My Guide to Surviving Boston Comic-Con.

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Thanks to Rodney at Nerd Caliber (http://www.nerdcaliber.com/) for making me look tough at this year's 'Walker Stalker' Convention!

Thanks to Rodney at Nerd Caliber (http://www.nerdcaliber.com/) for making me look tough at this year’s ‘Walker Stalker’ Convention!

The very first genre-specific convention I ever attended was an annual horror-themed one, “Rock & Shock”, located in my hometown in Central Massachusetts when I was in my early twenties. I had gone for one very specific reason- to meet one of my favorite actors, Malcolm McDowell- and have him sign my very old and very beat up copy of “A Clockwork Orange” book.

I had never been to any type of comic convention before that. I was an avid fan of certain types of movies, video games, comics and books- but most conventions were far away- too far to get to- or seemed expensive. I discovered “Rock & Shock” completely by accident and can vividly remember excitedly heading over to my hometown’s event center after I had left work for the evening- clutching my book under my arm the entire time.

And it was there that a love affair was born- not between Malcolm McDowell and myself (although he really is the coolest)– but between myself and comic conventions and the people who attend them. While at “Rock & Shock” that night- I encountered so many passionate fans, incredible artists, fantastic cosplay- and way too much fun merchandise- that I knew right then and there I was hooked. I felt like I belonged- like I had a place where my enthusiasm for certain things and genres was not only welcomed- but matched by others, too.

I started attending “Rock & Shock” every year. Then I ventured out to Boston Comic-Con, Rhode Island Comic-Con, Super MegaFest, Walker Stalker, New York Comic-Con- and I even managed to make my way to mother of all conventions- San Diego Comic-Con- in 2014, where I tried my hand at cosplay for the first time and which was undoubtedly one of the most fun experiences of my life.

While I wouldn’t consider myself a seasoned veteran of the comic-convention circuits- I’m also by no means an amateur anymore. I cosplay regularly, I know where to go and what time to be there to get the best spots for panels/Q&As, and the typically stressful photo op process is now a breeze.

With Boston Comic-Con taking place over the course of this coming Friday, Saturday and Sunday- I thought I’d share some of my tips and tricks to getting through the weekend (relatively) unscathed- and share some of the more fun local events planned to coincide with the convention for those who don’t want to spend the entire weekend walking the floor of the Artists Alley or vendor booths.

PLAN AHEAD: This one sounds like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised at how often some people skip this step and find themselves scrambling around later on. Whether you’re making a costume or heading to the convention in your regular clothes- give yourself plenty of time to prepare so you’re not left frantically getting your things together the night before. Make sure you get your tickets in advance, set aside some time to work on any costumes/props so that they’re not just done in time- but completed early– and bookmark the convention’s official website. Not only that, but be sure to check the site regularly- since changes/cancellations/rules and regulations/and schedules can be posted and updated sporadically. HERE’S the schedule (for panels, contests and events) for this year’s BCC. Make a mental (or written) list of the things you definitely want to see- and get to the line early to snag yourself a seat.

Also, for the cosplayers- familiarize yourself with the rules for costumes/props. There’s nothing worse than working your ass off making something you’re really proud of, only to be denied entry to the convention because your costume/prop is made with the wrong type of material or doesn’t meet safety standards.

CONSIDER THE ELEMENTS: Regardless of whether or not you’re attending the convention in a costume- make sure to take the weather and temperature into consideration. Your Deadpool costume is awesome- but it’s also hotter than the surface of the sun that day. Or you spend hours perfecting your Daenerys Targaryen hair and makeup- but it’s pouring outside. Don’t risk heat stroke or ruining your stuff with water damage by not doing your research! The convention, from what I’ve seen over the years, is pretty lenient about letting people change/touch up in the bathrooms- so keep your wig in a plastic bag until you’re safely inside where it’s dry or keep your mask off until you’re within reach of air conditioning. Trust me- you’ll be happy you did and you’ll still look great.

One more from Nerd Caliber! (http://www.nerdcaliber.com/)

One more from Nerd Caliber! (http://www.nerdcaliber.com/)

EAT AHEAD OF TIME: You’ve worked overtime and you’ve put money aside for weeks leading up to the convention so you can buy some limited edition gear or memorabilia. So tell me why you’d blow some of that hard earned cash on $15 nachos or a $8 soda? Come on. It’s no secret that food vendors at any and all conventions put astronomical price tags on their snacks since they know they’ll make bank on hungry attendees who need to refuel. Save yourself some time and money and eat a decent (and filling) meal before you head over to the convention center. It’ll get you through the majority of your day. Need to hydrate? There are water fountains in the convention center and they work just fine.

