Nicole and I got back from NYC late on Monday night. Although the trip was pretty brutal in terms of busyness and sleep deprivation, it was definitely worth it. I always enjoy getting back to New York, which was my home for many years. The city has changed a lot in the last ten years, not always in good ways, but it still has that certain magic that makes it unlike any other American city.
ComicCon was pretty impressive when you consider that this is only its second year. They are reporting 40,000 unique visitors, which already makes it bigger than GenCon. It’s like the city was just waiting for something like this to come along. I went to two seminars and got to walk the floor on a couple of occasions, but I spent most of my time in the booth. The show hours were 2-3 hours longer than most game cons and there were only three of us attending, so that made for some long days. It also meant that people could find me easily though and that proved handy. I got a chance to catch up with a high school friend I hadn’t seen in 20 years, a college friend I hadn’t seen in 10 years, and a punk rock friend I hadn’t seen since I moved out of NYC. The latter isn’t even into comics but her current boyfriend is and he dragged her along to this show. She stumbled upon our booth and we had a happy reunion while her boyfriend spent time in artists’ alley. Saturday night was dinner out with many members of my college game group, all of whom have written for GR at one time or another. It’s always good to see those guys; I just wish it happened more often.
Perhaps the most ridiculous thing I saw there was the “Jedi Stage”. Do you remember the internet video of that kid practicing his light saber moves in his parent’s garage? OK, now imagine dozens of those kids dressed up in Jedi gear having mock fights on a stage while videos of dancing flames and the like show in the background. That was the Jedi Stage. I couldn’t bear to watch it for more than 5 minutes but the room always seemed crowded.
In our free hours Nicole, Steve, and I did what the GR crew usually does when we get together: spend too much money eating out. We hit a nice spread of old favorites like Katz’s Deli and House of Vegetarian and new treats like Artisanal and Ruby Foo’s. I think Artisanal was the meal of the show. Really, I can’t believe that cheese-based restaurants existed in the world and I had never been to one. That was a hell of a meal and has made me want to try to find a “fromagerie” closer to home. Nicole, as always, has documented our culinary adventures in words and photos on her blog. Check out www.nikchick.com for more details.