A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

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A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby mew » Tue Apr 20, 2010 9:17 am

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No, but for serious, is anyone else going to A-Kon this year?
This will be my first time going to a large anime convention. I went to Dragon*Con back in 05 and that was pretty big (the vendors room was amazing). But the only anime conventions I have been to are really small (200-800ish attendees) crappy ones (you are bored after about an hour). So I am kind of excited to see what a real anime convention is like and I am going with my university's club so it will be awesomely cheap.

I was talking to some lady that opened up a new anime store in town and she was telling me about how the A-Kon VIP badge is completely worth the extra $10-15, you get in to the dealer's room early to you get first pick at stuff and you get to go to the front of the line for autographs. And then I realized "I don't actually care about any of that", I actually don't even like anime anymore (I guess my plan was to take a lot of pictures and spend most of the convention drunk). So what all is there to do at large anime conventions? The small ones I have been to would have about 2-3 panel rooms and something on the main stage at all times, a game room, 1-2 watching rooms, vendors, and a concert or dance at night. I imagine that A-Kon will just be a scaled up version of that? (more panels, more stages, more vendors, etc) I'm hoping that there will be a decent video game presence as well.

I wasn't planning to cosplay because everyone and their mom cosplays to anime conventions. My Chun Li costume isn't actually that nice (it was a mass produced costume and the bottom of the dress isn't at all accurate to the actual character) and if I wore my bear costume everyone would think I was a Pokemon. But I have been eyeing this one for the last couple years:
http://www.cosplaymagic.com/mokojaco.html
(although I have now started talking about costumes, I'm going to try to keep this thread low profile, I swears)
But I'm sure you can see the obvious plaw in this flan. $300 is completely ridiculous for such a simple costume. The detail work in the socks is pretty nice and the straps look good but the top is still very simple (you could almost just cut up and alter a leotard to make it). I found a seamstress on Craigslist that I contacted about it (I don't want to use my bear costume seamstress again, she seemed a little cold) but the more I think about it the more I would like it by A-Kon, which isn't too far off. I asked her for a price estimate and hopefully she can do it for under $200, otherwise I might seriously buy the $300 one (I have found it on other sites for $270 instead). I have literally wanted this costume for years =/ So I am thinking it might be about time for me to break down and just get it (I wasn't able to buy the situp bench I wanted for Christmas and I never really bought anything with my birthday money this year...) despite my upcoming unemployment (I am so excited about unemployment).

Last con I was at, I was at the bar and the group next to me (they were older, ranging from mid to late 30s to 50s, so it was nice) was playing this game- You make a team, it has to have one fighter, one robot, one alien, and one scientist. Who would you pick? (and no overpowered or invincible guys like Superman or Spawn, I think we also ruled out Dr. Manhattan)
I forget what some of us came up with, but there were some good ones; I think Yoda was a popular warrior or alien choice.
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Re: A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby isiz » Wed Apr 21, 2010 2:08 pm

mew wrote:And then I realized "I don't actually care about any of that", I actually don't even like anime anymore (I guess my plan was to take a lot of pictures and spend most of the convention drunk).


Can't you get drunk at home and have just as much fun for less money?
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Re: A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby mew » Wed Apr 21, 2010 2:21 pm

isiz wrote:
mew wrote:And then I realized "I don't actually care about any of that", I actually don't even like anime anymore (I guess my plan was to take a lot of pictures and spend most of the convention drunk).


Can't you get drunk at home and have just as much fun for less money?

No because I don't have anyone cool to drink with :( ... Why am I expecting there to be "cooler" people to drink with at an anime convention?
I guess maybe because if they are at the bar that means they would rather be at the bar than indulging in anime-nerd events, so maybe they are more mild nerds? I do like meeting new people (I need to get my own personal cards made). Hotel bars also tend to be really cool and laid back. Maybe I should just go to a hotel bar? But that would be sleazy.
There are the dances, and I won't dance unless I am super drunk, so that is kind of fun every now and then. And I guess when it comes to "partying" (drinking and dancing) I would rather do it with nerds than the standard club crowd type people.
I need to rethink my preferences, someday.

So update on the costume idea, I just got the price quotes for the Valkyr helmets and they are pretty much twice the cost as I was expecting. The problem is that I can still afford them =/ So I want them. I have to control myself to not buy the Jade costume to make up for the increased cost of the Blizzcon costume.
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Re: A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby isiz » Wed Apr 21, 2010 2:27 pm

mew wrote:No because I don't have anyone cool to drink with :( ... Why am I expecting there to be "cooler" people to drink with at an anime convention?
I guess maybe because if they are at the bar that means they would rather be at the bar than indulging in anime-nerd events, so maybe they are more mild nerds?

