Zigismunda formosa (melannen) wrote,
Zigismunda formosa

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Con.txt was great fun! I haven't updated about it yet for two reasons:

The first one is that I came home on Sunday night, got back online, and all over my flist I found links to explications of old Harry Potter BNF nonsense. The start of that HP story, just so you know, almost exactly corresponds to the time and place in which I first started being actively involved in slash fandom, and I remember following everything listed there, as it happened, and rolling my eyes at how silly and obviously fake it all was - and by that I mean not just the actual sockpuppets, but the whole cult of fame in that fandom at the time, which is so different from the way BNFs have been everywhere I've been since. I'm so glad I was mostly only interacting with other Peterfen at the time (and yes, I do still believe he'll be redeemed. I do!) It seems so long ago, but it really wasn't - and you know, all the people saying it was boggle me; at the time, anybody who hadn't been on HPfGU since before Book 4 came out was pretty much doomed to never be an oldbie. And now people blithely talk about forgetting stuff that happened a year or so ago. My goodness, last weekend I was arguing with people who've been BNFish since the original run of MfU, and people are talking like 15 months is ancient history?

The work that went into that was amazing - we need more mild-mannered reporters on the internet - and it made a lot of things make slightly more sense, and paradoxically enough, to some extent restored my faith in that fandom. But at the same time it was very depressing and made me occasionally wonder why anybody bothers with fandom in the first place, because it was so unrelievedly grindingly horrid.

And that was something completely the opposite of con.txt, and the people at con.txt, in every way, and I didn't want to contaminate my squee. (Why did she have to post it *that* weekend? OMG conspiracy!)

The second reason is the complete Highlander on VHS that I brought home from the swap table at the con. (Well, it was missing a few episodes from Season 3, including the first one with what-his-name, the guy with the big nose), but seriously, NOT COMPLAINING. I loved the swap table; everything I left there went, I picked up some good stuff, and it was fascinating to watch the stuff appear and disappear all weekend. And it reinforced my faith that if one is just patient enough, all things will come unto her. Six whole seasons of Highlander and a movie, and whoever taped them had even spliced out all of the commercials! Me, I consider it too much work even to wait for an .avi download. Though actually, VHS tapes are better, because with a DVD or a video file, you have to pick an episode and load it and watch it and if you want to go do something else it's easy to start right back where you left off. With VHS tapes, the only efficient thing to do is stick one in and then let in run until it's over - saves rewinding time, y'know. At least, that's how it seems to work for me, as I've had DVDs and video files waiting forever, but you don't want to know how many HL episodes I've already watched. Of course, it could just be that HL is love. That's probably worth the con fee right there, because otherwise I'd've eventually caved and bought the DVDs, I'm sure.

Granted, the quality of the tapes isn't quite up to DVD standard, probably because they're copies of copies of copies, but really, that just adds to the experience. It gives me a feeling of history and communion, that I am seeing the show just like the fangirls who came before me did. The older-than-me average age range at the con in general was good for that - I feel like this con really had a good balance between the old fandom ways and the new. Plus, I've now seen actual zines! Though I didn't buy any. What with thirty VHS tapes I haven't got the shelf space for anyway. And I'm boggled over again at just how good the cinematography is in this show. And the characters too of course. Did you know that Alexa is pretty much the only female character in the last six seasons who wears her skirts ankle-length rather than almost pornographic? Which means that Methos fell for the only girl on the planet who dressed like I do. q-: Also, MacLeod's father was played by the same actor who played Merlin of the Ancients.

And speaking of that, at con.txt, libitina (I hope it was libitina; she's the one I'm e-mailing it to) really really wanted to see the HL crossover I've only been talking about since the Atlantis pilot, and now that I've the tapes I've really no excuse for putting off working on it any longer, so I'm going to have to watch a bunch more of them for background research. And the start of SGA, which I also have on VHS, luckily for me! So I spent most of yesterday, when not engaged in schoolwork, watching videotapes and squeeing quietly to myself.

As for something resembling an actual con report - Yay! Let's see. I got to at least talk to everyone from my flist who was there. Except isiscolo, I think, but I did see the glory of the miniskirt. And I thought I had missed obsessed1 until I realized she was the lovely person who gave me Mardi Gras beads. (Hi Obi1! I wish I'd realized that was you!) And I would've missed idlerat except she made sure to say hi to me on the last day. And I sat in on a couple of panels that penknife was moderating.

...okay, so I totally fail at socializing. Most of the time when not at panels, I sat in the ConSweet doing this really ridiculously hard Spike puzzle that the concomm had left out, with as many as half a dozen other people helping and chatting at various times. Even during the dance. We still didn't finish it by Sunday. And I don't remember anybody's names. I don't do freestyle socializing very well. And it was my first con, after all, and I didn't start out knowing *anybody* in person. And I wasn't staying at the hotel, so I wasn't there for the drunker bits, not that I'd've known where they were anyway. Or gotten drunk.

