Well, it’s tomorrow, and I promised you a “next post” about Salt Lake Comic Con, so here it is. Bear with me, though; it’ll be a bit of a winding road getting to the heart of the matter.
[I’m glad I waited a day to write this, because, had I done so yesterday, it would have been ugly in so many ways that I would not have been proud of. There would have been words that would turn your monitor white and cause your mouse to die. Seriously. Dead. If you read it on a Mac, it might have imploded.]
Yesterday was an unpleasant day, which capped off a series of unpleasant days.
Where to begin?
After nearly 20 years of life, the roof of our house was becoming more and more prone to losing shingles every time we got a good wind storm. And we get more than enough of them. This necessitated me having to climb up on the roof and replace a tab here, three tabs there….
You get the idea.
Point being, we needed a roof.
A couple estimates later, and finagling some money around, we scheduled the job.
A bit of rainy weather a week or so before our time pushed our contractor back a week to finish those scheduled jobs. Understandable.
Our scheduled guy, let’s call him Mister J, was unavailable to start on our new day due to some unforeseen difficulties with the job he was finishing the day prior. Again, understandable.
So our contractor scheduled… let’s call him Mister Q, to come out later in the day of our scheduled start. He was later because he worked late the night before on another job that, you guessed it, had “old-house” issues.
Tear off of the original shingles (and removal of the evaporative cooler +patching) took a (half-)Thursday, (most of) Friday, broke for the weekend because Mister Q was putting in too many hours a week, resumed Monday, with Mister J arriving in the afternoon to assist in the tear-off work. By close of business Monday, we had a stripped roof, “wetted in” (tar-papered and whatnot), and the back side of the house (not garage) was shingled to near the peak.
Everbody caught up on the roof situation? Okay.
I’ve also been dealing with the VA about a back issue which is quite painful, more so than I might let on, and that has only added to my stress level.
So, environmental and medical boxes are checked. Add in normal job and life stressors and—well, you get the idea.
Soooooo…. Salt Lake Comic Con. (See? We got to it.)
Back on May 19, I inquired about the status of my press application for September’s Salt Lake Comic Con. I was told that I had been approved, along with my photographer.
Bought a VIP pass for the wife while they were offering early-bird discounts and called it a day.
I didn’t think about it again, until…
Monday night (last night), when I got an email from the PR folks at Salt Lake Comic Con.
It was a wonderful form email, full of color and official logos and art, telling me that I did not have press credentials for the event, but that I was welcome to use the included code to purchase passes at a 15% discount. (I get the same discount from my military status, BTW.)
VIP passes sold out a month ago, and the Gold level passes aren’t really worth it to me. VIP or nothing, right?
Anyway, Gold is in short supply, and the standard, 3-day Multipasses are listed as limited availability.
I kinda snapped. I admit it. I did.
I dashed off an email to the PR folks telling them how much I appreciated the near-last-minute notice that I was going to have to spend more money. Yes, I was somewhat (okay: a lot) sarcastic, caustic, and generally pissed off.
I tweeted my frustration.
I posted it on Facebook.
I even posted a plea to a very influential social media and web mogul-ess asking her to share this blog in an attempt to up its prestige, so to speak.
I was, really, really, angry.
Not just about this. I mean, yes, this, but it was just the figurative (not literal) straw that broke the camel’s back of frustration. It wasn’t so much the being denied thing (but, yeah); it was more about the 180 I felt had been pulled, to my detriment.
You never know how much stress you’re dealing with until it decides to go “HA HA!”
And it did.
About an hour later, after all my social media ranting, I got a tweet telling me to check my email.
The lovely lady (*cough* Danielle Chard *cough*) who had originally given my application the thumbs up back in May let me know that my information had accidentally been put on the wrong list, and that I was, indeed, approved for my two press credentials.
I can’t speak to how my information got put on the “no” list. I will take them (her, really, because she had been so helpful and understanding of my scheduling and cost concerns back in May) at their word and assume that the Universe just really, really, wanted to see what I looked like with a throbbing vein in my forehead and a heart attack on the horizon.
Either way, I am glad that the situation was resolved. I love my local Comic Con, even when I write not-positive things about it.
I have never thought to myself, “I’m not really excited to go to Con this time.”
I love the energy, the spirit, the fans, all of it. It’s as good a time as you can have in public. Legally, anyway.
I would have somehow sucked it up and gotten passes regardless and still provided the scintillating coverage of the event that I have in the past. But the pride of wearing a laminate that says “PRESS” is awesome when you start talking to people (fans, vendors, artists, etc) about what they’re doing, what they’re wearing, who they’re looking forward to seeing, etc, and reporting on that is indescribable. I think the word “PRESS” is a sort of validation, not only for me, but for them when they talk about their fandom, cosplay, or whatever.
It is a word with power, though not in the world-conquering sense.
It is essential for even trying to get a word with a celebrity about their time at the event, etc, beyond the chit-chat they give (graciously, I might add) to the fans.
Yes, I realize that My Own Little Shadow isn’t an internationally renowned podcast, or a syndicated TV show, or even a marginally successful Youtube channel.
But, Dammit, we all have to start somewhere, right? I’m trying.
Actually, in terms of Salt Lake Comic Con, I’m pretty successful. Organizers Dan Farr and Bryan Brandenburg both know my name, and most of the time they know me on sight. Unfortunately, it’s because we had a rocky relationship early on in the history of the Con. Anyone that remembers the lead-up to the first FanX might have read my posts.
But we got past it, and I’ve been happily chronicling the event ever since, good and bad. More good than bad.
So, if you want to help out a struggling author/blogger/media mogul, why not share the joy of this and other posts with your friends, neighbors, or strangers on a bus?
Yes, that was a shameless plug, designed to elicit pity, but probably only garnering loathing.
Oh, well. You can’t please everyone, I suppose.
See you around the shadows. And Con.
I look forward to seeing some of you there, if you care to talk.