But...if they would rather hang out at a bar than the actual convention, why would they bother going to the convention instead of going to a regular bar? I am confused as to why people who don't care too much about anime would bother getting a con ticket just so they could have access to the bar at the con. Is the bar there really awesome? Do they have some sort of beer-jacuzzi? Are they secretly into ugly men who dress up like Sailor Moon but have to get really drunk before they can actually enjoy it?
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Re: A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby Minnerva » Wed Apr 21, 2010 2:35 pm

were is it going to be held? still don't have the hair length to go as mio from k-on, i guess i can go like hinata from naruto. i will need to wear contact lens though, hinata doesn't used glasses lol
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Re: A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby mew » Wed Apr 21, 2010 4:01 pm

isiz wrote:But...if they would rather hang out at a bar than the actual convention, why would they bother going to the convention instead of going to a regular bar? I am confused as to why people who don't care too much about anime would bother getting a con ticket just so they could have access to the bar at the con. Is the bar there really awesome? Do they have some sort of beer-jacuzzi? Are they secretly into ugly men who dress up like Sailor Moon but have to get really drunk before they can actually enjoy it?
No one actually spends the whole time at the bar. It's more just at night or here and there to grab a drink, but most people spend most of their time at the actual convention (I probably would too but keep stuff in my hotel room to drink every few hours). I'm just a bit of an oddity in that I don't actually like anime anymore but I still hang out with a lot of anime fans.

Minnerva wrote:were is it going to be held? still don't have the hair length to go as mio from k-on, i guess i can go like hinata from naruto. i will need to wear contact lens though, hinata doesn't used glasses lol
It's in Dallas, TV, apparently a very big convention.
I used to think wigs were really expensive or hard to get, but I have a friend here that makes wigs and she says they're not that bad (she made a really nice long Chobits Chi wig for herself). She said you buy the base first, then buy the hair extensions (that's all they are, just hair extensions), and sew them in to the base. I'm sure there is more to actually making them nice. She says they are uncomfortable though.

:D That's seriously my favorite part about having gotten Lasik, I can cosplay things! :V I can finally wear masks or see through goggles while swimming. The prices of Lasik are going down and the procedure is becoming better, if you are very nearsighted (apparently the procedure for far sighted is much more complex) I definitely recommend it. Or I used to wear the frameless glasses (they are expensive but stylish) and those are a bit less obvious when cosplaying.
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Re: A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby Jerex » Wed Apr 21, 2010 4:36 pm

That's seriously my favorite part about having gotten Lasik, I can cosplay things! :V I can finally wear masks or see through goggles while swimming. The prices of Lasik are going down and the procedure is becoming better, if you are very nearsighted (apparently the procedure for far sighted is much more complex) I definitely recommend it. Or I used to wear the frameless glasses (they are expensive but stylish) and those are a bit less obvious when cosplaying.


Not to butt in to your conversation (even though that's exactly what I'm doing), but how was the Lasik operation? I've seen a video online of the procedure being done, but I have a real problem with holding my eyes open. I wore contacts for about 6-8 months, but switched back to glasses when the contacts started bothering me.

Some specific questions:
How long did the procedure take?
How bad was the not being able to blink part?
Did your eyes water excessively? (I ask because mine do when I put eye drops in or hold them open for very long.)
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Re: A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby Joanadark » Wed Apr 21, 2010 4:47 pm

and if I wore my bear costume everyone would think I was a Pokemon.


Or a furry.
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Re: A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby mew » Wed Apr 21, 2010 8:06 pm

Jerex wrote:
That's seriously my favorite part about having gotten Lasik, I can cosplay things! :V I can finally wear masks or see through goggles while swimming. The prices of Lasik are going down and the procedure is becoming better, if you are very nearsighted (apparently the procedure for far sighted is much more complex) I definitely recommend it. Or I used to wear the frameless glasses (they are expensive but stylish) and those are a bit less obvious when cosplaying.


Not to butt in to your conversation (even though that's exactly what I'm doing), but how was the Lasik operation? I've seen a video online of the procedure being done, but I have a real problem with holding my eyes open. I wore contacts for about 6-8 months, but switched back to glasses when the contacts started bothering me.

Some specific questions:
How long did the procedure take?
How bad was the not being able to blink part?
Did your eyes water excessively? (I ask because mine do when I put eye drops in or hold them open for very long.)

Not a problem :D I kind of made this thread out of boredom and to try to get talked out of buying a $300 costume.

