Monday, March 7, 2016

Klingon Babysitter





Thank you to everyone who stopped by our table at Central PA Comic Con this weekend.  We had a blast!  We brought cats, pins, and comics.   



By the way, you can still order a copy of Oh Hell, Donna! Volume One, and I’ll still sign it on request.  Over 100 pages for $30.  Simply email me at Deddrie@gmail.com with your zip code, and I’ll send an invoice your way.  Eventually, we’ll have an easy-to-order-from website…  I promise.



In any case, the convention had plenty of Star Trek cosplayers, which (once again) reminded me of that time I had a Klingon for a babysitter.  What?  Have I not mentioned this to you before?  Well, Dear Reader, have a seat. 



A thousand years ago, Vegas still had The Star Trek Experience, and it was the greatest thing of all time.



I’m a sucker for immersive things.  Like, between an action figure or a replica prop, I’ll take the prop every time.  Rides like the Haunted Mansion have a huge place in my heart for that same reason.  The Star Trek Experience did the same thing. 



Even when not on the “ride” itself, there was a museum to walk through.  The props and costumes were treated as true artifacts, as though the shows were historic documents from the future. 



Whew.  Got a little Galaxy Quest there.



Considering how few things Vegas has to offer a small child, I was still wandering around the casinos frequently enough.  My father’s family could be found in Nevada, so this meant even a 14 year old me got to see and meet The Amazing Johnathan…



Actually, I’m not gonna post about that separately.  You’re gonna get that story right now because I’m still entertained by how that went down.



For those not in the know, The Amazing Johnathan is a slightly morbid comedian/magician.  (http://www.amazingj.com/)  At one point during the show, he pointed to me and asked that I show my boobs.  I was, you know, 14 years old and with my parents, and I don’t think I would have done it anyway.  We all laughed…

And after the show, I ran up to him to sign something for me and get a photo. 



We had a few moments of him spelling my name incorrectly like three times, to which I responded, “You can call me Susan, for all I give a damn.” 



He looked at me, realized I was the girl he had pointed to, and when I related my age, his wife LAUGHED SO HARD at his horrified expression.  My parents figured it was all in good fun (which in retrospect is a little funky, but whatever) and I later on cut everyone out of the photo we took so it would just be me and my hero. 



SO.  Star Trek!  Back to WAY BEFORE THAT.  I was… 9?  Maybe?  Which meant there was even LESS for me to do in freaking Las Vegas. 



I was very young and small, and therefore not allowed to be on the actual gambling floor.  Anywhere the red carpet was laid, I was not to step.  This was in conflict, as my father wanted to play games.  





I have no idea where the rest of my family was hiding.



Luckily, my dad is a problem solver.  He called a man dressed as a Klingon over to watch me for “a minute.”  Total stranger.  Dressed as a Klingon.  Hopefully worked there.  A+ parenting. 





Thing is, as a child, I had no concept of costumes.  I didn’t even understand that re-runs were a thing, so from my perspective, Kirk and Picard were both current captains, William Shatner was younger than my father, and this WAS a Klingon standing before me.  

I’ll give him points too.  This guy managed to keep me entertained, stay in character AND not scare the piss out of me. 



I remember a very vivid scene of wandering down a hallway as he explained some of the displays.  





He stopped at one display “of his people” that he found upsetting, due to the tribble present by his ancestor’s feet.  “We do not like tribbles, and tribbles hate us in return.” 



Now considering that I didn’t speak much as a child, it’s pretty neat that I looked at this mountain of a man and said, “I like you, but I have a tribble at home.  We keep her in a cage though so she won’t get out.”



After processing that this wasn’t a child-game and that I was dead serious, he continued the conversation very carefully, trying to figure out what the fuck I actually had in a cage at home. 



Guinea pig.



It was a guinea pig. 





And this guy?  He was right on top of that.  “Ah yes.  You hold captive the ancestor of the tribble.  The ancient guinea pig is not quite as bad, but close.” 



