Life happened

Well, I’m debating.  I still have about 3 or 4 more things I wanted to write about with NYCC, but it’s been a month.  Although Rob and I got hit with a by a semi of life, recently.  Him more than me.

I had a doctor’s appointment about four weeks ago, and while I was there, the doctor said my blood pressure was a little high, and had been the previous visit.  So she put me on Labetalol and had me take my blood pressure every morning and night.  And I had to schedule an echocardiogram.

While I was dealing with that, Rob had a problem with his eye.  When he went to a doctor, he found out it was a detached retina and had to have surgery.  So, when he went in for his surgery, I had another doctor’s appointment.

She lowered my med dosage by half, and said the echocardiogram was fine.  Also told me the followup MRI of my liver was an enlarged blood vessel.  Called it something else, but I forget what that was.  There will be another followup on that in another 6 months.

In addition to all this, I’ve started exercising again. And working myself back into my writing, which is going slowly, but it is going.  Speaking of which, I think that’s what I’m going to actually do right now.

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Her Universe

Boba Fett modeling the Boba Fett-ish underwear

Since Rob and I couldn’t go to the panel we’d wanted on Friday morning, our first stop was the Her Universe booth.

The picture is from Saturday.
Her Universe was started by Ashley Eckstein (working with The Araca Group).  Ashley voices Ahsoka Tona, Anakin’s padawan in the animated Clone Wars series.  She started the business because if you’re female and want sci-fi clothing, you had to shop in the men’s section.  And about all that was available were shirts.  When the business started, there was a small selection of Star Wars shirts.

I’d known about Her Universe since it was announced, but I’d mostly forgotten there would be a booth at NYCC.  Coming across it was a pleasant surprise, and it was nice to meet Ashley.  She helped me try on several shirts, and she told me and Rob to watch the website/Twitter for an announcement.  That announcement was that Her Universe was expanding to include apparel from SyFy shows.

The main reason Her Universe was our first stop was because about a week before they put out a Halloween tote bag.  It sold out so quickly that there was an announcement that more would be available.  I almost bought one, but I saw on the email that there would be a limited quantity available at NYCC.  I decided I could wait.

The first thing I asked for was the tote.  Then I went from left to right and got almost every Star Wars shirt available, and the red spine Battlestar Galactica shirt.  I also got the Rebel insignia earrings and the charm bracelet and all the charms.  We didn’t see Ashley that first trip, but we were told that she had a hectic schedule and would be in and out of the booth.

Later, we went back, and Rob bought me the Cylon toaster necklace and the Imperial insignia earrings.  Ashley was there, but she was busy being interviewed.  We waited to talk to her when she had some free time-she said she remembered us from last year-and before she went to her next interview, I said that I was thinking about getting the BSG hoodie.

So, she went and pulled one out for me to feel, because that material is incredibly soft, and to point out some of the cool things about it—a small pocket inside the right pocket for an iPod/iPhone and a hole to put the headphones through.  The hoodie was a bit tight and wouldn’t quite zip, but I rarely wear them closed, anyway.  Ashley had another interview to get to, but she waited to make sure I was satisfied before leaving.  So I added that and the Boba Fett-ish set to what I’d bought.

Friday night, I tried on the red spine shirt, and I looked through the other shirts I got.  I’m glad I did, because I discovered that I’d accidentally been given a second red spine shirt instead of the Yoda shirt.

I put the shirt in my bag, and on Saturday we stopped by again.  I explained what had happened, and Ashley was more than happy to switch the shirt I got for the one I wanted.  By that point, I think I’d bought almost everything they had at the booth.  I didn’t buy the rhinestone Star Wars cap (I’m not so much for pink, rhinestones, or baseball caps), the Leena’s B&B shirt, or the Sharktopus shirt.  Well, aside from anything that I bought the previous year.

After such good experiences with Her Universe at NYCC, and having bought a few shirts from the site, I’m quite impressed and hope they continue doing well.  Yeah, the shirts are a bit pricey, but the quality and customer service is excellent.  I’m really hoping they’re able to continue expanding their product lines–I like having more places to get my geeky shirts.

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NYCC–Sunday fun

I hadn’t actually planned on writing about specific days, but Sunday was full of awesome.

Like I said before, there’d been tentative plans made Saturday night to meet up with Garrett, Priscilla, and Pam, or at least meet up after the con to go to Big Gay Ice Cream.  But we didn’t hear from them until after we were on the train home.

But, that was okay.  We expected to spend the day alone, but that actually didn’t happen. And the day was so much the better for it.

We started Sunday in the cattle-herding line, and once we got to the show floor, we stopped briefly at the Monarch booth before looking at vendors.  We’d waited until Sunday so that we’d have less to carry around.  That mostly worked.

