Posts tagged Transformers
The amazing thing about leading such a detail oriented life and having a brain that focuses on minutia is that you always notice the little things… or so you think.
Apparently, my wife and friends have been conspiring for the past two months to throw me a surprise birthday party for my thirty-something-or-other birthday. Knowing ME as well as I do, I can safely say that this had to have been a major undertaking of logistics, deception, and timed distraction to the professional level of a top notch magician. Seriously. Shit like this doesn’t get past me. I’m that guy that guesses the killers in mystery movies forty five minutes into the flick. I notice minor details to a degree that drives folks to look at me like I’m Rain Main. I ALWAYS FIND WALDO.
My only conclusion can be this: I have amazing friends who, over time, have learned to know me too well.
I mean, look at this:
Does this look like the birthday gifts for a thirty-something-or-other man? You might not think so. But they’re perfect.
After a day of business meetings in Orlando (the ONLY way my friends knew to absolutely get me into town without suspicion) I was led to the Geek Easy next to A Comic Shop to look at the space for a potential entertainment project. I was tired, dazed, and didn’t really WANT to see the space, but Tentacle Chris (whom I had been reviewing Cosplay Deviants related project stuff with) wanted to check it out and drop off some leftover flyers for some Sega video game.
When we walked into the Geek Easy and saw a large group of people I immediately thought, “Oh, shit. We accidentally just walked into a private event.” I paused ready to back step away and then, a nano second later, my brain recognized everyone in the room.
I HAD BEEN DUPED.
Not content with just a “normal” surprise party, my friends put together The Roast of Tom Croom which, if spend more than five minutes on the Internet, isn’t that hard to do. Needless to say, this is what it looked it:
I know what you’re thinking… you’re thinking, “Why the hell is Katie dressed like that in front of the mic?” Well, part of the party’s theme was to dress up as me at various points in my life. Katie (along with Disney Legend Tom Nabbe and his wife) were all dressed as ME dressed a VINCENT VEGA as a previous birthday party I had… one where everyone was required to dress as a character from a Quentin Tarantino movie. They ordered the correct shirt (just like I had years before) and even brought a photo of me for reference:
Thus my evening was spent being insulted by the most amazing people in the world… all dressed as me. I’m sure Freud would have a field day with this.
And so, at the risk of sounding sappy, THANK YOU. You’ve all made an old man feel appreciated and loved.
- Allen - My fellow towel carrying Guide lover. I’m fairly sure you can sell some of those photos from last night to TMZ or (at least) to some nerds on 4Chan. Thanks for always being there. :)
- Angie – You are an amazing part of my life and I’m glad to have you as a close friend. That said, you make a DAMN SEXY Prince Eric. Just sayin’
- Chris - The next time I say I don’t need a site tour in order to visualize an event concept, I’m sticking too it! Your epilogue from your roast was the most touching part of the evening. I love you like a brother I never had (or, at least, one my father never told me about.)
- Dave – Always the quiet one, but always one of the most reliable ones. That said, you heard that my mic was cutting in and out… WHY DIDN’T YOU FIX IT! :)
- Eric – I can’t believe you own one of those hats. You’re a gentlemen, a scholar, and good people. I’m glad our lives are permanently intertwined due to that damn cartoon. :)
- Erik – You and Karen have known Shannon and I since… well… damn near forever. AND WE’RE ALL STILL GEEKS. (Which is a good thing.)
- Gary – Stylishly late, but always stylish. Shannon and I will get out there for beer at some point. I promise!
- Gregg - Worst. Roaster. Ever. The reason, though, is because you are one of the kindest souls I have ever met. You are amazing and you’ve made this “old man” feel like more than he is, but at the same time believe that he (I) can still aspire to be it all.
- Jessica - How did you know I like Starbucks! That said, your Tom Croom costume was outstanding. Though, I’m not sure everyone remembers my time performing at the Parliament House. Thanks for being a part of this madness. :)
- Jo - Gifts are never necessary, and that gift card was too much. You’re a great guy and stop reminding me how long ago we met in college. It only makes me feel OLDER. ;)
- John – My best and worst roommate ever. It’s always great to see you again, though I am disappointed you couldn’t find our matching underwear. :)
- Kaleb – Thanks for taking photos at the event. I’m downloading copies from your camera (we took it home last night) and OMG WHAT ARE THESE OTHER PICTURES??!!!
- Karen - Damn, ma’am. I’ve known you longer than most of the folks in that room. I am happy that through the years, clubs, conventions, and strange anime fans that we’ve always remained friends. You are an amazing woman.
- Karma – What can I say that hasn’t already been said?
