. But why must their nipples be hard in every damn picture? Why must every nude form look at the viewer with enticement in her eyes or why must every nude form be enticingly prostate while her eyes were closed in a victimized and passive facial arrangement. Can't people just be beautiful and naked without serving as a masturbatory fantasy? Can't geek girls be attractive without being sexual objects? What happened to the Kira's, the Aeryn's, even the Buffy's who are attractive women and in charge of their sexuality without the camera spending lingering moments at their breasts? What happened to the Internet creed of "the person, not the body, matters most"? And holy crap! The ideal body type of Dragon*Con is 1000x more unattainable then the silliest fashion spread.

It put me in a harrassed mood. I found myself being very, very lookist. I critiically eyed every con goer, every piece of art, and myself with a ruthless eye. I found myself comparing my body to every woman there. And after awhile, I got cranky. At one point I told kellygirl “male sexuality annoys me."

Now you might think, hey, it's only art. Lighten up and quit being a prude. But, I really feel that this sexualized atmosphere where victim and warrior were objectified equally, affected the male population. Or at least attracted the kind of sexist men I'm just not used to being around anymore. (Long time readers know that I've spent two years living in W. Mass, Northampton to be precise, also known as Lesbianville USA)

Let me explain using personal experience. On Sunday, I was waiting in the James Marsters autograph line. In fact, I spent most of Sunday waiting in this line. Let me link to a picture of what I was wearing.Click Here. As you can see, I'm not gorgeous or anything. I don't think I'm ugly. I'm just a normal girl. And I was normally dressed. You can't tell, but I was wearing loose khaki trousers. Under this high collared mandarin jacket, I'm wearing an orange tank top. Not a skimpy orange tank top, but one that completely covers my full coverage bra. So that should give you an idea of what I'm wearing. Yes, the jacket was form fitting and you can tell in this picture that I'm busty, but like I said, tank top. Full coverage.

It's one thing to run around in my hoochie tribe costume and be stared at. I made the choice to dress a certain way, I expect a certain amount of attention fine. But out of ALL the days at the con, this outfit brought me the most attention. And crap, people ASKED me before they took my picture in my hoochie outfit. I took my glasses off for this picture, but the rest of the day I wore them as my left contact lens decided to take a vacation in the sink's drain.

So, I'm down in the underbelly of the Marriot Hotel. It's unbearably hot. Unbearably hot. I know I'm not black, hence I don't have to deal with "the kitchen", but I did seriously regret my choice to wear my hair down. As I stood in line, sandwiched between a girl with huge fairy wings that bonked me occasionally and a man in a wool cape, I tried to circulate the air around me with my little Dragon*Con badge. I closed my eyes and fanned my face, sometimes lifting the hair around me neck a bit and giving my nape some air. Well, you'd think this was the most erotic thing on the planet.

Because, one of the men ahead of me turned around and started fanning me with his program book. No big deal, right? Kinda nice, bonding this way. And hey, I get to cool off in what I affectionally dubbed "Satan's Playground" (seriously, who decided to stick all the vendors and the celebrity signers in the freakin' basement!). Well, no it was creepy. At first I smiled, took a bit of air politely and turned away slowly. Saying thanks, of course. But minutes passed, I got hot and promptly began to fan myself again. Said man begins to fan me once again. And he has this gleam in his eye, the one that says "I'm picturing my dick in your mouth right.this.instant." I'm sure many a lady in LJ land is acquainted with this particular glint. Since I sport a pair of full lips, I know all about it. Anyways, I'm being fanned and am well aware of the look in his eye, I'm uncomfortable, but I smile. After all, I stupidly feel like I owe him something. Then the guy, in a sleazy voice says, "Ooooh, I know this is sooo wrong, but it feeeeeels so right." Yup. Way to ruin the bonding moment. It's okay though, cause I was picking up on the wierd vibe anyways. The line eventually moved and I positioned myself in front of a mechanized fan. At this point I didn't give a fuck if I was putting on a show as I lifted my hair (but never ever took off or unbuttoned the jacket) airing my neck because, unfortunately for me, this was not the only guy who made an offensive comment to me in this particular line.

Nope, earlier as I hugged my book to my chest, eagerly anticipating James Marsters signing my copy of "Pretty Maids in a Row", a group of girls started staring at the book. I noticed their glances and I smiled, saying and gesturing towards the book: "Ahh, yet more people staring at my chest! But do you wanna see the book?" I totally meant it as a joke, not that they were lesbians or anything. And frankly, I've been hit on by lesbians and it has never been unpleasant. But right then and there, the furnace that I like to call the man in the wool cape next to me, turns and says, "Well, if you dress like that you should expect to be stared at."

