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Arisia

Don't get me wrong, though. Arisia rocked. I LARPed (the Friday SF LARP, not Vampire), I shopped ($2 Game Boy cartridge! Ferret picture for Jesse! deck of Kenshin cards! Kokopelli t-shirt!), I partied ($5 lost at poker at the Ninja Burger party), I flirted (well with some, poorly with others...), I saw people I hadn't seen in a long time, or people I had only previously been acquainted with... I saw all kinds of things I had never seen before.

I wore my "caffeine molecular structure illustration" shirt so I got lots of questions, "what's that?" and lots of people pointing and saying "aha! caffeine!" :) Good choice for the con, definitely. Clothing as a conversation-starter seems to be a big thing at the con (though sometimes it fell flat when I didn't have anything useful to say besides "Wow. Nice dress.")



Friday night, we saved the universe, and afterwards four of us went off to IHOP, since we were starving. IHOP service happened more quickly than usual, though that may have been because we were just a party of four, instead of the usual mob we show up there with. [Ed: he says "usually," but don't be fooled - last time he went to IHOP was over a year ago] It was two old friends of mine (a couple) and a girl we had all just met that evening, named George. That was pretty cool; she was a good LARPer, and very cute, and had a motorcycle... And I got no contact info from her whatsoever. It was really late, I guess. And I'm not exactly used to asking that kind of thing. :) Though I guess I should get in practice, if I want to change my stars.

Saturday I got up too early, and couldn't fall back asleep. This had the effect of keeping me in my chair all day, entranced by the screen, until I finally got the energy up to head to Arisia around 3. Or was it more like 5? Yeah, I remember because the trigger was Pete calling me and asking me if I was up for a dinner thing. I ended up volunteering to bring dinner in, which worked out really well. Then I hit dealer's row, instead of going to the masquerade. The sword guys had the Patriots game playing on the TV so I stopped in there occasionally for status reports (yes, I'm susceptible to artificially-induced regionalism in the right situations)... But the variety of *things* there was amazing. And the people in the halls... Most impressive.

As 9pm rolled around I started up to the party floor, and did one round there. At one point I stood before a room that had a sign outside: "Fandom Party", with some fancy graphics, simply photocopied... I went in the open door and was greeted most enthusiastically by this guy, who put a sticker on my badge, and pointed out the brochures in the near corner and the food in the far corner. I went to look at the brochures, and made an odd realization; this was the "Gay Fandom Party", and the brochures were all about, well, I'm not sure what, because I ended up (gracefully) leaving the room. I was afraid to be taken as gay, and I was afraid of showing my discomfort; I consider myself a liberal guy, and support gay rights, but ...

I guess there may be some insecurity there playing at me... though whenever I've thought about the possibility of being gay (after all, I guess I do fit into some stereotypes there...) the same response comes to mind: it would be such a shame to never get to sleep with a woman. :) It's women who I find attractive, and that's really all there is to it, right? But having that reaction to being in a gay party, it shames me as a good liberal...

Then there was the "Bash Bush Bash" where they had an excerpt from The Economist editorial (paraphrased "we may have given the impression that Bush was legally and duly elected as president, we apologize for the error") and a "pretzel choking area"... and that's where I ran into the most of my friends that I saw anywhere at the con. One of my ambiguously flirty friends was there with her boyfriend, and I saw plenty of other friends there...

Let's see... then I started wandering up and down the stairs... the fourth floor had the Vampire LARP going and I got to find out how my assassin friends were enjoying that (it didn't sound like something I would enjoy, after all...)

The fourth floor also held the video room, and I hung out there a little, on-and-off throughout the evening. They were showing "The Mask of Fu Manchu" there, and I sat through maybe the first half hour of it. Hilariously dated, but really, I imagine in its time it was considered very ambitious. Next to the likes of Indiana Jones, though, it was as black-and-white as the film it was shot in. I also got to see a good chunk of "Big Trouble in Little China"... which was especially good given the company in the room at the time; I never saw the few people I was watching with, but some of them were seeing it for the first time, or laughing as if they were, and that can make a movie so much more fun for me. It's why I love to show people movies that they "should see" :)

Around midnight I was hanging out with some friends on dealer's row and we started to worry about the T's hours... Some of them left, and...

