Chimaeracon Report: Day 3

I got a horrible night's sleep Saturday night and Sunday morning. I forgot to pack my melatonin, which helps me regulate my sleep schedule when I travel, and sure enough, I fell asleep promptly at 1:15am... and sprang awake at 3:25am. I channel-surfed for a while before settling on a show about tornado chasers on the National Geographic channel. I can't remember what time I finally fell back asleep, but it had to be around 4:45am. And then I sprang awake at 7:00am. Oh well. So much for "sleep." I packed my bags, ate breakfast, and checked out of the hotel. I was the 2nd person to arrive at the convention center (the first was the guy working convention security.) I trundled my bag over to my table, and then took a 20-minute power-nap on one of the couches. The noise from the X-box stations kept waking me up, so I decided to have a go at one of the games. Burnout 3: Takedown really caught my fancy. I'm pretty good at driving games, provided they don't rely on "magic" key-sequences (a la Mario Kart Double Dash) and have reasonably true physics. I had a great time playing Burnout, in which the object is to take your nigh-indestructible car and run everybody else off the road. The other players, including the computer players, ALSO have nigh-indestructible cars, though. I can ram a delivery truck and send it sailing through a second-story window, but Player 1's car could only be taken out by knocking it into a head-on collision with something big and solid... like an overpass piling. (Note: four days later, back at home, I rented Burnout: Revenge. Wheee!) Sunday was a slower day at Chimaeracon, but we still had a great time. I had lots of company at my booth, including a few folks who kept coming back to have me draw Munchkin cards. These are tricky to do, because I have to lay them out in pencil on another sheet of paper, and then do the final artwork in Sharpie, freehand. Here's a nice picture of me doing a "William Effing Shatner" card for Al Griego. He heard about the one I did for Wil Wheaton at Linucon 1.0, and just HAD to have one of his own. DrawingACard.jpg The guy who took the picture was a new Schlock fan (within the last six months, if I recall correctly), and was also a disabled veteran from the Iraq war. His attitude was fantastic -- whiney Howard stands to learn a lot from somebody who has to sit everywhere he goes. He wanted some artwork, he got some artwork. I didn't ask him to pay, because the way I see it, he did stuff for me already, and it's the kind of stuff I can't begin to pay back. If a free Petey picture makes him happier (though I have a hard time imagining him any happier than he was when I met him), it's his for the asking. As some of you may know, I prefer to spend Sundays in church. My chosen profession currently requires that I spend at least a few Sundays on the road. On those days I try to look for a spiritual element that I can lean on for support during the rest of the week. With the help of a fan in a wheelchair, I found that element. All in all, Chimaeracon was a great convention. It wasn't large, but it was very spirited. If you live within an hour or three of San Antonio, you really should make time to be there next year. If Al, Keri, Gilder, Michael, Stuart, April, Glenn, and the rest of the folks I played with this year are there, I promise you'll have a fantastic time.

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