I hear it varies a little by what type of surgery you have done but the procedure is always very short, not even 15 minutes. At the place I got mine done they hop you up on medicines (not pain killers since there is no pain but something with similar effects) so you are pretty groggy and relaxed anyways (they don't want you to try to move during the procedure).
Don't let the written method of the procedure scare you because it's not nearly as bad from the perspective of being in the chair. They clamp your eyes open and put in some sort of numbing drops (your actual eyes don't even have any pain receptor neurons in them anyways), so you can't blink even if you wanted to. They keep putting a lot of eye drops and keep your eyes very moist so they won't feel dry.
You can still see during the procedure but the only thing you will feel is various amounts of pressure during certain points. They will ask you to focus on certain lights. The laser is programmed to shut off if anything moves or shifts out of place (so I would imagine that if you move it will increase the procedure length); I think something happened with one of my eyes that they had to redo, so that second eye ended up taking almost twice as long as the first one (first one didn't even take 5 minutes). Overall it's a very safe procedure these days. You are pretty medicated for the whole day after it and the less you use your eyes over the next 3 or so days the less irritation you will have (I downloaded some audio books and put them on an ipod to listen to while I slept the whole day).
I had mine done on a Friday morning and I was back at work on Monday. I had trouble reading small print for a bit (had to turn my WoW chat to large text) but I was entirely better by the end of the month.

My two brothers had it done as well. My younger one and I never had any problems but my older brother has dry eyes. I think this is something they can predict ahead of time though (his doctor made him start taking Vitamin E before the procedure and when I asked mine about it he said they would only really do that if someone was prone to having dry eyes or something). Also the younger you are, normally, the thicker your corneas are, so the easier it will heal (I think they told me the ideal age is around the mid 20s).
Your eyes heal gradually over the next few months, so you want to use a lot of eye drops and make sure to wear UV protecting sun glasses whenever you are out in the sun (but that's something you should do anyways).

Definitely try to find a place that will give you a free consultation. I got a pretty good deal on mine and it was $2200 for the cheapest package (no guarantees or refunds if it didn't work), I think my older brother got his for around $3500-4000 with a lifetime warranty, my younger brother got his done in India for like $500 :V My dad was so pissed at him when he found out that my brother impulse-purchased Lasik surgery, but it turned out fine, he never had any problems.

Also, I don't know if you are like me and used to have bags and dark areas under your eyes because of glasses. For a while I was like "Uggggh, I look soooo bad" but the bags go away with time and the dark areas reduce (mine still haven't completely gone away). I remember my younger brother looking horrible right after his but over time it definitely got better.

It's really cool, if you decide to get it done I will be super excited for you :D I was incredibly blind before it (couldn't see more than 6 inches in front of me without glasses) and I just love being able to watch TV and fall asleep now.
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Re: A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby Grehn|Skipjack » Wed Apr 21, 2010 8:16 pm

Been thinking about getting that surgery for a long time. Dunno if A) I still qualify for my step-father's health insurance or B) that health insurance even covers Lasik. I gotta admit I'm a little apprehensive about the whole thing. I love my glasses and have since I got them. Hell, I got my glasses on purpose because I always thought they looked neat. Even if I got my eyes fixed, I'd wear goggles or sunglasses all the time. Plus, it feels like betrayal. I have a huge glasses fetish. Stick a pair of glasses on a troll and suddenly she's a model huge. If I'm not wearing glasses myself then it's just cheating!

In an attempt to remain somewhat on topic, I won't be at A-Kon, but I will be at Animazement in Raleigh, NC. I was supposed to be going with my GF but I don't think she'll be getting enough leave.
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Re: A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby Arnock » Wed Apr 21, 2010 8:29 pm

mew wrote:(your actual eyes don't even have any pain receptor neurons in them anyways)



Tell that to my eyes on the rare occasion that my contact slips back underneath my eyelid! :P
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Re: A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby mew » Wed Apr 21, 2010 9:55 pm

Arnock wrote:
mew wrote:(your actual eyes don't even have any pain receptor neurons in them anyways)



Tell that to my eyes on the rare occasion that my contact slips back underneath my eyelid! :P
I've never had a fun experience with contacts :(
That's probably from your eye lid then :P I'm saying the actual eyeball and stuff underneath it have nerves for light reception and junk but not for pain. But I'm sure the area around it has to be pretty sensitive.
But the numbing drops take care of most of that, and they are constantly giving you relaxers for a couple of hours prior to the procedure.

I'd recommend not reading this if you are thinking about getting the procedure, it's one of those parts of it that sounds scary but really isn't at the time:
I thought the coolest part was when they were brushing something over my eye, and it's clamped open and you can still see. So whenever they put drops in you can actually see the drop falling and on to your eye. When they were brushing over it I saw a brush and I saw that it was brushing something, I couldn't feel anything, and I saw that it was being curved when it made contact (so it was brushing a curved surface), and then I realized "Holy shit, that is brushing my eyeball".

