As a high schooler I always wanted to attend Comic Con’s like my friends, but I’m actually grateful I didn’t become a convention goer until my twenties. It’s the appreciation I have for the whole experience as an adult that makes conventions better.
Some of my high school friends have dropped off from the scene, while some attend one or two. It was the summer after college for me, when I first attended a convention. I was 23, and my twin sister and I fell in love with the whole ConnectiCon world. It was also a nice reunion with my college friends. I went to CCSU in New Britain, CT, and most of my friends were from that end of the state. Going up and down the escalators were many of my old classmates. I also caught up with college friends outside of the convention, which topped the whole long weekend.
Conventions aren’t perfect, but honestly the imperfections don’t bother me. Maybe it’s because I’m an adult, and we all need an escape from that adult place.
As an east coaster I spend most of my convention time in my home state of Connecticut, Rhode Island, and in New York. I’ve branched out well past one convention in the past two years as well. So far it’s been ComiCONN when it was in Hartford, and then later at Foxwoods, ConnectiCon, Big Apple Comic-Con, Rhode Island Comic Con, Liberty Anime, and TerrifiCon. There was also a Comic Con night at a Sound Tigers Hockey game in Bridgeport, CT. Mixing hockey and conventioning was the best decision ever by the way.
I never get enough for my convention fix though. Now my season kicks off with Big Apple Comic Con, and then I can’t wait to get to the next convention. There’s a bit of a gap from late spring to summer, when my list of conventions starts up again, and part of that is because I can only attend so many conventions. Dishing out money on the metro north, greyhound bus, peter pan bus, or amtrak, and hotels can be a bit tough, but every dime I save toward expressing my ultimate nerdness is worth it. My sister and I regret nothing, and are pretty good at conventioning on a moderate budget. The trips can’t be recreated any other way. We’ve even taken our parents a long for a few. My Mom’s more of a convention goer than my Dad though. At TerrifiCon he didn’t recognize someone was from Game Thrones, and my sister had to explain that his autograph area wasn’t the information desk. You can’t get that story anywhere else. Also, to be fair to my Dad only my sister watches that show in our family.
My sister wears costumes and I wear “nerd shirts.” Although my sister still thinks we should be the Shining twins. Back to the Future, and The Breakfast Club are some of my favorite graphics to break out. You can’t attend a convention incorrectly. Unless you sneak in without paying, or you’re one of those weird people who says perverted things to cosplayers. Then you are trash, but beyond that almost everything is acceptable. Some people volunteer as staff, some people work at the convention centers, some people cosplay, and some people wear nerd shirts. Some people also come as media guests, artists, or vendors. Shout out to them for making the days fun. Honestly though you could wear a full on business suit, or sweats and sneakers, and no one could stop you. Comic Con’s are a place to release your inner nerd, and take a backseat to the whole adulting thing. The cons, are just fun.