SHOP AROUND: I love FUNKO figurines as much as the next person, and that Harley Quinn shirt is practically screaming my name- but what one booth charges $40 for, another booth across the convention center might be charging way less for the same exact product. While I have a few local companies I trust and shop with religiously- it never hurts to take a spin around the vendor area a couple of times- especially when you’re looking for items that aren’t necessarily hard to come by and aren’t considered limited edition or rare. Keep your eyes open and browse before you make a selection on merchandise.

REALIZE CELEBRITY PHOTO OPS ARE INSANELY FAST: I know doing an elaborate and fun pose with your favorite celebrity guest at a convention sounds almost too good to be true- but please keep in mind there’s going to be a long line of people thinking the same exact thing and that the guest, the staff, and the coordinators of the event have a pretty strict schedule to adhere to. Celebrity photo ops last about 5-10 seconds and you move right along so the next person can get their picture taken. The best thing you can do is smile and make sure you don’t blink or sneeze when the flash goes off so your 8 x 10 glossy print comes out fabulous.

Don’t get too discouraged, though. A lot of guests are really cool about posing for selfies/photos at their respective booths when they’re doing signings and meeting fans. You’ll also get more time to talk to them- but, you know- just don’t be clingy or anything.

BE RESPECTFUL OF COSPLAYERS – AND SPEAK UP IF YOU SEE ANYONE NOT BEING RESPECTFUL: There’s a lot of incredible handmade costumes/props to marvel at every year at various conventions- and you may want to take photos of some of those costumes/props- but please be sure to ask, first! Sometimes folks are heading to a panel or a photo op. Sometimes they’re trying to find some water or a restroom- and they may not have time to stop and pose. It’s always a polite and appreciated move to ask if you can take a photo, first (plus- they would probably want to pose so their stuff looks good in the picture- so give them a heads up!) rather than just snapping away when they’re unprepared or not interested.

And in a related note- always, always ALWAYS be respectful of the cosplayers. Be careful if you’re touching their stuff. Don’t gawk or grope. Don’t make inappropriate comments. Don’t behave like a pig, basically- and if you see someone acting like that- notify security immediately. People dress up for conventions for fun- not to be harassed or objectified. Stand up for them if you see anyone being less than courteous towards them.

FINALLY, HAVE FUN AND TAKE A BREAK IF YOU NEED ONE: I get it. You’ve been walking around- to and from panels, around the vendor booths, to the celebrity area, etc- and you’re exhausted. There are wall to wall people and you may start to feel a little overwhelmed. It’s okay! I’ve been there. Everyone has been there- and probably more than once, too. The point of a convention is to have a good time. Enjoy yourself! Don’t stress out about things too much. If you missed a panel, a Q&A, or couldn’t find that one artist you were trying to track down- it’s not the end of the world. You’re doing the best you can with the time you have in the convention center!

And if you need a break- take one. Don’t hesitate. There are plenty of places to sit down, cool off, and recharge without having to go outside or go home and risk not being allowed re-entry for the day/weekend. Find the designated resting spots and utilize them as much as you need to.

In addition to the scheduled events inside the convention center- there’s almost always things happening in and around the city to commemorate the weekend, too. Different bars and restaurants have deals (and additional discounts/specials for those of you who show up in costume!) so it’s always worth checking out Boston Comic-Con’s official FACEBOOK PAGE for info/active promotions.

One event in particular that’s going to be pretty great is the Star Trek/Boston Comic-Con themed night at Fenway Park on Friday. While the event is sold out at the moment, it doesn’t hurt to check out sites like StubHub for those last minute cancellations and freed up tickets.

From the MLB’s website for the event:

Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Star Trek and the kick off of Boston Comic Con at Fenway Park on Friday, August 12th. The Boston Comic Con is the largest comic book and pop culture convention in New England (held from August 12-14th at The Seaport World Trade Center). Fans who purchase tickets through this special offer will receive this limited-edition Captain Kirk Red Sox figurine. Be sure to get here early to see the original Captain Kirk, William Shatner, join us to throw out the first pitch, compliments of Boston Comic Con!

It may be hard to see the photo of the Captain Kirk figurine on the website, but seriously- how funny is this thing?

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That alone is worth heading down to Yawkey Way for.