I remember nodding with a stern gaze, as though to say, “Yes, my brother.  I understand.” 



We wandered pretty far…   I assume he must have just taken me back the way we came, because we didn’t go on the ride together.  

Dad seemed pleased that I was fine.  I’d like to the think he tipped the Klingon man.  I also hope the guy got a raise, or an acting gig. 



So.  That’s the time I had a Klingon babysitter.






I ever tell you about the topless show I was too young to get into but saw it anyway?





What happens in Vegas…

Winds up on this blog.




OH



OH HOLY SHIT I forgot.



Hold on.



SO.



The convention I was at this weekend?  
Speaking of Star Trek…



I pooped next to Uhura!



…That needs clarification.



Nichelle Nichols was in the bathroom at the same time I was in the bathroom. 

I waved at her and she smiled.  Hopefully I wasn’t too crazed- wide-eyed.



After she left, I turned to the girl who was behind me, pointed at the door and exclaimed, “That was Uhura!” …but the girl was unimpressed and/or thought I was a lunatic.  

Like, you know in Invader Zim, that face Dib makes when he’s happy and pointing, waiting for someone else to SEE the thing?  That was my face. 



So, yeah.   Star Trek has been a pretty big part of my life, I guess.




Sunday, January 17, 2016

The Weddening Part Two: Food



This is the second and last part of the "I GOT MARRIED" posts, but the food-stuff merited it's own thing... So here ya go. 



Due to concerns about allergies, we were pretty unwavering on wanting to know exactly what ingredients would be used in the foods.  We asked to meet with the chef, which is a generally normal wedding thing anyway… 


We were told “Oh, there’s no reason to be concerned!”
So we reiterated that despite that, we would feel a lot better speaking directly to the chef.


The response was, “Do you want to call other people with different allergies who ate here?”


No, we don’t.  We want to talk to the chef about the ingredients and OUR list of allergens.  Like, great that you didn’t kill a completely different person in a totally different scenario?
This went on for months.


It was a clusterfuck of upsetting.


Finally, we got a, “I gave your list to the chef, and there are some problems.  Can we do a meeting?”


The.  Fuck.  


Did I mention we didn’t like our wedding planner lady? 


Have I mentioned (a thousand times) that I’m recovering from a food phobia and I am pretty damn delicate about not wanting to be poisoned from my many REAL allergies?


Just picking the menu was a bigger hassle than it should have been.  She told us to circle everything we could possibly want on the menu, to then edit down later.  


So we did that.  



She panicked and said, “You chose a lot of stuff guys…”  Right.  Like you said.  We were not intending to actually eat all that.  (Also, take the fucking chocolate fountain off of the list for the tenth time, you lunatic.)


The first chef wasn’t a bad guy, and I’d like to say he made great food, but I’ll never know.  


He insisted he would only make a special plate, instead of altering his recipes for the people paying him to cook.  “So yours will be terrible and tasteless”   

 …Right.  


That tasting was a lot of everyone around me explaining how I can’t eat ANYTHING and must be SO MISERABLE ALL THE TIME.  Mind you, I did this to myself in one regard.  


When I listed off my food allergies, I included things that will straight up kill me if ingested, right along with stuff I’m just intolerant to, like things that make me a little physically uncomfortable, thinking that I’d rather not run to the bathroom at my own wedding.  


I included soy on this list though it probably shouldn't have been there.  I used to have a HUGE PROBLEM with soy way back in the day.  Not a hive-gonna-die reaction, but a running-to-the-bathroom-and-praying reaction.  Now, I can generally eat things that contain soy.  I really can.  REALLY, I can.  


I’m still not going to eat a brick of tofu any time soon, but if something is made with soybean oil, I’m totally fine. 


But, yeah.    
I didn’t correct anyone when this was treated like my actually dangerous allergies, because it was a matter of principle and trust.
If I now let this go, what else would they think was okay?  


See, again, we weren’t originally even going to get a tasting of any kind, because we didn’t count as important. 
  