The first booth we stopped at was the Doctor Who booth.  Ian McNiece, who played Churchill, was signing, but we didn’t try to get anything from him because of the huge crush of people.  We planned to go back, but didn’t make it.  I did get an awesome picture of the Ironside Dalek, though.  And at the store I bought a plush Adipose.  Cause those things are just cute.

There were a couple other booths we stopped at, but we didn’t buy anything. We wandered around, passed the publishers and got a few more books, and headed for the open space by Her Universe.

We were able to get something of a cell signal there, but we hadn’t heard from anyone.  I was waiting to hear from Kiera, or waiting until I thought she’d be around to text her, because we had a bag we were told to give back to her.

At that point, Rob reminded me that CE Murphy was at the Harlequin booth and found the location, and we headed over there before she left.

When we got there, we met CE Murphy.  Awesome.  Even more awesome?  Kiera was there, too.  And we got to meet her friend Robin.  Kiera got the coolest picture of CE Murphy, but I’m not sure where it is that I could link to it.  We gave Kiera her bag and it’s contents—OMGdelicious peanut butter chocolate chip bars (there were cookies, but Ben had taken them with him)-and she pulled the tub out and opened it to share.

We talked for a bit, then CE Murphy had to go.  She was looking for Anton Strout to meet him, so Rob and I told her what we thought the likeliest places to find him would be, although we weren’t certain he was there.

Isn't it pretty?

We stayed with Kiera and Robin, and we followed them to Artist Alley where, I think, Kiera got a piece of artwork for Robin April.  While we were there, Kiera remembered the bracelets she’d made us and helped us put them on—Yay!  I never wore bracelets until she made me one, now I wear both every day.  Except for Sunday, when I do laundry.  She also let us try her Warrior crunch granola—so good.  She got me S’mores granola, which I haven’t opened yet.  Kiera suggested trying it in strawberry Greek yogurt, and I keep forgetting to get some.  Plus I know that as soon as I open that package, it won’t last long.

When it comes to food, I’ll trust whatever Kiera tells me, few questions asked.

We stood talking for a while, then headed back toward the publishers’ booths.  We circled them a couple times, picking up free samples and books.  Kiera bought a knitting book with some neat stuff in it—a scarf with blood dripping from the ends, a corset—and she discovered the ticket Del Rey gave out for free books.  She got her free books and went back to the Del Rey store and bought a couple other books—the Homecoming graphic novel and I forget the other—and got more free books.

After she got those free books, we stood by the booth, and someone, Robin maybe?, suggested Kiera try trading the peanut butter bars for more free books.  Kiera told me to try, but I knew I wouldn’t be good at it, so I told Rob to.  And he pitched like a pro, pulling out the container and opening it for the woman (George RR Martin’s editor, I believe) to try.  She had one and started pulling out books for Kiera before finishing it.  We left the entire tub with her, and Kiera put the books in the now empty bag.

From there we went to the audiobook booth and got more free samples, and we found out they would be giving away audiobooks later in the day.  We then got in the line for the Patricia Briggs signing.  Kiera got cheesy pictures of me and Rob, and I think she purred almost the entire time we were in line because Robin kept massaging her back.

This was the second time Rob and I  got a book signed by Patricia, and she remembered us this time.  Or at least asked if we’d met before because we looked familiar.

We started back around toward the Del Rey booth, and we ran into Ben.  That was when we found out that he’d taken all the cookies with him.  Just after he left us, we ran into Myke Cole and two of his friends (both also military).  They had stopped by the Del Rey booth because Myke wanted his friends to watch the Old Republic trailer—Del Rey had a TV sets up showing book and game trailers.

Military men watching the TOR trailer

It was fun to watch Myke not in author mode but geek fan mode.  Kiera and I got some good pictures of them watching the trailers.  He gave Kiera his card and asked her to send him her pics, and, I think, after she complained we didn’t tell her about his ARC signing, I believe I heard him tell her to email him about that to see if his publicist could get one for her.

They watched two trailers, then they headed toward, I think, the Star Wars books booth—I think they were going to see Drew Karpyshan.   I could be wrong.  All the little details blur together, and I mostly remember the pictures.

By then, it was 4:30—time to go to the audiobook booth.  And while we waited in line for that, the HarperCollins booth was giving away one book to a person.  Rob and I got some comic books.  One a black and white thing, and one called like Clockwork Girl, or something like that.  Kiera said it’s actually good.

The line moved, and Rob had wanted to get Ready Player One, but said the guy in front of him picked it up, so he grabbed the Zombie Survival Guide.  I got the 20th anniversary edition Heir to the Empire.  Kiera had been making grabby hands at the newest Rick Riordan-Son of Neptune-not actually released until the following Tuesday, I think, and she got a copy of that.  I’m not sure what Robin got.