With all that being said, I’m ready to grab my Lucille prop and strap on my leather boots to dress up like Negan from ‘The Walking Dead’ again. I’ll be popping in and out of the convention throughout the weekend- so if anyone sees me- come say hello! Don’t let the bat wrapped in barbed wire scare you away!

I hope those attending have a phenomenal time! Have fun and stay safe, everybody!

xx

Top 10 Photographs of 2015.

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As has become a bit of a tradition for me since I started ‘Legally Redhead’, I’ve put aside some time to comb through all of my photos- ones I’ve taken myself throughout all of my adventures and ones that have been taken of me (some flattering, and some not so much)– over the course of this past year, and believe me when I say there were a LOT of them. So many, in fact- that narrowing down the photos to just ten to include in this list proved to be much more challenging than I’d been prepared for! I had an idea going into this post, sure- but once all of those photos were laid out in front of me- all of them filled with such wonderful memories, travels, and some with just plain silliness- my idea was thrown out the window and it was like starting from scratch!

I digress- After multiple edits, rearrangements, and more edits- I think I’ve formally and finally selected my favorite ten photographs from 2015!

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#10: Oh, the HUMANITY (February 26th)

Some may be surprised that a photo from one of the worst winters imaginable (barely) made it onto the list, considering how miserable the non-stop blizzards made me, and the rest of New England- but this picture I captured on my cell phone from inside the parking garage at my last job after yet another storm shows just how serious things were starting to get when we began running out of places to put all of the snow. The back of my car, pictured in the bottom, left-hand corner- shows how close the buildup was getting to what was my designated parking spot at the time.

That pile wasn’t completely melted until late May/early June, by the way.

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# 9: Barely able to contain my excitement with Hayley Atwell at Boston Comic-Con (August 2nd)

While the image quality might not be the best (it’s a photo of a glossy photo, after all-) the laminated copy of this picture snapped during this year’s Boston Comic-Con is proudly on display in my bedroom. While I simply didn’t have enough time to make multiple, elaborate costumes like I did for San Diego Comic-Con in 2014- the one costume I DID take the time and the effort to make, a homage to one of my favorite female Marvel heroes- was a gem in my cosplay résumé. When I got to wear my costume and pose next to Peggy Carter herself, Hayley Atwell- I was pretty much inwardly screeching with joy. When Hayley complimented the outfit- I couldn’t stop beaming- and that’s right around the time this photo, which definitely highlights my overjoyed megawatt grin and subsequent squinty eyes- was snapped by the hired photographer for the event.

Meeting Hayley was the cherry on top of a truly fantastic weekend I had that month. Not only did my longtime friend Steven attend the convention with me (and we saw ‘Ant-Man’ that night!) but it was also the day before Brandon Flowers’ incredible performance at House of Blues.

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# 8: An evening in The Morgan Library (January 18th)

In the first of many day/weekend trips to NYC my friends and I took in 2015- January 18th saw me catch a train to Manhattan all on my own specifically to spend a couple of hours perusing and relaxing in The Morgan Library and Museum on Madison Avenue. While it was a tad difficult to get a perfect shot without other visitors looking and looming around in the background- I always liked this one the best. I thought it captured just how gigantic the library really is- and the stunning artwork that brightens up the ceiling (that feels like it’s a three miles high.)

The visit to the museum was absolutely worth the train ride- and the gigantic bruise I sustained on my hip after I fell on ice shortly after my arrival in the city earlier that afternoon.

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# 7: Central Park Pretzel Squad (June 20th)

During another day trip to NYC, this time during the Summer and with a group of some of my best guy friends- what was going to be a quick visit proved to be a nearly 24 hour walking tour of the city (we only took the subway back to Grand Central Station when we reached Brooklyn and literally couldn’t move our legs anymore.) The trip was with- and for- our friend, Nick- who had never visited NYC before. We were determined to show him as many tourist attractions as we could (and I thought we did a pretty good job!) but I snapped this photo with my phone in the middle of the afternoon when our group stopped to take a break in Central Park. It wasn’t until we’d all taken a bite when I realized that we’d all ordered some variation of a cart pretzel- which are really the best.

I was going to omit food photos this year (because I did a lot of really tasty baking and thought ten photos of my kitchen concoctions might be a bit much for one post)– but this one was too good to pass up.

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# 6: Historic Deerfield (July 27th)

2015 was the year I rediscovered (or rekindled?) my love of Western Massachusetts, specifically the Pioneer Valley. I spent a lot of time in Northamption, Amherst, Hadley, and Deerfield- especially the historic area- lined with pretty houses, old fences, and plenty of flowers. I stopped by the area one afternoon in July to take a walk while I waited for my friend to finish up at work so we could go about our scheduled plans. After taking a corner, I was greeted by all these bright and beautiful flowers- some that had grown almost as tall as me- and I took a few photos while trying to avoid the bees that were buzzing about.

