Didn't end up sleeping more than an hour before waking up at 2am on friday. Good thing I made it out early, the trains were not helpful at all, waiting the better part of an hour before an E train arrived. And the lines at the airlines... never seen them that long before.
As I mentioned in a previous post, while waiting at JFK an older woman asked if I worked for Nesquik (because of my coat). That turned into kind of a strange conversation (strange because it's rare I speak to strangers like this). Mostly about her views on medicine and large companies and what they might do for poorer countries and such, I gathered that she worked as a scientist for the EPA. Wasn't boring, but a bit awkward to strike up a conversation like that.
Rest of the trip to the con wasn't quite as interesting, which usually is a good thing when flying. No delays, no problems, all went smoothly... strange :P
And then of course the trip back was similar in nothing happening. Couldn't sleep either with either direction which was unfortunate considering how completely wiped I was. Really surprised to have complete row to myself on every flight I took there and back... now if only could work on the leg room.
Lastly, on this boring part of the con report, the picture I got at the art auction ("Zhao's Lantern") fit no problem in the luggage compartment on way back. If I had outbid on the other two large pictures I had my eye on, would've been a different trip home :)
There isn't much chronological setup to my report, if it matters - the only big difference in what was happening on different days is that I really only checked out the dealer's room on the last day.
The hotel was as I remembered it, very spacious despite... well, there were a damn lot of attendees this year :) And even with the space, there are bottleneck situations - and unfortunately a large amount of people all too willing to strike up a conversation or just stop and stand at the worst possible place, lots of log-jams by the hotel buffet area and in some of the dealer space.
The Dealer's Room had a lot and not a lot, in that typical furry way. So many things are similar at cons in terms of what's for sale, I guess you either have to know what you're looking for or specific artists you want to check out - but from an overall glance, you can't always tell. I did manage to pick up Furnation #9, was looking for that one artdecade story. Got some older comics and a couple of the FC t-shirts and that comprised most of what I bought this con.
On a sidenote, holey shit prices have shot up. Did I miss something by not attending many cons the last couple years? Con badges seemed to be priced arount the $40 range (if y'know, wanted something in color). What happened to the $20 range? I get people want to make some cash and there are a lot of people who work hard on badges, but it seemed like almost everyone had it priced at that level no matter what their skill - and when it gets to be around that cost, I want something I can hang on my wall and not something I'll wear once in a blue moon and might lose or damage in the process. Well, back in 2003 I got the badge this icon is based on for ten bucks.
Art show was quite good. Again with the costs... they've gotten pretty high for furry art in general. Luckily there were a number of really good pieces that were priced in a biddable range. I'm also a bit surprised that I won a pic where I was the only bidder. The other two that I had my eye on, got sniped the last half hour of the auction. Which... only annoying, I would've needed to ship both. And the one that I was seriously looking to buy had reached $500 before going to voice auction... ouch, nah I'll pass on that one. The other pic I lost by five bucks and that also went to voice auction, was a really cute pic of tons of snow leopards but... I didn't want the hassle of transporting it home. To give you an idea of the cost changes, last time I attended FC back in 2005 I acquired two of my favorite pieces of art (the snow-boarding fox & the LoTR furry poster) during voice auction - and neither went over three-fifty.
One great thing about the FC location these days, they've got a UPS store in the hotel now. Would've come in handy last time I was there but at least now there's an easy way to get your shit home :P
The pickup and payment of art auction stuff seemed to be trying something different. I don't remember it being as slow last time I attended, maybe they needed to alter their process and it through a bit of a monkeywrench is the works? Took me about an hour to get my stuff, for a line that was less than fifteen feet long.
Yes there were parties at this con. And I'm glad there weren't any issues with the party floor like in 2005 (the patio thing that runs outside the second floor rooms was closed off for repair that year). One great thing about FC is the use of a part-floor system, so the rooms that know that's the priority try to situate themselves there.
And the first party I attended this con was the Klingon party. Of course had some Bloodwine, some Blood of Keyless, a few others I'm not really sure what they were. Got me a bit tipsy to start off, which was a good thing. Beetlejuice made same comment as the woman at the airport had made, the "do you work for Nesquik?" comment? heh, people need to hang out in NYC - see coats like this all the time in the area :P Anyways, then headed out to thegreeenarcher's Frozen Oasis
Saturday added another party to the mix - Statik, rockwolf, tekfox and a whole mess of others organized a two room party with the bar being served by Beetlejuice in one room and the dj'ing in the other room. I couldn't quite get into this one, because it was raining it felt a lot more crowded than it should've.
Anyways, the majority of my partying was switching between Soron's and the Klingon's - which ended up being enough for me for this con.
One final note on the parties. I heard rumor that someone overdosed on the party floor friday night, everything was closed around 4am supposedly. Now, if I heard right, someone actually died of the overdose. Other things I've heard say the guy may have been resuscitated, or may have been brought back only to die again. Sounded like he was mixing some heavy drugs with alcohol. But... like wow man, don't let you go through any shit at a furry con. There sounded like very little sympathy for this person (and at one point talking to someone else, a comparison to Tumbles the dragon was brought up).
Yes, did do "some" fursuiting this con. Probably did more suiting this year than I have at the last three cons combined. The hotel is great for just wandering around the main floor, there's enough space that in the largest areas you really shouldn't have too many problems with overcrowding. My main problem of course is with myself, still working on being as engaging and fun as so many other fursuiters playing around.
The parade was a little frustrating at times. The starting time was pushed back at least a half-hour (honestly felt longer when in suit). Glad at least that it was during the only day where there was very little rain. A lot more fursuiters than I thought were there, the number was huge (though as someone else pointed out, the whole "East/West" rivalry feels like it's getting a little too personal).
Now, I understand there would've been problems doing this but it would've been awesome to have the asian dragon lead the parade rather than just be at the end. The con hired a professional asian dragon troupe to perform at the front of the hotel after all fursuiters gathered. The drum performance with dragon felt... a bit overly long. I wouldn't have minded (I'm one of the few who wasn't put off by the belly-dancer skit from a few years back), but... certain things made the performance tough to endure. You have tons of people in very hot costumes in a crowded space; and you know many people in fursuit won't be standing still during any of this, they want to be active and perform themselves. But not everyone was really paying attention to how much space they had (that plus limited eyesight). I got clipped by an elbow as one fursuiter lifted up another one on his shoulders, yeah nifty idea except for not really worrying about the people around you or blocking their view and stuff. And no one's talking while in character, and you don't feel as much when in suit - glad it didn't get as bad as it could've, but getting elbowed in a suit I'd like to keep damage free ticked me off.
Didn't take a lot, but here's the majority. Reminds me that I seriously need to get a new camera, had this one since... 2003? Sucks for indoors and no longer so great for even outdoors.
I'm disappointed that I didn't plan better for seeing people at this con. People I did see I didn't see long enough, then there's a whole lot of people I wish I had seen. So, I will make sure this doesn't happen again next time - cons for me are about hanging out with friends and meeting new ones, I've totally blown off going to panels or events for a long while now; about the only thing furry I do at these things anymore is fursuit, but chilling with people has always been the most enjoyable part.
But anyways, as my sorta emo-ish posts from before mentioned; I've been kinda missing some of the bounce from cons these days. And I guess it's too much personal troubles intruding on what should be a fun time. I miss the earlier days when I first became familiar with furry, it's not like 2003 is that long back... something eludes me these days.
Hope everyone who made it to the con had a great time, hope everyone who didn't doesn't get annoyed at one more post about it :P