Tuesday, January 26, 2010

ChibiCon in San Jose?


According to the SoCal Host Club (which now I am a part of), we are supposed to be at ChibiCon at Branham High School in San Jose on March 20th, a Saturday, holding another Host Club event like we did back at ALA.

The funny thing about this is that so far, my con outlook for 2010 has dramatically changed - I went to ALA instead of Sac-Anime in January, now ChibiCon in addition to Sac-Con in the month of March, and possibly skipping Sac-Anime AGAIN in favor of Anime Vegas in September since the SoCal Host Club is looking to be part of that convention as well.

For some reason, I don't feel like driving all the way up and back in one day. Since Ryan is headed up there to host, I might take the train down to San Jose, have him pick me up at the train station, we go to the con together, have him drop me off back at the train station, and take the train back up to Sacramento. Given it takes $~30 for a full tank of gas and I burn most of it with that distance, it's only about $20 more with a student discount (and another $10 for parking). The only problem is that the first train out of Sacramento that will arrive before the con starts is 5:40am, so again I have to be up early to head down there. At least the ride is 3 hours both ways, so at least I can catch extra sleep before and after the con.

I will be talking to the SoCal Host Club again to finalize this, and I will post more soon as we get closer.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

FanimeCon Staff Meeting Mini-Report: January 2010

I've been hinting with some people, but today I had the chance to pitch an idea to bring a Ouran-style Host Club to FanimeCon. Despite some of the roadblocks that me and the SoCal Host Club founders are facing, we have a ton of options out there to explore and somehow we will have a separate event from the actual gathering, which I also got some information on. Overall the staff was very helpful in answering all my questions and explaining everything to me. When this is your first foray in event and gathering planning, you probably want to make sure you got everything covered. Plus meeting the con chair was awesome. A good use of a asked weekend off (in addition to visiting my good friend that lives in the Bay Area).

It may seem a long time, but FanimeCon 2010 is quickly creeping up...get those rooms reserved and get crackin' on those cosplays!

UPDATE: After talking to the members of the SoCal Host Club, they have decided to push back the idea and try for FanimeCon 2011. I agree with decision given how much it takes to get a large event planned out. There will still be an Ouran gathering, so all is not lost here.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Sac-Anime Flashback: January 2008 - Reaction Video to Skit #2

This one is pretty self-explanatory. I get on stage at the Masquerade at Sac-Anime Winter 2008 (January 2008), and I film the audience's reactions.

That's all I have for the flashback videos.

Sac-Con Flashback: December 2007 - Masquerade

I have three videos from the Sac-Con December 2007 Masquerade featuring Phoenix Wright cosplayers, candy, and The 12 Days of Christmas.

Sac-Con Flashback: December 2006 - DDR

I took video of people playing DDR back at Sac-Con in December 2006.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Sac-Anime Flashback: July 2005 - The Coconut Song

Even before I had this blog up, I was still taking pictures and videos. This is one of them, from the 1st ever Sac-Anime that I attended back in July of 2005 at the Sunrise Mall - the only time it would be at the Sunrise Mall.

Keep in mind: this was before I graduated from high school. Then things got better.

I should of been doing this a long time ago, transferring my old videos from my main account and reuploading them to the blog account. Be on the lookout for more of these flashback videos.

ALA Cosplay Chess 2010 Videos

Finally there's some videos up of cosplay chess at ALA 6 (2010). Credit to RowinDincht69 for the videos.
For now, I'll post three from that set of videos:

California Conventions Blog: Now With a Facebook Page!

I decided "Hey, let me make a Facebook Page for my blog!" So in the late night hours of Monday, I did. However, I did stop blog updates on my main Facebook account as now they go to the Fan Page.

I hope this page improves the interaction between myself and the people who visit my blog. Become a fan and enjoy the coverage & insights!

anime los angeles 2010 ++ l. a. thunder

Scarlet Rhapsody's report of ALA 6 (2010) is up. Go read it!

Also, finally!

