Wakandacon Day 2: Cosplay and Cupcakes

Spoiler Alert: I think Wakandacon may just be my favorite con.

Yeah, I've attended lots of cons. I've volunteered with a few too. But man, this one is top-notch.

What can I say? The volunteers were great, seriously ALL of them. The vendors were extremely friendly. Heck, Leia from Just Play Entertainment was nice enough to do a demo of her game "Hip Hop Charades" with us. It was a hilariously good time. I'm definitely buying the online version of this game.

Family-Friendly And They Mean It

One thing I also loved about the con is that it doesn't preach about being a family-friendly convention, Wakandacon just is. They have more than just a play area for kids. Kids can have their own panels and even a STEM booth was set up for them. There were no side-eyes at crying children but overall, the kids seemed extremely happy to be there. I think I'll be bringing my (not so) little Bby-8 next year. I definitely think Leslie should bring her Geeky Baby one year

Panel: Cosplaying While Black

I'm disappointed that I couldn't clone two of me for just that day because there were SO MANY amazing panels and I couldn't go to them all. Some of those panels were "Melanin and Mental Health", "Taking Black Magic to New Heights: Diversifying the Space Industry", and "Queerkanda".

The discussion was revolved around things we already know and experience as black and brown cosplayers. The two biggest takeaways were:

  • Black cosplayers get so much more hate than a white person doing the same cosplay
  • because of that, it can be extremely emotionally taxing to cosplay while black.

We as POC know this, but it was so validating to hear. I hate when I bring up an issue with racism in cosplay and people dismiss me by saying "Nooooo, we are all the one race: the human race"

That's great, but it still doesn't solve the issue of people threatening us and calling us "apes".

These cosplayers shared their pain, but they also shared their strengths. This panel was full of inspirational people who give back to their communities and are overall strong and positive people. They inspire anyone who wants to cosplay to go out and DO IT. There was even a short slide showing the panelist and their cosplay evolutions. It really proved that your craft gets better over time.

I LOVED all of their cosplays, but my absolute favorite cosplay was Ashhuhlee who was cosplaying as Max dressed as Powerline from A Goofy Movie

For those of ya'll who don't know, it's this scene from the movie:

All of these cosplayers worked super hard to put on this panel and it turned out amazing. If you want to get to know them, here are their Instagrams:

Icy Ace Cosplay IG: @d.etheridge.alpha

Outta Line Cosplay IG: @outtalinecosplay

Lusciously_Wicked Cosplay (with Javon Jackson. They are engaged and cosplay together awwww) IG: @Lusciously_Wicked Cosplay

SuperDan6488 Cosplay IG: @danlemon88

Ashhuhlee IG: @ashhuhlee

Suga Bear Co IG: @sugabearco

Cosplay Contest and Parade

Showing again how good this con is to their kiddos, they had the kiddos come out first and I about drowned in cuteness. The "awwwww"s never stopped.

The adults still came and showed out. Congrats to the winner Dr. Esquivel Ph.D. It lights up!!!

After the contest. There was a cosplay parade. As the line of cosplayers circled around the convention center, they began Jabari Tribe chants that echoed throughout the halls of the convention center.

I L I V E D!

Convention Cupcake

I'll admit, whether I'm working or doing press at a con, I am not the greatest at remembering to eat. I know I know I need to take care of myself, but it is what it is. my mind just isn't on food.

So imagine my surprise as I came across this lovely booth with cupcakes and chocolate turtles. Sweet Tooth Confections by Ariel "Cocoa" Scott was a lifesaver at that moment. But when I tell you how DELICIOUS this cupcake was...woo chile... I am so sad I don't live in Chicago. But she did say she would try to see about shipping cupcakes in the future. So that's good. You will hear my shout from the rooftops if that happens.

Overall, it was an amazing day at an amazing con. I am a die-hard fan now. Wakandacon forever. I don't want to leave.

Wakandacon Day One: Throwing Greyhound Under The Bus

I'm not sure if this counts as an official day one, because I didn't get to see the con until about one hour before they closed. You can thank the Greyhound Bus for that one.

