In a word, Otakon, the Japanese Anime convention at the Baltimore Convention Center last weekend, was draining.
I'll post some photos as soon as my buddy RJ sends them to me.
It was my first time navigating the inside of the sprawling convention center. I hope I never have to do it again. This massive building takes up two whole city blocks and is horribly confusing -- even with a map.
Otakon's volunteer staff made it even trickier by labeling some doors "exit only" and others "entrance only." Several times, we were told to walk all the way around the convention center to get to the "in" door because this was the "out" door and God forbid we walk in through the out door, even though no one is walking out, but rules are rules and rules shouldn't be broken. Gimme a break.
My little sister Emily and I caught a couple decent new anime flicks, munched on some Pocky, bought some merchandise and walked around all afternoon.
As expected, at least a third of the crowd came in costume. My two favorite ones actually weren't anime-related at all. One guy came dressed as Jesus, complete with a giant cross he lugged around all day. People went nuts. Everybody wanted their picture taken with Jesus.
Also saw Santa Claus (real beard!), who posed for photos with an index finger over his lips, saying "SHHH." Guess Mrs. Claus didn't approve of him sneaking away from the North Pole.
Around 4 p.m., we ended up in an almost unbearable How to Write Japanese seminar. It was a classic case of the awkward leading the awkward. Emily summed it up nicely: "I learned how not to teach Japanese."
We left, exhausted, around 5 p.m.