I spent the last week in San Diego for Comic-Con.
It was a fantastic time. Here’s the full story.
I got in about noon Tuesday, and walked to our place. My friend Scott found an awesome place. It was a huge open loft, three beds, a pull out bed, and some couches. It was 2 blocks from the convention center, and just incredible. It had a full kitchen, and Ralph’s super market was two blocks away. I went for a jog to check out the convention center, and got to see the massive trucks unloading huge crates of stuff at the back of the convention center.
Scott showed up that afternoon, and was equally wowed by the place. We threw back a couple beers, then headed over to the Padres stadium, met up with Pants (Brian C from Comic Geek Speak), and headed in to the game. We had great seats on the field level back up above the home dugout.
That ballpark in San Diego is a great park. It feels new and a nice place to sit for an evening. One corner of the stadium at the left field is built into an old historic building of some sort, very cool. I think pretty much any stadium seems great when compared to Oakland coliseum though.
I didn’t watch that much of the game though, since I was talking with Scott and Pants most of the time about comics and whatnot. Ralph joined us after a few innings as well, which made a great group to hang out with.
After the game Scott and I headed back to our apartment, sat around a bit and threw back some beers. Drinking beer was a prominent activity throughout the entire weekend.
The weather in San Diego was fantastic. I realized this when I was sitting outside on our patio at night, wearing shorts and a t-shirt, and wasn’t cold at all. Some of the best times of the convention happened late at night, sitting around talking comics with my apartment mates.
Wednesday is Preview Night at SDCC, but it is really just another day of the convention. There is really nothing “preview” about it. I got to the convention center about half an hour after badge pickup started. The line was long, and it took a while to get through. The funny thing was that the line for pros and press was much longer than for attendees. They had hundreds of folks working the line for regular attendees, but only a dozen or so working the line for press and professionals. I was attending the show as press for my Only The Valiant Podcast.
Wednesday was all about convention exclusives for me. I went around to a few booths and bought exclusive toys and statues only available at SDCC. My plan was to work Wednesday night to get stuff I could sell on ebay, and help pay for my trip down. Mission accomplished. There was a fiasco getting the Green Lantern Blackest Night figure, but I eventually got the first of the five figures. I wouldn’t be so lucky with the rest, as I figured out Thursday.
The best part of Preview Night was meeting up with everyone afterwards. We had a nice meet up at the Tilted Kilt for food and beer. About 15 or so folks showed up, we got our drink on, talked about preview night, and what we were looking forward to. I recorded the first OTV Comic-Con Episode, which was great fun.
The meet up at the Tilted Kilt was a beginning of a theme throughout the convention, the best times are not the convention, not the panels, not the dealers, but spending time with people and friends. Conventions are a chance to get together with friends, meet new people, strengthen those ties, and hang out. The convention itself plays a small role in the overall experience, and is just the thing that brings us all to the same place at the same time.