And then we had to part ways because the con was coming to an end.

Even though it was kids’ day, and still very crowded, Sunday was actually the more relaxed day.  No rushing around to get to panels and being able to hang out and talk with cool people.

Kiera, Myke (good looking writer guy), and Ted Arthur

And I’m amused as hell that one pic on Facebook has Kiera commenting that she’s become one of the geeks, and Pam called Myke a good looking writer guy.  He responded that the good looking guy was his friend and not an author, and that friend tagged Myke as “good looking writer guy.”

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A short break

From NYCC posts.  I had one started yesterday, but didn’t finish with it before bed.  Rob and I got distracted by an online chat Q&A with Jim Butcher.  And tonight, I’ve gotten a pretty long post written, but like everything else I write, it’s written longhand and needs to be typed up.  Which is actually somehow easier to do sitting on my bed than it is sitting at my desk.  So that’ll likely not get done until tomorrow because I’m pretty sure I’m the only one awake in the house.  Cause the cats don’t count for that.

And I’m quite aware of the oddity that I’m typing this at my desk, but can’t copy something.  Has to do with not really having anywhere to put stuff except right in front of me, plus the laptop sits a bit higher than is comfortable for that kinda thing.

Now, to try to get something story-related written.

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What initially got me most excited for NYCC wasn’t anything about the con.  It was finding out a friend (Jessa/@chichenpizza/Kali) from the Jim Butcher forums would be going.

Actually, her tweet about Yotel was what made me look into it.  Very glad, too, that place was nice.

Rob and I met her Friday morning, and she bought us drinks at Starbucks.  Rob wanted to repay her, but she wouldn’t take the money.  We walked together to Javits, and then we separated for lines—she had a VIP pass.

Unfortunately, we never managed to meet up with her again—Jessa went to several panels-VIP access-and Saturday night through Sunday, she ended up sick and staying at the hotel.  But as she’s said since, it adds to the “MYStery” since so few people saw her.  And I got no pictures of her, either.

We also met up with Priscilla and Garrett for dinner.  Pam (@jeditigger) got a room at the hotel for the night and crashed.  Cons can take a lot out of you.

Saturday was all about friends. (And free books, but that’s another thing)  Like I’d said before, Rob dressed up as Elwood blues, and one of the first friends we met up with was Shecky (Richard, but no one calls him that but his wife)-he was dressed up as Jake.  The costumes had been planned pretty quickly, maybe three weeks before.

Story behind those—Rob and I had gone into the city to meet people for bowling.  We sat outside a while-too late to go to the Intrepid Museum—and we somehow got onto the topic of The Blues Brothers  Overheard a song, or something.  And I told Rob that he and Shecky  should go to NYCC as the Blues Brothers cause they fit.  Well, Rob told Shecky when we got to the bowling alley, and it must’ve been a great idea because at one point the place played “Think” (the Aretha Franklin song).

The Blues Brothers

They looked pretty good, too, though I kept forgetting to write the letters on Rob’s hands.  I don’t think they managed to walk too far on the show floor before getting stopped for pictures.
One of the best was at the DK booth.  There were three stormtroopers, and they wanted a picture with Rob and Shecky.  One kept saying “I’m a soul man” over and over in a sing-song voice.  At one point, he said, “Sorry, that’s the only line I know.  I’m a soul man.”

"I'm a soul man."

They were there when we came back later for a signing.  That was when we met up with Priscilla(wearing the purple wig) and Garrett, and they saw that Shecky had shaved.  Once together, we went outside and had a bit to eat, then back inside for the military sci-fi panel followed by a signing by the authors.

Priscilla's expression on seeing Shecky beardless



Saturday night we all met up at the Irish Rogue, along with several other Jim Butcher fans.  The Rogue’s where we had the fan dinner last year, so we knew it’d be a nice place, and that the food and drinks were good.  And decently priced for NYC.  Rob and Shecky pulled out their Warden cloaks for the finishing touch to their costumes.  I’m thinking I should put up another post just for that, and to show off the pictures.

The Blues Squad


On Sunday, we had tentative plans to meet up with Priscilla, Pam, and Garrett, but they’d decided to have a lazy day.

Kiera and Ben



That was okay.  We ended up spending almost the entire day with Kiera and her friend Robin.  They look cute together, though I somehow didn’t get a picture of them.  I did, however, get a picture of her and Ben together when we saw him.  Kiera made bracelets for me and Rob, and she gave them to us then.  Kiera had mostly stayed away from picking up any books, until she walked around with us.  I think she ended up with more books than we got that day.  We stayed until around 5ish, and then said our goodbyes to head to the hotel.

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