WHAT THE FRELL?!!! I said, "excuse me? I'm wearing khakis! This jacket has a collar that practically goes up to my chin! What is your problem?" Of course, he ignored me and when back to talking to a group of girls in capes. Silly me, expecting logic and reason to win the day, silly me to try to point out his fallacy, silly me to expect some respect. After all, I was wearing khakis.

Later, when I related the creepy fanning guy story to kellygirl as we stood in line at the food court a nosy stranger, overhearing the conversation, turned to me defensively and said, "He was just being considerate!" Uh no, you fucker. It's none of your fucking business and you missed the part where he got all creepy on me. Shut the fuck up.

Basically it seemed like it was every guy's right to stare and it was my privilige to be ogled. Or maybe my duty. I should be pleased at being surrendipitously photographed. Pleased at the attention, pleased at the one liners. You know, I would have been a bit pleased if the guy in line had said, "Oh, but you're pretty so people stare." Sure, it means the same thing, but I don't feel like a piece of meat with no say or control over the matter. I know people are going to judge. I know men are going to look. I look at men too. I like men. That's right, I like having sex. I like giving head, I like getting it. I don't find it degrading. But I don't like being harrassed. And I don't like the fact that I feel I have to defend my sexuality now at the end of this post because I didn't appreciate most of the male attention.


On a sidenote, I find it intensely amusing that I swear when tired or in passing, but when under intense emotion my language is pristine. Still, I should swear less. Or at least, swear less in my journal and more at these asshats who presume to talk to me. Otherwise it just sets a bad example.

On another sidenote, this painting cracks me up. It sums up all the other art in a very freudian way. Drawn by a woman, I wondered if it was some sort of statement about fantasy art. But I don't think so. I've seen the rest of her stuff. This picture though... It's just so obvious. But, it did make me laugh.

BEHOLD! PHALLIC FISHY! It's prominence at the dealer room made sure I never got lost when looking for the Buffy signing. I even made a little song about it. And sang it often. While closing my eyes and swaying. And then I'd open them and a Tribe Actor would often walk by, much to my horror. Stupid phallic fishy.

Sunday, September 7th, 2003
10:47 am - Losing Your Voice for a Great Pair of Legs

The above quote is a sage observation from the ever perceptive Kellygirl about the movie The Little Mermaid. Put that in your piehole and smoke it a bit, ay? Makes me glad my fave Disney movie is Beauty and the Beast.

The following Dragon*Con story involved losing one's voice, but that was because my brain turned into sea foam. And there was beauty involved, possibly because of a deal made with The Beast if you get my devilish meaning.

In other words, this is a tale of hysterical blindness, a tale of Dreago and James Marsters.

All weekend long, I had been yammering about meeting James Marsters. Oh Lord, I was so excited. And I had a plan. I had a question all lined up. I was going to call him on his obsession with fascism. Did he really believe the United States was drifting towards this unhappy state or is he just influenced by his method acting (remember, his next film is set in fascist Italy)?

Oh, I was ready. Last year at Redneck Con I had answered three charade questions accurately and won the hardcover edition of "Spike & Dru: Pretty Maids All In A Row." Although the book itself was like reading mediocre fan fiction, an unbeta'ed fan fiction at that, I had mildly enjoyed it and the condition of the book was still pristine. I planned to have him sign it.

Oh yes, I pictured quite the conversation we would have. I was prepared to be cool, confident and very charming. I pictured myself having an in-depth discussion about politics. I was sure this was going to be the outcome. I didn't mind that he was an Act-or, I just figured he was a smart guy and had not been properly appreciated for his smartness.

Not that I didn't appreciate his other more superficial qualities, because like the Tribe Guys, I too had seen him topless. I was a bit dissapointed that I would have to pay for his signature, but I had received Iyari Limon's autograph for free (after a very wierd and awkwards exchange. I thought she hated me and my conversational gambits, but then she surreptitiously signed my Buffy Student Planner and not charged me a penny. Huh) so earlier I had joked with the Tribe Kids during the interview that perhaps I would show up looking all provacative, sit on his lap and get myself a free siggy.

ha. Ha. HA. HAHAHAHAH! I'm an idiot.

As I stood in line I mentally scrolled through all the fan encounters I had heard about. The ones I wished to emulate. I thought of the fabulous Truecrystal who is always cool, calm and snarky. The man had stared at her breasts and she had made a witty comment in return. With her as my role model, I plan to be just as smooth and collected.