This story is one for the podcast, but if you follow my twitter, I gave you a snippet of what happened. From the driver telling us to act like "real" men and women, to driving off the road and telling us to "shut the hell up" when we alerted him of such, to being well over 8 hours late to Chicago, this is a story for the ages.

I wish I could say sorry for this. But being as that Greyhound hasn't done anything but send a copy+paste tweet at this point, I have to, for lack of a better pun, throw them under the bus.

You would think that god-awful bus ride would be enough to set the tone for my vacation but no. You could imagine my relief of seeing that purple Wakandacon sign and walking up to the table for my press pass. Everyone had a big smile and was super helpful. If they were at all overwhelmed, I couldn't tell. I got a quick peek in the vendor hall and, let me tell you, you are going to LOVE what they have to offer.

Sorry about not getting this one out last night folks. I needed a minute to recharge and relax after that whole debacle.

I'm super excited to show y'all everything that Wakandacon has to offer. Stay tuned!

Not Enthused by SDCC

Leslie has some thoughts to share about SDCC. Plus awesome news for her and more convention news you can use!

WakandaCon: https://wakandaconforever.com/

Tools for Teachers: Toolsforteachersindy.eventbrite.com

pecial thanks to Michelle for contributing to our Ko-Fi! If you would like to throw a dollar or two this way to keep the lights on (and the hosting going), consider donating to the Ko-fi. Ko-fi.com/geekygirlsni

Send Quinzel (or me!) a note or art for the dungeon!: PO Box 90232 Indianapolis, In. 46290

Facebook.com/geekygirlsnightin

Instagram.com/geekygirlguide

Twitter.com/geekygirlsNI

Twitter.com/Geekygirlguide

Check out the writings of Quinzel, Melissa, and I at www.geekygirlguide.com
Music today was LoveChances by MakaihBeats.net. Check him out for more music! 

I’m an Area 51 Soldier, I thought I Told You

Leslie is very confused about Area 51. Can you clear up some of it for her? She also has a very special request with a very special reward if it comes to fruition. See details here: https://youtu.be/1fdEWg0dz9o

A very packed episode this week with all the Week in Geek News!

Crystal Vanner – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRp-p1EyeQbP_YM4jYTVoag

Jenelle Elliana - https://youtu.be/UG8QnjT57UY

Evelyn from the Internets - https://youtu.be/SZuiXRw_0Uw

Asian Boss - https://youtu.be/u1xwLUjk1uI

100 baby challenge Playlist - https://youtu.be/2svi_xw_Q7I

Link to Bite Fight - https://us.bitefight.gameforge.com/game/?kid=2-00245-09045-1907-10320128

Spaceland  Trailer - www.youtube.com/watch?v=F0E-AUwnvJ8

Blackalachian Instagram - https://www.instagram.com/theblackalachian/

 

Send Quinzel (or Leslie!) a note or art for the dungeon!: PO Box 90232 Indianapolis, In. 46290

Would you like to buy Leslie a coffee? Support her podcasting habits and learning? Go Here: Ko-fi.com/geekygirlsni

Facebook.com/geekygirlsnightin

Instagram.com/geekygirlguide

Twitter.com/geekygirlsNI

Twitter.com/Geekygirlguide

Check out the writings of Quinzel, Melissa, and Leslie at www.geekygirlguide.com

 

That Scene You Don’t Wanna Talk About in ‘The Lion King’: Let’s Talk About It

1994 was a good year. It was the year one of my favorite Disney movies came to theaters. I saw The Lion King for the first time on a humid night in June. I don't remember what I was wearing, but I am sure it was something along the lines of overalls and hair scrunchies.

I remember being amazed by "Circle of Life" and "I Just Can't Wait To Be King". My childhood was at its height when I saw Simba and Nala running through those zebras. And then...and T H E N

I don't know exactly why I wasn't moved to tears by Mufasa's cartoon death. I was seven years old, so I had some concept of emotional intelligence, right? Well, I must not have. The older woman sitting next to me was crying- no -SOBBING! Full on shaking and sobbing out loud in this theater. 7-year-old Quinzel was confused. Mufasa's not really dead. He's in the sky, see! He wasn't going anywhere!

Well, I definitely grew up and wasn't able to ignore the implications of death any longer. This time, not only would I see this movie as an adult, but as an adult who also has a child.

