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Postby The Eva Monkey » Fri May 17, 2013 11:47 am

View Original PostAR-99 wrote:LAEM? Do you really want to go there? :huh:

I'm not really looking to stoke the embers, I'm anticipating that some day someone will declare the project dead.
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Postby AR-99 » Fri May 17, 2013 12:41 pm

That knowledge would remove a worry of mine.
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Postby The Eva Monkey » Fri May 17, 2013 2:17 pm

View Original PostAR-99 wrote:That knowledge would remove a worry of mine.

Indeed.
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Postby Monk Ed » Sun May 19, 2013 10:42 pm

I'm back.

This year was quite different. First of all, I was the one to drive myself and my crew there instead of having someone else drop us off. I think that's what we'll be doing from now on, because having a car on tap proved useful and empowering.

But more importantly, I met this girl... and then possibly blew the chance of a lifetime.

It was Saturday, and I had just woken up at midnight of what was technically Sunday morning after a couple hours' sleep. I had stayed in all Friday after the drive in because I just hadn't had the energy or enthusiasm to leave the hotel room, and I had stayed in most of Saturday as well except for a token outing just to get some exercise, following my picture-taking friend around. I had gone to bed early (way early, 10pm instead of 5am like the previous night) because I just couldn't be bothered to stay awake any longer and figured I should get a head start on sleep anyway so that I'd be in condition to drive home at noon because that was the checkout time.

As I tried to get back to sleep (knowing from recent history of my sleeping patterns that I likely wouldn't), I started to imagine what I'd write here. I did not like the post that I composed in my head -- there was no other way to characterize my experience thus far than to say that I'd wasted the trip, because I had not even used my convention badge yet.

So I decided to get up, figuring that a good excursion would help me get back to sleep later anyway.

For some reason, I decided to attend a yaoi panel. I'm not even that much into yaoi for its own sake, but I was curious as to what the presenter(s) would recommend, and just for the anthropological experience -- I was curious as to what yaoi fans would be like. The line for it consisted of less than 10 people, all female except for me, and it looked pretty pathetic compared to the line across the hall for "bad mature fanfiction", which extended in both directions from the door because there wasn't enough room in the hallway for people to line up going just one way. The girl ahead of me, probably figuring there was a good chance that I had mistaken this line for the other, even asked what line I was looking for.

The panel presenter(s) never showed up, so after more than a half-hour of waiting, I decided to check out something else.

(Incidentally, while waiting, I had a conversation with someone else in line when I heard her mention Evangelion, and I asked if she knew about EvaGeeks. She said she went there for spoilers when 3.33 came out. She asked a bit later if I had been at the Evangelion panel earlier. I said I hadn't. She said they talked about all kinds of crazy theories like that Rebuild takes place in a time loop. I said I get enough of that stuff on EvaGeeks.)

And so I went to "Hellsing Hentai After Dark" (an exploration of Hirano's early works from which he lifted entire characters for reuse in Hellsing), because it was close and seemed like the next most interesting thing. I had discarded consideration of it previously because the description said that rowdy hecklers would be welcome, and I thought I wouldn't enjoy a panel that would surely be about just poking fun at hentai.

But in fact, it was hilarious. I don't think I've ever laughed so genuinely at ACen. The jokes weren't even that good, but the energy of it all that you could only get from being there was incredible. I don't even consider myself the type who typically likes "shock humor" but it worked here. The first thing I heard walking in was a Nazi joke from the presenter, and it only got worse (by which I mean better) from there. The rowdy audience, far from detracting from the atmosphere, fit it perfectly because of the mood set by the presenter. I felt comfortable there because it seemed like there was almost nothing anyone could say to make things feel awkward. When the presenter is a woman who's into rape hentai and makes Nazi jokes, there's really no lines left to cross.

I started off sitting in the back, in what I guess could be called a "jump seat" because of the ease with which I'd be able to just jump up and leave as soon as I got bored, but as the presentation got more and more interesting and welcoming, I moved up further to see the screen more clearly, taking a new seat each time a closer one cleared out. It was a little difficult to will myself forward each time, too afraid of drawing attention, but I've been working on my social courage for the past year and it paid dividends.