Aw, damn. I just realized I missed the housewarming I was supposed to go to today. Dammit. I told them I'd be there like on four different occasions yesterday. I should have written it down; I got distracted by a few too many different shiny things today (Sunday)... I should email an apology or something.

Anyway, I ended up with an agreement Saturday night on how to deal with the transportation situation. A game designer friend of mine ("L") would pay for the cab to where my car was parked in Kendall Square, and I would drive him the rest of the way home. It would work really well; it would more than halve his cab fare, and I would get a ride to my car.

Anyway, the time came to execute the plan, around 2am, and we went out to the front door, and, as many probably could have predicted, it was the time in the city when the bars close. So there were these two really obnoxious drunk women out there insulting the doorman for his failure to get them a cab. They were racists, saying things like "go back to your own country" and making fun of the guy's name... It really made me angry, and at some point I interrupted one and said "oh, shut the hell up!" ...some words were exchanged, and "L" and I realized the error of our timing, and we went back into the ol' con.

We ended up at Staff Support, where I finally got to meet up with chaiya (Christy, to me ;) and we hung out a bit with the end of the Staff massage queue, chatting about this and that. I think I showed a bit more of my, um, ... "old-fashioned" side, for lack of a better word for it. Close-minded for a more, um, annoying word :) But it was a good time, and I think I am learning more and more... stuff.

Anyway, "L" and I hit the cab stand again around 3:30 and met up with some friends of mine already there ("R" and "O", a married couple), and their cute friend who I thought seemed vaguely familiar, and the doorman ended up finding us a courier car/limo type thing that cost $20 to get us all to my car at Kendall Square... Which is a lot for a cab, but reasonable, especially since a cab would not have let us pile 5 in the car... Anyway, we got to Kendall, we piled out of the cab, and into my car, and I gave rides from there... Dropped off "R"&"O" at their hotel, and continued to mid-Cambridge with their cute friend, who "L" and I learned quite a bit about in that 10 minute drive :) Ended up with her trying to recruit us into the MIT G&S society (that seems to happen a lot with that crowd, actually) and right after she got out of the car I told L, "I've been stage crew for lesser reasons."

Anyway, drop L off at home, go home, and fall asleep. 6 hours later, I'm awake again. Only this time there's people online already planning a brunch trip, so I wen with them and got to see other people I hadn't seen for a while; one had been in Egypt, one had been in Slovenia, and one had, um, been in New Hampshire (though only for a day).

Hm. nameless journal entries really do get tedious, don't they? It's like all pronoun-land and ... ah, whatever. More later. This is already way too long for a journal entry.

Comments

( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
chaiya
Jan. 20th, 2002 10:52 pm (UTC)
I think I showed a bit more of my, um, ... "old-fashioned" side, for lack of a better word for it. Close-minded for a more, um, annoying word

I have absolutely no clue what you're referencing here. This could be a good thing -- either your radar is way too sensitive, or I've forgotten whatever faux pas you may have committed. All I remember is sitting on your lap and laughing at sugar bowl exhaustion testing. :)
awfief
Jan. 21st, 2002 08:22 am (UTC)
went to look at the brochures, and made an odd realization; this was the "Gay Fandom Party", and the brochures were all about, well, I'm not sure what, because I ended up (gracefully) leaving the room. I was afraid to be taken as gay, and I was afraid of showing my discomfort; I consider myself a liberal guy, and support gay rights, but ...

I guess there may be some insecurity there playing at me... though whenever I've thought about the possibility of being gay (after all, I guess I do fit into some stereotypes there...) the same response comes to mind: it would be such a shame to never get to sleep with a woman. :) It's women who I find attractive, and that's really all there is to it, right? But having that reaction to being in a gay party, it shames me as a good liberal...



As well it should have. The GSFS (gay science fiction society) party was open to everyone. I don't know about the gay and lesbian community, but the bisexual community in Boston is very open to ALL sexualities. I don't assume that everyone in a room is gay if it's a gay event (or bi if it's a bi event) and perhaps other people do what I do, and perhaps others don't.

