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Bounty; Also, Stay The Hell Off My Lawn

Morning has come way too damn early at San Diego thanks mostly to the people that decided hosting an overpowered audio system in an unenclosed place and letting the sound rip until one in the damn morning was a nifty-neato way to promote whatever their brand is. I get it, Friday night is an acceptable party night and everybody at the event seemed to be enjoying the crap out of themselves; hell, I was enjoying the crap out of myself at the ShiftyLook party¹ until the old man sleepies caught up with me.

The difference being, a bit after eleven, the ShiftyLook party bosses and hotel staff conferred, some of the louder game cabinets were turned off, groups talking were discreetly asked to be mindful of the hotel’s guests, and the sound system was playing ambient electronic music at a considerate volume.

Meanwhile, between Island and J, 7th and 8th, an audio monitoring app on my phone tells me that sound levels with the windows closed were peaking at 70db and with the window open, 85db². For reference, 70db is defined as EPA-identified maximum to protect against hearing loss and other disruptive effects from noise, such as sleep disturbance, stress, learning detriment, etc. and 85 db as Hearing damage (over long-term exposure, need not be continuous). No kidding, a fire engine running full lights and sirens shortly after the speakers were turned off was not as audible as DJ ScrewYouPayingGuests, and of course was not sitting in one place cranking up the bass³.

So here is the deal: I want to know who sponsored this act of disregard for everybody not on the guest list, so I can be sure to never, ever give them money in the future, and I will pay an reward in the amount of one dollar American Cash Money to whoever can tell me whose party this was.

There were cars set up in a way that suggested they were on display, and what appeared to be pages from The Walking Dead were being projected onto the side of a nearby building. Oh, and at least two patrol cars from San Diego’s Finest (number 6-955 and 6-266) were on the scene, hopefully with industrial-grade ear protection (but certainly not doing anything to enforce local nuisance ordinance). Go forth, my minions, return with the information I seek, and help me in my quest for vengeance.

  • Speaking of the ShiftyLook party (which was excellent, by the by, allowing me the opportunity to talk with the likes of Sam Logan, Jim Zub, Stacy King, Kris Straub, Christopher Hastings, Evan Dahm, the aforementioned Chris Butcher, and others), I had the opportunity to talk briefly with George Rohac of What Pumpkin where we tried to figure out what the heck the session booking team was thinking.

    As mentioned earlier, the ShiftyLook panel will be kicking off later today (2:00pm to be precise) in a not-overly-large room (28DE), and will feature Zach Weinersmith, Scott Kurtz, Kris Straub (any one of whom could fill the room just with his own readers, much less those that are coming to hear the ShiftyLook plans) and Andrew Hussie in his only panel appearance. I want to go by 28DE, find the little plaque that indicates the maximum number of persons allowed in the room, and then take a picture of the Homestucks lined up outside the entrance and receding into the far distance.

    It’s not as if the SDCC staff don’t have some warning about the Trollstorm that’s about to hit them; last year I watched the Homestuck Parade that occurred when they relented and finally granted TopatoCo a section of the autograph area for Hussie’s signings (which they had requested and been told wouldn’t be necessary) after the first session turned into a seven-aisle backup that snarled traffic on the show floor for a ten-aisle radius.

    After TopatoCo Supreme Presidente Jeffrey Rowland brought the news to the lined up Homestucks that they would have to relocate to meet their Lord and God, he led a line of fans that took more than ten minutes to pass by in reasonably clear booth traffic. Every single one of those people will be wanting to see this panel. This is gonna be awesome.

  • Speaking of panels to see today, the Adventure Time panel will be at 3:30 in Room 8, and the STRIPPED panel at 7:00pm in 28DE.
  • Speaking of commerce being driven, Friday on the show floor was weird. Everybody I spoke to had a different impression of how the day went — it was busy from start to finish, or it was quiet, or it had bursts; the show floor was crowded at all times, or it was preternaturally empty; sales were strong, or they were okay, or they were terrible compared to last year. In my past experience, these are the sorts of things that usually evolve a consensus, but literally every booth I stopped by to talk to creators had a different view on how the commercial end of Friday went.

    My personal impression is that the number of sales events that I could see from my vantage point in Webcomics Central was less than on Thursday (which is consistent with the personal experience I had of Square through much of Friday — instead of being nigh-unusable from load as it was for most of Thursday, Friday was very hit-or-miss; a card swipe might result in a communications failure in ten seconds, and the customer might see approval after a minute and a half of waiting). Considering that Friday is traditionally neck-and-neck with Saturday for the top day, saleswise, here’s hoping that today is a monster in terms of merchant activity.

  • Hope Larson dropped by at the start of Friday and I was privileged to tell her how much I enjoyed her film short, Bitter Orange; she in turn was kind enough to pull out an iPad and share her next film project, a music video for Dan The Automator featuring Mary Elizabeth Winstead. I don’t want to give anything away, but let’s say the following:
    • It is beautifully shot in black and white and every moment had near-perfect visual composition
    • The storyline is hilarious
    • It required Larson to figure out where one could obtain prosethetic eyes, which is probably not a conversation you ever anticipate yourself having until it actually occurs

    The video’s in the hands of the label and they’ll hopefully be releasing it soon because dang, this needs to be seen by everybody.

  • Speaking of Larson, she was one of the winners at last night’s Eisner Awards, and we at Fleen are thrilled for her, even as we’re sad that Meredith Gran was one of those that Larson beat. The two actually agree that should either of them prevail, the other would start a fight, so if you heard any rumors of flipped and/or jumped tables, punched thrown, or security having to separate combatants, they are undoubtedly true.

    In addition to Larson’s win for Best Publication For Teens (A Wrinkle In Time), let’s also congratulate Ryan North, Shellie Paroline and Braden Lamb for Best Publication For Kids (Adventure Time), Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover for Best Digital Comic (Bandette), Tom Spurgeon for Best Comics-Related Periodical/Journalism (The Comics Reporter), all of the other winners, and the parents, who worked so hard to make the costumes.

Below the cut, the best cosplay photo of the day: Hench 4 Lyfe.

¹ Where, despite Christopher Butcher’s trash talk, my ass remains unkicked (as least by him) at Pac Man Vs, the greatest videogame for people with booze in their hands in existence. Any time, Butcher. Any. Time.

² Quick explanation: decibels are on a logarithmic scale, meaning that every time you go up by 10, the noise level has increased by ten times. 85db isn’t one-fifth louder than 70db, it’s more than 30 times louder. What with distance and reflectivity off of buildings and all, on the ground the noise level was likely above 100db, or louder than a jackhammer at one meter.

³ When the windows are rattling seven stories up on a building that is being hit by sound that’s already being projected in the other direction and reflected off another building, you are being a jerk to everybody in a five-block radius.

[…] of Andrew Hussie, I saw the initial start of the ShiftyLook panel referenced yesterday, and I owe the SDCC showrunners an apology. I very much doubted that the maximum capacity of 170 in […]

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