- Katie – Who’d of thunk that my ability to put up with Mike Herz and that FX Show would ultimately result in THIS? Seriously. There’s some deep philosophical implications there – or I’m just damn lucky to have you and mine and Shannon’s life. (I’m going to vote the latter.) Your channeling of your husband at the roast was spot on. :)
- Ken - You weren’t here in person, but your spirit (and words) were carried via your wife… asshole. ;)
- Kim – Thank you for being there all these years and I may need to hit you up for a copy of the kumquat tree story. (I need it as the foreword in my autobiography.)
- Lyn - One of the FEW people on the planet that knew that costume that you wore. Thanks for being such a good and unique (that’s a good thing) friend over the years… and for putting up with so much of my shit. :)
- Myna – I wanted to say something profound and touching here, but I was distracted by your boobs. You’re a great addition to the circle of nerds and I’m glad you were able to join the insanity.
- Ray & Diane – I always hear jokes about “the in-laws.” Thanks to you two, though, I don’t understand a single one of them. I love you both dearly. :)
- Richard – Your video message was inspiring and disturbing. Strangely, it was shot in a locations just like Rikki’s. You’re a good friend and I DON’T CHEAT AT WORDS WITH FRIENDS. That’d be that “Kaleb” guy.
- Rikki – I’ve watched your video a few times now. I keep struggling between laughing again or just calling you and forwarding you to someone for professional help. I may do both. Also see my note to Richard above; you’re both seriously fucked in the head – apparently in similar ways. :)
- Scott – I haven’t read those Shia Lebouf books. Yet. It scares me, though, that you know me well enough to know how much I’ll enjoy the torture of reading them.
- Seth – One of my oldest friends who predates my hardcore venture into the business of geek. You are an anchor for my sanity reminding me that there were people who saw things the right way in our days at Universal together. You are amazing and I’m glad to have you continually in my life.
- Shannon – I love you. You completely and entirely got me by surprise. Well done. Game on. ;)
- Shortie - Last night I realized how long we have known each other and, as a result, I felt EVEN OLDER. Thanks for always being there for Shannon and I – and especially Shannon. It’s good to have another person she can talk to about mutual friends. :)
- Tom & Janice – You will always be my adopted Orlando parents who have always been there for my wife and I. Thanks for showing up and reminding me that I will ALWAYS be younger than your real son. :)
- Tracy – I’m sorry I was tired and distracted all night and didn’t have time to make you cry – because it’s not a party until Tom Croom makes his sister-in-law cry. ;)
- Troy – Well played, sir. Now I have NOTHING to bitch about at Busch Gardens on Saturday… or Sunday. There was SOMETHING I was supposed to do on Sunday, too, right? Better check my Google Calender. ;)
Since you’re writing from a business email address I assumed it was public knowledge. That said, contrary to the negative image your convention works to paint of me – I’m not a dick. Per your request, I’ve removed the address from my previous blog post.
That said, Botcon put on a dreadful show in Orlando. I called them out on a poor presentation in a review online and even brought to light their failure to disclose all ticket prices… a mistake that can understandably be made by a freshman or even sophomore year convention.
You have pointed out, though, that Fun Publications has been doing Botcon since 2005. The ticket issue alone makes the failures in Orlando even worse. You realize that, right?
You can claim that your customer base’s requests drove the selection of the location for Botcon 2012. I can also state that (by strange coincidence) I predicted the Botcon 2011 and 2012 locations in 2010 based on the need for Fun Publications to do easier shows after the Orlando catastrophe.
I (along with my friend Joey Snackpants) have been promoting a love for the Transformers franchise at panels in front of (literally) thousands of fans at conventions in Atlanta, Miami, Orlando, Indianapolis and other smaller towns here and there since 2002. We came to Botcon with high hopes for a Transformers celebration that creates excitement about the fandom.
Instead, we were lied to about ticket fees and offered an average trade show.
All I’ve done is call out your convention to step up their game. Botcon, though, seems to have trouble with feedback that critiques them. Instead of working to improve – well, your PR team flippantly tries to pick fights with me on Twitter and you’re emailing me about posts on my personal blog. Hasbro must be proud.
For claiming not to pay attention to me (http://twitter.com/#!/BotCon/status/141892993228611584) you all sure seem to pay a lot of attention to me.
Best luck with Dallas. I guess we’ll wait to see how 2013 fares in one of the two locations I didn’t predict.
From: Pete Sinclair [mailto:pete@[FROM FUN PUBLICATIONS].com]
Sent: Tuesday, December 06, 2011 9:07 PM
Subject: Fwd: RE: Misinformed
—————- Begin Forwarded Message —————-
Subject: RE: Misinformed
Date Sent: Tuesday, December 6, 2011 8:32 PM
From: Tom Croom
To: ‘Pete Sinclair’
I will be happy to clarify and state again.
