Nothing tells you how good an event is supposed to be better than its line. I first found this out when I was eight and was waiting for Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back to let in. I was with my Father and I think the only reason why he took me so close to the release date was he knew it would shut me up. The lines for a comic book convention are no different. If it is long the chances are it will be a good con, short and well… what is the point of going?
I am here earlier than most but not as early as I have been in past years. This year if I was not reporting the event I would probably be standing in line already. One year I did not realized they opened up at noon and arrived so much earlier than I should have, I still wasn’t first. The volunteer shirts are a light green and within minutes I saw two people I knew at the event. One was working at a booth, I never expected him here but friends help out friends. Another was here because his niece asked him to volunteer with her, he wasn’t wearing his shirt- it didn’t fit.
I was never first in line, the best ever was second but every year I did attend there was another person that I seemed to have seen every year and I associate the con with his presence. He was absent and I shuddered. What did that mean? Did he hear that this con was not going to be good; did he figure that it would not be worth his time, or worth the hype?
With millions of Philadelphia tax payer dollars (mine included) to add to the Philadelphia Convention center, Wizard World Philadelphia is taking place in the newly constructed addition. The entrance was around Thirteenth Street and although I made it here before Nick and Jordan I made my way inside with the email from Jerry Milani (Wizard World PR Director) showing that I was indeed approved to cover the event. I felt like I was cheating, but it did get me past the volunteers and security to get to the main ticket stand and this is where I stopped.
Not because I had to but because they told me that they were not giving out press pass’s till twelve, even though the e-mail I had stated thirty minutes before opening. I would have showed her that too, if it wasn’t for the fact that it was only a little past nine (I told you I like to get there early). I went back outside and waited. If there were numbers I would be somewhere past 25. Soon after one of the volunteers came around telling everyone in line “press would be allowed in at nine thirty”. Only ten minutes to go.
As I exited the line refusing to look at anyone else I saw Brad Guigar. In tow was his one son, who was probably just so happy to be with his dad at work. I remember those days. I said hello, and of course it was nice enough to see him again year after year. But we both were going in separate directions. He had to get his last minute additions ready and I had to go get my press credentials.
I felt inquisitive. My interviews were approaching soon and I needed some practice. I asked the volunteer how long he has been doing this; he informed me it was his first year covering the event. He was nice enough but I felt sorry for him. I can picture the line being antsy and ready to go when it wasn’t allowed to go. I pictured the volunteer as a small boy walking a pet dragon. I couldn’t wait to enter the floor and look around. There is something about being in a place that only a select few are allowed to be at. I was going to be one of those. I got back up to the main ticket stand again and was politely told I had to wait. Once again, Wizard World at its finest. One does not know what the other is doing. Wait till I tell you about the registration desk that I stood at for the next hour…or so…
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