Taking a moment for The Con and all things Nerdawesome!

I am interrupting regular programming for this special PSA on the importance of nerdawesome events like The Con. Better known as San Diego Comic-Con International, the convention was founded by a Michigan born comics fan after he moved to San Diego in 1970. The original gathering was a three day event which drew 300 people. Nowadays it draws upwards to about 150,000 people. It is traditionally a four-day event (Thursday through Sunday — though a three-hour preview night on Wednesday is open to professionals, exhibitors, and some guests pre-registered for all four days) held during the summer in San Diego, California, United States, at the San Diego Convention Center.

The convention showcases comic books, science fiction/fantasy and film/television, and related popular arts, the convention has expanded over the years to include a larger range of pop culture elements, such as horror, animation, anime, manga, toys, collectible card games, video games, webcomics, and fantasy novels. Comic-con also features panels, seminars, and workshops with comic book professionals. There are also previews of upcoming feature films, portfolio review sessions with top comic book and video game companies, and such evening events as awards ceremonies and the Masquerade, a costume contest, as well as the Comic-Con International Independent Film Festival, which showcases shorts and feature length movies that do not have distribution or distribution deals.

In short, all folks of shapes, sizes and nationalities unite to celebrate all the things nerdy and geeky.

Typical afternoon around Downtown San Diego during Comic-con.

I was first introduced to The Con back in 2007 when I was still living in LA and hanging out with video game artists. Being a self-confessed geek myself, I did not mind traveling to check out what the convention was all about. Let me tell you that my first time walking around the San Diego Convention Center was an experience. PERIOD. You have people in crazy costumes, numerous visual displays and thousands of fellow nerds basking in the glory of The Con. Guys, people from all over the world come to this event!

The love of my nerd life, my geek soul mate- Zach Levi. He is the lead actor of the awesome show Chuck. He was instrumental in pulling this event together! He reached out to his fellow Hollywood geeks and promised game-a-thons with unlimited energy drinks (or at least that is what happened in my head).

I believe hands down one of the best experiences I’ve had was sharing an elevator with Iron Man back in 2009.  However, my experience last weekend during Comic-con 2011 now tops that. I had an opportunity to attend a “conversation” with one of my favorite actors Nathan Fillion (of Castle and Firefly fame) hosted by the NerdHQ. NerdHQ started out as an online community of- of course- nerds. This year they created an independent off-site event which offered tickets to attend “conversations” with favorite TV personalities that have a huge nerd following. It turned out to be a fresh and innovative format since the venue was intimate and the audience had full participation as the conversation revolved around their questions. Plus, did I tell you that all the proceeds went to charity?

One of the few Nerds who asked the panel a question. They actually had signed giveaways for these brave souls.

In any case, I was over the moon because Nathan Fillion was not only handsome, charming and funny but because he was able to bring in some of the Firefly cast into the conversation. I, of course, also got to also see my long time t.v. crush Zach Levi who I have unashamedly been cyberstalking for a while now.  

However, I think the true highlight of the event was my phone alarm going off while Nathan with fellow actors- Adam Baldwin and Jewel Staite -were in the middle of answering a question. I did not even know I had programmed an alarm for that time (2:45pm). Extremely mortified, I quickly turned off my phone hoping that they would think it was someone else from the audience. My heart was beating and I started to sweat. I felt like I was in high school getting caught cheating by a professor. Just my luck. Nathan turns in my direction and jokingly said: “Seriously, who leaves their phone on during a panel? And who would even think to put their phone on the most annoying ringtone ever. That old phone ring. Krrrring krinnng”. The audience laughs and my face turns red. He then smiles at me and then softly says: “First panel, huh”? I nodded as I tried to hide behind someone or something (I was on the front row) Ugh, I was so embarrassed that I froze and couldn’t even think of a funny quip to cover up an extreme faux pas.

If you ever read this, Nathan or Zach, I’m sorry for being THAT person with the annoying ringtone in the middle of the conversation!

This was just about the time when my phone alarm went off. Embarrassing!

Anyways, I managed to recover as the conversation went on and everybody forgot about my boo boo. I thoroughly enjoyed the rest of the time and wished it was longer. One hour is simply too short to fully geek out. My only regret after the conversation was not staying at the NerdHQ. I heard that Zach ended up hanging out with fans and playing arcade games with them =(

Now I’m curious, what would you have  said or done if you were in my situation?

They were doing incremental quarter turns so that everyone could get a nice photo. Nathan was talking at the side of his mouth cracking everybody up.

If you are a fellow nerd or you happen to know one, I highly recommend checking out Comic-con. It’s gotten more attention over the last two years since large Hollywood studios have taken notice of the event. So it is better to buy tickets online once they become available. To know the exact dates of when registration opens, I suggest you follow them on twitter: @Comic_Con for updates or just keep checking their website at http://www.comic-con.org/. Note that they won’t probably sell it until early next year but tickets will sell out fast so be sure to buy them right away.

For Comic-con 2012, the ticket prices are as follows:


BADGE TYPE Adult Junior* Military /
4-DAY WITH Preview Night $175* $87* $87*
4-DAY WITHOUT Preview Night $150* $75* $75*
SINGLE DAY Thurs – Sat $40 $20 $20
SINGLE DAY Sunday $23 $11 $11

2012 DATES

WED, JULY 11(Preview Night)


SAN DIEGO Convention Center

111 W. Harbor Dr.
San Diego, CA 92101

Lastly, if you are planning to go let me know! I have already scored tickets (special thanks to dear Lisa W. who waited in line for 4+ hours to get limited onsite presell ticket- I owe you my life) to Comic-con 2012. Would love to meet up =)

If you want more Comic Con photos click here.

21 Comments Taking a moment for The Con and all things Nerdawesome!

  1. Barbara

    Pretty amazing that you got so close to so many big names!
    Had the conference organisers told you to turn your phones off? I always switch mine to silent when someone says "phones off".

  2. Renee

    I know that had to be embarrassing, but it seems that Nathan was pretty sweet about it. He was looking dead at you though. lol There will be a comic con in Atlanta in December….I’m sure to see the ‘characters’ walking around in costume (at least I think that’s the convention that does that…we have so many conventions where people love to dress up) since I work downtown. Good review. Oh, I think Zac’s cute too.

  3. Debbie Beardsley

    Your excitement over attending ComicCon is infectious! Just yesterday I was looking at pictures of the Fringe cast on a panel and thought I would go for that! Nathan Fillion is great eye candy.

  4. Jeremy Branham

    Wow, had no idea you were such a geek!! 🙂 I can be nerdy at times because I collected baseball cards and comic books and studied a lot in school and did well. However, I am not sure I would have any interest in this.

    With that said, really cool to see some of the actors and actresses show up to this thing. I liked Nathan Fillion from many years ago on Two Guys and a Girl (with Ryan Reynolds, Traylor Howard). Fantastic show!!

  5. Mark Wiens

    Sounds interesting Grace. That was pretty funny how your phone went off in the middle of the interview questions. Hopefully Nathan or Zach will read this soon!


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