This one was my favorite of the bunch. I love all the different colors in this photo.

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# 5: Making a friend at Ocean Beach, San Diego (January 25th)

Days before the first of many historic blizzards and Winter storms were set to hit the East Coast at the beginning of the year, I was in sunny San Diego celebrating my 29th birthday with friends. On my last day before I was due to fly back home- I headed down to Ocean Beach- my favorite spot in SoCal. While there, I watched surfers ride the waves, ate some awesome tacos, and strolled the boardwalk- which is where I spotted this guy just hanging out. Even as I inched closer and closer to him, he didn’t budge- he just sat on the railing and watched me- and then he let me take his picture with the beautiful ocean and palm trees in the background.

Sadly, I didn’t see him this past October when I returned to San Diego for a vacation.

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# 4: Quabbin Reservoir (September 6th)

As Summer slowly but surely began to slip away, making room for Autumn- I headed out for one last evening hike along the Quabbin Reservoir one late afternoon in September before I made my way to Northampton for a dinner date. My timing as I hit the trails was perfect, because I caught this beautiful and serene shot just as the sun was first beginning to set. I was the only one there for a short period of time before a couple of hikers came by, and I remember just being so blown away with how lovely the water looked as it reflected the sky. It was like something out of some far away fantasy movie.

It’s a shame swimming isn’t allowed in the reservoir- because I would have dove in- in a heartbeat!

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# 3: My final set list of my 20’s (August 3rd)

I had mentioned it above with my photo with Hayley Atwell- but August 2nd-3rd were so unbelievably fun for me. The 3rd, my second day of getting to spend time with my Irish BFF, Steven- was also the day Brandon Flowers brought his ‘Desired Effect’ tour to Boston. Since my teens, The Killers and their individual solo work have played an integral part of my life. I’ve met so many people and have made so many friends because of the band’s existence and through their wide and diverse fan base- and their music has, on more than one occasion- been a soundtrack to different ups and downs since my late teens.

The set list shown above, a gift from Steven after the show- marks my final B.Flow performance of my 20’s. Come mid-January, I’ll be entering my thirties, and while I don’t anticipate never seeing a show again, ever- it’ll be within a whole new era of my life.

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# 2: Viva Las Vegas! (October 16th)

Despite the fact that we’ve known each other for 20 years, my best friend Sean and I have never actually taken a vacation together (apart from the occasional weekend in NYC or New Hampshire or something.) All of that changed when my long lost twin sister, Kelsey, tied the knot in Las Vegas this past October and Sean was more than happy to fly across the country and come along as my date. We had an absolute BLAST there- from hitting the strip, going from casino to casino, to being apart of Kelsey’s beautiful ceremony at the M Resort- which marked my first time seeing her in a few years! It was by far one of the best trips I’ve ever been on- and the photo-of-the-photobooth-strip above is just a snippet of our overall carefree and silly attitude during our stay.

We’ve already agreed that we need to head back to Vegas together A.S.A.P. and catch a show or two (and do some gambling.) Maybe it’s in store for 2016? We’ll just have to wait and see!

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# 1: Stone Arch Bridge – Upstate New York (April 25th)

In April, I set off to Bethel, New York, for a long weekend of relaxation in the middle of nowhere and to revisit areas I had stopped by with my parents during a family holiday over five years ago. One spot in particular, the Stone Arch Bridge, proved to be one of my favorite places to pause, sit, and take a few photos. The area was still feeling the aftermath of Winter (the trees were bare and it was a bit chilly out) but it ended up working in my favor. I loved all of the pictures I took during my stay- but this one in particular really caught my attention while I was reviewing it after I’d come home. It’s very similar to a photo my father took the last time I was there (only the trees were much fuller and I was actually on the bridge in his version.)

Because of how sentimental the area is to me, and because of how lonesome-looking but lovely this picture came out (I’m quite proud of it!) I’ve dubbed this picture my # 1 of 2015.

