-I danced more than ever before.
-I spent very little, but got very cool stuff
-I spent quite a bit before the con, and got very cool stuff
-Being a fan of unpopular series is cool at cons
-TOO MUCH COSPLAY TO DO
-Uncomfortable shoes like me. D=
-Dancing dancing dancing!!!!
Alex, Nur, and I headed out of SLO at about 9:40am. The drive was pretty uneventful. We didn't hit much traffic, so yay to that. Everytime a version of Hare Hare Yukai came on, I tried to dance to it. Unfortunately, they were all long versions, so it was a bit hard since I only knew the short version. We got to Long Beach at about 1:30 and got in line for registration. It took about two hours to get through, but I was in good company, so we had some nice chats. I brought the Ruler of Badassity to get it peace bonded. I decided to bring my Syaoran costume because Yuki is an interesting costume, but it's hard to be emotionless for too long, and Shanks is cool (and holy crap everyone loves him), but binding my chest hurts and the red marks from just one day of doing it is plenty for me. Syaoran is pretty easy, just a bit big. So I dragged the Ruler through the lines, got three wonderful compliments on it (made me feel so nice! I was asked a few times thoughout the con where I bought it!! XD!!!!), but it turned out they weren't peacebonding on Thursday. This sucked majorly for me, because they have semi-retarded rules regarding weapons now. Can't be over seven feet or over fifteen pounds. My staff is seven feet one inch. I wanted to get it checked on Thursday so I could make sure it was okay and not show up on Friday in costume just to get it rejected.
With badges in hand, we left Long Beach to find our way to Costa Mesa and Book-Off, aka Heaven. I spent twice as much here as I did at the con! But it was worth it. I found a bunch of things I was looking for (009 volumes, Conan, YGO, ToTo!, and on and on, WOOO), and got some wonderful random volumes. I figure, if it is a dollar and looks cool, get it. I've gotten some of the coolest volumes this way. Unfortunately, a lot of the stuff I seem to find is impossible to find the rest of. ANYWHERE (I love you, General Contractor Buddy 999! Even if I can't find anything that says you exhist online, I'll find more volumes someday!). My borther got off work and we headed to Chipotle and then to his place to play some Smash Bros (I'm so rusty!!) and spend the night.
Got up fairly early, drove back to Long Beach, found friends, got staff peace bonded (no hassle about size, yay!), and went to the Viz panel. Nice panel, but all Viz seemed to do at the con (no booth or anything). I wanted to say certain things about Naruto and how I think it may have been handled better from a letterer's point of view, but I held my tongue because I didn't want to be killed for "ruining" Naruto/glomped for helping with Naruto/out of a job for saying what I would have said (HIGHLY unlikely, but there was always that tiny chance...). Generally saying I worked on Naruto seemed like a bad idea, and my points didn't have much strength unless I said that. Oh well.
Checked out the dealer's room, got a From Far Away artbook for $3, a Hideki Kawai yaoi (one of my favorite doujin artists!!) for $1, a box of Giant Robo figures for $10, three posters (Brave Story, Aquarion, and Utawarerumono) for $6, and two cels (Yorn from Eden's Bowy and Daisaki from GIant Robo) for $5 each. At a quarter to three, Audrey called me over to the Bandai booth where we watched Friday's Haruhi dance competition. It looked like so much fun that she and I joined in. I think people liked us a lot. It was a good, really fun warm-up. The ASOS Brigade seemed to really like us, Patty (the Haruhi) double checked to make sure we were coming again on Saturday before announcing the winner. She told us that they really liked us!! What a confidence booster! I honestly have no idea how I spent the rest of the day up until the evening. Nur and I dropped a bunch of stuff off at Alex's car and decided to find food. I thought I ought to wear my loafers around so I would get used to them for the contest the next day. BAD IDEA. After about five blocks, I thought my feet were bleeding. We finally got to a Vons, found no packaged meals or anything, and I had to turn around. I was on the verge of tears, and taking my anger out on Nur was not cool. Luckily, our route back took us past a Subway, so we did get food. Glorious food. We went back to the car to eat and watch the Cat Returns on Artemis, but his battery was really low. We decided to steal power from the convention center, so we walked the retardedly round about way around the convention center in order to get inside. The movie was awesome and the food was good. We got our Haruhi group together and practiced until about midnight, then all went our seperate ways.
Saturday, THE BIG DAY
We stayed at Nik's place throughout the con. In order to get to the con at a reasonable time, we had to get up really early. Not because he was oh-so-far-away, but because we needed showers and whatnot. So I throw myself out of bed vat about 6:15, grab a shower, get in my Yuki costume, get ready to go. I bummed a ride with Nik because he left slightly earlier than Alex and Nur. But... this rushed me and I forgot my cartigan and book. Luckily, Alex and Nur were nice enough to bring them for me. I got to the rest of our Haruhi group at about 8:35, and we fixed ourselves up, danced a bit, and got pictures taken by a million people, including the very awesome Eurobeat King. The dealer's room line, which we were in, finally started to move, and we were able to get to the Bandai booth to get ready for the Haruhi dance contest. We danced and danced well. Then we participated in a dance-off... and lost. But! They liked us enough that they gave us backstage passes for the concert and told us that they would try to get us on stage too. (The grand prize, if you didn't know, was to dance onstage with the Japanese seiyuu for the three girls.) We were miffed for not winning (I swear, when they did the "cheering check" to see what the audience thought, we got way more), but it all turned out alright. Our group had to kill time until we could go back stage, so we went out for food, then just sat around for a couple hours.