* BotCon has been held in several different cities, no where near Ft. Worth. BotCon was around for a long time before you made your first visit in 2010. Please reference the list in the prior email.
* The way we approach each show is the same, whether it is an hour away or 18 hours away.
* I work out of state and handle most of the things you stated would be to our advantage by being so close. So again, not really an advantage.
Finally, why would it matter if it is? In this competitive con market, why would you blame any business for working the best advantages for themselves, which in return, only benefits the consumer.
However, and please do not gloss over this point, our customer base really wanted a central location this year, and Dallas had an amazing offer and location for us. We would have chosen it if we were based out of South Dakota.
BotCon has grown by leaps and bounds since Fun Pub acquired the license, and judging by the number of hotel rooms we have already booked and how quickly we sell out of Primus packages every year, no reason to think that fans won’t once again be thrilled with BotCon. We put everything we have in to each show, and that can be seen each year.
Thanks again for your interest in our convention. Hope you can join the thousands of other Transformers fans at BotCon 2012!
Thanks for writing! I’m confused at what facts are in question. (In my best impersonation of the narrator from Pushing Daisies)
The facts were these…
- I have been attending fan conventions across the United States since 1991. I’ve visited events like yours of almost every shape and size from Los Angeles to Miami.
- In 2010, I went to Botcon in Orlando, Florida. My friend Joey Snackpants and I had been anticipating attending the event for years.
- I was tragically disappointed in Botcon’s presentation. (See this review online.) NOTE: My disappointment is a fact; my opinion of the event is… well… my opinion.
- I stated, during the ongoing online arguments that ensued on my blog, that the only way to see if Botcon had learned anything from their (in my opinion) failure in Orlando was to see the show at a location that wasn’t near Los Angeles (which resulted in 2011) or near Fun Publication’s headquarters in Texas.
- Botcon 2012 will take place less than 50 miles from Fun Publications in Texas.
Thus my argument holds plenty of water: 2010 was weak. 2011 was well attended based on location and proximity to the Transformers movie release. 2012 is less than an hour’s drive from Fun Publication’s headquarters.
Having run events across the United States, I can say that any promoter I know will tell you it is ALWAYS much easier running a convention local to your core staff.
FUN FACT: The movie Glitter has a 7% on Rotten Tomatoes. That means SOMEONE liked it; that doesn’t, though, make it a good movie: (http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/glitter/) Think about that as you look at your convention. Instead of pissy Twitter replies (making your convention look unprofessional) try listening to the feedback and look to improve your show.
Also, I am (of course) posting this email on my blog.
Thanks again for writing,
From: Pete Sinclair [mailto:pete@[FROM FUN PUBLICATIONS].com]
Sent: Tuesday, December 06, 2011 7:00 PM
Just an FYI… BotCon has been held, since FP started in 2005, in Frisco, Lexington, Rhode Island, Cincinnati, Pasadena, Orlando and then back to Pasadena.
Regardless as to whether the show is an hour a way or 16 hours away makes zero difference from a logistics standpoint. All shipments, guests and planning (and so much more) are done the same way. Same number of site visits are made as well. ONLY thing that changes is office staff will drive as opposed to fly. Out of state staff, like myself, actually handles the advertising we do for the show, so even that part of your argument holds no water I am afraid.
Please make the effort to ask before reporting the “facts” next time
So BotCon’s Twitter replied to me today to inform me about how they are working on the “amazing Botcon 2012″ event.
Check it out: http://twitter.com/#!/BotCon/status/141892993228611584
Instead of a long series of tweets, I’ll remind the folks at BotCon what I pointed out back in 2010 with this short blog post:
1. BotCon in 2010 was abysmal. The event was a good “trade show,” but an extremely weak convention.
2. BotCon 2011 was set to be a success regardless of the quality of the show. It took place in southern California (with ten million people living in Los Angeles County alone) AND it was the same year of a Transformers movie release. You’d have to actually purposely try to fail at getting folks not to attend a convention with that “perfect storm” in place.
3. BotCon 2012 will be the true test of seeing if they can put on a real show again (that’s assuming that any of the BotCons before 2010 were any better) as long as it’s outside of Los Angeles.
Depending on the location, maybe I will do a follow up story from our bit back in 2010.
A few months back I bought this awesome book shelf from Ikea. It is now home to my library of AWESOME and a bunch of Transformers statues. Bask in the geeky goodness of this photo.
I occasionally update new photos (and old ones that I scan) on my Flickr account. Each Friday I post one on my blog from my collection that I think is visually literary.