As I neared the front of the line down in Satan's Playground, I began to really look at the object of my weekly affection. He had his trademark bleached hair but had made the really unfortunate choice of wearing a yellow shirt and sporting a fake bake. Ewww. Under more careful observation, I noticed he looked tired and that he had a funny nose. I thought, "wow, he's not that cute." Now, it's not that he's unnattractive. Because even in his shirt, he was. It's just that he's been billed as the greatest gift to sex since flavored lube and it turns out he's just a nice looking man.

Chanting my new mantra, "hesnotthatcute, he'snothtatcute, he'snotthatcute", I walked up to him and passed him my book. He looks up at me and my world stops. Oh dear. Like a deer in headlights, I am frozen by the blue of his eyes. Mesmerizing blue. Electric blue. Now, I'm partial to blue eyes myself and if you were to look up the definition of the color blue, you'd get a picture of the hubby's eyes as his eyes are "true" blue framed by long golden lashes. But this, this was snake charmer blue.

The background setting melted away around me as I just stood there like a mute. I might have said a weak "hi" in response. I felt kinda drugged. He very enthusiastically puts his hand forward for a handshake and get this, I startle away from his gesture like a nervous rabbit.

Oh the shame! Oh the horror! Oh the humiliation!

For I was surprised by the combination of quick movement and the fact that this man wanted to shake my hand. I eventually shook it. I hope I had the presence of mind to give my trademark firm shake, but alas as I shook his hand and gazed into his eyes a white fog began to cloud my vision. I now have no clear recollection of the visual memory of this man's face or his eyes while I shook his hand because I.went.blind.

Seriously. I'm beyond embarassed by this. Truecrystal chastised me, telling me I was supposed to represent. I was! I meant to, I tell ya! How was I supposed to know that he's obviously made a deal with the devil, sold his soul for the ability to turn his charisma on and off like a mesmer insturment? I like to think my body and soul responded to the demonic influence of his charm by blinding me in self defense. I like to think a lot of things.

I don't want to think that he was just a regular guy, a gifted actor and that I, a sucker for blue eyes, had a massive fangirl moment. I'll stick to my nice, safe, supernatural explanation. Thanks.

He silently signed my book. I silently watched him sign my book. I shyly said a soft "thank you" and wandered away like a dazed pot smoker.

The End.

DragonCon Sunday pt2.- Sweet Jesus, He's Going To Rap!

Well, as if standing in line for JM while kellygirl went to eat, shop, go to the JM Q&A and the Beth Allen Q&A wasn't tiring enough, the day wasn't even half done! After wandering around the dealer room looking for her and trying to shake off my severe embarrassment, we met up, grabbed some lunch and took a quick nap.

The big event of the day/evening was the Masquerade. It was a huge costume contest and it was taking place at the Civic Center. Better yet (or worse), Meryl Cassie and Tom Hern were going to perform. Here was the dilemna:
I'm acutely sensitive to shame. Acutely. I can't watch shows like Saved by the Bell without cringing when two people kiss and the audience goes, "woooooooooooo!" Kellygirl is a witness to my daily mortification. It's tough being me. When I watch Tribe and things get to cheesy/embarrasing for the actors, I have to hide my face. When the character of 13yr. old Ved tells his 13 yr. old sweetheart whom he later empregnates, "We don't need fireworks, we'll make our own", the corniness of this line makes me want to beat myself with my t.v. remote control in order to divert attention from how horrendously stupid an actor must feel to say this line out loud.

So, when I heard that the Tribe actors were going to perform cheesy pop hits in front of an large, mostly male, mostly white sci-fi audience of whom CruxShadows (goth metal band) seemed to be the band to watch, I just couldn't mock. And I love to mock. I need the mockage or I turn into a puddle of pena since I'd identify too much for the kids on stage who are not going to get an ounce of applause. Not only did I know love the actors and wanted to have their babies, but now I didn't want them to go through the ordeal of a bad gig, you know?

So with some trepidation, Kellygirl and I got seats in the front off to the side. Just as expected the audience was almost completely unresponsive to her sugary pop tunes. No one knew who this Kiwi girl was! Well, actually a dozen of us did, because some Tribe fans had come to support her. I don't know what's worse. No one clapping, or 12 people in an audience of thousands clapping.