I've often made the comment to mycroft that it bothers me that, to the uninformed, we look like a heterosexual couple. when we kiss in a public place, we don't look like 2 bisexuals, we look like a straight couple.

Anyway, the point is, did you assume everyone in the room was gay or lesbian based on gender? Did you assume gender? Personally, when I walked in the room, there were at least 2 known bi people out of 10 or so. the GSFS is bi-friendly AND straight friendly.

*shrug* and I think the point is that gay men don't want to sleep with women.

Plus, you could call yourself gay and still sleep with women. There are no "sexuality police" that go around telling you who you can and cannot sleep with.

As an example of my rant, the poster boy for BiCamp (ie, the one who helps bring a lot of people together) is straight, and one of the board members of the Bisexual Resource Center is openly gay.

crs
Jan. 23rd, 2002 07:40 am (UTC)
hmph.
As well it should have.

Well, that's a supportive attitude of someone who's trying. In fact, I didn't assume everyone in the room was gay, but it seemed like a reasonable guess that there was a high percentage of gay people in the room, given the label on the door, the way I was treated upon entering, and the way people on the bed were acting. Actually, I think it was that look I got coming in the door, more than anything else...

I'm not even sure what you're trying to accomplish with this message... am I supposed to learn something I didn't already know? I was talking about gut reactions, a minor bout of irrational heebie-jeebies that I already admitted was unfounded. But then you go and react so negatively... It's not a productive way to foster dialogue when you attack someone who confesses to having some wrong attitude.

I think to be a straight person in that room and feel comfortable, I would have had to be visiting someone... Or at least to be me, and feel comfortable. If they want to be considered "straight-friendly" then they should actually be straight-friendly, rather than just asserting their straight-friendliness.

That said, there was nothing actively hostile there, just vague heebie jeebies, and it was, in fact, likely my closed-mindedness that brought this about, rather than anything they did. Or maybe even just a bit of surprised to find myself in an unexpected situation, just because I couldn't read a sign. I certainly wouldn't ask them to "tone it down;" that wouldn't be fair, in the least, especially since I don't even have an "it" to ask them to tone down. :)

So, in other words, I, too, have no point. *sigh*

awfief
Jan. 23rd, 2002 07:54 am (UTC)
Re: hmph.
Well, my point is that you have to look at yourself and see why you are uncomfortable. Were you assuming that everyone else in the room was assuming you were gay? That seemed to me why you got the heebie-jeebies.

And you confirmed it by saying "I think to be a straight person in that room and feel comfortable, I would have had to be visiting someone..." Why? Why can't you just go there, without visiting someone, just to show your support?

I guess that's my beef. I mean, I guess I don't really go to the BDSM parties "just to show my support" or to other parties in crowds I'm not specifically in, but then again, if I find myself in places where I didn't realize where I was, usually I try to find out what "those" people are like. *shrug*

I guess I was just commenting on the fact that your closed-mindedness annoys me, but I guess you were just commenting that you were annoyed about your closed-mindedness, too.

Um, so, yeah, I was just agreeing with you.
(Anonymous)
Jan. 23rd, 2002 02:15 pm (UTC)
Re: hmph.
Morals/ethics/ideals are about how we *should* feel , journals are about how you *did* feel. Sometimes we feel things strongly, and sometimes those things are not the way we'd like to feel if we had control over our own emotions. Those are the things that it is most important to talk about, to explore, to figure out.

If Chris can figure out *why* he felt uncomfortable, then he can learn something about himself that he may want to change, or we could learn something about the partythat we may want to change in our own parties.

-Pete
awfief
Jan. 23rd, 2002 02:20 pm (UTC)
Re: hmph.
Morals/ethics/ideals are about how we *should* feel , journals are about how you *did* feel.

That's true. But comments on journals are how we feel about how that person felt/acted/whatever. I was just commenting that, like crs himself, I didn't like the way he felt.
crs
Jan. 23rd, 2002 05:01 pm (UTC)
fair enough
I guess my gut reaction was "she's trying to say something beyond just annoyance, what is it?" Sorry to overreact.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )

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