I call it dress rehearsal, because most of this 'shift' (1pm-7pm) is slow as mud. People get off work at 5 or 6, maybe even have dinner, then straggle by. That leaves most of the day in the vendor's room pretty quiet.
Gung-ho earlybirds were first on the scene, I guess. The people milling about were soon a mix of early visitors and slowpoke vendor setups. Such visitors are there on a recon mission. Scope the scene, absorb a mental overview of the room, then continue mapping the rest of the con. Some of this type wander the whole con all weekend. I call em Orbiters.
Orbiters provide some good company when things are otherwise slow. -Er, not to slight my neighboring vendors, but orbiters bring news from the outside. Vendors are all shackled to their tables, except when Jeff (Jeff Currey, I mentioned him in the last post) comes by to unlock us to go to the water cooler, or washroom. All hail Jeff! Paradigm of Order! I just learned that this was Jeff's last VCON before moving to Ontario. Doubtlessly to bring Order to that savage land.
One such Orbiter was named Gabe:
Hark ye, Gabe, young man seeking his destiny! A quest, an epic quest! Being an Orbiter, I'd learn more of this epic quest in days to come. Little did I know that I was to be integral to this quest. And I'm gonna be a dick, and hold you in suspense until I blog about sunday.
In a totally unrelated note, on my table also lay an item I built to strike up convers- I mean to showcase before the U.N. snapped it up:
I thought the world needed to see it before the U.N. snatched it up, and it disappeared into some black ops involving eggs, pancakes, and possibly assassinations. The smaller text that you probably can't see:
-Laser Guidance (batteries dead)
-Photonic-based night vision assistance
-AM transistor radio (option not yet included in this year's model)
-Sniper scope (broken)
This Spetula was more recently used to flick fleas off of a rabid, muddy dog, and may carry a variety of diseases. This is a good thing! It's like a poison coating to enhance attacks. As long as I'm at VCON, I'm also selling my books. They are not scoped, laser guided, and have no night vision, so they are just $15. I'm pretty sure they don't carry diseases.
Photo credit goes to Steve Fahnestalk. speaking of Steve-
He was running his table alongside his wife across the aisle. Used books. He was running a kind of clearance sale. Most of his books were $1 or 2. Hmm. And I'm selling for $15. Hmm. BUT MY BOOKS ARE SHINY. And have a much higher lesbian ratio! Zombies, too! And I highly doubt that any of his have an exploding, flying log.
Oh yeah, it was on. He was also giving out free bookmarks. Again, mine were shinier. and in CoLoUr!! Alright, alright, anyone walking around in that room was offered a bajillion free bookmarks, but it was war anyway. When a visitor walked between us, they were liable to be in the middle of an outlandish slander-fest about opposing bookmarks. They carry disease, they carry nanites of good and evil varieties, gypsy curses, and upon reading the bookmarks, a person is then doomed to buy the associated book. Here's a picture of Steve. Or one of his employees. Tell me, would you take a bookmark from this guy?
I didn't think so. Spikes beat balloons, simple mechanics.
At the end of the 'shift' things had picked up a little in terms of traffic. Sales were still low, but this was recon day. Most of us were multi-VCON veterans, we knew this was normal. Anyone new this year was probably pretty worried at this point. Nothing I or anyone could say about this being normal can entirely wash away the little voice saying "I'm wasting my time here." Patience, little ones. Patience.
OK, that's a good place to wrap up a post. I skipped a lot of great folks, but I'll have to catch up on them in later posts. No one likes HUGE blog entries. So this is were we'll end... end of dealer hours on Friday, Oct 1.
Next up: Friday Part 3- Book launch event