Got picked up at 7 AM. Died on the drive up to Chicago.
Prereg: (~11 AM? 12 AM?)
Arrived around 10 AM. Went in to register. Whoever was in charge of the administrative side FAILED. REALLY, really badly. There was one long line to get to the lines where they separated pre-registered people, at-con registration, and stuff. I went into the at-con registration line, since I wanted a single-day pass. The first part of the line went pretty quickly - they piped up past computers where we could register and receive a registration code. Then we hit the payment area. That's where it all went bad. They had 5 cash registers. One accepted Credit Only. I asked which lines was fastest - they lied and told me credit. I stayed in said line for nearly an hour and a half - these lines were piped over to smaller lines that went to the cash registers. The credit only line moved ridiculously slowly. I finally wrote up a sign that said "Pick me! I can pay in cash too!". (see, the way it worked involved one of the volunteer staff to check and see which cash register line was short, and they'd pick people from the cash or pre-register line and send them over to the cash register lines. From there, another volunteer staff told people to go to individual cash registers as they opened up. Think of a roller coaster ride - you've got multiple lines: the normal and the express. These feed into smaller lines. And then those lines go to random cash registers.)
But yes, eventually I made my way to a cash-only cash register. That line took about an hour, despite the fact that there were only 7 people in front of me. They had more smaller lines than cash registers. Stupid organizers. I understand it's to spread people out, but honestly, it was ridiculous. And ever so often, they'd stop everything since there were apparently only two (!?) badge printing places - they opened up more later, but it went slowly before they figured out how to do that.
Eventually, I got to the cash registers, paid $40, was thrown a $10 ("Here's some money, now go away." was the exact words, I believe. I was amused.) - I presume prices were lowered to keep people from bitching out the staff. My badge was printed within 10 minutes, and I was out of there. W00t.
Called the people I was with, and was located and taken to our hotel room. We changed into costume and headed back... (I was Ritsuka, from Loveless. I'm the one with ears and black hair. The blond, taller one is Soubi, my "Fighter". A friend dressed up as Soubi, and the girls found chains and made the cuffs. They started falling apart in the end - sorry 'bout that. We were... rather rough with them at times.)
Dealer's Room: (3 PM - 7 PM)
...to the dealer's room. I wanted a Yaoi paddle. I dunno. Got my Yaoi paddle. Didn't have a pen (people apparently sign Yaoi paddles...), and I came to realize that I'm too embarrassed to actually smack someone else on the ass with it. Hmm. Oh well, it's nice in pictures, and something tells me I'll find some use for it another day. Like everything else I find and keep. Cost me $38 ($35+tax!?).
Then we walked around a lot. Was recognized verbally at least 15 times, photographed at least 5 times, and glomped by fangirls at least 3 during this period. I do enjoy the squeals of joy ("Look, it's LOVELESS!") from the fangirls. It's amusing. And while I'd normally prefer not to draw attention to myself, when I'm doing something like this, I think I prefer the attention. It makes the effort worthwhile.
I managed to escape our chains for a short bit and look at all the other dealers booths - in short, there was a lot of manga, some dojinshi (mmm, Yaoi Harry Potter stuff), lots of cat ears, some tails, a nice leatherworking stall with lots of stuff (Ooooh, cat-of-nine-tails! Or some sort of multi-stranded leather whip.), a ton of swords (shiiiiiny), and lots of plushies and keychains and stuff. Oh, and there were some import games as well.
Didn't really spend much time at the Artists corner as I probably should have - only recognized AppleGeeks from the ones that I follow. I think there was other stuff too, but I was tired and not too fond of walking after having been on my feet for pretty much the entire time.
Then we went back to the hotel to order pizza, rest (I passed out for another 30 minutes), before heading back out around 9 PM. We met up with Denise, Chris, and eventually Jenny, then Stephanie. While standing around and waiting for Jenny, we took some group pictures, some individual pictures... a more professional photographer person came by and took pictures of us. We got his card - I need to check his website later. Glomp count during this period: +1 or +2.
Pictures, games, and panels, oh my!:
Met up with Jenny. Wandered down to the game room (eeee, Para Para Paradise! Or whatever it was called.) Didn't get a chance to play though. Grr, should have insisted on stopping and trying the game. There was also a lot of other beat-based things. Marf. Took more pictures. Posed. And took more pictures. Got asked to be photographed. Posed. Got squeals. Was amused. Wandered back upstairs to check out some of the panels, was intercepted by apparently the editor(?) of some anime magazine (AnimeFood, I believe), and she squealed and took pictures of us (I was still chained to Soubi). I may appear in the July copy. Hmm. She said to call her around mid-July.
Went to some yaoi panel for a bit, then left as there was only really standing room. And it didn't seem all that interesting. Met up with Stephanie. Debated on going to the "How to write a lemon" panel. I said something along the lines of giving them inspiration. And demonstrated by grabbing Soubi and pulled him down to fake a peck on the cheek. This resulted in much laughter and quite a bit of squealing from the fangirls in our group (and some running away by the more not-yaoi inclined). No one got a picture (I think). And I refused all requests to do it again. :D Mwahaha. ::ebil::
Hit the "How to write a Lemon" panel. Jenny, our most innocent member, was quite shocked and terrified. I almost feel bad, expect sometimes I wonder if the innocence is really just an act, because she knows it amuses us so much... I kinda wanna try to write the worlds worst lemon now. :: snickers:: Manroot. Manmeat. Hot flaming bun-oven (or something like that). Lube. Lube again. (Self-lubricating Harry Potter!) What not to use as Lube (blueberry muffin mix). That was probably the most amusing...
Eventually left, as the amusement level went down and we got bored. Wandered around for a bit, lost some group members (those who didn't like our yaoi focus, I guess). Watched a bit of loveless in some room or other, and then found the "In the minds of a yaoi fangirl" panel or something like that. It would have been much better if there wasn't absurdly loud bass coming in from the rave next door. And I had to use the service corridor to find it. Got bored, left that. Went back to the hotel. Slept around 2:30 AM.
Woke up around 7 - people left to get tickets. And then Angela had to run back (sorry! thank you!) to let me into her car so I could get my suitcase and catch the bus to the airport. Slept the entire flight (ah, front row seat. 1A window seat. Yay for strange seat selections. Granted, it was a small plane, so...). But yes, am home in Maryland now.
Pictures... once I upload them to facebook or to livejournal, I'll post a link in a new entry.