San Diego Comic-con is notorious. Not only for the convention itself but also for the inability to get tickets. Awhile back I was given the possibility of going to Comic-con for free. How might you ask since all the tickets had been sold out for months? Well, I work for a wonderful organization called The D20 Girls Project. We put out a monthly newspaper and quarterly magazine, as such, members can qualify for press badges. And with the help of my awesome assistant manager, Cryshayn, we were able to attain press badges. However, I struggled to actually get my badge from Comic-con despite the approval. For awhile it looked as though I wouldn't be getting a badge at all, and so, I began making secondary plans. I already had a hotel to stay at and knew that several happenings occur around downtown San Diego during comic con from a previous trip. One of these happenings is Gam3rCon.
Day Zero: Thursday
We left NorCal on Thursday late morning and decided to stop by Disneyland, because we can. Of course, this meant missing out on all of Thursday's panels at SDCC AND missing out on Nerdcore nights at Gam3rCon. Luckily we were planning on going to the Nerdcore show later that weekend. Disneyland was great, as usual, but not being used to SoCal, I didn't realize leaving the park at 11pm would mean we wouldn't get into San Diego until after 1am - oops. Luckily our host we so generous and nice, as well as our other roommates. Yes, we were those people, and stuffed seven bodies into our hotel room at the Hilton Bayfront. Being that it was so late we just literally threw sleeping bags on the some available floor space and passed out in our clothes.
Official Day One: Friday
|My Gam3rCon staff shirt (photo courtesy of T1nk the C0n Fairy)|
|Fallen Flyte (photo courtesy of T1nk the C0n Fairy)|
|Ermahgerd! Cermic Cern! (photo courtesy of T1nk the C0n Fairy)|
After I enjoyed the wonders of the vendor hall and met a few other D20 Girls by just wandering around I headed back to Gam3rCon. I decided to walk back and enjoy all the sights of the Gaslamp district, but I could have taken the free shuttle that was being offered by Gam3rCon. There are so many restaurants in the Gaslamp. I was really disappointed that I wouldn't be able to eat at most of them because we were trying to save money on this trip. Although I did enjoy a delicious veggie burger at Hodad's earlier in the day.
Every evening Gam3rCon hosts some type of rooftop event/party. This night was the showing of Video Game High School, which also had a few of the stars making an appearance. I had actually caught this YouTube series earlier in the year in one of my random, geeky news feeds and was familiar with the opening episode. H4773r and I are big fans of Harley Morenstein from Epic Mealtime. I was a bit disappointed he wasn't able to make an appearance. Overall the cast was super nice and I enjoyed watching some more of this hilarious series before I decided to call it a night.
Day Two: Saturday
|Saturday's outfit (photo courtesy of T1nk the C0n Fairy)|
Fun story that happened while working for street team: A guy with a microphone and camera man approached our street team and asked Olivia if he could interview her for a segment. I only glanced at him and couldn't quite see his shirt to identify what company he was with, but I did notice he had what looked like a Fleshlight in his other hand. She immediately said yes and then he asked her what she thought about Fleshlights. (So it was a flesh light!) Her face drew a blank as she asked aloud, "What's a Fleshlight?" I immediately made some kind of face at Olivia who took one look at me and then told the interviewer that she changed her mind. I piped in with, "So that is a Fleshlight you're holding?" To which he responded yes, and then asked if I would be interviewed. To which I said, "Yes!" I was asked which superhero I'd have sex with (answer: Tony Stark), which superheroes I'd have a 3-way with (answer: Catwoman and Batman), do I own a Fleshlight (answer: no), would I consider buying one (answer: no, but if someone gave me one that'd be cool). He then mentioned Fleshlight/Hustler Magazine would be having a party that night and I should stop by. I said maybe, but I knew I wasn't going since I had a concert to go to that night.
I trekked back to the Cryptozic store with everyone to get picked up and then stopped in to check with H4773r and another friend to see how they were doing at Gam3rCon. I knew I had missed all the panels, again, but decided to head back to SDCC and into the vendor hall to pick up swag and maybe meet some more people. I did manage to find Adrianne Curry getting interviewed on the street and snag a photo, thanks to her awesome manager/friend.
|Could I have more of derp face? (photo courtesy of T1nk the C0n Fairy)|
After running around all day I barely managed to pull myself away from SDCC to meet up with H4773r so we could attend "Nerdcore Nights." This was an event I wanted to attend for a few reasons. One, I absolutely love any chance I get to see MC Frontalot or MC Lars live. They're great performers and the concerts are fun. Also, I knew that Devil's Playground Burlesque would be performing and I wanted to network with people from The Gamer Girls. I had a great time for the time I actually spent there. Please check out this blog for my review on the show.
Sunday: Last day in San Diego
I decided to wear my costume, Alice from American McGee's Alice, on this day since I knew it would be a short day as far as work. I checked in with Gam3rCon and did my final day of street team work. There weren't any panels of interest on Sunday so I didn't feel horrible missing out on anything. And I did spend my last day back in the vendor hall picking up more swag, because really, that's all I could afford.
|H4773r and friend playing Starcraft II (photo courtesy of T1nk the C0n Fairy)|
|The D20 Girls (Cryshayn, Leah Rose, and JC) at Hard Rock Cafe (photo courtesy of T1nk the C0n Fairy)|
I ended the night back at Gam3rCon for their "Deconpression" event. It was a great day to end a long weekend.
|At Deconpression as Alice (photo courtesy of T1nk the C0n Fairy)|
|View from our room (photo courtesy of T1nk th C0n Fairy)|
What we ate
H4773r and I usually try to be thrifty when it comes to food. We often bring our own snacks and items to make meals out of. H4773r has a huge preference to using MRE's. But we did eat out a bit. In general, the Gaslamp district offers a huge variety and pricing scale for places to eat. I enjoyed meals at Hodad's and the Hard Rock Cafe. H4773r ate at Cremolose. And then I did have an emergency meal at Papa John's pizza. There are also a few Starbucks around if you're in need of caffeine.
Veggie foods: I always bring vegetarian/vegan snacks with me. I also usually break my no dairy rule on vacations just because I have such a hard time finding decent protein sources. At Hodad's I enjoyed their veggie burger and fries (no cheese). At Hard Rock I had the Veggie Leggie (sooo good!) and enjoyed my side salad with a vinaigrette.
H4773r and I didn't have any problems with parking this year since we were hotel guests. We opted to pay the $27 per day to park at the Hilton Bayfront parking lot.
This trip was a wash for me. While I did get assistance in get my SDCC tickets and got a share a room (albeit, very expensive room), this trip was highly expensive. In general a trip to SDCC is expensive. I had quite a few of my roommates spend hundreds, almost a couple of thousand on purchasing SDCC exclusives. And this is in addition to hotel costs, travel costs, food costs, and cosplay costs (if you're into that sort of thing). Also, because of my obligations I really feel like I didn't get to enjoy either con as much as I wanted. I didn't game at Gam3rCon and I didn't catch a single panel at SDCC.
I honestly don't know if we'll be heading back to SDCC next year. We've already missed out on purchasing the passes and since my article was never submitted to D20 I don't know if I'll be eligible for a press badge next year. If we do go next year, I plan on making the most of it by spending my day at SDCC and then joining Gam3rCon in the evening as an attendee.