Because of this, I didn't stand a chance, I full on boo hoo-ed through this scene yall.

The thing about this being live action, you see everything. You see and can feel every little detail,

Imagine watching a tiny Simba trying to avoid the stampede of animals.

When he falls from the limb, Mufasa grabs him by the nape of his neck and lovingly places him on the rock. He breathes for one second. One small second of relief before being carried away by the gazelles again.

Simba searches for him. But this time, you don't see the panic in his eyes like in the animated version. It seems like his fur sticks straight up in a panic. His body stiffens.

Mufasa emerges, using all of his strength to climb up the rock wall. He is not visibly bloody or injured, but you can tell that he climbs in pain. That it takes strength to scale this wall that he doesn't have. And then...

Betrayal, pain, and a fatal fall to the bottom. You don't need to hear him hit the ground. You don't need to find him in a pool of blood. The eery silence aside from a single gazelle leaping, you just know.

Simba nudging Mufasa's lifeless body to wake up is enough to start the first steam of tears. But after he cries for help and nothing happens, he decides to cuddle under his dad's lifeless paw.

Say what you want about live-action, I might be inclined to agree with you. But seeing this scene for R E A L about killed me.

Dooooonnnn't even get me started on "Remember who you are".

Under the Sea part 2: Oceanic Boogaloo

Leslie is thrilled with this Little Mermaid news. THRILLED!! We also tried something new in the podcast this week and need your feedback. Let us know about the intro. 

Week in Geek News:

Frankie's Revenge: https://www.frankiesrevenge.com

Sly (Deck of Ashes): uberstrategist.link/deckofashes_steam 

Roller Coaster Tycoon Touch: http://bit.ly/2jmGTxS_IOS

Masque of Red Death by Kendra Wright: https://www.amazon.com/Masque-Red-Death-Interracial-Mystery-ebook/dp/B07TTSX6DH/ref=sr_1_1?qid=1562420021&refinements=p_27%3AKenya+Wright&s=digital-text&sr=1-1&text=Kenya+Wright&mc_cid=5e9af85315&mc_eid=d32cb53899

Send Quinzel (or Leslie!) a note or art for the dungeon!: PO Box 90232 Indianapolis, In. 46290

Would you like to buy Leslie a coffee? Support her podcasting habits and learning? Go Here: Ko-fi.com/geekygirlsni

Facebook.com/geekygirlsnightin

Instagram.com/geekygirlguide

Twitter.com/geekygirlsNI

Twitter.com/Geekygirlguide

Check out the writings of Quinzel, Melissa, and Leslie at www.geekygirlguide.com

 

 

Poor Unfortunate Casting

Quinzel is back with Leslie this week to discuss the news of possible casting in the live action Little Mermaid. 

They have a lot of  Week in Geek news! Stay tuned! It is a long one.  #Tursela

Laby in action: 
https://uberstrategist.link/Laby-GameplayYT

Titus Burgess singing Poor Unfortunate Souls:

 

Send Quinzel (or Leslie!) a note or art for the dungeon!: PO Box 90232 Indianapolis, In. 46290

Would you like to buy Leslie a coffee? Support her podcasting habits and learning? Go Here: Ko-fi.com/geekygirlsni

Facebook.com/geekygirlsnightin

Instagram.com/geekygirlguide

Twitter.com/geekygirlsNI

Twitter.com/Geekygirlguide

Check out the writings of Quinzel, Melissa, and Leslie at www.geekygirlguide.com

 
 

Crying Behind My Sunglasses at Pride: How ‘Free Mom Hugs’ Was Life-Changing For Me

It is now a tradition that my spouse, kiddo, and I attend our local Pride festival each year. It's one of my favorite things to do because Pride is like this little force field of awesome where the daily effects of homophobia and willful ignorance about sexuality cannot penetrate it. However you identify, there is something beautiful about people coming together in one place to be exactly who they are with no judgment and interference from anyone else.

Also, Pride is just a heckin' good time. There's a ferris wheel. It's the bomb diggity.