That's how I wound up sitting next to this pink-and-purple catgirl in the (effective) front row. I was in the aisle seat, and she was right next to me. I wasn't even sure she was a she at first, because she had a voice that I thought might be that of a crossplaying teenaged boy, and her body type at a glance from the wrong angle could be mistaken for such as well. But checking aside when I had the excuses to turn my head that way, I could tell, nope, definitely a girl, and the more I looked, the more I noticed how cute she actually was, in a way that straddles the line between dorky and conventional attractiveness. And she wasn't just there because someone had dragged her there; she participated, not as much nor in the same way as any of the boys but enough to demonstrate genuine interest in the subject matter, such as excitedly telling the presenter what Integra was saying in one panel that she remembered a friend translating for her for the particular doujin that was on-screen. (After exploring Hirano's early works the presenter moved on to showing us some Hellsing doujins.) She even told a joke, in an adorably semi-awkward way: "My friend told me that Catholic Mass is like a blowjob, you go up and down and up and down..." (Text can't really convey what it was about how she told the joke that I found "adorably semi-awkward", but maybe it helps if you imagine it being said in the voice of a young teenaged boy whose "R"s sound a bit like "W"s.)

Over the course of the show, we established a bit of a rapport. I don't remember who spoke first, but I'm pretty sure it was me, by turning to her and asking "What did he say?" when I missed some joke that made the whole room go "Oooh!". And I'd been looking for just such an excuse. Pretty soon she was offering thoughts to me unprompted, turning to me and saying excitedly "I have that exact one at home!" (pointing at the screen on which was being shown a page of a Hellsing doujin; she had said shortly beforehand that Schrodinger's face on the page was the "cutest Schro face ever"). And, "I even dressed up as Schro last year, see?" (She shows me a picture of the Schrodinger cosplay she did last year.) At some point, I complimented her on her costume -- genuinely; it was impressive.

On the way out, I wanted to find excuses to talk to her more, but all I could think to do was ask for a picture. Hers was the only picture I took at ACen, at which I usually take precisely zero.

After that I was kicking myself because I didn't even get so much as her name. I had to at least get her name, right? I found her positively charming, being all excitable and dorky and with a voice that I thought was really cute, not in spite of but because of the fact that I'd mistaken it at first for that of a boy. Nice body, too. But most importantly of all, she seemed to be into more than a few things that I was into, and more particularly than just anime in general. Not that I've ever been into Schrodinger in particular but he's in the same classification as, say, Shinji.

And then I bumped into her again, minutes later. It happened one floor up, in the lobby of the Hyatt, where an overflow crowd for the rave had formed. I spotted her near there, perhaps talking briefly with someone, not dancing or anything just yet, and she did say that she was going to the rave so it shouldn't have been that surprising. But it still felt, in retrospect, like fate giving me another chance.

So I caught up to her again, and asked her her name. We exchanged first names... and that was it. That was all I could think to do. I could have asked her a few more things, but I drew a blank, and so instead I let things smoothly transition from there to the two of us walking in opposite directions as if that really were all I'd stopped her to ask. Very quickly I realized that I hadn't actually learned anything useful by which I'd ever be able to see her again.

I got my second chance, and I blew that one too!

I hung around a little longer, but dared not approach her again for fear of coming off like a stalker, or at least a nuisance. I found excuses to stay in the area, busying myself with my phone or my program guide, stealing glances in her direction. I saw her hug and talk with enough people (male and female) to get the sense that she was here with a number of friends. She hugged a tall male cosplayer who might have been her boyfriend, but I also saw her hug another guy later and saw her stand boobs-to-boobs and hands-on-ass with another girl (I'm pretty sure the other girl's hands were resting on this girl's butt) so who the hell knows.

Eventually I convinced myself that I should go, before I really do start to look like a stalker, standing there eyeing some girl from afar.

On the way back, I had so many regrets. I started thinking of so many things I could have asked her, and in non-creepy-sounding ways. Simple things like "Are you local, or did you fly in?" (as opposed to "Where do you live?"). I even dreamed of what it would have been like to have had the courage to ask something like "This is crazy, but I have to know, do you have a boyfriend?". I dreamed that maybe I could just suddenly turn around and rush back and try to catch her one more time like in some sappy chick-flick. I even planned out what I'd shout out the window if I happened to spot her one last time on the drive out the next day.

Lying in bed, trying to get to sleep, I kept guessing at what the little signs I'd seen of her personality must mean for the rest of the whole, and although I dared not let my imagination run wild with fantasies of what we "could" have been like together, even just focusing on what little interaction we'd had over and over again (which was all I could do to keep from delving into complete fantasy) filled me with lament, because it made me realize what a golden opportunity I'd walked away from. I didn't think of it this way at the time, but lying there in bed I began to realize that I'd gotten that rarest of things: a legitimate "in" to start a conversation with a hot cosplayer with whom I might actually have something in common. And not just a conventionally hot cosplayer, but one who pressed a lot of my own particular buttons.