Listed on The Cosplay/Anime Costuming and Masquerade Links Page

I have been contacted by the webmaster, Widya Santoso, a number of times in the past about having my con reports and photos on my blog posted on a site called The Cosplay/Anime Costuming and Masquerade Links Page based out of Australia. The most recent contact was for my reports and photos for ALA, which have now been posted on the site. However, there is a 404 error on that site when you click on the link to the photo gallery, and its credited to my Photobucket name rather than the website itself. I e-mailed the webmaster and I hope that gets fixed soon.

Anyways, thanks for putting my blog on your site.

Friday, January 15, 2010

ALA 6 (2010) Report: Part 5 - Epilogue

Even before I left ALA 6 on Sunday, I knew that I would be coming back in 2011. There was certain vibe with the staff and the attendees that really never got out of Sac-Anime outside of the Gaming Room. Maybe it's the SoCal scene that I've been missing since I started to do convention coverage in 2007.

With this being the first con in a new decade, with so many things changing in over a small weekend, I feel that this may be a start of a new convention me, forgetting about all the negative past experiences, forging new friendships, and starting new adventures. The journey may have ended for this con, but I believe that this is the start of something much bigger.

Anyways, that concludes my ALA 6 report. If I don't see you all at FanimeCon or Sac-Anime (or, AX!) I will be back for ALA 7!

Thank you for reading my report.

-ALA 6 Report End-

ALA 6 (2010) Report: Part 4 - Sunday

Wait a minute, did I just pull an all-nighter? What time is it?

It's 7am. And really, I just pulled an all-nighter. So, what to do now...hey, I can pack my things up, take another shower, and prepare to pull another day before I sleep on the airplane ride back home!

By then the Veoh upload was done and I was able to post that as soon it was done encoding, and with that I went downstairs. Actually, I did take a 20 minute power nap behind the Artists Jam (or whatever they called it) before finding out that both my roommates were out by 9am which was the best-case scenario. With that, I call it a day from the room, get everything downstairs before everyone else got their things downstairs, and check out. I also stop by Starbucks again, but this time my breakfast was a tall glass of Tazo® Black Shaken Iced Tea Lemonade and fruit bars my roommate left.

By 10am the CLAMP gathering is about to start.

After that I spend a lot of time with the Emperor Lelouche, Suzaku, and Ryan (as Ashford Lelouche) taking shots.


And then I get these three shots.

With autographs, I help Ryan out with getting the last few that he needs. By now it's into the afternoon, and it would be a few hours before my auntie would pick me Ryan up to get a much-need-post-con meal. We stick it around the Game Room, Dealers Hall, and Artists Alley while trying to keep up with Ravens/Pats and Packers/Cardinals. By 3pm, an hour before we leave, I went to check out the Sunday Steampunk demonstration that they were doing down in the patio area. Diet Coke and Mentos all around.

I also saw Russia and America from Hetalia fighting, which got to me explaining to them the plot of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 1 and 2 as told by the characters of Hetalia. I got close.

With 4pm around the corner, I say my last goodbyes before heading out to the center of Los Angeles, and to a well-known Los Angeles landmark...

Roscoe's House of Chicken 'N Waffles. Oh yeah.

All this, plus the Mac and Cheese? I'm set.

Since Ryan came along, I got this shot -

- which prompted me to make this when I got home -

Yes, I had to.

We dropped off Ryan back at the hotel, where we had our last goodbyes, although we would meet again at Fanime. I got to the airport around the time I wanted to get there, but with no security line. So for the time being I wait around and suck down a McDonalds shake to kill time. By the time I got on the plane I was already knocked out thinking about everything I did over the weekend.

I arrived back in Sacramento just before 10pm, and finally my 62 hour marathon journey was complete.

-Day 3 & ALA 6 End-

ALA 6 (2010) Report: Part 3 - Saturday

I woke up at 7am, taking in about six hours of sleep. I jump in the shower (because most cons suggest that you do), get myself refreshed, and iron out my Ouran uniform. I head downstairs for Starbucks - wait, what? $4 for a large White Mocha? Fine, fine, and with the coffee cake that makes $7. I swear, I pay less than that at FanimeCon.