Only in the last few years of my life have I been able to enjoy Pride. I have an aunt (who I'm no longer in contact with for soon-to-be obvious reasons) who would laugh about Pride. She would say horrible things about going to Pride just to "sight-see" (I'm using a better word here) and I was traumatized by this. I was so afraid there were hundreds of straight people like her at Pride who just saw everyone there as "entertainment" (using a different word again as not to trigger).

My first year at Pride made me see that someone with my aunt's mindset would never last a day at Pride.

As accepting, loving, and fun as Pride is, you would think that would be enough to make me cry behind my sunglasses. But no. The first year I attended, I was awestruck. I completely took in the energy around me and felt the positivity, the freedom to just be, running through my veins.

I was happy. I was free. But I didn't cry. Not yet...

Back to the relevancy of bringing up my aunt earlier, I am not in contact with anyone in my family. They don't know where I live or have my number. And I pray to all of the gods, every last one of them, that I don't run into them.

Why? Well, that's a loaded question and maybe this isn't the post for that. But the dynamics were pretty bad. I got to a point when I realized that I could leave, I could sever ties and choose myself first. Once I realized that, I ran in the middle of the night and didn't look back. Abuse will do that too you, either leave you frozen in fear or getting the hell out of dodge Forrest Gump style.

So I'm living life without my birth family. It's painful but I have amazing friends. But, as amazing as my friends are, even as amazing as YOU ARE because you're reading this right now and supporting me, I crave the love of a parent, the unconditional love of a family. I love my friends, my spouse, my beautiful baby. I'm more than prepared to catch them when they fall, but who is there to catch me?

Back to Pride: it was a sunny Sunday morning. So sunny, in fact, I came armed with a new pair of sunglasses, so I wouldn't, you know, go blind.

As I walked down the vendor hall, I notice a group of women wearing shirts that say Free Mom Hugs embracing a group of people. A man also wears a Free Dad Hugs shirt and my throat catches.

I never talk about my dad and it's because I've never met him. My parents were married but they divorced when I was one. He's been gone ever since. The only picture I've seen is of him looking down. I've never even seen his eyes. None of the adults in my life would willingly give me any information about him.

So I've never in my life been hugged by my own dad. And all of the men that I'm blood-related to, my uncles specifically... let's just say any physical contact they are accustomed to is a bit stronger than a hug.

The man wearing the Free Dad Hugs shirt made eye contact with me and waved. He asked if I would like a hug. I knew I could say no, and I knew my eyes were covered with the sunglasses, thus any visible emotion coming to the surface. But I nodded.

I didn't think this hug would spark tears. That a simple pat on the back would start a chain reaction of tears hitting my sunglasses like hot water from a hose. I pulled away to subtly wipe the tears from under my sunglasses. I cleared my throat and say an audible and quick "thank you."

I will blame it on my upbringing, but I hate hugging men that I don't know. I'm always afraid that a hug is signing a contract with a hidden clause that I don't realize until it's too late. But in that moment, I felt safe and I felt appreciated. Hell, I felt loved.

After I said "thank you", the group noticed my spouse and baby and I introduced them. The entire Free Hugs group clamored around little Bby-8 in the stroller, exchanging more heartfelt hugs with me. They hugged my spouse. They told me my baby was beautiful. They told me they were proud of me as a mother and that I was doing a good job. And then I teared up again. Not hard enough for them to (blatantly) notice, but enough to where the sunglasses fogged up quicker. Thing is, I wasn't sad, I was relieved.

Something in that interaction allowed me to unpack something that was heavy, something that was weighing me down. In that short moment, I felt that all of my hard work to better myself was worth it. I had been so used to being torn down, so used to hearing negative talk from my bloodline that receiving a hug and being told that someone is proud of me was enough to bring me to tears.

Free Mom Hugs didn't just change my life, they helped me heal. They gave me something that I've needed for a long time. If anyone from Free Mom Hugs is reading this right now, I want to tell you this: by being a temporary mom and dad to me, you all helped me be a better mom to my son. And I thank you for that with my whole heart.

I WILL BURN YOUR FANDOM TO THE GROUND! TO ASH!

Leslie gets into a severe verbal altercation with the Twilight Fandom. She is going to burn this motherfucker to the ground. This episode contains a LOT of cursing and general anger. Her and Quinzel are blocking OJ Simpson from every social media they have.  For..reasons. 

