Here we go with the final installment on the month that was May in the year that is 2015. I know you were all waiting with baited breath to see how that month ended for your Uncle NecRo. And here it is, with pictures and everything. And in case you were morbidly curious, I’m currently listening to the Echoes compilation by Pink Floyd whilst I write down all the brain droppings from that event. I normally recommend a good quality pair of over-the-ears headphones while experiencing the spacy, mind-altering musical soundscape that is Pink Floyd, but that’s personal preference. Point is, pop in some Pink Floyd (or whatever it is you’re used to, I have no way of knowing…yet) and read along, mein Kinderschnitzel…
Week 5 (May 30th) – The final weekend of May was the event that I was really looking forward to (not that any of the other things that transpired the past month didn’t get some anticipation levels going, mind you); this was the weekend of the First Annual Omaha Comic Con, aka the O! Comic Con, aka the Ironically Named Omaha Comic Con Because It Technically Was Held In Council Bluffs, Iowa. Yessir, my neck of the woods finally had its own convention where every kind of geek, nerd, n00b, lama, troll and enthusiast could gather together and find something to grock. Various booths dedicated to all the colors in the pop culture rainbow were represented, all within a fifteen minute drive from where I dwelt. I had my ticked a few months in advance, thanks to the enthusiasm of one of the Exalted Geeks that tipped me off to something like this existing in the first place. I couldn’t wait, and finally the day had arrived.
I almost didn’t go.
You see, I have this love/hate relationship with doing new things and going to new places. While I generally like the idea of stretching out from my comfort zone, trying out new things and checking out new places, I’m also a bit neurotic when it comes to doing it by myself. I’m not one to go exploring by my lonesome. Mostly due to fear of getting royally lost in the process. And while your usual adventure-seeking individual would be up for “going with the flow”, I tend to be more a creature of habit, with some adventurous tendencies. If there’s someone there with me trying out this new thing, I at least have someone to blame when something goes horribly wrong. Or at least try and trip while running from the horde of zombies to save my gelatinous butt. But, that’s besides the point.
Despite my careful study of Google Maps, I nonetheless got lost on my way to the Mid America Center, where the Con was being held. And when you get lost in Council Bluffs, and admit to it (like I am right now), everyone and their grandmother has the right to mock you outright. My knee was acting up because of the weather, and I still wasn’t out of the woods from the massive sinus infection that I had been battling since I got back from the previously-posted about Memorial Day Weekend hijinks. No matter. I was determined—if not a bit grumpy—to find the damned place, even if I had to turn around and get back to Point A. I did turn around, but I managed to find the road that lead to the Mid America Center. It didn’t help things that a big black pickup sporting a nosebleed altitude chassis, two pointless diesel exhaust pipes sticking over the cab, and stickers that screamed Insecure Redneck Overcompensation Mobile constantly tailgated the Aluminum Falcon most of the way their. This was Iowa. I was going to go the speed limit—in this case, it was 25—intimidation tactics or no. I was paranoid enough the way it is.
Anyway, I made it to the North Parking Lot of the Mid America Center, where I soon discovered that the entrance to the Convention itself was on the South End. Of course it was. This section I was nearest was hosting a graduation ceremony for some high school I was too uninterested to find out the name of. So, being directed by the security guard on duty (heh…”duty”), I hiked around to the other side of the structure, seeing others that were clearly there for the Con making their way from the same areas of parking lot to the doors.
I got in, presented my ticket, and joined the throngs of people gathered together for this event. And just standing in the lobby, trying to summon someone from the group that I was meeting to find out where everybody was, I saw dozens of costumed individuals, cosplayers both amateur and professional, wandering about the place. I immediately spotted some guy dressed as Buddy Christ from Kevin Smith’s Dogma movie, and had I not been focused more on finding my tribe I would have definitely had my picture taken with him. Preferably in front of the Omaha Atheist Society booth I saw down the hall. My love for irony knows no bounds, it seems. Of course, I tried to find him…or Him, if you prefer…after I found the rest of the Coven of Exalted Geeks, but alas he was nowhere to be found. He may have ascended or something, I don’t know.
So, after finding the rest of the group inside the room that was hosting one of the panel discussions on the schedule for the day, we all settled in to listen to a panel discussion with Billy West and Maurice LaMarche, most familiar to me as the voices of Philip Fry from Futurama and Brain from Pinky & The Brain, respectively. They told stories, they dispensed some sage advice about the Voice Actor business, they took questions, and they both read the script of the original “Who’s On First?” Abbot and Costello routine, in the voices of Zapp Brannigan and Kif from Futurama.
If you squint, you can make out their features…
And in case you were wondering, yes, I did have ask them a question. Only, the original one I had was asked by the guy who was before me. It may be a case of “Great Minds Think Alike”, but test result are inconclusive. I had to go with my backup question. And no, I’m not going to share what they were.
That’s good parody…
and in case you were wondering, yes I did wear this to church…
After some wandering around the convention’s merch area, getting a taste for what was there, we all had some lunch at a nearby Texas Roadhouse, then came back for some more wandering around the merch area. I was taken by how very little actual comic book paraphernalia was at this Comic Con; there were only two of the local Omaha comic shops with tables set up there: Legends Comics and Krypton Comics. And Legends was only serving coffee at their table. And as Nex pointed out, he had more comics in his collection than Krypton actually brought to the convention. There were trades and comics being sold at the various artists and writers tables, but they were the ones they were associated with. And none of the general comic book industry companies were there, that I could see. Then again, this was the first year of the convention, so here’s hoping that will be rectified in the following years. There were booths galore, though, catering to any and all fanboys and girls, ranging from fantasy, horror, sci-fi, and all points intersecting. Of course, I chatted a bit with the peeps at the Dr. Sanguinary booth (I really, really miss the live shows at the theater formerly known as the 20 Grand), and discovered Atomic Cotton, a shirt company that specializes in rather unique horror and other pop culture shirts. I couldn’t resist, and bought a couple that caught my eye. If I left the convention without buying something, I would have the stench of failure about me for weeks thereafter.
The anxiety levels were spiking a bit due to the congestion of people inside the merch area, so I found the rest of the Exalted Geeks in the main lobby area, where we then went to another smaller room to take in the Science Of Stargate discussion. This turned out to be, not a talk with someone who was associated with the actual show, but kind of a bullpen talk by a local Stargate fan talking about the scientific stuff used on the show. Kind of like when your High School teacher tries to make his class sound cooler by tying in the lessons with things found in Star Trek. Or Star Wars. Or what have you. I was like willingly listening to someone you just met at a social gathering go on and on pedantically about something you were kind of into, but obviously not at the same kind of level as this guy. He didn’t’ even use the microphone or podium that was obviously set up for another possibly more interesting panel discussion for that day. Eh, it was all right, I guess. I did throw out a topical request on the cloning process of the Asgard versus Natural Reproduction. It was either that, or the time loop probability from that episode where O’Neal and Teal’c were stuck in that Groundhog Day kind of thing…and looking back at what I just wrote, I believe I made the right choice for topic. I left the convention soon after.
“…and when those actors from Farscape came on the show, things just got more awesome! Hey, is that guy asleep?”
So, there we have it, the goings on in the month of May of this year. Comparatively, June is downright relaxing. Gives me some time to write, in any case. Hope you enjoyed my inane ramblings, my wonderful freaks. Until next time, then, cheers.