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San Diego Comic Con: Day One

15 August 2007 by Gnoll 3 Comments

For the last several years, I have made my Labor Day weekend plans around one event: Atlanta’s very own Dragon*Con, the largest science fiction and fantasy convention in the Southeastern United States. One day, MCFTR’s own Hollywood insider Chad told me that I should come out and see what a real Con was like, over there on the left coast.

Imagine his horror when Terry, Bobby and I called him one night this past Spring and told him that we were coming to crash in his house and eat all his food in preparation for a run at the World’s Biggest Nerdfest.

After a reasonably comfortable four hour flight cross country, we arrived at Los Angeles International, where we met up with out humble host for the weekend. After a late lunch to compensate for our jet lag, we shuffled to the House of Chad, where we made plans for our departure the following morning for the convention.

They put avocado on everything in Los Angeles, by the way.

The House of Chad is on the northwest end of Los Angeles, so it’s a long haul to the city of San Diego, where the convention happens to take place. We got up fairly early and headed south. Three hours or so later, we arrived at our hotel in the Gaslamp District. After stowing our wares in the room, we walked the 10 blocks or so to the convention center. The smell of nerd was in the air, and we knew that we could easily find our destination by trailing the slovenly-looking dudes with thick glasses and ratty beards.

We got to the center in the early afternoon, and it was already a packed house. And let me tell you right off the bat — this was overwhelming. It’s like sensory overload, with sounds and lights and shiny things eveywhere. You don’t know where to begin, but we figured that picking up our badges would be a good place.

As soon as we walked into the gigantic dealer’s room, we were right where I wanted to be: right in front of the Hasbro booth. I made my way to the area where they were selling their convention exclusives and got in line. Within ten minutes of arriving at the convention center, I had already dropped $130 dollars on toys. Transformers Monopoly, Stan Lee Marvel Legends figures, concept art Obi-Wan and Yoda, and even the Pepsi Optimus Prime. The last one was probably an impulse buy, seeing as to how they were already sold out of the 25th Anniversary G.I.Joe Destro exclusives for the entire convention, and out of the Transformers Rodimus and Menasor I was looking for.

So I’ve been at a convention for mere minutes, and not only have I blown a ton of cash, but I’ve also got a load of crap to haul around. Thankfully, Warner Bros. was giving out gigantic tote bags (about 3″ square) hawking Smallville, so I was able to haul my stuff around pretty easily. It didn’t take long for the four of us to get separated, but we managed to run into each other often enough to enjoy the experience together.

Among the coolest things seen today:the real-live Batmobile from the 1960s TV show, a Mach 5 promoting the upcoming Speed Racer film, and a model shilling for Grindhouse‘s Planet Terror, who actually only had one leg.

The dealer room closed at 7:00 PM, and we had barely scraped the surface. It’s roughly a quarter-mile from end to end, and as wide as a football field. On top of that, we all had panels and other events we wanted to see. It’s a good thing we decided to get a head start and attend for a third day. In actuality, the convention opened on Wednesday, so we were already behind a day, but we spent much of that day in transit.

After the dealer room closed, we regrouped and dumped off our purchases at the hotel, then made our way to a local burger joint for a couple of pitchers of beer and some fatty foods. After six hours of walking, three hours in a car, and a full stomach, we were all ready to pass out — which we did, at around 9:30 PM.

I’ve never felt so much like an old man in my life.

I’ll be back with day two of the convention tomorrow, so make sure to check back then. And trust me, there will be far more pictures in the next couple of days. My camera barely even got warmed up on Thursday. It was Friday and Saturday where the other 500 pictures got taken.

3 Comments »

  • » San Diego Comic Con: Day One said:

    […] Original post by Noel […]

  • San Diego Signs said:

    long live the nerds. I wait for comic con to come to san diego.

  • menasor said:

    […] Defensor battling it out with Bruticus and Menasor. … Mail (will not be published) (required) …For the Retarded Geek Mockery at its Finest! Blog Archive …15 August 2007 by Gnoll 2 Comments. For the last several years, I have made my Labor Day … the […]

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