Black Fan Fiction Consortium:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/382344932274215/

Around 16:35 Leslie said Beauty Bakery. She meant Juvia's Place!

Where I lost it talking about Getting Jiggy with it
https://twitter.com/mrsckugs/status/1009048032929898496

Rockabelly Takes on the Taco Popper
https://www.fanfiction.net/s/12643853/1/Rockabelly-Takes-on-the-Taco-Popper?fbclid=IwAR3Pc_bl2sMY6hdgjRI9jLrC1bsd7ZmJSZu1jn1ffWRsPYs1xbZZG8A1OuU

La Sua Bella Mente (Her Beautiful Mind)
https://www.fanfiction.net/s/13047241/1/La-Sua-Bella-Mente-Her-Beautiful-Mind

Send Quinzel (or Leslie!) a note or art for the dungeon!: PO Box 90232 Indianapolis, In. 46290

Would you like to buy Leslie a coffee? Support her podcasting habits and learning? Go Here: Ko-fi.com/geekygirlsni

Facebook.com/geekygirlsnightin

Instagram.com/geekygirlguide

Twitter.com/geekygirlsNI

Twitter.com/Geekygirlguide

Check out the writings of Quinzel, Melissa, and Leslie at www.geekygirlguide.com

How many times should you dust yourself off and try again?

Whew Chilay. It has been a week year. I don't even know where to begin with this.

I talked a little bit about this on Instastories earlier today. I graduated from college in 2008. That means I have been in the world of Information Technology for 11 years. 11 long, thankless years. For those of you that do not know, my major was computer information technology with a specialty in Microsoft Networking. I've never used the Microsoft Networking portion of this degree because does MS even deal in networking? Who knows. After working crap jobs for so many years, I kicked off my IT career doing help desk.

I've worked some form of help desk over the years, working my butt off, striving to do better and be better than I ever was *cue Pokemon song* but it seems like I could never get ahead. A few years ago I wrote a blog called When a Geek is Fed Up. It detailed some of the abuses I dealt with in a large corporate environment. I got away I was free and life was good.

Until it wasn't.

It seems no matter where I go or what I do, I can't seem to get ahead or get promoted. When i first started out in my field I understood. I worked for a tiny company. There was nowhere to go, nowhere to promote me to. I eventually worked up the nerve to ask for a raise and title change. I was told no, because my manager at the time didn't believe in different titles (which confused me to no end, but whatever). The environment I was in when I wrote 'When a Geek is Fed Up' was absolutely toxic. I applied for a position that would have been a promotion and I nailed the interview. I was what they were looking for. I found out later that the person that I was interviewing with, the person that would have been my manager actually wanted me for the position, but it was a good ol boy system and he was pressured to hire someone else. Namely my supervisor at the time who wasn't even eligible for the position at the time (he had just gotten a promotion and should not have been able to take another position for at least a year).

Why am I writing about this? Because it has happened again. I applied for a position I am qualified for. It would be a good jump for me, pushing me further in my career. It was with the same company I am currently with. I was hopeful and excited. The first month.

Two months after I applied they finally interviewed me. I thought the interview went well. I was to go on vacation a month after the interview but I figured I would have an answer by then. I was wrong. Two months after the interview, still no response. At this point we are 4 months past the point where I applied. Another two months pass. I finally got a "we're going with someone else."

Six months. It took me 6 months to get a rejection from a job in a company I work in. And what's more, I got the rejection while I was at work. This may sound strange as if I would get a response after work, but I was applying for a department. They are in another state. They typically call me after hours to let me know news. I then had to make it through another 4 hours at work without crying rage tears.

I know some people can suck things up and move it along to the next opportunity, but it honestly feels like I am drowning. I enjoy the people I work with, but my job duties have changed so much in the past three years, that I no longer recognize this position. There is no longer any joy in it as half the time I have no clue what is going on. I am disinterested. I want to focus on what I actually want to do for a career. How do I do that, when I can't even get a foot in the door of a company that knows my work ethic? It feels like I will always be slowly scrabbling at the ladder and I am so tired of it.