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Okay – I was going to launch the LBB last Wednesday, July 1 – because it seemed like a good date to start. I was going to journal my experiences at CONvergence 2009 and pop that puppy in the mail on the 7th when I was rested enough to see my way to the mailbox.
That didn’t happen.
CONvergence kicked my ass in all sorts of fun ways and I am still recovering. I didn’t dress up or down, opting to merely test the waters by being myself. I called the T.A.R.D.I.S tea Society my home base and set out from there. You’ll read articles about people assigned to go but didn’t really attend. Those pieces are written from the sidelines because it was easier than actually getting involved in the panels and events and overall pageantry. They mention the parties and the drunks and people who walked around in skimpy costumes. Except CONvergence is more than a 4-day party.
They don’t mention the Guests of Honor
They don’t mention the panels on the creative process
They don’t mention the fantastic perks of being a registered CON-goer and how ridiculously awesome and accommodating the staff of the Sheraton Bloomington was.
Oh – Samantha Fox of Minnesota: I found your ID and Room Key on the stairs near the North Entrance and turned them in to Reception. I hope you got them back (I actually got a little worried for you).
Those articles are written as ironic feathers in the caps of scenesters that lack anything substantial to pad a writer’s resume. I saw enough of them this week to know that just because CON seemed to be *the* place to be, they stuck out like sore thumbs, the equivalent of losers in lampshades at the Office Holiday party.
This was my first CONvergence experience, and despite tales and videos to the contrary, I was wholly unprepared.
I learned a few things this past weekend that I will now outline for you in bullet form:
There is a Creator Community in the Twin Cities of which that I am deeply envious. They support each other, support the community, and boast a roster teaming with people who’s brains I find especially sexy – people too smart for the room, but cool enough to understand that every experience brings new knowledge.
I learned that you are never too young or too seasoned to have a good time, and yes after the kiddies went home to chicken nuggets and whatever comes on Nick, the adults came out to play. It was the reward, see – for all of the panels ad networking and signings. You could become an honorary Goddess, or sip specially brewed “tea” in the T.A.R.D.I.S. I boogied at the Romulan Consulate and got my go-go on at the COW Asylum. Seriously, there was a party for everyone, someplace to chill and be chilled.
I learned that we need cool stuff like this here in the Mitten, and I do not imagine drawing that large of a crowd and organizing that many activities is an easy task. I will not claim the weekend was trouble-free, and some panels could have a stronger more knowledgeable moderator, but to niggle over the minor quips is like complaining that you spent a glorious day sunning on a Hawaiian beach and got sand in your shoe.
I had some minor drama this weekend, and Saturday was especially difficult for me. It wasn’t anything I couldn’t handle, but it put me off my game for a while. A dear friend’s mother passed this weekend. It was expected that it would happen, just not this weekend. Just when you think you have time to reminisce and laugh over old times, you get CC’ed on the memo that time isn’t your own to casually arrange. I was torn between heading back home to be the supportive person I know I can be, and being the person that stays put because I knows there are some situations I simply cannot assistant with. In the end I chose to stay in the Twin Cities and prepared to be ready when called upon.
All in all, I’ll be back next year, a little better prepared and ready to