Every consolation I tried on myself backfired: "Why should I feel so bad? The odds were against anything happening." "But the odds are against any couple meeting. Those two from the bondage seminar last year met at a previous ACen, at the rave no less. The odds were against me and her being there at the same panel as it was, and the odds are even more against me ever meeting anyone like her again." "There's always next year; I might see her again." "But I don't even know what she looks like under that makeup and wig, and she'll probably be in a different costume!"

That night, nothing in my life seemed quite so meaningless as everything but that girl.

But there was one thing that I found eased the tightness in my chest and let me finally relax: "She's probably already taken." I remembered the sight of her hugging that tall cosplaying guy who might also have been the same guy she was sitting on in the pic she showed me of her cosplaying as Schrodinger. They could be just friends, but every time I repeated that sentence, I eased a little.

I repeated that sentence over and over in my head like a mantra, until finally I could get to sleep.

Amazingly, I woke up without half the regrets I had going to sleep. I just plain felt better about the whole thing, even though nothing had really changed. I still feel that way now. Every now and then I'll have a little bit of regret, and all the stuff that seemed so important before ACen still seems a little pointless now by comparison, but I'm not kicking myself quite as much anymore.

TL;DR: Boy meets girl, boy can't even figure out how to ask girl her contact information before walking away, perhaps never to see her again.
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Postby Defectron » Mon May 20, 2013 12:03 am

If you saw someone wearing a paper plate mask, that was me.

Also Psycho Gothic Lolita is an AWESOME movie!
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Postby Redtophat » Mon May 20, 2013 12:41 am

View Original PostDefectron wrote:Also Psycho Gothic Lolita is an AWESOME movie!
I just saw that last night, indeed it was a hilarious movie.

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Postby AR-99 » Mon May 20, 2013 12:46 am

Hey Monk, appreciate the share, I can definitely relate. You can also look at what happened as it wasn't meant to be if that helps.

And hey, there's next year. This time you know what to do. :thumbsup:
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Postby The Eva Monkey » Mon May 20, 2013 7:02 am

View Original PostDefectron wrote:If you saw someone wearing a paper plate mask, that was me.

Nice to know some things never change.
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Postby Monk Ed » Wed May 20, 2015 3:48 am

I skipped a whole year in here, but that's understandable given the state I was in at the time. (I came back quite depressed.)

But this year was different.

For the first time ever, I participated on a panel. Not just any panel: an Evangelion panel. Not just any Evangelion panel: an Evangelion panel with Carl Horn.

The opportunity popped up out of nowhere. Leading up to ACen, I got word from Monkey that Carl Horn was coming to town to do an Eva panel and that he (Monkey) couldn't make it so "Monk Ed! You're in Chicago, right?" And thus the angels spoke and my fate was sealed.

It was a fantastic experience. Truth is, I didn't even know who Carl Horn was, so I was quite surprised to find an extremely professional (yet personable!) man in a business suit. :lol: Despite his attire and air of expertise, however, I was far from intimidated but rather felt empowered in his presence. He made me feel like the honored guest, and took great care of me on the stage. He gave me some minor coaching over email that really helped (little more than reminding me that, hey, it's just going to be an open forum for people who want to talk about Evangelion), but more importantly covered for me whenever I was having trouble. Guy had an answer for everything.

I should mention that in addition to not really knowing who Carl Horn is (except that he had something to do with editing Sadamoto's manga, which for all I knew meant he did a freelance job this one time in Word at home in a T-shirt and pajama pants), I actively avoided learning anything more about him lest the panel start to feel like an even bigger deal than I already felt it was. :lol: I'd done public speaking before but only in front of a classroom of some 30 students, for a public speaking course in college. I thought this would be even more intense because it was some 500 people instead of 30, and furthermore I'd be doing it entirely by the seat of my pants instead of from prepared materials, but instead I found it to be a lot less nerve-wracking than I remember those experiences to be because of Carl's assistance. :lol:

Monkey was present in spirit via a presentation he'd prepared in lieu of his presence. Nothing groundbreaking, nothing we don't already know around here (as one would expect), but I thought it was a tremendous help, by anticipating several big questions about such basics as "3.33 when" and "3.0+1.0 when" and giving answers I sure as hell wouldn't have been able to provide (cuz I don't follow that kind of stuff very well, cuz that only makes the wait feel longer). And, it was my first time hearing his voice! :lol:

But Carl's presentation was a whole 'nother matter. Nearly everything in it was information I'd never heard before! It was, primarily, a retrospective of the history leading up to the creation of Evangelion, and it was so much to take in that I wasn't prepared for that I have trouble recalling even a fraction of it (particularly because about half my brain was likely preoccupied keeping stage fright at bay). I saw Anno looking younger than I'd ever seen him before, and learned secrets (so to speak) I'd never even thought to look for about Evangelion before it aired.

