Son of SpongeBob Vega$Pants
When we last left our heroes, they were in a hotel room, on little sleep, somewhere in Las Vega$…
“Mrphhzzzzgggggthphbbt,” was all I could muster.
There was silence on the phone.
There’s this voice in our heads. That voice that tells you it’s not a good idea to kick that guy, or that you probably should think twice before you take all that shrimp from the Buffet…it’s the self-preservation voice…you know it. My self-preservation voice, and my stay-in-bed voice are currently having this conversation:
“Dude. Mumble again, and go back to sleep. It’ll be okay.”
“What?! You have a commitment to these people! Get up!”
“Gettin’ up is for pussies!”
“If you don’t get up, everyone will hate you.”
“They hate you already! Stay in bed! Hey! Youurreee wiiffeessss innnn bedddd….”
Somehow, I got up. I told them that I’d take a cab, so they didn’t have to worry about that, and I’d see them about 9:45.
Anne gets up, and orders some room service (Which is *always* over priced, so I’m not even going to complain about it) while I take a shower.
Walk through casino.
I get to the hotel where they’re doing the show at about 9:55. I’m supposed to start at 10, so I can imagine that they’re freaking out a bit.
I’m right. I wander all over the hotel, giving all of the appropriate Vulcan and Klingon salutes, until I finally find someone from the con, who tells me where to go. Then she shows me where I’m supposed to be.
The autograph thing works like this: some people paid quite a bit of money to get these “golden ticket”-style things, where they’d get the best seats, access to all the extra shows, and they’d get an “in-person” autograph.
Tangent about autographs: I don’t get autographs. I don’t understand the appeal of having someone’s signature on a photo. It’s just not something I’m into. But here’s what I do get: having someone sign something for you means that you get that person’s attention for 30 seconds, and you can tell them how much you like them, or how much you didn’t like them, or whatever. The autograph is secondary. It’s that contact that’s important. At least that’s what I guess about these people, because they paid a lot of money to get their autographs “in-person”.
So the way this works is it’s like an assembly line kinda thing. You come into this long hallway, and there is Michael Dorn, sitting at a table. You give him your ticket and picture (or phaser, or whatever) and he signs it. You go to the next table, and there is Marina Sirits. Ticket. Autograph. Repeat.
Contrary to popular belief, sitting at a table, signing thousands of autographs is really hard. Because it’s not just scrawling my name. It’s stopping and listening to the always excited, sometimes shaking, sweating, scary dude wants to know exactly why I did X on episode Y, and would I please sign his picture in gold, because Marina signed it in silver, and now he wants the men in silver and the women in gold, oh, and I hated your character, and here are 25 reasons why, and I expect an answer for each one of them.
Now, personally, I think this approach, while the only one that really works, has the potential to really suck for the fans. Sure, if you’re in the first 100 or so we see, that’s fine. But towards the end, we start to get tired. Our arms and backs get sore. We begin to lose our voices, and we’re ready to go home. But I do my best. I stay focused, and I remind myself that these fans waited a LONG time, so they are the ones that I need to give the most attention to, when I am the most drained.
So I get to the hallway where we’re set up for autographs, and, as I am walking up the hallway, I see Dorn, Marina, Renee, Kate Mulgrew, and WILLIAM FUCKING SHATNER. Shatner has always been a dick to me, but I want to say hi, so I approach them, and I say, “Hi! How you guys doin?”
Everyone returns my greeting, even Kate, who I don’t know, at all. Never even been introduced. Everyone, that is, except WILLIAM FUCKING SHATNER! Old toupee-head won’t even look at me! I don’t know what this guy’s problem is, really. I think he’s very funny, I think he’s got a great sense of humor about himself, but he is always a dick to me. So all I can do is just smile, shrug it off, and get set up at my table. On my way there, I hear Kate say, “Could we get some coffee?” The person who is working for the con says, “Sure. There’s a coffe cart in the lobby.” WILLIAM FUCKING SHATNER says, “Uh, no. What we need is not just coffee. We need a Starbuck’s run.” Cool, dude. Like this convention staffer isn’t over-worked enough. Good thing there’s a Starbuck’s every 100 feet.
Okay, so I’m at my table, and they send in the flood of fans. I’ve got my game-face on. My pen hand is strong, and I’m ready to be witty, charming, friendly, and make these guys feel like the autograph I’m currently signing is the only one I’ve signed all day.
Here comes the first fan. Okay, she’s not wearing a spacesuit…that’s a good sign. She has a witty Sci-Fi T-shirt on. Also a good sign. She’s about 20 feet away, and I can’t smell her. A VERY good sign.
Here she comes.
“Hi! How you doing today?!” I say.
“AWFUL! THIS IS THE WORST CONVENTION I HAVE EVER BEEN TO! I HATE DAVE SCOTT! I HATE LAS VEGAS! I HATE THIS CONVENTION!”
“Uhh..I think…that…this convention…just started…and…uhh..I’m sure that if you talk to Dave Scott, everyt–”
“DAVE SCOTT IS AN ARROGANT ASSHOLE!”
“Uh…yeah…well, you see, the thing is, I’m sort of not really involved in the planning of this convention, you know? I’m just, like, a guest…maybe you could–”
“THIS IS THE MOST FAN UNFRIENDLY CONVENTION I HAVE EVER BEEN TO!”
And she storms away.
What the fuck?
Well, at least it can only get better, right?
THE REHEARSAL THAT WASN’T!