Geek.Kon 2012 was easily one of the smoothest conventions I’ve ever done. Virtually zero issues were encountered this past weekend, making for a convention that will go down in the books as one of my all-time favorites.

Thursday late afternoon, Chad, our friend Andrea, and I arrived at the Marriott West in Middleton, WI. Check-in was a breeze, Chasing Amy was on TV in our hotel room and we were able to relax for a bit after the two hour drive. Two hours may seem like a lot to some folks, but after doing so many conventions across multiple state borders, two hours is a cakewalk. Still, it’s nice to plop down on a bed after that to recharge your batteries for the rest of the night. We discovered that room setup was taking longer than expected, so we decided to hit the TGI Friday’s across the street for our first real meal of the convention, complete with succulent burgers and $2 Long Island Iced Teas.

Man, setup is fun when you’re tipsy.

It wasn’t until the car was unloaded that I discovered that I was missing an entire box of wireframe crates, the most integral part of my setup’s construction. Luckily, I had one small box and was able to make do. If you’ve never seen my setup, it’s five cubes high and displays the banner up top proudly. This time around, I only had enough for two two-cube towers, draping the banner in front of the table. Not preferred, but I took Tim Gunn’s advice and made it work.


After a successful setup, the gang and I retired to our room for a celebratory drink. This is when Chad and I discovered that we were not in possession of a bottle opener for our River West Stein. We had to resort to other beverages, and we went on to the rest of the weekend with no RWS. In fact, it’s still sitting unopened in my car as I write this.

Friday was calm but interesting. As I wrote the blog post for the comic that was posted on the 7th, the Starbucks I was typing from had the most interesting musical selection (expanded upon in this tweet). I thought that was strange, but it was topped a few minutes later when I returned to the hotel and a random congoer asked me if I was Anthony Burch, writer of Borderlands 2 and co-star of Hey Ash Whatcha Playing.

During sales time, it was clear that Douchebag pony was the crowd favorite, despite the last of my Mystery Boxes selling out. I also loved Friday because I was able to see some high school friends, some of which I hadn’t seen since their 2008 wedding. I also got to meet a ton of new friends, as well as some super talented artists, including Mike of Caffeinated Crafting, Merm from Mermade, Jess from HylianJess, and many more!

The best cosplays if the day were two Klingons and Gumby. Now there’s a sentence nobody’s ever typed.

Once the Alley closed, the rest of the night was split between watching The Big Lebowski (while playing the drinking game of “Take a drink every time someone either says ‘Dude’ or ‘Shut the fuck up, Donny!’”) and the 24-hour video game room with virtually every game system you can imagine. My friend Meg and I managed to defeat the first level of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles arcade machine controlling two characters each.

Saturday morning kicked off the most fun day of the convention. My first sale of the day went to Geek.Kon guest of honor Monica Valentinelli, whose work can be found here. Like Friday, Saturday was filled with cool people, cool cosplays (my favorite being Mugatu from Zoolander), and great sales, the top seller being my Adventure Time fanart buttons. There was a dude carting a 1:1 scale Dalek around the con, which I managed to snap a quick picture of as it passed my table. Luckily, I was not exterminated.

I normally don’t attend the raves at these conventions, but when a dozen customers said they wanted to party with me after selling them cool stuff, it’s hard to say no, especially since I’m a sucker for flattery. While I did stop by the rave (dubbed a “mixer” because I guess the term “rave” is likened to drug use or something stupid like that), it was quite bland. The speakers got blown out early on, causing the people dancing around me to be even louder than the music, which was a pretty unimaginative set, anyway. I spent the rest of the night with new friends in the game room, playing that TMNT arcade machine all the way through. Much gaming fun was had until about 2:30am.

Sunday, I returned to my table in the morning to discover that one of my display charms had gone missing. It’s a bit of a backhanded complement when you discover that your stuff is so badly desired that it’s theft-worthy. In better news, I did an art swap with Merm from Mermade; a necklace for a hat. Thanks, Merm! As one would expect, Sunday was pretty relaxing. Chad, Andrea and I deconstructed my setup, hit up the nearby Cheeseburger in Paradise, and trekked home.

I will definitely be making Geek.Kon a regular staple of my fall con schedule. While it’s on the small side, the community is a generous and supporting one, and the staff has got a solid grip on how to properly run a convention.