And there it is! My top ten photos from this past year. I’m very pleased with my list- and I’m looking forward to snapping even more pictures come 2016 with all the big plans I’ve been making for the upcoming year!

xx

Comics, Cosplay, and Cheeseburgers

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Yesterday marked the third and final day of Boston’s annual Comic-Con. I had been unable to attend on Friday or Saturday due to prior commitments, but was able to stop by for a few hours in the afternoon in my Peggy Carter costume to browse the booths, admire other cosplayers’ ensembles and intricate props, pose for photos, and geek-out at the guests (like Stan Lee, who I caught a glimpse of as he passed through the photo op area with a coffee in hand and a smile on his face!)

I snapped a few photos with my cell phone, since it was more convenient than digging my big camera out of my bag over and over- and easier to hold while trying to simultaneously juggle my little toy pistol and my purse. There were so many fantastic costumes on display as I roamed the aisles (and quite a few other women dressed as Peggy Carter- all of who looked absolutely beautiful!) and even though my feet were killing me by the time I took my heels off- it was worth it.

Marvel Team!

Marvel Team!

This lovely lady was dressed as Angie from "Agent Carter" and she looked incredible!

This lovely lady was dressed as Angie from “Agent Carter” and she looked incredible!

Ms. Frizzle!

Ms. Frizzle!

Owen and Claire from "Jurassic World". I loved these two!

Owen and Claire from “Jurassic World”. I loved these two!

My ultimate fan-girl moment of the day came when I had the pleasure of meeting and posing for a photo with Peggy Carter herself, the absolutely stunning Miss Hayley Atwell. She’s so beautiful, and so sweet- and her complimenting my costume brought me enough joy to last me through this life and probably well into the afterlife, too. I was so completely elated. I think my huge smile in our photo speaks for itself, really:

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I swear I must have looked like the heart-eyes emoji for hours afterwards.

The best part of the day, though- was that my good friend Steven (who I only get to see once every year or so!) met up with me at the convention. We had so much catching up to do, and when my feet couldn’t take the heels anymore, we continued our conversation all the way to Harvard Square- where after changing into some flip-flops- I gave Steven his first tour of the grounds at Harvard University and stuffed my face with a double cheeseburger and fries at Charlie’s Kitchen. One of the perks of the Peggy Carter costume is that without the hat and the suit jacket, it looks like I’m just enjoying a break from a formal business meeting. It’s a lot more practical (and comfortable!) than my semi-itchy Poison Ivy costume from San Diego Comic-Con last year, for example!

We also caught an evening screening of ‘Ant-Man’ by Fenway, too- which seemed like the perfect way to end a beautiful afternoon of good, old fashioned geek-dom. I really, really enjoyed the movie- so much that I would happily see it again- and I all but clutched my chest at the post-credits scene (no spoilers!)

Tonight, I’m re-joining Steven at the House of Blues on Lansdowne Street for his last night in town where he will be working his lighting magic for Brandon Flowers’ show. I’m so excited. I’ve been loving Brandon’s latest album and I’m looking forward to singing and dancing along.

I’ll be wearing more comfortable shoes for it, at least.

Steven and I post-convention!

Steven and I post-convention!

A Visit to Boston Comic-Con ’14!

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I was actually getting ready to photograph the guy on the right when the guy on the left showed up. The two of them were so adorably excited that they had on the same costume. I had to snap a photo of them both!

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I ran into a little trouble in the Artists Alley.

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This guy right here.

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Wilfred!

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I found my twin, Daryl- and big brother Merle!

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SO. MANY. DEADPOOLS. This group just kept getting bigger and bigger with every Deadpool cosplayer that came into the mix. You can’t really see the bubble someone held above them, but it says “I hope no one has the same outfit.”

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The cutest little Sharknado ever.

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And the cutest little Harley!

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Sorry, Rick. No one ever knows where CAR-UHL is.

I thought for sure that after San Diego Comic-Con, I’d be convention’d out through October, at least- but yesterday afternoon I found myself once again donning my Daryl Dixon costume and heading down to check out Boston Comic-Con 2014 at the Seaport World Trade Center for a few hours. The photos above, some taken with my cell phone (it’s very difficult to juggle a cell phone, camera, and a crossbow all at once, by the way,) were some of my favorite cosplays and props that I saw while perusing the exhibitors hall. I ran into a couple of familiar faces- which is always a treat- and I met a lot of really fun people, too. Shout-outs to the other Walking Dead enthusiasts I got to pose with!

The convention was a lot busier than last year’s, which made stopping to shop around with such a large crowd milling about at any given time a little difficult. Ultimately, I didn’t take home anything save for a few pamphlets and flyers. I think it may have been for the best, anyway- since I already spent enough money in California.