During this time, I still need to figure out how to get the materials needed to promote the SoCal Host Club, which is about to take place in four hours. Since no one at the con has posterboards, I have to pull three-way strings with me, my roommate, and the hotel staff. In the end, I have to charge extra to my room for my roommate's parking with in-and-out privileges so that I can head over to Staples to get what I need. Thank god Staples was open at nine in the morning. After I head back, I get Ryan from his room, who just woke up. He's glad that I got the posterboards and he tells me that he'll be down there in a moment. Eventually I find the other members who are taking part, and I ask for their help to get the first sign up, which went right in front of registration.

We're supposed to get access to the La Jolla Room about 11am to get things set up, so in the meantime we're running around between getting this prepared, trying to get a commission of the Ouran emblem on one of our signs, and getting Ryan's items autographed.

We get hotel staff to open the door, and with everything just about set up, we go ahead and create the 2nd sign, and this would go in the elevator hallway on the ballroom floor since the only way to access the 1st floor from the ballroom floor was through the elevator - I really don't know why there's no stair access from the 1st floor, and no the escalator doesn't count.

With an hour to spare, I take the Host Club to do a bit of advertising, and my advertising I mean breaking my character as Mori to try to get the con's attention; I really don't know how many times I yelled "ATTENTION ATTENDEES, PLEASE LOOK AT MY SIGN" during that one hour. We also pick up the commission from Artist's Alley, and it looked beautiful.

By then, we were about to start. Ryan got everything autographed that he needed for that day, and with that we head up to my room on the 12th floor to pick up the laptop and the webcam...

By the time we got down there with my laptop to do the live recording, they already started because the line got too long. I must say, this was the best two hours of ALA so far. Shortly after we got done about 2pm, we wanted to get a group shot of the Host Club but with other commitments to gatherings and the Masquerade, it was just me and Ryan. We wait around a bit trying to get a professional shot of us and the signs but after awhile couldn't wait around, so I settled for this last shot, which is the commissioned front sign with everyone's signature, both participant and attendee.

With nothing else to do again between now and the Masquerade, I decide to see if I can get press seating for the Masquerade. Unfortunately, due to the fact that I had my request in at three in the afternoon instead of ten in the morning when the Masquerade head was present meant that I wouldn't be able to get my press seating. So either I don't go or forge the line. But for now, back to the pool deck.

Much more packed than Saturday, of course. By then it was 4pm, and it was time for day two of the 1/2 appetizers, this time over at Latitude 33's bar. As I ordered, I caught the tail end of Jets/Bengals which then I realized Wild Card weekend was underway. It was pretty cool to be chilling with the hotel staff talking about the game, reacting to each play. With the line for the Masquerade probably starting which meant I would get horrible seating to take pictures, the prospect of watching a bit of Eagles/Cowboys seemed good for a bit.

After 5pm I decided to roam the convention halls again, taking more pictures.

Eventually I did sit down with a group that was watching Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series. I was shocked to hear that they were watching it for the first time ever, so I spent some time with them watching the early episodes. Then I realized that I was in the line for the Masquerade too as well, but after they started to move I ditched the line and went back up to the room to relax and watch a bit of Eagles/Cowboys, which by the start of the 3rd quarter was already a blowout. I also start work on converting and splicing the Host Club feed for YouTube. I found out later that the sync was off so I went to Veoh and let the video upload overnight even with the slow internet connection.

I didn't do much else while waiting for the Masquerade to end, played a bit of "Spin the Vodka Bottle" with more Hetalia cosplayers and walked around.

Around 10pm me and Ryan went out to the pool deck to get some late-night shots with Ashford Lelouche.

I don't remember much else after 1:30am after I did the vlog with Ryan, but from what I can recall it involved 3am, Subway, a horse, and this -

-Day 2 End-

Thursday, January 14, 2010

ALA 6 (2010) Report: Part 2 - Friday

I woke up just after 3:30am because usually I can't sleep the day I travel to cons. Since my fight was at 7:10am, I was supposed to be there around 5:30am to allow ample time to check-in and go through security. Unfortunately, I left my carry-on which contained everything back at the house, but even with that I was through security with an hour to spare. That's where the first vlog of this con would come from, and I would learn pretty quickly that trying to upload raw footage on shitty internet connections would be a bad thing.

