Sakura con 2003 report, diary of a convention slave first class
Like any good Otaku, when the yearly local anime convention came around I had to go. Lesson #1 Like any smart anime fan going to a convention I pre registered. Even though I covered this in my first guide to convention going this bears repeating. Conventions have two lines to enter. If you pre register you go through the short line that goes more quickly and you pay less to do so. You make the decision.
After getting my badge I only had an hour or so to blow before I had to report to programming for my volunteer work. Yes you heard me right, I was doing volunteer work at the convention. Lesson #2 if given the opportunity to volunteer at a convention, do so. The work isnít hard and the staff will kiss your ass for doing so. In particular the work I was doing was sitting in a room and watching anime for five hours straight and changing the tapes when they ended. Not that hard given that sitting in a room watching anime for hours on end is one of the major reasons you go to an anime convention in the first place.
After my shift I went out for a bite to eat. Food is important when going to a convention and eating right can by confusing to the convention newbie. The three most important factors are the three cís, connivance, cost and caffeine. First of for connivance, you should figure out what places are closest to the convention. The three types of places that you should concern yourself with are fast food, 7-11 type mini marts and all night diners. Each of these has itís own strengths. For cost each of these types are good but I suggest that you should bring some food with you in advance. This is especially good when getting things from fast food joints the price can be brought down considerably by getting soft drinks from home or the supermarket. The supermarket is another great place to get food, especially for little money compared to restaurants and since they are open before the convention begins hitting one wonít take time out of your convention schedule. Finally for caffeine that is what the all night diners are best for. As much coffee as you want for less than two dollars can keep you awake all convention along. One thing to note caffeine like other drugs becomes less effective the more you are used to it, so you might want to lay off the coffee the month or so before the convention to get more out of the bean.
After getting something to eat I tried going to attend the music video contest. To my great dismay thecontest required tickets to get in and unfortunately I didnít get one. Lesson #3 plan ahead during your convention stay so this does not happen to you. However this was not to much of a let down since at Sakura con if you canít get into one thing there are five other things to do at the same time.
After a pie and coffee break I headed back to the video rooms. It was very late at the time, however this is the best time of all to watch anime in the video room This is especially true of subtitled anime since you can get around one of my objections to subtitled anime (see confessions of a dub fan point #3).
On thing I forgot to mention in the previous convention articles is the video gaming rooms. In Sakura con there were two gaming rooms one for console games and another for pc games. I am not entirely sure about the console gaming room but the pc gaming room was open twenty four hours a day. If you are like me and can stay up all night when going to a convention this is the perfect way to kill time and enjoy yourself. What was even better for me in the pc gaming room they were showing old anime music videos. Talk about good luck within bad luck.
Unfortunately for me some poor planning and relative poverty kept me from enjoying Sakura con to itís fullest this year, however the whole thing was still a blast and I plan on going back next year.
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