Edit: Oh, and (at least with the procedure I had done) you can see right after the procedure, things are just blurry and you don't want to use your eyes because then the healing will have less irritation. I don't know if this was because of the type of Lasik I had done or because I didn't use my eyes at all for a day and a half in worry of irritation, but I literally had none; no itchiness or anything (and I'm generally a very itchy person), but I still had to make sure and put a lot of eye drops in. For the next couple of weeks things might randomly be blurry but this usually fixes by puttin in eye drops.

Edit again: Haha, I remember when I first got out of the procedure and the lady was going through the "what to do before tomorrow's appointment" list. It was like in movies when a character gets knocked out and hallucinates that they are in heaven. There was this blonde girl dressed in white (scrubs), talking very calmly and quietly to me, everything was just slightly blurry, the lights around the room were exaggeratedly intense and blurry behind her, and I'm still extremely dazed from the meds.
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Re: A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby Joanadark » Thu Apr 22, 2010 4:24 pm

Definitely try to find a place that will give you a free consultation. I got a pretty good deal on mine and it was $2200 for the cheapest package (no guarantees or refunds if it didn't work), I think my older brother got his for around $3500-4000 with a lifetime warranty, my younger brother got his done in India for like $500 :V My dad was so pissed at him when he found out that my brother impulse-purchased Lasik surgery, but it turned out fine, he never had any problems.


The military will do it for free. I've been thinking about putting my name on the waiting list for a while. I didn't realize it was so expensive. I'll probably go sign up for it now.
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Re: A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby mew » Fri Apr 23, 2010 7:36 am

Grehn|Skipjack wrote:Been thinking about getting that surgery for a long time. Dunno if A) I still qualify for my step-father's health insurance or B) that health insurance even covers Lasik. I gotta admit I'm a little apprehensive about the whole thing. I love my glasses and have since I got them. Hell, I got my glasses on purpose because I always thought they looked neat. Even if I got my eyes fixed, I'd wear goggles or sunglasses all the time. Plus, it feels like betrayal. I have a huge glasses fetish. Stick a pair of glasses on a troll and suddenly she's a model huge. If I'm not wearing glasses myself then it's just cheating!

In an attempt to remain somewhat on topic, I won't be at A-Kon, but I will be at Animazement in Raleigh, NC. I was supposed to be going with my GF but I don't think she'll be getting enough leave.

Sorry, I somehow missed your post earlier. I don't think most insurance covers it, I know mine (blue cross blue shield) considered it cosmetic surgery. That's pretty cool that the military covers it, I guess it would make sense that if you are in the military not having glasses would be pretty advantageous for deployments or something? Out of curiosity, would something like veteran's insurance cover it or only if you are active? If he military is going to pay for it then go for it. As I mentioned, it's pretty safe. I heard of a friend of a friend who got it done for $1400, but she apparently had a really rough recovery at least.
I used to like my glasses too (I can't say I liked them as much as you did or that I had a fetish...) but you have to admit they are a hassle. When I got the Lasik I was thinking that I was going to go out and buy plastic glasses to wear anyways but I never did. But that is always an option if you really want to.

Edit: I think the only reason I am going to this con is because it's going to be so cheap. It's like a 2-3 hour drive, I will be carpooling, and the club is paying for crowded hotel rooms, so the total con trip (plus ticket) is going to be under $100 (probably only like $60). Oh, and it will be nice to go to a real anime convention. I'm sure I will manage to be entertained.

Also, update on the costume, local seamstress says she can do it for $165, so I'm happy with that (down from the original 300). Her work seems good and she has experience with costumes. I need to go shopping for some shoes to wear with it, I am thinking of just getting those ballet-style shoes that are in right now in either black or if I can find a matching green.
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Re: A-Kon 2010, anyone else going?

Postby Joanadark » Fri Apr 23, 2010 9:12 am

That's pretty cool that the military covers it, I guess it would make sense that if you are in the military not having glasses would be pretty advantageous for deployments or something? Out of curiosity, would something like veteran's insurance cover it or only if you are active?

They make prescription dust goggle and gas mask inserts for guys that are deploying that wear glasses, but having fully corrected eyes is certainly an advantage. The thing that I could never stand about glasses is that you lose your peripheral vision, and if you don't look directly straight ahead through the lenses you don't get 20:20 vision, which is extremely annoying when you're trying to sight in with a weapon.

I know that active duty military are entitled to essentially one "cosmetic" surgery of choice, and that is the category lasic falls under. You can get all kinds of different things that fall under that category though. I know service members that have gotten everything from cosmetic dental surgery as their "morale procedure", to boob jobs and penis enlargement. Yes, the military will give free penis enlargement surgery if you can justify that it will tangibly improve your morale.

I don't know as much about Tricare-for-life, which is the coverage military pensioners fall under, but I'd imagine there would be some out of pocket in their case.
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