Otaku Encabulator

Random musings of a sleep deprived guy.

Anime Los Angeles 2010: Day 1

Okey-dokes, first post with something readable! ( A warning, this is very much a “tl;dr” post, so feel free to just skim/skip when I start rambling)

I staffed at ALA this year, working Con Operations, providing general con security and keeping people in lines and out of trouble.  This is my second year doing so at ALA, and my third year attending.

It’s what I would call a rather… “medium” sized con, with about 2000-2500 people attending. This year marks the second year it was held at the LAX Marriott Hotel and Convention Center.  ALA is one of two conventions I regularly attend, with Anime Expo being the other.  ALA doesn’t really bring in really famous guests or anything of the sort.  If you go for just the events, you’ll be extremely disappointed. Rather, ALA is more enjoyable when you get to interact with the attendees.

Well, enough of that intro rabble, let’s move on, shall we?

The first group of people I’ll mention are the usual gawkers not part of the con.  Our first victims were….

*drumroll*

Football Fans~! (American, of course)

The Rose Bowl, this year’s College Football Championship Game, had just been played the day before, and there were a number of Texas Longhorn fans about at the Marriott. (And the occasional Alabama guy)  Since I don’t have pictures of their silly dumbfounded faces, think Texas and Alabama football fans checking out wading among a sea of cosplayers checking in, and I’ll let your imagination fill in the rest. What a great image of California to present to these people, right? heh Land of Fruits and Nuts, indeed.

So, while my sister is busy in Artist’s Alley, my first job was to man the registration line.  I was to greet the people coming down the escalator and direct them to the registration line, or to fill out registration forms if they didn’t pre-reg.  Now, I was lacking sleep, as the night before, I was having some difficulty installing a copy of Windows 7 that I had acquired off MSDN Academic Alliance. (But that’s a story for later)  I was pretty much dead, but luckily, there was usually someone helping me out.  My sleep-deprived face was the first thing people saw as they came down that escalator.

What knocked me out of my stupor and told me that I was at a freakin anime convention was when one of the newly arrived attendees came up to me and asked, “Have you played Sengoku Rance?”  I haven’t, and I said no, but having lurked on /jp/ enough times, I had a fairly good idea what he was talking about, and the short conversation ended with a smile on the man’s face and a high five. Anything to make the attendee happy, I guess.  Apparently, just knowing a little about a certain eroge was enough.

After that job, I was allowed to rove around the convention–basically patrolling the place and keeping attendees out of trouble.  This is the reason why I like this staff job.  I get to move around.  I can take pictures I otherwise could not have if I stayed in one place all the time (not that my pictures are any good).  I met old artist friends Kathy and her sister Potatobuns. They’re really nice people, and I may have hung around there a bit too much. hah Somewhere in this time period, I found my other sister, who was given a ride to the con by her friends, since she came straight from school.

The rest of that afternoon was me roving, taking pictures, and going off duty for a few hours, since there was a Touhou cosplay gathering at 5:00pm out on the pool deck. It was getting dim though, and there really weren’t very many of them out there. However, a couple hours later, when I was back on duty at registration, there seemed to be an impromptu meetup just in front of the escalators accompanied by men with big cameras. When the reg line disappeared, I took the chance to snap a few photos. I don’t believe that any of the photographers had a good idea what Touhou was, it looked like they just got whole group shots. Until I requested that I get a shot of Cirno and Letty… I take a photo, and turn around to see a whole gaggle of photographers with huge cameras and flash diffusers. My flash diffuser was a little ghetto folded piece of tissue paper taped in front of my camera’s pop-up flash. hahaha…..

Well, while I was there, my sisters wanted to go home… I wanted to wait til 8:00pm before going off. My sisters tired of waiting for me so they went off to Spike Speigel’s Spencer’s panel. (sorry, brainfart right there) You may know him as the whiny voice of Shinji in Eva. After I was done, I went and joined them. My back and legs were in pain, so I enjoyed sitting down there.

If you’ve never seen Spike in person, he is the COMPLETE OPPOSITE of nearly all the characters he is cast as. This man is one of those loud party guys that’s willing to do stupid things for the sake of doing them. He is rather amusing. And he tried to get the people in the panel all hyped up and excited, but the group seemed really tired to me. haha Or shy, I dunno. He had an observation that the craziest, wildest cons were out in rural America, and I’m not really that surprised at that finding, but an interesting finding nonetheless. ALA is a nice con. Not that it doesn’t have its loud and crazy moments, but it has more a friendly atmosphere than a party atmosphere.

Well, after that panel, we went home. (I commuted from home… parking was expensive, but still cheaper than getting a hotel room) I was tired, but I got another 6 hours, and readied myself for the next day!

Oh, you want to see my horrible pictures? You’ll have to excuse the blurriness and quick and dirty levels adjusting in photoshop.

Okay then…

Ah, the Registration Line

Caught the Con Suite guys+Maetel cosplayer gawking outside.

yeah~ black rock shooter~

Random quiz game question~ (The answer was D, but the way the question was asked implied C.  All 3 contestants got that question wrong)

I never could get a pic with her and Luka together…

Man-Sakuya~

There are knives on a string there… I just chose a horrible angle to take this shot.

K-ON! meido

This Suika didn’t seem to have a drunken pose. lol (And I was too lazy to think of one/ask her to pose)

Weren’t many Touhou cosplays, so let’s get sum BlazBlue in.

Ah, there are the Touhou cosplayers.

Cirno isn’t paying attention. hah

If I’m not mistaken, that’s Renko taking a picture of the photographers.

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