I Survived the 2018 Dragon Con Parade

This is a post about hygiene, playing cruel tricks on your friends, and the Dragon Con parade. Let’s begin with that last one.

This year marked the 13th year that our “cardboard stormtroopers” marched in the Dragon Con parade in one form or another. I had to skip last year’s march due to a nasty cold I contracted at Play On Con 2017, but this year I was back in the mix – albeit well out of shape and without a solid plan once the parade was over –  I have learned through experience that my body is in charge of things from that point Continue reading I Survived the 2018 Dragon Con Parade

Robby Hilliard Awarded 2018 Reinhardt Award

This weekend my friend Robby Hilliard was presented with the prestigious Hank Reinhardt Fandom Award, ostensibly for his service to Dragon Con’s Filk Track where he has served as Director, but also for his contributions to fandom in general. Robby is a ding-dang, top-notch, A#1 Nerd, and I’m glad to know him.

In case you got hung up on the word ‘Filk’ in the previous paragraph, all you need to know is that it’s a musical genre featuring lyrics with sci-fi/nerd-centric themes, and is associated with Continue reading Robby Hilliard Awarded 2018 Reinhardt Award

26 Things Not to Touch at Dragon Con

After dancing dangerously close to telling Dragon Con to “get off my lawn” over the past few years I have turned a corner and am now finding joy in people who are new to the convention scene.  If I had only one piece of advice to give to these people it would be “stay hydrated”.  Adequate hydration is part of the formula for maintaining your body’s immune system, making it far less susceptible to illness and injury. My second piece of advice would be “don’t touch anything” from the following list.

#26 People

Duh. Don’t get near them. People are the number one cause of disease among humans. Look it up. I am correct about this. Just stay away from them. They will only sneeze on you, attempt to lick you, or break your heart. Generally they will attempt to do all three in that order.  People are as bad as they sound so get ready to hear an awful lot about them and the things they do in this article.

#25 Elevator Buttons

They’re round, they’re shiny, they light up when you push them, and they will take you back to your room so that you can change into your next costume. Guess what? Lots of people like to use these buttons. A whole lot.  Records indicate that a single button in the west bank of elevators in the Marriott Marquis was pressed 832,729 times between Continue reading 26 Things Not to Touch at Dragon Con

Dragon Con Turns 31 – Is It Too Big Now?

This aging dragon has certainly grown!

Just look at that graph!

It’s based on data I found on a Dragon Con wiki, which explains that its data was collected from snapshots of the Dragon Con website as preserved on the Internet Archives. I also used numbers from the Wikipedia article on Dragon Con to fill in the graph. Attendance figures for some years differ from those listed in the history section of the current version of the Dragon Con website, but I believe these numbers are close enough to deliver a good approximation of the growth this convention has experienced over the past 31 years. Continue reading Dragon Con Turns 31 – Is It Too Big Now?

Skidmark

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I remember when the Marriott Marquis was still shiny and new, back in the 1980s. Somewhere in my stack of sketchbooks I have a little student study I made of the hotel while I was in the architecture program at Tech. In that write-up I compared the elevator cabs to blood cells pulsing through heart of the hotel, mostly because back then the elevators were painted bright red! Somewhere along the line an interiors person must have been paid good money to come in and inform hotel management that rocketship red was Continue reading Skidmark

Should Dragon*Con Expand?

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This morning a number of my friends spent several frustrating hours attempting to reserve a room at the Marriott Marquis for next summer’s Dragon*Con, as this was the date that the hotel released that block of rooms to the public for purchasing. The sell-out of rooms for Dragon*Con has become a high-stress, high-stakes game for these people, many of whom have been attending the event for more than 20 years. These folks are what I call my “professional” nerds – the kind of people who know what a “real” science fiction convention is like and who lament more and more at what Dragon*Con has become: a very Continue reading Should Dragon*Con Expand?

Science Fiction Summer

Drew with Daleks at DixieTrek

I dropped out of the elevator, crouched low to avoid detection. Looking left and right, I rolled quickly over to the wall trying not to be seen. I’d been avoiding her for most of the morning but her spoor hung heavy in the air in this place. I knew that the big cat was looking for lunch and that she had me in mind for the main course.

She wasn’t your usual cat, this one. She stood five feet tall at the shoulder and her coat was jet black streaked with fluorescent red. Her claws were long elegant blades and she had mysterious green catseyes, but it was her black leather cape and knee-high go-go boots that were a definite giveaway that this wasn’t your everyday feline.
Continue reading Science Fiction Summer