I got on the plane dressed up as Junpei from Persona 3; I learned this from FanimeCon 2009 when I wore my Ouran uniform down to San Jose. Within five minutes of the flight...sun. Oh, beautiful sun, how much I missed you.

I arrived early ahead of the scheduled arrival time with plenty of time to spare.

Welcome to LAX

I went downstairs to the baggage claim, and for some odd reason my luggage was the first on the belt so that save me some time. I then went to look for the shuttle that went to the hotel. It pointed me westward, so I walked and I walked and I walked until I found the shuttle. I could of missed it if it wasn't for me asking the driver which hotel he was going to since I didn't really know what that shuttle went to.

Photos that I took from inside the shuttle

I arrived at the hotel ahead of 9am. I first checked my bags in with the bellhop before heading down to the con floor to pick up my badge. Now, for a Friday the hotel was packed - remember, there was a National Title Game the night before and fans from both the University of Texas and the University of Alabama were in full force; there was even a man selling merchandise that I wanted to pick up. I made some comments to the bellhop about how the Texas fans were feeling, even though they did almost come back after losing their star QB in the first quarter.

I went downstairs, and the wait time in line wasn't long. Soon enough I had my badge and my goodies bag and I was ready to roll.


I roamed around the con floor for a bit before trying again to see if there was room available for me. I wanted a balcony room, but there wasn't one available at 10am. However, there was a room available next to the elevator, so I was like "screw it, let's take it." I ended up on the 12th floor, which wasn't too bad - the elevators were mostly empty when it came up to my floor.

With my room established and my first roommate established as well, it was time to wait around for opening ceremonies. I find my friend Ryan from FanimeCon, and he tells me of the news about the manager for tomorrow's SoCal Host Club fell sick and that he was the lone wolf in trying to run it. With nothing else planned on Saturday, I greatly put in my word to help him out. Of course, we had all day to talk about how to go about this, so for now I continue to wait for opening ceremonies. While waiting, I went outside to check out the pool deck area, where the majority of the gatherings would take place.

12pm hits, and still no opening ceremonies. For some odd reason, I ended up on the wrong side of the main stage where no one was lined up (everyone was lined up on the other side). So while I waited I took more photos of people waiting in line to get into the dealers room.

Somehow, someway, I found myself sitting down in the front for opening ceremonies, which was now running late.


With opening ceremonies over, cosplay chess would be starting in just over an hour and half...so, back to pool deck.

3pm - Cosplay Chess. Granted, I wasn't supposed to be in cosplay chess because I didn't sign up through Maguma via submission form, but I was first to jump on the walk-ons, requesting the knight on the black side.

I like I said, I had some troubles with handling weapons and hearing, but all and all it was a good time. Besides how many people can say that they were defeated in cosplay chess by a Pikachu with a crowbar?

In the end, Kenshiro went down to Emperor Lelouche.

With that event over, it was time to eat - finally. Victoria and Jared from Scarlet Rhapsody wanted to eat at Champion's Sports Bar, where it was happy hour with half-off appetizers and $4 domestic draft beers. Both of them wanted to get something in before going to the AMV contest which they had two videos entered. This would start the trend of living off of half-off appetizers during the con weekend.

With that, I really had nothing to do for the day. So I walked around, found every little nook and cranny this con had to offer. I also found Ryan again, who's pretty steamed because The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya gathering failed horribly. However, it was redeemed when he took this shot with Christina Vee.

Damn right Kyon.

For the rest of the night, we discuss what we want to do at tomorrow's SoCal Host Club gathering in addition to roaming around the convention. One of things I did was stop in on the Rum Party just to see what it was, and again right at the end when they were doing the auction. I also did the dance for a bit.

With 1am Saturday settling in and me having to get up early to prepare for the SoCal Host Club, I decide to call it a night.

-Day 1 End-