Which is why the weekend was so *cool*, because there were plenty of opportunities for *structured* socializing, and everybody was so wonderfully friendly and accepting that I didn't feel awkward or shy ever no matter what I was doing or saying. Plus, the very coolest thing about a weekend with fangirls? I can go up to random people reading the label on a can of soda and say things like "Every time people do that, I assume they're checking for citrus" and have them know what I meant. (Not that I don't say things like that anyway; I just usually get blank looks for it.)

By Saturday night I had got over my shy enough that I sat in to the second round of ellen_fremedon's Fandom Spelling Bee, and managed to come in third on a really embarrassing Stargate word, and then she talked a bunch of us into sticking around to finish the rest of words she had worked out. Which, made-up science fiction words and obscure fandom references and conlang etymology and general extreme sf geekery? And other people who understand how much fun that is? How could I resist? So, yes. That was brilliant fun. Plus, nobody even knew Klingon, so there.

Much of the rest of the weekend was spent in panels. I went to a panel in every panel slot (except one) and I talked a *lot*. In fact, in retrospect (as usually happens on the odd occasion that I squash my social anxiety and let my love of discussion go free) it feels like I talked too much. Lots too much. But nobody seemed terribly upset at me at the time, and I've even seen things I said come up in a couple of con reports, so. And there were some *really* good discussions going, and I got to attach a lot of fandom names to faces. And every single person who I recognized from lj discussion is even smarter and even nicer and more fun than they seem online, and everybody I didn't recognize made me want to go look up their lj immediately and see what I was missing. And did I mention pretty? There was a lot of pretty at that con, and I'm not just talking about the vid show or the slide show (Although there was a lot of pretty there, too, and they were both masterfully put together.)

Let's see. So, did I mention a lot of panels? I kind of hoped getting a chance to sit in on live discussion like that would cut *down* on the number of meta posts I wanted to make. Hahaha. I should have known better. I could do several entire posts on the thinky things in each panel. But I think I will limit myself to short irrelevant comments on each, rather than the thinky stuff, as I am about to fall over asleep anyway.

Friday: Bitextuality (...people wanted to read my H/G/T story?), Where do the women go (there was a *lot* of good discussion here. Also I brought up BL for the first time), Star Wars pairings (The crack panel was up against this one, so it was very small, but it was nice to get a view of post-prequel fandom, even if I was probably very annoying during it, and the Star Wars fans made me feel so at home), fan potrayal in the media (in which I managed to talk about Bones), the politics of slash (I came in late to this one due to every single parking space in Silver Spring being metered), OT3s (The mod promised she'd make a recs post from this panel, which I am really looking forward too.) And the Doctor Who for Non-Downloaders DIY panel, which was a fun, laid-back safe space for discussion.

Saturday: Writing Longer Stories (In which I said I'd get back to work on the HL/SGA), Photoshop for Icons (this is where I confess that I went to no fandom-specific events for either SGA or HP. I just don't find Snape or Sheppard that complicated, and there was always polyfan stuff going on at the same time. I was really well beyond the skill level the Photoshop tutorial was aimed at, though - I'm tempted to do some GIMP tutorials just so people stop thinking they need to waste money on Adobe in order to crop a screenshot.) Going Pro (in which to industry professionals talked to us. In their capacity as pros rather than as fangirls, which really made it a rather different sort of panel than any of the others. Although it was nice to get a bit more up-to-date on the industry, in case I ever finish any original stuff anytime soon.) Comics and Canon (Yay comics! and also, I talked about CRFH!!! and webcomics. As I do.) When Subtext becomes Text (Alan and Denny! People watch one episode of that show, and they say "I've never seen anything less subtextual in my life." And the episode they've watched never turns out to be one of the slashier ones, even.) Fanworks, Copyright, and Tradework (in which I blatantly pumped executrix for research for a BL fanfic). And Slashing the Past, in which I talked too much. And brought up my Boston Legal fic again. And got some really good recs.

Sunday: Only three panels. What Fanfic Teaches Us About Writing (the best part was how people kept using Methos sprawling on something as an example of descriptive writing, and every single time, the *entire* room would go quiet for a second just to enjoy the image in silence), Firefly and Sex in the 'Verse (In which I was not on the same shipping page as anyone, possibly because the only slash ships I ship there are Mal/Inara (and Mal/Wash/Zoe, sometimes)), and Writing Diversity, whose moderators tried valiantly, but in ultimate futility, to actually get somewhere with that topic. Although I now want to write the story where Teyla and Ronon visit the US and encounter the concept of racism for the first time.

And then Dead Duck, about which I want to re-iterate:: Con Committee, though I have no standard to judge by, you did an amazing and awesome job as first-timers (and for this first-timer). It all went flawlessly as far as I could see, and I had a really, really great time.

Also, I think I had the weirdest hairdo of anybody at the con, which I was really not expecting, because fangirls=weird in my limited experience. But I forgot how many old-style slash fen are used to working undercover, I guess. Well, anybody who remembers the girl who talked too much in panels and had her hair done up in pirate braids with Canadian pennies in them will know it was me.
Tags: con, fandom, highlander, meta

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