This woman even said OUT LOUD, “We aren’t making the margins that we typically do.”  Like… did she… Did she think we don’t know what that means? 
  
What?





So that first chef, what we have is a super-hip know-it-all who apparently isn’t actually that talented if he CAN make separate food just for me special, but can’t figure out how to make it delicious, so I’ll get a special plate.  


I didn’t want a special plate.  I wanted to feel normal.  For one damn day of my life.  I wanted hope that I might have that feeling more than once.  


I had been dealing with this food phobia for over three years.  


I just wanted to feel like a normal person during my own goddamn wedding.  I just wanted to feel safe AND be able to eat what everyone else was eating without fear.  We didn’t understand why we couldn’t just have what he put in front of me for everyone else. 


We were eventually asked to do a 2nd meeting with no further explanation where we were introduced to the NEW chef who had no problem making the entire menu without using anything off the allergen list.



And the desserts!  Trying to find a nut-free cake was a giant pain in the ass.  Every place we found that said “nut free” was also everything-else free, and so would wind up using other things that make me sick, if not could kill me.   
Totally unhelpful.   

A lot of those places also seemed to be doing that out of a fad-thing rather than with allergies actually in mind.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                

Finally, I found a freaking “Living With Allergies” help board online, which led to finding a woman in the area who works right out of her kitchen.   
She was able to provide us with a nut-free cake (bottom layer was chocolate with strawberry filling, the middle was a yellow cake with Oreo filling, and the top was chocolate with a mixture of the two fillings).  


Of course, we were meant to pick up and drive this cake to the wedding, so admittedly that was harrowing.  It was a lot of screaming and “WHY IS THE ROAD BUMPY??” but the cake was perfectly fine.  



Given that this cake was a post-apocalyptic cake… with flowers?  We were a little confused when we first picked it up.  




But I love the topsy turvy shape, and that’s all that really mattered to me in the end. 


This same woman was able to make vegan cupcakes, gluten free cupcakes, AND sugar free cookies for all our guest’s dietary needs. 


 



We had the place make special labels for each item, both here and for the buffet.   
They stated what the item is and what ingredients were used.   Super useful right?  



Except for that one where they totally failed.  


Not entirely getting the point led to our planner-lady interrupting me while I was getting food to say, “OH you don’t want that!”   

At first I was like, “Is this bitch calling me fat on my goddamn wedding day???”  Turn out, there was a last minute change to the menu, and one item had… something? 


Dude, if you can’t do what I asked you to do, just cut it out.  DO NOT endanger people by having the once useful sign now functionally worthless.  


Given my food-phobias that I was really super determined not to freak out about that particular day *BREATHES* I was furious, and scared.  I managed to still eat macaroni, but I didn’t actually eat anything else.  Anything.  Because she ruined it.  She burned my hard earned trust away.  It was gone.







Okay, “ruined” might take it a bit far.  The party was still awesome and continues to be talked about as, “The Best Wedding Ever” so suck it!
We even got to dress the bartenders up as mad scientists!  Did I mention that?



Every wedding has those oh-my-god-no moments, and ours went pretty well by the end.


Sooo I would still recommend the venue, warts and all.



Wednesday, January 6, 2016

By The Way, I Got Married





2015 was pretty busy. 

Along with giant strides made in my emotional and physical health, I did a lot of art-stuff!

I finished Volume 1 of Oh Hell, Donna! 
Those pages are going to post one at a time every Wednesday. 
Meanwhile, I’ve already done the first chapter of the second volume. 


Deddrie is oddly still going.  …for some reason. 
I have finally made the choice to post a comic every other Thursday for that, rather than just “whenever I feel like it,” so let’s see if I can keep that up.

I finished Unicorn and fixed up Venus. (The plan is to put together a little Fantasy-anthology type thing...)

My Knight in Pinstripes and I went to a few conventions and did pretty well there.

I was in that Bubbline book…  Was that 2015?  Jeez. 

