Another year, another Dragon*Con under my belt. As usual, it was different. Each year seems to possess its own atmosphere. I'd sum up this year as "I'm having fun, but I'm tired, dude." Most people just looked weary, even on Day One.
We took a room at the Hilton downtown instead of one of the main convention hotels to avoid the crowds. That didn't work as tons of people (and their dogs) headed north into Atlanta to avoid Hurricane Frances. We honestly thought there was a dog convention somewhere in town until we asked someone. A number of the escapees were elderly folks and they seemed a bit bewildered. And that was BEFORE Dragon*Con started. The wait for the elevators proved almost as daunting at the Hilton as it would have at the Hyatt or the Marriott (the main con hotels).
I only ended up with one panel assigned (last year I did five) so I crashed one when other panelists didn't show up. Some snafu with the scheduling it appears. Hope they work that out for next year as I really like doing the panels. Got to meet a whole new batch of writer folks and reconnect with lots of friends from all over everywhere. And Mage (aka Harold, the husband) wore his new Utilikilt.
For those of you not familiar with Utilikilts, they are kilts for the average guy. Not plaid like traditional Scottish kilts, but made of denim or poplin or leather. They even have a version for guys who do construction. So these are seriously built kilts. Mage loves his and when topped off with a jacket, he looks great. "Freeing men of trouser tyranny" is their claim and it did the trick. Some go regimental (no underwear for those of you not familiar with the term) and some wear something beneath. Given the fact that women occasionally will hike your kilt just to look (without asking, I might add) you have to decide where to be modest or not. Given the sheer number of kilt-wearing men this year, I'd say the 'have a peak' trend is declining. A few years ago a guy in a kilt was a novelty. Now it's standard issue.
I also came to love sour apple martinis. I've never tasted one of these and so I actually tried one, contrary to my rule about not consuming a bunch of alcohol at Dragon. You can blame the husband -- he bought me the first one. And then Sunday night I decided to have more of them than I should have. Wheeeee! Monday morning I was up and back at the convention, doing just fine. By Monday afternoon, though, I was starting to fray at the edges and packed it in. Husband (who didn't drink a drop) claims to have a hangover. Go figure.
Next year's Dragon is Sept. 2-5. If you've never been to one -- give it a shot. Where else can you see an entire forest full of hobbits/elves and the most remarkable Gollum this side of Hollywood. And the Gene Simmons clones were pretty awesome as well.
Must find Advil...