It has been a few weeks since I last posted something on here, and quite a few things happened since then. I am expecting to write about my laptop replacement that should be in my hands by Monday, if not Tuesday. That’s probably one of the more exciting things about these upcoming months, and I am going on a trip on the 2nd of March. A quick one for the weekend to see my best friend graduate from Flight School down in Pensacola. So, let me ramble on for a bit eh?
Convention Staffing – Katsucon 2017
First out of this post is actually my first experience in staffing a convention. I had been interested in staffing them since finding out the perks, and had the opportunity to be placed as one of the security staffers for this year’s Katsucon, held on February 17th to the 19th in the Gaylord National Resort & Convention Center. Overall, my convention staffing experience can be best summed up as a ‘Good’, ‘Bad’, and ‘Ugly’.
The ‘Good’ about ConStaffing was, and it’s somewhat cold-hearted of me, but I had the price of admission, room, and board more or less paid for. While I thought that was one of the bigger draws to it, as I worked the overnight shift, I came to like the people I was working with, fans of different tastes and persuasions that reminded me a whole lot like my time as a local stagehand while I was in college. A relaxed kind of working environment with people who can go from laughing and joking to completely business at the drop of the hat. Basically I enjoyed my time working with them.
The room and board were good, even though we were hot bunking with four or five to a room. But conisdering the usual going price for just a room, especially at the Gaylord, it was a bit of a st
The ‘Bad’ was actually the people at the convention. For folks who have gone to conventions, we know there are more to it than meets the eye. Unfortunately, working for the Security Team for their overnight (0200-0800) shift meant I saw a bit of the con that I normally don’t see. Once I’m in my room snuggled up in bed, there is that night-life to a convention. Young adults finally away and as someone would say, ‘getting their freak on’.
While the first thought that comes to people’s mind would be of evoking scenery of fading to black, bodies intertwined in sheets, I think what I remember the most was folks who are still quite high, either in energy or otherwise, slowly mingling around the convention hall before trooping up to their rooms to either sleep it away or continue on. Some groups though, weren’t. While nothing too crazy happened in my first ConStaffing experience, stories abound of what others have found before. I think the occasional rowdy drunk was the most excitement I can put in this post.
The Ugly about ConStaffing. Well this is my first time, but I definitely need to hit the gym more. I had been tasked to help with the Registration staff to help set up the convention hall where they were staging the Registration and Pre-Registration lines, and my job was to walk two paces and then lay down some gaffer’s tape to indicate the border of a line that was snaking through a set area. So I walked my paces, then squat. Repeat for what seemed to be 200 feet. Repeat on the other side for roughly a quarter of that, and suddenly being out of shape has me hurting the rest of the convention.
The whole weekend was me dealing with legs that were overworked within a short amount of time, and I believe I pulled something or at least strained my quads. Sitting down hurt, and stairs became my most bitter of enemies. Advil my greatest of friends. The soft hotel beds didn’t help at all, having taken the spare pillows and adjusting them to support my back and knees for a time.
But other than that, I enjoyed the experience, and can’t wait to do it again next year.
The convention itself was great, and actually manged to meet up with the KanColle USA group for their usual Katsucon meet and dinner. I missed the meet, went for the dinner. Also attended a few panels, the one I enjoyed was one called Anime in the Developing World – An Economic & Cultural Look, hosted by Economics and History graduate students. At the end, I encouraged them to submit a paper to Mechademia, the academic journal dedicated to the world of anime and manga, since it seems like a pretty good subject for the journal.
Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid & Gabriel DropOut
These two shows are what started to fill up the space on my tablet alongside Youjo Senki. And frankly, both are quite similar. Both are fantasy slice of life, one featuring a glamoured female dragon taking the shape of a rather buxom twintailed stereotypical anime maid, the other about an angel getting a sort of on-the-job experience living on Earth and falling into temptation by MMORPG and becoming a NEET. Though thinking about it now, the linked definition I had of it seems a little harsh, maybe one can say Tohru and other Dragons merely shapeshift or cast a magical spell to be in human form?
Dragon Maid has fun quirky characters, with many people loving Kanna, a younger dragon who glamours as a platinum haired loli. I though mostly connect with the titular ‘Miss Kobayashi’, a hard-working salarywoman who has seemed listless until meeting an injured Tohru (the dragon maid) in her dragon form after stumbling home drunk one night. That one drunken encounter was what would set up the interactions between the two, with the long-lived Tohru not regretting being attached to a short-lifespanned human, seeing that she loves her new companion and would not exchange their time together for anything.
Other dragons do appear, with by the time of this writing, the last of the main and recurring cast finally being revealed.
Gabriel DropOut was actually recommended to me by my friends, if only because the similarities between several of the characters between us is quite striking. Particularly the haughty and arrogant Satania and the main character Gabriel resemble a friend of ours I shall now refer to as ‘Chibi’. Chibi inherits Gabriel’s disposition with Satania’s luck and arrogance (at times). The person who actually sold me on the show most resembles Raphael, in that he is the biggest troll we know, that German, but most of the time he does it to Chibi. We’re all just Vigne and watching the shenanigans roll.
Both of them are great shows, with Gabriel DropOut being one that illicit the ‘pause-video-and-laugh-my-ass-off’ session while parts of Dragon Maid pulls the heartstrings (like how their fanservice episode was a little heavy at times).
This show has been entertaining so far, and I’m quite liking it, though that’s much all I’ll say about it. I am planning out a costume based on the Empire’s Mage corps, and so far I’ve figured out the needed clothing materials. A set of olive drab coveralls, preferably with a high collar, else I’d have to modify it. I do want to obtain a used parade rifle, typically an M1 Garand with a working bolt for Inspection arms. It’s a non-firing replica so it’d be considered convention safe. I’d then modify it to look like a Mondragon Rifle, probably fitting a magwell underneath. I’d then look to remove the chromed M1 receiver on the back and place a PVC pipe on it to replicate the Mondragon’s action.
Worst case scenario I’d just model one. Also, the image is from Forgotten Weapons. [link]
The flight system backpack would be built probably out of PVC pipe and cloth, probably also make it functional so I can store stuff in it while keeping the weight down, since I’d be hooking this up to a LBE or similar milsurp. The boot will end up being molded from hard foam panels and shaped with a heat gun, I had saved a page actually that deals with how-tos with it.
Yeah, a bit ambitious for a first time cosplay.
And that’s my quick thought to end the month of February. I’m participating in the Kantai Collection Winter 2017 event, though I’m not going all hardcore on a three map event. I don’t have the time and plan to only spend a bit on it.
I did talk about getting a new laptop. I had bought a Sager NP6852 from Xotic PC. With the options I chose, it came to be 1247USD, which was a good chunk of my tax returns. My old laptop has shown its age, stuttering on low settings in both World of Warships and Civilization V, and I honestly think upgrading it to Win10 from Win8.1 did it in.
I look forward to actually trying it out, and it should last me just as long as my current laptop is. The current laptop will be cleaned up and given to parents for their own use if anything.