Another Mediawest*Con come and gone, and despite our muttering of ‘it’s out last one, finances,” we signed up again as well, it’s the only place we get to see lots of friends in one place. We used to drive, then did Amtrak, and after one hideously long sleep-deprived trip, I vowed I’d n ever do that again (at least to go to Michigan), so I flew. Last year was fine, and then of course, this year I see all these news stories about horrendous lines at LaGuardia and O’Hare, the two airports I go through, so I got to the airport early, only to whisk through TSA and didn’t even have to take my shoes off. I looked at my boarding pass and lo and behold, somehow I got randomly selected to be pre-TSA. Cool. Worked on the trip back too, although the Lansing airport is small so it’s not like you have a huge line. One thing I noticed during the hours sat waiting at airports is that Godzilla could traipse through with no one noticing as far too many people are glued to their smartphones. Me? I finally broke down and got out coloring pencils and psychedelic page to work on. Finished it at the con and it came out rather neat looking so, because I didn’t have time to do door decoration, used that and other pages I colored for the door.
Let’s see, while at con, ate far too much food (Cracker Barrel, Finley’s, Chinese, Steak ‘n’ Shake (twice or was it three times? Had the delicious raspberry chocolate shake. Ordered the big two pancakes, eggs and bacon breakfast at CB; couldn’t eat it all but it was yummy. Then stared with desire at certain items in CB’s store (octopus glass paperweight flamingo birdbath) all of which would not fit in carryon. Ended buying flamingo bag for $1.99. Yeah, like I need ANOTHER bag, but then, I knew it would fit in carryon. Got to Horrocks – bought a small, pricey but scrumptious goat cheese log covered with blueberries and cinnamon. When I got back, checked local Trader Joe’s but they don’t have it. They have blueberries and vanilla but the cinnamon. Yum! Will get that first thing next year if they still carry it.
We ended up at several stores, like Walmart, where I dithered on whether to buy the cat mug-shot t-shirt as it wasn’t my size, but then said ‘what the hell’ as it wasn’t even $5 and I doubt it would be in my Walmart (which it wasn’t). We hit Michaels (bought ANOTHER bag, this one with tropical motif with parrots, too pretty to use except as decoration) in search of a gold pencil for a friend. The coloring book phenomenon was everywhere at the con, and the coloring book party in the party suite was PACKED. We also went to Hobby Lobby, where another friend got a nice set of colored pencils for $9.99 which I said ‘nah, it won’t fit carry-on’ and then at the register, my friend said “Hey, they’re 30% off” and I’m sure everyone heard the squeak of my sneakers on linoleum as I did an about-face and ran back and got a set for myself (yes, they just managed to fit in the luggage). Didn’t buy anything at Barnes & Noble as nothing screamed “buy me!” but found the stuffed “Finding Dory” toys which were rather adorable.
Four us took in the matinee at local theater and saw Captain America: Civil War. Enjoyed it but it was a Greek tragedy of sorts at the finale; even the end credits had fracture lines running through it. Can’t wait for next movie however. My friend found a cool Captain America shield keyring at Hobby Lobby and bought it. Speaking of Captain America, went to the party someone held. Was just going to swing by and check it out – it was very well-attended – but then I saw…. Cupcakes. So I had one, and then another (one chocolate, one vanilla, had to, er taste test), and it was downhill from there. I stayed. They had some contest, one was to find the hidden Bucky’s in the room. Much to my surprise, I won the contest, and got a great little bobblehead Bucky and thought to myself, “This WILL fit in my carry-on SOMEHOW!” By the time the party broke up, I’d won three of the contests. Much to my embarrassment, I must admit. I was positive that someone else would win the ‘toss the Captain America paper plates into the Captain America hamper’ contest as I’d only managed a measly two, but it was enough, so I came home with a Captain America plastic cup, towel, bobblehead, coloring book, bag, fantastic fuzzy blanket (wore it briefly like a cap to another party). As they were going to toss the paper plates used in the contest, I said ‘waste not want not’, took them and rimmed my hotel room door with them. It was a rather neat effect. And the individual who brought the Captain America-themed motorcycle (parked in lobby) brought it again this year, done up with more artwork.
At one point we were putting flyers up on the glass windows by the lobby and this fat squirrel came down to look at us and suddenly there were half a dozen people all staring at the tree and taking photos. After a while, the squirrel realized we weren’t going to feed it so left.
Alas, no big Michigan thunderstorms. Anything headed out away dissipated over the lake but one night we got a torrential downpour. I went outside and spotted a gorgeous sunset. Lovely shades of red, orange, violet and more. Fortunately the weather held out for the trip back as who wants to fly in a thunderstorm? When we landed in LaGuardia the pilot announced “at least we didn’t have to divert to Pittsburgh” which meant we probably dodged some nasty storm system.
One of the huge (and yes, it was that big) surprises in the art show was a life-size Toothless from How to Train Your Dragon! Yup, this guy made it, brought in a used Twinkie van he’d bought and you could pose with it. It was fantastic!!! I thought I took down his contact info but will have to find it. I hope-hope-hope he comes back next year.
Did not buy much this year due to finances and carryon restrictions, but scored a neat Godzilla glass holder (from Matthew Broderick version) which fits certain cups very nicely ;) as well as the cat t-shirt. Because Agent with Style appears to have gone bottom-up, not a ton of zines plus my fannish interests have waned and my main reason for the con is other fans, although when I came back home, I had urge to watch Stargate SG-1, so have been binge-watching DVDs of it. Ah, it was a great show. Shame SyFy has fallen down to wrestling and endless repeats of Resident Evil.
As planned, did get to the hotel’s hot tub and swimming pool. Both, alas, have seen better days. Peeling paint, etc. When I went to the hot tub (which I had all to myself) I was rather astounded to see what looked like roof shingles around it and on the steps. I swear, that’s what it looked like but it wasn’t as it was soft underfoot and definitely non-slip, unlike the older painted concrete around the pool. Had to tread carefully there. Note: I think I finally got all the chlorine smell out of my suit. Maybe hit a sports store to get special stuff to remove it as I don’t want suit drying out. It’s very annoying to put on suit a year later and hear the elastic stretch out but not back. Ack!
All in all it was more a relaxacon than anything else. Watched a ton of Avengers movies, some Stargates, some Minions, ate too much and generally had a good time.
Hoping that a lot of folk will be back next year!
1) We left the hotel in a slightly less better shape than we found it (actually, it’s the old Days Inn and it was down to nada before the con was half over)
2) Breakfast at Cracker Barrel.
3) I want! (Octopus)
4) Or the crab. Cute!
5) Can we say “Miami Vice retro”?
6) Could not pass up this t-shirt at Walmart.
8) Inquisitive squirrel
9) The perfect stick figure family decal for a car!
10) Oh yes, these pens were fine and dandy. Took photo so I could order ‘em online.
11) Sunset after big rainstorm.
12) Another shot.
13) Toothless and his master ;)
14) My door decoration
15) Captain America motorcycle
16) Captain America keychain – metal. Heavy. Nice.
17) Very funny poster on door
18) One of the congoers…..
19) Some of my Captain America party booty
20) Oh, my Godzilla cup holder and it’s new cup. Does this not scream movie tie-in? Minions meet Godzilla???
And I came home, had to mow the lawn the next day and weedwhack the nasty weeds, and got a wretched case of poison ivy on my leg (no photos so as not to scare everyone).THE END.