I've got issues with one of the ten commandments. I say "oh my God" constantly.I know, I know, my bad. But I can pride myself that you will never hear me take Christ's name in vain. That just strikes me as way too blasphemus. But when Tom Hern joined Meryl on the stage the horror of what was about to happen struck me so quickly and painfully that I practically exploded this next phrase: "Oh Sweet Jesus! He's going to rap!" Honestly? A part of this was a prayer. Like, Lord have mercy on us sinners and retract this punishment.
It's wasn't that Tom is a bad rapper. Okay, he's not that great. But if the audience wasn't too into a black Kiwi girl doing a Britney imitation, you can imagine how the audience responded to a white Kiwi boy doing his best to sound like Tribe Called Quest. It probably wasn't as bad as I anticipated, but it didn't matter. I couldn't hear most of it as I had curled into a fetus position in my seat, jammed my fingers in my ears and squeezed my eyes shut, while begging Kellygirl to tell me when it was over. All I heard was Tom saying something about Eminem and I just couldn't take it.

Of course, the kellygirl was dealing with her own embarrasment. One of the themes of the weekend was her habit of sitting next to the wierdos. You know, the ones that laugh like hyena dogs, ask embarrasing questions, or smell really bad. That evening, as Kellygirl and I sat trying to process what we were watching on stage (Poor, poor tribe kids...I desperatly wanted to whisk them away from the unresponsive and silent audience) the guy next to her wouldn't shut up. When he heard us whisper how horrible this must be for poor Meryl, he started going off on how no one knew Selena but when she died she became huge.
First of all, this is stupid. People knew who Selena was. Maybe not white people but all of Mexico and the Mexican-American community knew who she was even before she died so what.ever. old, nerdy, white guy! And anyways, what I said to him was, "Are you implying Meryl Cassie should die in order to get popular?" The guy actually said yes! What a moron. And then for some odd reason he launched into his speech about how much he liked Touched By An Angel. That was it for me. Meryl's up on stage singing to the crickets, this guy is telling me about his love for Roma Downey and implying Meryl should die. I started swearing as much as possible, hoping to shock the guy into silence or something. He seems to be into all the "family values" shows since he also mentions 7th Heaven. So I start talking about the fuckability of the Camden family. No dice. He ignores me and keeps talking. Kellygirl just wishes he would shut up since he was spitting on her throughout his little talk. Wierdo.

We had so much fun!

DragonCon Monday, " I touch myself, I want you to-Oh god, crap."

By Monday, all inhibitions were gone. We were punch drunk with all the going ons. At one point, as we were waiting to say goodbye to the cast of the Tribe, I mentioned to Kellygirl how one could possibly respond to certain questions.

You see, we had heard about James Marsters and the topless girl and earlier in the weekend someone has asked Caleb Ross what it was like to be so good looking. I told Kellygirl, how do you deal with these kind of questions? What do the questioners expect to hear? Do they really think they stand in the mirror, ala Mulder in "Small Potatoes", telling their reflection how hott they are? Then I'm all like, *insert sarcasm here* "Yeah, I bet they stand there singing, "I touch myself, I want you to know, I get down on my knees..." and I start doing this quasy sexy, quasy silly dance in my seat while I wait for the panel to start. Have I mentioned I'm in the aisle seat? I'll let y'all ponder who walks by at the exact moment I break into chorus and rub my hand down my chest. Maybe I was unnoticed. I really doubt it though. God likes to point and laugh....I really was made in His image....

We got autographs and pictures and the cast asked the fans some questions too. And once again I was reacquainted with the taste of shoe leather. Earlier that morning we had gone to see the Buffy panel Q&A. I wasn't that impressed with James. Now, I know he has to be all sincere and condescending because his fans are a bunch of morons (I'm including myself here), but it is still irritating to sit there and listen to James give an agoraphobic "advice" on how to live her life, how to get out of her house, how "courage isn't the absence of fear." Shut up, James. I know, I know, he's right and I'm sure I'll steal this corny platitude for when I conduct therapy, but it's extra annoying coming from an actor who's spent 20 years living in a world far removed from reality.

Danny Strong however, came off like the PINT SIZED HOTTIE he was. Kellygirl and I were trying not to melt in our seats. He was so fun and silly, and when he turned his head in a certain way, I finally saw the hottness. teleri025 is a woman of vision, yo! So, when the cast asked what we thought, I said, "Well, James wasn't as hott as I thought, but I came away with a love for Danny Strong." Then, one of the Tribe volunteers starts MOCKING MY LOVE! I get all defensive because A) Danny Strong is the bomb B)He's mistaking Danny Strong with Tom Lenk C) Fuck you! So, I loudly quote anniesj and say, "Hey, my kink isn't your kink, but we're o.k.!" Silence permeates the room. Next time I see annies, I'm totally giving her a savage beating. She can pull this saying off...damn her for letting me think I could too!

I'm totally coming back next year. The amount of hysterical laughter on the flight home alone was worth it. The muscles in my neck ached, but in a good way. And maybe next year, I'll learn to keep my mouth shut....
NAH! See ya next year!