I’ve even got my next projects lined up, and I’ve started showing some of the character designs on Tumblr, DeviantArt, and Facebook.  …and Twitter.  I’m on a lot of sites these days.


I also have been in my not-art job for almost a year now.

OH and we bought a house. 

 SO that was the year that just ended… PLUS THE WEDDING.

Riiight right.  We got married. 



Our wedding was crazy and planning for it was more-so.  Like, this was the Save the Date:


Actually, let’s start off by talking about the wedding planner who came with the venue.  We liked the venue, but had no need of a wedding planner. 
The place was beautiful.  See? 

OH by the way, THIS IS MY FACE.

But yeah.  We didn't want a planner, because we had a clear set of ideas for what we wanted. 
We tried to make that clear… but again, she came with the place. 



She was horrible.



Anytime a family member had to get involved, they’d say the same thing.  They’d say they really liked the place… and not her. 



I’d like to say she meant well but I don’t think she actually did. 

The first meeting we had with her, we talked about how we wanted to just call it a “family gathering” to celebrate our union, since we’d already be legally married by that point, there would be no white dress, no flowers, no DJ...

This was our DJ:

And no pretty-much-everything that makes something a typical wedding.

I mean...  THIS was on our invites:


She took this to mean that we either weren’t going to be married at all, or that we were tricking her.

Every now and then, she’d say, “This is starting to sound A LOT like a wedding…” and look at us suspiciously.  She’d give us an outlandish suggestion that we’d either turn down or think about, but if we said we liked any part of it, she’d panic and say, “GUYS THIS IS GETTING REALLY COMPLICATED” and act like it was her idea to do whatever it is we wanted to do in the first place.

We were already complicated on our own.  My party was the Scorpion Gang:


and his was The L10N5:




The idea was that his group had been underground when the bomb went off, and mine was above ground as raiders and such...
WEDDING.

At one point, we even filmed our friend for the purpose of having a screen project the image for the audience… We cut that later.

Mind you, we still did A LOT.   

We had boxes and boxes of stuff for the tables, and I labeled each bag for each one…   

We made the Nuka Cola labels ourselves, and Rob even made Nuka Cola caps, though those were ultimately not used for the wedding.  



Rob nearly mutilated his own hands to help me make my shoes...

 *Stained with human blood*




We chased people for RSVPs, including people we saw all the time or people who had actually complained about that themselves for their own wedding, as well as family members we didn’t have any addresses for to begin with…  



OH and since we moved right before the wedding, I lost my carefully planned out bad of day-of stuff, including all of the jewelry I had planned to wear and even scorpion tattoos I was going to put on all my brides-people.   

Rob lost his ties, including the one for the wedding.   

We did a kind of scavenger hunt to replace the items just in time, and I have since found my bag, but HOLY BAJEEZUS I did not need that extra stress.



And yet…

She, the "planner" was the worst, most difficult part of the whole shebang. 



The tables were neat though.   
Yeah!  Let’s talk about the tables.


Each had their own theme.    


Guests were encouraged to barter, bargain, trade, and steal with other tables.  My favorite common saying of the night was, “They stole my monkey!  I mean, I stole it first, but I stole fair and square!”




Each guest knew which table they had to go to via our “escort cards”…

Which were “wedding survival kits”…



These included a band-aid, some aspirin, a teeny tiny glow stick, gum (my father loves this gum), and a neat little keychain thing that has a compass, a light… and apparently a whistle.  



I didn’t catch that last part until people… until DRUNK people started using them.


“WHO GAVE THEM WHISTLES” quickly turned to realization that, “We did.  We gave them ALL whistles…”

By the way, my dad freaking loves this gum:


OH and the tables all had cameras on them (JEEZ I’m jumping around) so that we could get candids beyond what our actual photographer would get.


AS an aside, we did have a good camera-worth of totally unusable photos.  Dude wasn’t even someone we know.  He was a +1 of a friend.  WHO TAKES DICK PICS AT A STRANGERS WEDDING???  They weren’t even in the bathroom!  That shit was by people’s grandmothers under the table! 

