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GATHERING JOURNAL, PART TWO
Saturday, August 22
Woke up, went downstairs to Starbucks (which turned out to be cheaper than the frakkinâ continental breakfast), grabbed a chocolate croissant for me, cinnamon roll for my lady, and went back upstairs.
After breakfast, I took a shower, went down to the lobby for coffee, then up to the fourth floor. Had no plans to attend any panels in the morning, so I mingled a bit. Had a very nice chat about the new canon material (and also about fanfic) with Greg X, Vicky, and G-Side. Then I decided to browse some artwork. LOTS of good stuff this year. I was forced into voting again by Shaun (Brooklyn X). Thatâs the second time heâs threatened me with death! I also saw even more Gargs merchandise I didnât know existed, including a shaving kit. Interesting. Bid on a few things in silent auction, including a Demona figure.
Eventually, 11:30 rolled around. Time to get in line to meet Marina Sirtis. Didnât have too much to say to her, except âhi.â Paid twenty bucks to get her to sign my DVD of âStar Trek: First Contact,â and got a picture. Went up to the room after that to find my girlfriend, since sheâs been talking about meeting Marina for the last few weeks. Found her outside the room without a key, so I let her in to get her con badge, and then we went back down to the fourth floor so she could get in line for an autograph, as well.
Had some time to kill after that, so I stopped briefly in the Con Suite, then headed back towards the dealerâs room, and had a chat with Mara about artwork.
At 1:00 or so, Steph and I went to the voice actorâs panel. Keith David dropped more f-bombs than one would expect from a daytime panel, but as Steph pointed out, even when he swears, it sounds elegant. There was also a fun little argument between Greg and Marina about auditions.
After it ended (and it flew by, largely because it was so entertaining), I went upstairs to the room and ate a cold slice of leftover pizza, and then I sat in on the SSM panel for a bit. I left that early to get a good seat at the Star Trek screening, and also to buy a copy of Clan Building: Volume One for autographs later.
The screening was not what I expected, but it was still enjoyable. Amazing what an Elvis impersonator with a dream can achieve. After the screening, Steph and I got seats for the Radio Play.
Fantastic Radio Play this year: a Gargoyles/SSM crossover. Greg would reveal later that evening that it was not canon, but it was a still a lot of fun. A lot of inside jokes for fans of both shows. It was especially fun to see a lot of voice actors do their voices in person. Among the most thrilling were hearing Marina Sirtis do Demona (the âhuman whoreâ line got a lot of cheers), Steve Blum do the Green Goblin, Daran Norris do both Jameson the elder and younger, and Dee Bradley Baker do the Lizard snarl.
After it got out, I managed to get Steve Blum to sign my Cowboy Bebop DVD. Then I went to stand in line at the Dealerâs Room (Steph went to check out the bondage panel). Turns out most of the voice actors in there were Spider-Man (and I forgot to get a DVD before the con!), but I still got Thom Adcox and Wendy Pini to sign my Gargoyles trade.
After the signing was ended, I hung around to wait for Greg X to lock the room up, and then he and I walked up to City Walk, and fought our way through the crowds (which were numerous) to Tommyâs, where we picked up some burgers and fries to bring back to the Blue Mug.
Blue Mug this year started out a little depressing, and then got very good quickly. Greg left to go to the restroom, and was gone a very long time. Guess it was something he ate. He was gone long enough for that miscreant, Edmund Tsabard, to show up and attempt to brainwash the crowd into shelling out money for his pornographic âautobiography.â Then someone began altering the doll Greg W had been presented with the previous evening at Opening Ceremonies.
After Edmund left, Greg finally got out of the restroom, and seemed relieved that heâd missed the guy. The Blue Mug went on for a bit longer, and Greg gave his own sales pitch for the Blue Mug, which was a lot more sensible than Edmundâs.
Mug ended before midnight this year, but I still saw some disturbing porn, this time off Maraâs laptop. Went up to the room after that, updated the journal, and went to bed.
