Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Geek.Kon 2011

Last week's Thrift Store Pen Pal is Laura from Musings of an Orange Sheep! I can't seem to find her email to get in contact with her though, so hopefully she is reading this and will email me her info at WoodyTheHun@gmail.com so I can send her a random item.

[NOTE: this is a really long and REALLY nerdy post. Only my hardiest readers should dare venture forth, as it will reveal more about myself than I should probably post online. And it's kinda long.]

I have been neglecting Ol' Bloggy as of late due to a mini vacation a friend and I took over the last several days. We decided to take a road trip somewhere. Anywhere, really. We are both semi-nerds as we both like video games, board games, and, of course, The Internet. I looked up some upcoming events and found Geek.Kon, a nerdy convention of video games, board games, and internet stuff! ...and anime, cosplay, LARPing, and other uber nerdy ventures.

The convention was near Madison, WI, which is about a 9 hour drive. That's after the 3 hour drive I took to get back to Kansas to meet my friend. I must say though, it was totally worth it! This was my first-ever convention of any kind. I always considered myself pretty nerdy, but I can't compare to some of the people and things I saw.

Although we were a little apprehensive at first, once we got a feel for the geekocity we finally embraced it and called upon our inner nerds (a couple drinks didn't hurt, either). For example, these are the names we elected to display for ourselves all weekend:

And those were mild monikers compared to some. 

During the opening ceremonies, a girl came out and discussed the importance of hygiene and how we should all remember to take showers (with water AND soap). I was a little confused as to why we needed this lecture, but the reason soon became apparent as I walked past the registration line.

There were some questionable smells in that hallway. 

Then we found the video game room. Oh my god. There were soooo many video games. They had every game system. Literally. They had systems I'd never even heard of, and it was all free! 

If my math is correct (and it is, I'm an engineer) they had close to 100 TVs, all hooked up to video game systems. If you wanted a game that wasn't currently on display, you'd just flip through one of several binders with lists of games, check one out, and play. They also had free arcade games set up, including Dance Dance Revolution! I actually took a DDR class in school at KU, but that's a different story. Here's Pikachu at the DDR machine:

They also had a board game room with hundreds of different board games you could check out. If you didn't know how to play a game or wanted to try one out, there was a guy whose job it was to teach you how to play. It was pretty fun to make some nerdy friends and play a random game. In the board game room there were also Role Playing Games. I'm sure you've heard of Dungeons and Dragons, in which you are basically in a fantasy world (all while sitting around a table) and you must roll a 20 sided die to determine the outcome of certain events. It's all very nerdy. 

Well, my friend and I decided that we would try and experience all there was to experience at Geek.Kon, so we decided to do the nerdiest thing we'd ever done: play an RPG. It was pretty outside of our comfort zone to delve that deep into dorkiness, so we had to prepare.

We went to the hotel bar and each ordered a shot of tequila to loosen up for this momentous occasion. Upon receiving his shot, my friend decided he'd better have two. The bartender questioned him about it, so he replied, "I'm about to go do something that'll be very uncomfortable for me." The bartender just gave a funny look and walked away. I then realized that we were two men, in a hotel bar, taking shots shots of tequila. I'm pretty sure that after my friend's comment the bartender thought we were about to go make sweet man-love in our hotel room. 

Anyway, we went to play the RPG. It was actually pretty fun, but then again, I get my kicks browsing thrift stores and eating weird food, so I may have a different fun-scale than most people. My character ended up dying after a series of bad die rolls and the Game Master said that he was taking pictures of everyone who died in the game and would post it on their Facebook page. I figured it would make for some decent blog material so I agreed. The picture is here!

We headed over to the vendor area, which was full of vendors peddling their various wares. 

It was a pretty big room and I got some pretty awesome stuff. I talked with one artist, Jake Rueth, who was actually really cool. I also loved his art; it's just my style - simple and weird. I picked up this little gem, and my friend got this one. I also picked up something that I now cherish almost as much as Gollum cherished The One Ring:

Yes, friends. That IS a rock with Nyan Cat painted on it. Be jealous. Be very jealous. For those of you who don't know, this is Nyan Cat. So happy :)

I got some other stuff, too, but I may use that for another post. Another great part of Geek.Kon was the Kon.Quest, in which there were different stations where you did puzzles or played games and got cards. You then used the cards to play other games and won prizes and stuff. I can't really explain it but it was one of the best parts of the con. 

There was also a rave. It was pretty awesome and the music was pretty great (lots of electro, techno, and dubstep) but the lack on inebriation and abundance of minors made it a little... off. So I only stayed a little while. 

I also did karaoke! I performed Careless Whisper by George Michael. I really hammed it up, too. It was awesome. 

A big part of the convention was anime, which I know next to nothing about, but everyone had pretty interesting costumes! My friend and I didn't take part in the costumes, which I kind of regret now - we were definitely in the minority without costumes. Here are some particularly good/nerdy costumes:

Not sure what they're supposed to be... Again, anime.

Really in-depth costumes!

Batman, with a crazy Bat-Mobile motorcycle. If you look closely you can see Batman smiling under his visor.

There were plenty of dressed up nerd girls, too. I overheard one guy say, "Apparently, nerd girls hold a special place in my dick." That was pretty funny.

So. I guess I'm a true nerd now. Realizing this, it's a wonder girls still talk to me... 


  1. What a coincidence that you post your nerdy post just after I post mine! lol Great minds think alike!

  2. Dude...how have I never, ever heard about this before? It looks...AWESOME. Wisconsin is pretty far from Pennsylvania but I won't hesitate to make this pilgrimage to the Mecca of geekery.


  3. Good, sweet lord. I think I should definitely tag along next year, this looks awesome. And I missed your karaoke debut??? So disappointed...

  4. Nicole: I know, I was a little surprised by that as well! It's awesome though :)

    Shane: Yeah it is pretty far from you, and pretty dang far from me, too. But totally worth it! You should have met us out there, would have been fun.

    Grace: Yes. Yes you should, although now that I've whet my appetite I'm sure I'll look for cons closer to home, and you can come! I'll do a repeat performance on my karaoke for sure, so don't be too disappointed :)

  5. lol Woody this is EXTREMELY nerdy, but it somehow looks like it was quite enjoyable. Those blonde dudes look like people from Dragon Ball Z. . .they must go through hair spray like crazy o.O

  6. How fun!! I LOVE that Pikachu costume and the rock! XD My husband and I ALWAYS want to go to ComiCon!!!

  7. You should DEFINITELY go to ComiCon!! Although I would be extremely jealous. And then you can blog about it :)