There were no faces, but given that everyone was in costume, we know it’s you


*Ahem*



People kept clinking their glasses for us to kiss.   

We’d see folks come over, trying to take a picture of us doing so, but they evidently always failed.   


Every shot of that is either right before or right after.   
We had little nervous pecks more than a romantic kiss in front of a hundred people. 

OH YEAH we had a "sweetheart table" 

Which was still close enough to the Tank Girl table for my party,

And the Vault 13 table for his.


But at one point, there was clinking… and no husband. 

He was off being useful and fixing the music, but the point was that it left me going, “WHAT DO YOU EXPECT ME TO DO?  WHO AM I SUPPOSED TO KISS??” 



Thankfully, a couple of our friends stepped in, causing husband’s racist, homophobic grandpa to get a front row seat to two men kissing rather romantically.  Then another friend came in and slapped one like he was a scorned lover.  It was all incredibly entertaining. 





Speaking of entertaining, did I mention the battle that occurred between tables 12 and 14?  





See, because each table had a theme, we DID want people to mingle.  We didn’t realize it was cause an impromptu social experiment. 

I can't even begin to explain what happened, but everyone seemed to enjoy themselves.




We had a card-bomb for well wishes and such. 
 


When we broke it open, there were a lot of “TABLE 12 RULES/SUCKS” and so forth.  We could also tell when people started to really start drinking, because nice date ideas turned into lewd non-sequitors. 


Oh, those skeletons were a gift from our cousin (ha!  "Our" now cause marriage so she's my cousin now too!  I'm so tired.)
Even they got a little lewd by the end of it.

Our dance floor was The Thunderdome.  
Bride and Groom enter.  
A married couple leaves!

When it was time for our first dance, my father fled for the bathroom… followed by Rob. 
I mean, they didn't go together. 
It was just that after Dad came back, my husband had vanished.



I truly believed neither would come back in time…   
But they did!  YAY! 



Rob and I danced to a David Bowie cover of “God Only Knows” by the Beach Boys.

Then Dad and I/Rob and his mom danced to “Something Stupid” by Nancy and Frank Sinatra. 
This means that when someone asks, I can now say, “God only knows… Something stupid” and sound super sarcastic and uninvolved.  I find this hilarious.  

Gaze upon our awkward prom photo:



OH and we did something special for everyone on the dance floor.  :-D 
Once enough people were up and having a good time boogie woogie-ing, we had a Daft Punk tune get cut off by a record scratch, leading the way for Rick Astley. 

That’s right.  We Rick Rolled over a hundred people. 

OH LAI;FKLJhijkldjf  The bathroom! 
So.  Okay.  The tables each had their own post-apocalyptic thing...

That's right.  

The bathroom was Demolition Man. 

After the wedding, we had a bonfire.  The fire didn’t really exist well, but everyone had a good time joking around.  I was startled when she-bitch appeared behind me like the Devil in a 1920’s silent film.  She said, WAY TOO CLOSE TO MY FACE, “Was it everything you ever dreamed of?”  I nodded, nearly pissed myself in fear, and spent the rest of the time just praying she wouldn’t manifest herself again.   

 

Then we went inside for gifts and whoever managed to stay up that long.

And I got my shark.


I love him.



I want to beat our planner with this shark.  Look he has a friend!


Lastly, we had our next-morning-brunch.  That went well.  In line for food, my aunt asked me, “What did you guys do last night?  …Well, I KNOW what you did last night, but aside from that.”  Heeey let’s not talk about my sex life right now, yeah?  Ya weirdo. 

Meanwhile, Rob’s grandfather just loomed behind to say, “You’re gonna regret marrying into THIS family.”  Okay.  So.  Was that a joke, or a threat?  Both?  




Yaaaaaay marriage!  Well, part one. 
I didn’t talk about the food-stuffs here because that deserves its own post.  



BUT YAY!