When we got backstage, they told us we were in and that we would be dancing the full version and the short version. First, OMG YAY WE'RE GOING TO DANCE IN FRONT OF 9000 PEOPLE THIS IS SO COOL HOLY CRAP OHHHH MAN I'M SO EXCITED. Second, wait, FULL DANCE? Uh-oh. We waited for further instructions from the people running the concert and hung out with the grand prize winners, the BBQ Brigade, and Friday's winner, Jenny. They were all really, really awesome and I'm so happy that we got to spend time with them! Everything was running late because of earlier delays and sound problems, so we didn't even get to do a run through beforehand. We sat and watched Chiharu-san (Yuki's seiyuu) start a couple songs, and watched Jonny Bosch chat with other VAs a couple seats in front of us. They didn't have anything to play music for us, so Audrey had to make something up based on memory until someone brought over their iPod. With that, she and the other Haruhi were able to piece stuff together. Right before the concert began, we got little iPod speakers, so we did a couple run-throughs using those. Yuki and Mikuru of the ASOS Brigade joined us at the end, so that was really cool. I think we really pulled it together. We watched the concert from the right of the stage. Awesome seats. XD When it was our turn, we all lined up and headed out. There were a lot of people on stage, the three seiyuu in front, the ASOS brigade behind them, and us contest winners in the back with the english VAs inbetween us. I think we did really well, especially for the thrity minutes of practice we were given! I messed up a little bit on a Yuki solo-ish part, but otherwise I think it was okay. They royalled messed up the encore, and we all got back onstage part-way through the song. Oh well, we were so used to dancing, everyone just snapped into the right move exactly as we got there! I hear the concert will be an extra on the fourth Haruhi disc, so I'm really excited!! A cameraman filmed us a bit backstage too, I wonder if that will be on it as well. We were SO tired afterwards, we just headed to the Hyatt's lobby to sit and make plans for dinner. We didn't get to dinner (@ Bubba Gump) until about 9, so we were out pretty late again. But the day was completely awesome. Such an amazing experience!
Shanks cosplay day! Got lots of loving, especially at the One Piece panel. Everyone loves Shanks! That panel was fun, as was the Funimation panel, the Production IG panel, and the Bandai Panel. I got a couple free things, a free poster and a bright pink Gekko State shirt. The shirt is just so bright and different from what I usually wear, I like it. We also attended the hilarious Mega64 panel. Good stuff. It was an early day for us, so we headed home around 9 and got some In-N-Out back around Nik's place.
Syaoran again! Didn't do much again today... Went to the Manga panel with Rebecca and Nik at 10. It was AWESOME! They showed episode 4 of Karas, which was SO AWESOME. Otoha, you keep going up the scale of awesome. Awesome awesome awesome. And super badass. I can't wait until the full DVD comes out in late October. SO BADASS. Ahhh, after that I went back to the dealer's room and bought a couple more little things, then we headed to the director's panel, lunch, and the art and charity auctions. I really, really wanted either that Mushishi print or the Mushishi art, but they were waaaaay out of my range. AX was over for us, so we headed to Alex's car, which promptly blew a fuse. Luckily, it was still driveable, so we got it back to Nik's place and eventually fixed. Well, the guys fixed it, I was moral support. We left Nik's at 9:30ish and got back to SLO at 1am or so. Poor Alex had to leave at 6am the next day. Ouch. :(
-Omg Haruhi dance! Such an incredible experience!
-My costumes got lots of love this year!
-Wheee, cheap and awesome cels!
-Hanging out with lots of cool people I don't get to spend much time around
-Convention center sucked
-Poorly planned con
-Convention center staff were very rude and not helpful
-I came down with a cold on Sunday (and it's only getting worse... D= )
-Not going to the Oreskaband concert! I just got some of their songs, and SO GOOD!!!
My Wataru armor on Wednesday morning. This is why it wasn't coming to AX. Look how small it is compared to the barrel I wore at Fanime!! XD XD XD
Aruru!! She was really adorable. <3
Don't look so happy, guys. But 009 love, nonetheless.
Violinist of Hameln???? SWEET. They were really cute together too! XD
Hikora of Kakurenbo! Sorry about the bad picture, but this short needs more love!
♥♥♥ After this picture was taken,
Audrey and Steven(sp?) being adorable.
Sapphire of Princess Knight. TEZUKA LOVE REPRESENT!!
More 009 love! There were TWO 005s at the con. TWO. Most excellent, most excellent. He was much more into it than the other guys. And, hahaha, you can see my reflection in the window! XD
A REALLY good Haruka. She was really amazing.
Kamen Rider, I think. Old school represent! This was a really spectacular costume.
Lots of manga. This picture is pretty big, so I'm just going to link it. Most of these are from Book-Off (plus some Houshin Engi and Bleach vol 1 which I had already put away), but the Love Com fan book and the first volume of Birdy the Mighty is from a store near Nik's place.
My backstage pass. I will treasure it forever. Well, at least for a good long while. ♥
My box O' Giant Robo figures. I've only put two together so far... >_>;;;
My new cels (and sketches). Top row, from the left: Daisaku (Giant Robo), Akito +Sketch (Nadesico). Bottom row: Nube +Sketch(Jigoku Sensei Nube), Yorn (Eden's Bowy), and another Daisaku (Giant Robo). Mmmmmm, yes.
One of my two Yu-Gi-Oh shirts. The other one is has Yami on it, but I wore it Monday night, so it was upstairs when I was taking pictures. Hey, don't look at my like that! It was 2 for $5, I couldn't resist!!
That's all from AX! I have some pictures from earlier I just rediscovered, so I'll (hopefully) post those later!
A Rightstuf order came in yesterday! I ordered the first two (extremely cheap) Power Stone discs to pad my order and get free shipping. It's dub only, but maaaaan do I love this show. It's absolutely ridiculous and seems to make fun of itself at times. It really kept me going through a very long day or work and being sick.