Tuesday, January 21, 2014

FC 2014 - Con in Review

This is probably the first time I've managed to review this con since my very first (and very brief) visit back in 2010. I've come to realize the mean reason for my lack in truly reviewing is largely due to not quite remembering a bulk of the con after it happened (large con is large). Much of this review is aided by social network/personal phone history whenever possible in what would otherwise be best-guessing recollection.

Day 0 
I decided to make a quick stop after class to help with setting things up. Beyond bulk of things being done prior (I had arrived around 5 pm), I help bring in some electronic/AV equipment inside before hanging with the early crowds...or lack thereof - only a trickle so far in the Marriott and Hilton combined. Nevertheless, fun, quick convos with some friendly furs were had before I returned home, prepping for the next day and actual con.

Day 1 Took bus from class, arrived in afternoon, walked to Marriott, waited briefly in prereg line, 2 hour wait at the time, only to ditch and wait until later when lines dropped (roughly 10 pm), kept running into local furries (and feeling a heavy dose of deja vu from last couple of years) before having dinner at the Thai placewith Lawrence, a local wolf. . Boarded a Light Rail to Great Mall with Furries for games at Dave and Busters, left halfway when the cars detached (forcing us all to go to the front of the train) upon finding out that Alphapak had arrived and checked in. After a quick settling down, I met up with a couple of furs for a night of Cards Against humanity.

Day 2
Wook up early worriedly, and went straight to school for a morning class....that never happened - nobody, not even faculty was present. Annoyed, promptly went back to the con and had lunch with Koda and Cosmo. Ran into Meerk and friends, walked a bit, hung out with Calzone, roamed the Dealer's. Went back to room to rest for a bit, joined roomie friends (A-Pak, Scrypto, Dbeat) for Thai again, furry nomming curry, kept running into a bunch of furries whom I've known on web, and vice versa. If anything, it just felt awesomely weird to immediately recognize a whole bunch of folks. Almost as if I were popufur or something....but I digress (honestly, I feel anything but - I'm far from popufur)

Exercised plenty in Marriott, walking up the stairs. Saw dance comp, enjoyed choreography. Went back to Marriott to Meet with Daniel Barker, walking up 22 floors in the process.

Went to Fancy Friday despite leaving formal wear at home (yay semi-casual!), hung out with Doctor Fox, having a nice conversation. Full house, long line. No foods, but still fun. Overall, excellent start to the con.

Day 3
Woke up casually for once (busy week been busy), tried to see the exotic animals exhibit only to find it crowded up to hallway audience (did see a gator though), met up with a Granite Coyote for breakfast with at Psycho Donuts.

I walked around downtown SJ with Granite for a bit, getting stalked by a Base Jaguar and feline friends. Later gung out with said coyote and did coyote things.

On way down for quick lunch at staff lounge, I saw a tweet asking for folks to fursuit in parade, jumped at the chance and went across to the Saint Claire to meet up with (and dress up as) Sarge, a military doberman.
Doing the parade was, to say the least, an interesting experience. Dressing up as a giant animal costume that I could barely see in (let alone know what I actually look like outside), in what could double as a mini-sauna, walking by tons of cheering spectators, and waiting in a long line for a photoshoot with Sarge's army, could be best described as 'tedious, but fun'. Good experience, and at least I know what to expect when finishing project marflesuit sometime in the future.

After a bit of unmasking recovery return in the Saint Claire, and a brisk walk back to the Marfiott, I began a quick window shopping at the Dealer's Den, to prep for final shopping the following day.

Time flew briefly and had to begin my first (and surprisingly only) shift for the con in the late afternoon. Admittedly (and granted, bulk of my work had been done prior to con), the job at had wasn't really much - just watch over all the panels, making sure they're running properly and are set-up accordingly. Save for one minor misunderstanding with the podcast Fur What It's Worth's setup (and getting an applause from them later), the overall shift was quite casual - almost quite like general attending. Awful lot of walking was done, however, so yay exercise.

Shortly afterwards, got an invite for Pizza (My Heart) with Calzone, Fennic, Doctor, and the gang, heavy on furry standard time - after much fursuit shenanigans, we finally headed off roughly an hour later. Enjoying a bit of chat with old friends, then rushed back to hang with and do wolf things with a Jet wolf before heading down to check out some ill-fated Kareoke with Fennic, suddenly having odd cravings leading to nommage of chili-bacon-cheese fries before calling it a night.

Day 4
Final day in the hotel room, I woke up lateish (relatively, around 9 compared to 7/8 of the past few days), and the first in room to do so. Signed up for brunch later in the day, and having read that there was some extra time, decided to join Scrypto and Deadbeat in some Dealer's shopping..only to discover I misread the brunch time - said event happening within the next 15 minutes - and promptly made a dash across 4 blocks to the diner...only to also discover that said time was for meeting up at the Marriott lobby.

Derpily, I walked back, and ended up meeting Calzone midway, forgoing the brunch in favor of Pitas and running into Kodachrome, enjoying a nice photographic discussion, walking back with Calzone to the Hilton, parting ways for the morning followed by a brief breather and pack-up, before rushing to Diridon station for a brief(ish) familial visit.

After a brief(erish) stop at home to unwind and unpack, I returned to the Convention center in the midsts of an early afternoon to fairly uneventful afternoon of random walking, random running into the same 10 furries (apologies to Boveda, whom of which we seemed to keep crossing each other's path), eating all the peanut M&Ms in the staff lounge, and briefly meeting up with some furries, and finally waiting in line for FC: Unleashed

Compared to last year, FC:U exceeded expectations. Full show indeed, plenty good acts, very much impressed, and thoroughly entertained with yoyos, Piano dragons, and some acts of which a few have placed their life's blood into. I have heard good reviews of the Scott Meerkat Preview, and am definitely looking forward to FlashlightCon 2015. I may be for guys but there's something to be said about a group of ladies dancing to Psy's Gentleman. Currently brainstorming plans for next year's theme.
I was supposed/planned to head home shortly after the show, however, as the Doctor would say "I don't wanna go", and ended up staying until the very last bus trip meeting up with fellow furs, and saying farewells. Overall, while done in the blink of an eye, and puns aside to neighboring cons (no substances ingested, I promise), my FC ended on a high note.


Further Confusion 2014 a blast! I had tons of fun, and I thank to staff for helping out and glad to be a part. Pleasure meeting all 30 folks repeatedly, enjoyed helping out when I could.

I had pretty much checked off everything I planned/wanted to do at a con (suit-up, meet fur/friends local and otherwise, enjoyable events, working staff and helping set-up, doing literally all there is to do...well, save for selling at the dealer's/market and/or having a piece in the Art Show). Thanks to Sarge for lending me his suit for parade. Thanks to @Alphapak for hosting the room, and to Scrypto and deadbeat rooming along. Great and amusing moments were had.

Final words on FC2014: On par with 2012, and definitely looking forward to 2015!

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