Sunday, August 23
Slept later than I intended. Woke up around ten, ran downstairs to Starbucks to grab more coffee and bread items. Then I ran up to the room to give Steph her cinnamon roll before running back down to the ATM to make a withdrawal.
Then up to the Dealerâs Room, where I bought some prints from David Wong, which he said he would mail to me in about two weeks. After that, I got in line to get autographs from the Gargoyles production crew panel, though I left briefly to see the reel of deleted scenes from Spectacular Spider-Man. Then it was back over to the line to get more signatures in my con booklet.
Steph and I then had some time to kill before one, so we walked up to the Subway, where I got a Sweet Onion Chicken Teriyaki. Went back down to the hotel with our food, where I ate outside the Dealerâs Room while waiting for the Spidey Production Panel to get out. My girlfriend went on ahead to Project Run-Garg, while I waited in line for more autographs.
I had a nice brief little chat with Kevin Alteiri about Batman: The Animated Series, and how much he missed working with Bruce Timm. After that, I caught up with Steph at Project Run-Garg, and found out that she had been recruited for Team Lexington. The panel turned out to be more fun than I thought it would. Team Demona wound up winning, but all three were very creative.
After that, Steph went on to the Writing for Television panel, while I decided to take a breather and update the journal. Wound up in the Con Suite, where I ate a pretzel while chatting with Greg X and Mara.
Around three, I caught a little bit of the television writing panel, after all. Heard a funny story about the origins of Kim Possible. I would have stayed to the end, but I received a text from a friend whom I used to go to school with, and was now living out in LA.
I told them I was coming out, and gave them my number, but I hadnât heard from them before that afternoon, so I wasnât expecting them to actually show. So I met them outside the Dealerâs Room, and we wound up doing a quick recording for this radio show they stream from the web.
Stood in line for writerâs autographs after that, during which time, Crzydemona stopped by to chat. After getting more autographs, I arrived at the Live Auction a bit late. By the time I got there, theyâd sold the Demona figure Iâd bid on earlier. But I did manage to get some Demona trading cards. Like last year, Seth and Gorebash were very entertaining, though they had to get through the last items pretty quickly due to time constraints.
Fortunately, I managed to get second in line to pay for my loot. Which was good, because I barely had time to change for the Banquet. Met Steph up in the room, threw some nicer clothes on (though nowhere near as nice as herâs), and downstairs we went.
The Banquet was a lot of fun. We sat with Greg Guler and conversed on the state of movies today, and the decline of 2-D animation. Matt sat at out table, as well, but unfortunately, I canât remember anyone elseâs name. Food was also really good: I ate tomato and mozzarella salad, chicken, rolls, garlic mashed potatoes, and cheesecake. Good stuff, though the cheesecake was a little tasteless. The Q and A was also a lot of fun, though I think some people were making up questions to ask on the spot, since the next opportunity for Q and A might be awhile.
They finally ended things around 8:30, so people could prepare for the Masquerade. I managed to stop in the bar for a martini. When I got it, I drank it rather quickly, to get back to the ballroom before the doors opened.
There were a lot of good costumes this year. Was really cool seeing Zehra as Shari. Jade Griffin and her family were also very amusing. Plus, the Gorelisa award finally got a recipient. Sadly, I didnât get too many decent pics due to the lighting.
The dance afterward probably had less dancing than the other Masquerades I attended. Steph and I danced for a few songs, which was actually the first time Iâve ever danced at one of these.
She went upstairs shortly after that, while I stayed downstairs to mingle. Congratulated as many Masquerade winners as I could. Also got served some sort of maple liquor from Karine, which was really good. I swear, I love Canada more and more each day. First they give us Rush, then they give us some great artists, and now some great liquor.
Right before bed, I smoked a cigar outside with Kael, Kat, and some other congoers who I found out live closer to me than I thought. Went back into the ballroom after that, but didnât stay long because I was tired. So I snuck out and went up to the room to crash.
I'm gonna miss not Gathering this year...