Eric (datan0de) wrote,

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I never really left...

I love `con. I love it more than I can express. Dragon*Con is the high point of the year for me, but I dearly love all of the `cons we attend - Dragon*Con, Necronomicon, and Frolicon/Fantasm. They are the environment where I am most in my element - where I am most myself. I love even my "mundane" life, but I feel most alive at `con.

It's not perfect though, and I have a couple of complaints about `con (and Dragon*Con in particular). One complaint is that I can only be in one place at a time. When there are up to 5 different "must do" events happening at the same time it requires painful compromises and crushing sleep deprivation.

The biggest problem is simply that it ends. A con lasts 3-5 days, and then you go back to the real world, right? And the contrast between "con space" and "normal space" is jarring. Honestly, the only thing that keeps me from falling into a depression after Dragon*Con is the promise of Necronomicon right around the corner. I suspect that my obsessive need to take copious pictures at `con stems from a desperate desire to bring some small part of con space back into normal space. As the event winds down my strongest desire is to not have to leave con space.

This year, to my delight, I haven't really had to.

Most of my "recreational listening" nowadays is podcasts, and many of my favorite podcasts - The Skeptics' Guide to the Universe, Point of Inquiry, The Signal, Skepticality, etc., had some representation at Dragon*Con. What's more, they've been steadily airing recordings of some of the panels. No, of course it's not the full `con experience, but in at least a virtual sense I've been steadily attending panels all month. Some, like the SGU panel and the last couple of episodes of Skepticality, are panels that I was physically at, and others are panels that I missed due to conflict or the need to sleep (curse my puny meat body!!). But in either case it's been a sheer joy to keep part of the event still going almost a month later! In fact, I still have at least two more events to "attend" that are currently on my iPod, and then I may start going through the rest of the recorded panels.

I really hope that this becomes a trend for large sci-fi conventions in the future. There's no replacement for actually being there, but this is a wonderful complement to the `con experience.

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