Hey everybody! My name is Regina Gasser, and I am a Communication Major in good ol’ Springfield, Ohio. Recently, I got to go to Comic Con for school credit (no, seriously. I got to participate in a panel and everything!). It truly was a dream come true for the giant nerd I am. When I wasn’t getting my hands on all the fun toys and swag that I could, I learned some things about life with a Comic Con twist.
- Only the really cool, ultra rare things come after a long wait. Or in life’s case, good things come to those who wait. Con goers think nothing of waiting for days just to get a glimpse of their favorite geek idols. Imagine if we all could have this patience while waiting for a job promotion, or maybe that special someone!
- Just because something is free, or handed to you, or tossed your direction, doesn’t mean you should take it…or keep it. Sure, the thought is nice when your uncle gives you his collection of National Geographic’s he’s been saving since he was five, but if you’re not going to do anything with those Mags except line the floor of your closet, it’s time to let go. Same goes for free swag at the con. Are you really going to use that free foam dalek hat when you go back home? Really? Perhaps you should leave that in the hotel room…
With this being said…
- Travel light, and carry a big rucksack for loot. At the con, it is almost impossible to not buy something that you will inevitably have to carry home with you. This goes for most trips, and usually goes for most trips out of one’s house even. Therefore, always travel light so you can have room for that trip to Target you didn’t really need, or that collectors Action Figure you needed to complete your collection.
- Always have your camera ready. You never know who you’re going to meet, or what you’re going to see. At the Con, one moment you might see Cylons getting a coffee, and the next you might see the real Stan Lee walking amongst the floor. Think of how silly you’d be not to have some form of camera ready to capture this! What with phones, iPods, goPro’s, and actual cameras you have no excuse not to document everything and anything. Kodak moments are everywhere if you look hard enough. Just think of instagram. You laugh now, but that guy who keeps uploading everything in an artsy fashion is capturing moments that are important to him. Maybe he won’t want that picture of #skittles when he’s 80, but for now, he’s a photojournalist capturing his life through the lens of his camera.
- We all need something to “Geek” out about. Now, I’m biased because I was born and raised a geek by two equally geeky parents. But I’m not saying everyone should be a Trekkie, I’m saying that everyone should have at least one thing that makes them turn into a fan boy or girl. Whether that be your favorite clothing designer or a restaurant that serves the best ceviche around. Without obsessions, we don’t have anything to chase or get excited about. And that would be just plain boring.
- You will never see everything you want. Enjoy what you can. I made the mistake of going to Con thinking that I would get to see every panel I wanted with ease. Ha. Hall H and Ballroom 20, which house such panel favorites as Dr. Who and Firefly, only let in the extremely dedicated. This means wasting a good chunk of your time in line, often overnight. This isn’t for me. And in real life, most of us aren’t going to see all the countries we want to visit. We have to pick and choose what’s most important, and wait. And with time, you will see what you can, and you will treasure those moments. I got to see Firefly, but I missed Dr. Who, and many, many other panels I really wanted to see, but I still had a marvelous time.
Well, that’s about it! I’m sure there are lots of other parallels one can make between the world of Comic Con and the real world that we all inhabit, but these are the ones that I think are particularly important for all of us to remember. So go out there, grab your bag and your camera, and enjoy!
See that photo? That’s me in a Kodak moment, camera strapped to head to capture the terrors of The Walking Dead obstacle course at Petco Park, just across from the convention center during the Con.