Chaos Attraction

Carnivale Expo Weekend

2015-05-03, 8:08 p.m.

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So apparently the notifylist stopped working and nobody said anything about it to me and I can't find anything about it. Grrr. Have now replaced with TinyLetter.

This was a super busy weekend. I had been planning to go to at least two events this weekend--I attempted to invite other people but everyone bailed. (And I flaked on the third out of exhaustion because I was just not up to waking early on Saturday.)

I actually ended up with free time on Friday night (which is to say, Meg and I were going to get together but she felt sick, so never mind), so I headed off to the movie theater to brave the geekline and see Avengers: Age of Ultron. For the record, every 2-D showing was sold out except for 11:30 p.m., which should perhaps tell you something about the popularity of 3-D. I myself don't usually think the extra few bucks worth it unless it's an animated movie, but in this case I considered myself lucky to get a 7:30 showing in 3D. Plus they gave me free popcorn for that. So I sat in the geekline (and seriously, SOME DUDES BROUGHT A TABLE AND CHAIRS) for an hour and then got in, but that one wasn't sold out.

Anyway, I considered it a good movie. Rather overstuffed on people and I concur that some elements of the plot are a little ridiculous, but Joss had to work with what they gave him, I suspect. And I think he did an excellent job balancing out giving attention to all of the other characters, giving Hawkeye some love since he didn't get much in the last movie, etc. So, good show for me. Funny stuff makes me happy, and to quote someone I heard speaking today, Joss doesn't waste a word.

On Saturday I went to the Intergalactic Expo. It was a wee bitty con--I've never actually gone to a sci-fi one before--featuring all space television shows, or any other geek reference you want to make, really. (I spotted an Anna from Frozen, though I'll admit it took me awhile to figure it out since she had short red hair with a pale streak....oh yeah, and it was Frozen at a sci-fi con.) I was heavily debating whether or not to go to this one Saturday or Sunday--it would have been more advantageous to me to go to this one on Sunday and they would have had more craft vendors on that day--but ended up picking today because they were going to have panels on Farscape and the women of Whedon and a steampunk show and a dance party.

Okay, the dance party turned out to be a bust--when I saw four people on the floor at the end I thought "Okay, never mind, I'll just go home and clean the house then"--and the steampunk show was confusing and weird and I gave up halfway through, and the "panel" on Farscape turned out to be just a showing of "Out Of Their Minds" (not that that's bad).

But the other discussion panels were excellent, and I ended up having a good time listening to them and spending pretty much all of my time in lectures on the anthropology of Star Wars and Star Trek (by this guy who teaches this stuff alllllll the time at his college and handed out a lot of free papers on his writing), and a discussion of how the science in sci-fi goes awry in Hollywood but also inspires scientific developments. And the Whedon panel was just excellent and had GREAT discussion with a lot of very cool women. I went to the steampunk show and like I said, eventually left it and found out the discussion was still going on a half hour later, so I just went back and listened in. There were some very cool ladies in there, the sorts of people I wish I could hang out with if our lives ever overlapped. But they don't, so oh well. But hoo boy, was it fun to get to talk about all my geek TV shows with people in person instead of online because my IRL friends don't watch all that much television. It was also a darned good idea to go see Avengers before a geek con, for the record.

It was a small affair, but entertaining to me at least. I always like seeing costumes/cosplay. It kind of made me wish I had a cosplay outfit, but I don't really know who I'd dress up as. I'm not really a Trekkie/into the girl's outfits, I love Princess Leia but her outfits are kinda dull (and Padme's...ugh. Oh yeah, there was some FUN discussion on the weaknesses of Padme today), I can't pull off an Aeryn Sun and the other ladies of Farscape are too complicated, Firefly...I dunno, maybe if I got an Inara dress and busted out my black wig? As for Doctor Who, well, I've never made a TARDIS dress (or a Dalek dress), but maybe someday.

I had a moment of dumb--I showed up to the Expo early and while I was waiting around for it to start, I saw in my iPod planner that I'd said I'd go with Merry to a thing in Sac on Sunday night. At which point I was all, "oh crap, I really should have gone to this tomorrow and not Vallejo with the longer commute." I called her and she said she'd be coming from Oakland herself, so...late might just be happening anyway.

As for Sunday, I went to Carnivale Fantastico, a new Italian Renaissance Faire in Vallejo. It was working out its kinks a bit--they had parking far away from the event and a shuttle bus or two to take people to the event, there was a charge for that ($5) they didn't warn folks about online, and according to someone on the bus she found out that you could park across the street from the event for $10. Ah well...it's the first year.

Here's the thing about this one: I go to Vallejo so infrequently (last time I went is here) that I forget about its weather. Which is to say, it is near water and thus is fucking WINDY. I tend to forget about this, plus I think when I've been there it's usually been in June or so. But as I was driving over to Vallejo and suddenly the day went from sunny to pure pea soup gray San Francisco, I was all "fuck, shoulda checked the weather report before I left." It was a cold, cold day over there. The park it was in, as far as I can tell, wasn't even by the water and it was still frigid and the winds were so strong I was afraid that the tents were going to start blowing into people's heads. The sun did come out after awhile, but it was incredibly damn blustery. This is probably the only Renaissance Faire in California where the performers aren't too hot for once--heck, they wanted more clothing. I had a conversation with one of the No Parchment Needed players (the cute one photographed here) and she said she had made a cloak for her "wussy" fiance and he offered it to her before she left and she said, no she'd be fine... Hah. I was luckier in that I had plans with Merry after this and in the event that I got back late, I had brought a pair of pants and a jacket in the car. So I put the pants on under all of my skirts and wore the non-period jacket and hoped for the best. And at least I was warm from the waist down under all of that. But seriously, if/when I ever go back to the Pirate Festival, WEAR MORE CLOTHING.

Other than the weather, it was a cute little faire, kind of reminded me of going to the Folsom one in a lot of ways. I finally got to watch No Parchment Needed, which somehow never has seemed to happen when I go with friends--or when we tried they were doing the show in the bar and we couldn't hear for shit in the back so we gave up. This was clearly a small child friendly faire (i.e. no bar area), so not an issue this time. It was interesting to watch it as someone who's learning improv now, albeit not the short games style that they're doing. (And coincidentally, I just finished listening to an interview with the Improvised Shakespeare Company.) I kind of wanted to nosily ask questions, but didn't. I also saw the "Manly Men In Tights" again, Rome version, and a "Seven Deadly Sins" play for like fifteen minutes, and Romeo and Juliet, and some kind of Bachelor-ish? parody about final roses. And a glassmaking demo, which I am into. I managed to restrain myself on the shopping given what's going on next weekend and only bought myself a $5 rainbow necklace.

After the final show I had on my list, I decided that if I wasn't going to buy anything else and had eaten and was getting windblown out the wazoo, I might as well leave early--this turned out to be a good idea because Merry hadn't gone to the thing she was going to go to today and was actually going to be ready to leave on time. So I went back, changed clothes, hit the grocery store, and then met Merry at her house to go to Sac. We were meeting certain hippie-ish friends of hers to go picnic in the park for the full moon, and we ate veggies and otherwise yakked about stuff, like them all suddenly wanting to make ass pillows after I brought mine to sit on. There may be another gathering at the end of the month, we'll see. It was fun. Then after that, Merry wanted to go out for dessert without her husband around, so we did that. Huzzah!


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