There were some great guests in town for B.C.C. this year, including James Marsters, John Barrowman, and Jason Momoa- but the one I was most excited to see was none other than Darryl “DMC” McDaniels from Run D.M.C., who has his own comic book coming out later this year. With good timing on my part, I made it into Darryl’s panel, and with my knowledge of useless movie trivia- I answered a question correctly prior to the panel’s start-time and got to sit in the front row- as well as have a moment with the man himself backstage afterwards. The panel was a lot of fun, and Darryl is such a kind, sweet, down-to-Earth guy. Getting to see him was the highlight of my day.

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Darryl and Daryl.

I had such a great time, but with a fully-loaded work week ahead of me, I’ve got to hang up my angel winged vest (for now!) and get some much needed rest.

Talk Nerdy to Me.

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For anyone who has read or followed this blog for any considerable amount of time, or who has met me in person, you know- or you have at least had an inkling- that I’m a total and shameless geek. I’m a horror movie connoisseur, I’m an avid gamer, I can have long and heated discussions about which Avenger is the best in the group (Captain America, by the way. End of story,) or which character in “The Walking Dead” is best equipped for long-term survival- and even though I can’t speak Klingon and my comic book collection isn’t as impressive as others- I have a deep appreciation for the brilliant minds behind the artwork, books, movies, and television shows that I’ve come to love and embrace in my nerdy-ness. I also have so much admiration for other fans and the time, energy, and skill they channel into showing their passion for a particular series/character/etc.

Yesterday afternoon I headed down to the Seaport World Trade Center for Boston Comic-Con, which was originally scheduled for April but was postponed due to the Boston Marathon Bombings and the subsequent manhunt for the Tsarnaev brothers in the aftermath. I spent hours meeting wonderful new people, chatting with extraordinary artists, admiring some of the most impressive costumes I’ve ever seen, and running into a couple of famous faces. The convention runs through this evening (Sunday) for anyone in the area who may want to check it out. I personally had a phenomenal time.

Here are some of my favorite costumes/people I ran into:

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This guy had an incredible Bumblebee costume. It was massive!

This guy had an incredible Bumblebee costume. It was massive!

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Holy shit at the guy in the background photobombing like a champ.

Holy shit at the guy in the background photobombing like a champ.

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Rick Grimes & Tyreese!

Rick Grimes & Tyreese!

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I had such a mini freak-out over these brilliant Silent Hill costumes.

I had such a mini freak-out over these brilliant Silent Hill costumes.

Kick-Ass!

Kick-Ass!

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One of the coolest Tony Stark/Iron Man costumes I've ever seen. This guy was on point.

One of the coolest Tony Stark/Iron Man costumes I’ve ever seen. This guy was on point.

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There were so, so, so many more, and I truly wish I could have photographed them all. Major kudos to those who came in costume. You all looked fabulous- and thank you so much to everyone who posed for pictures. You were all so sweet and so fun. It was an absolute pleasure to meet you all!

Speaking of meeting wonderful people. I was fortunate enough to have a quick hello with Kristin Bauer van Straten of “True Blood” fame. She’s GORGEOUS.

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Laurie Holden (Her most recent role being Andrea on “The Walking Dead”) was also there- and just as stunning as ever. I had last seen her in June while I was in NYC. Aidan Turner and Dean O’Gorman from “The Hobbit” were present yesterday as well. Very, very cool.

And I didn’t leave without scoring a few awesome things, too. By the end of the day, my purse was bursting with business cards, contact information, and promotional items from different artists and independent publications- but I was especially fond of the following:

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The Dixon Brothers figurines from Funko POP! Television are two of the cutest things I’ve ever seen in my life. I can’t get over how adorable they are, and it pains me to know that they will forever be left in their respective boxes when all I want to do is cuddle them both. I mean, look at them!

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Merle has the little arm attachment, and Daryl has cartoon bags under his eyes. Way too precious (and hilarious.)

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I also got a pair of these “pixelated” frames which completely cracked me up. I’m not sure where outside of a comic convention I would ever wear these, but with YouTube’s first ever “Geek Week” kicking off today, who knows? They could come in handy.

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And lastly, an adorable addition to my collection of “quirky” jewelry, I took home this 3-D squid cameo necklace from Kay and P. They were kind enough to tie some beautiful ribbon through it, but I plan on getting a chord or a chain to go through the loop to guarantee it won’t come undone and that I won’t lose it somewhere. It’s just so cool looking.

Again, thank you to everyone I met who helped make this such a great experience. I had a blast, and I’m looking forward to doing it again next year!