The Q&A was interesting, and, of course, the only part to which I contributed. Even then, Carl did most of the talking, and even then, some audience members were clearly more interested in sharing their own views than asking ours :heehee:. But I welcomed it, because it meant more time where I didn't have to think of anything to say. :lol: For example, one early question was about what the hell happened between 2.0 and 3.0, and while I was prepared to answer that, another audience member (whom I found out was the host of another panel when I attended it later, about the music of Evangelion) stood up and offered her own lengthy theory. (I'd have added my own explanation after hers but Carl called on a new questioner before I could signal that I was going to.)

Defectron came up to me after the panel, to ask who on EvaGeeks I was. I said, "I'll tell you on EvaGeeks." :heehee: Those of you reading this now who attended, you are among the lucky few who know my real name and face! :lol:

I have to say that my experience was more eye-opening than I thought it would be. You never realize what a bubble you live in until you catch a glimpse of what's outside of it. That room was full of enthusiastic fans who reminded me that the Eva fandom is a lot bigger than just EvaGeeks :lol:. As if I didn't know, but it's different to actually see them. It really puts the so-called problems that I deal with as an admin around here in perspective and reminded me of what's important -- and what's not.
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"NGE is like a perfectly improvised jazz piece. It builds on a standard and then plays off it from there, and its developments may occasionally recall what it's done before as a way of keeping the whole concatenated." -- Eva Yojimbo
"To me watching anime is not just for killing time or entertainment, it is a life style, and a healthy one too." -- symbv
"That sounds like the kind of science that makes absolutely 0 sense when you stop and think about it... I LOVE IT." -- Rosenakahara

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Postby Defectron » Wed May 20, 2015 2:17 pm

Oh so you were that guy at the eva panel, I knew you were one of the admin I dont really pay attention to, I was thinking you were Dr.Nick except I kept thinking "Wait is Dr Nick even an admin? Is that even a user on evageeks? Or am I remembering someone from another forum?"
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Postby Dr. Nick » Wed May 20, 2015 3:33 pm

Perhaps I'll visit Merica one day when my mortgage is paid off.

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Postby Joy Evangelion » Wed May 20, 2015 4:17 pm

@Monk Ed -- Haha, I was wondering which admin you were too. It all makes so much sense now. You didn't seem nervous or anything and I thought you represented EGF well. I was right there in the front row.
I definitely appreciated your bit about the Spear of Longinus and the seeds of life since it's not often(or ever) I hear someone talking about Eva's finer details IRL. And yea, the rest of the panel was really enjoyable as well; loved the fact that one could get on a boat with Anno and Sadamoto at that Gainax convention. Luckily I saw Carl Horn for a brief second outside the con, so I was able to tell him that the panel was a good time.
Unfortunately though, I didn't have the courage to go up to any other Eva fans, which was something I was hoping I'd be able to do...but I guess my inability to do so is one of the reasons why I connect to Eva so much in the first place. Oh well.
Last edited by Joy Evangelion on Wed May 20, 2015 9:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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and thank you so much for everything!!

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Postby AR-99 » Wed May 20, 2015 8:58 pm

^Something to work on.

I've met Carl Horn in person years ago when he used to work for Viz and went by Carl Gustav Horn. Most recently saw him at Japan Expo USA 2013 where he participated in the Eva panel with Sadamoto. Yeah, that Sadamoto.
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Postby Defectron » Wed May 20, 2015 10:56 pm

Yeah it was cool talking with Carl again, I actually partied at his room a couple years ago at a past acen which was coolz.
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Re: I'm at anime central

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Postby Joy Evangelion » Fri May 19, 2017 9:57 pm

I'M at Anime Central. Dressed as Smile from Ping Pong.

Not a single Eva panel, can ya believe that?!

Any other evageeks that are here... have a great time! :w00t:
I used to work in a factory and I was really happy because I could daydream all day -- I.C.
And thanks to EVA, I've started like myself and that has made me very happy. Mr. Anno, please keep working on EVA a lot more.
and thank you so much for everything!!

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Re: I'm at anime central

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Postby The Eva Monkey » Fri May 19, 2017 10:11 pm

View Original PostJoy Evangelion wrote:Not a single Eva panel, can ya believe that?!

I'm guessing Carl Horn didn't make it this year.
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Postby Defectron » Mon May 22, 2017 10:22 pm

View Original PostThe Eva Monkey wrote:I'm guessing Carl Horn didn't make it this year.


There was almost a gainax panel, but then it got cancelled. I miss the days when Carl Horn was at acen and would just invite all the people who show up at the gainax related panels to party at his room.
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