Today was the first day of Comic Con 2012. Registration was much simpler than last year - took about five minutes, if you don't count the ten minute walk from the $30-guarded-by-folks-from-the-methadone-clinic parking wasteland. I've written before about San Diego's deserts, and although Comic Con is in the Convention Center in the Gaslight District, much of the parking is behind Petco Park, in the badlands. Having registered, everything became fun, for those values of fun that include lining up for an hour to see an hour's worth of entertainment.
We saw Yaya Han talking about Cosplay first. I've never really understood the cosplay impulse but she did a good job of explaining it. Everyone knows that Comic Con is where you'll find people dressed up as Stormtroopers or as anime characters, and 90% of mundanes - she called them "normal" people - laugh at "those people". I was in the 10% who didn't laugh, but didn't quite get why, and now I think I do. They are the same completist people who would like to have a set of every Third Man Records tri-color, except they do it by having the most exact (or best interpretation) of a canon costume it's possible to make. She also covered some of the differences between the scenes in different cultures and countries, and what cosplayers like to pose for, and be photographed doing, and what they don't. (Hint: If they are posing in a corridor, you might ask to take a photo. When they're eating or in the loo, not so much. The costumes are heavy and intricate, and they don't look at their best when the cosplayer is trying to do normal things, like eat.)
We went to see Gilbert Shelton, my favorite cartoonist, the creator of not only Wonder Warthog, and not only Fat Freddy's Cat, but also the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers. (Excellent!) I got a photo of Mr. Shelton drawing on the overhead.
We saw two podcasters called something like Two Buck Chuck talk about time travel to a packed room who were way ahead of them on the science (slight miscalculation there) and we watched a presentation on Guerrilla Art by Lori Gordon and had the opportunity to make a miniature guerrilla art poster ourselves.
In between we had a pretzel dog...if you don't know, don't ask...and a fairly nice but also fairly expensive curry.
Good first day, I'd say.