Jefferson is a single dad of two great kids, a Coug, a fan of live anything over recorded anything, a former blonde, ex-rock magazine editor, Sounders and Reign supporter, licensed teacher and flagger, 18x marathon runner, black belt in both Tae Kwon Do and Thai Kickboxing, pop culture convention worker, soccer fan/player/coach/media, published novelist, Frosted Flakes fan, two step and swing dancer, Kurosawa movie buff, future punk band singer, the founder of Keeper Studios and ShotgunProse (dot com), and a failed guitarist/musician that keeps playing anyways ...
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Seattle Mariners 4
Chicago White Sox 7
April 22, 2012 - Seattle, WA - Safeco Field
AL Regular Season
Maybe I am drinking the cool aid here, but there is a nice group of young players here, but judging by the continuing slump in attendance, Seattle is not paying attention. A beautiful Sunday like this and the building was well under half full.
I saw some things for the first time. For instance, a pitcher throwing to a base as a pick off move when there were multiple runners on and no one was covering first. The ball went all the way to the stands and both runners went all the way round to score.
I cannot recall a batter reaching first safe on a passed ball after a strike out in person before.
There were 4 separate plays at the plate and two were tag outs.
I have never seen a major league base runner called out for runner interference.
The Seahawks posted a hit it here target, kind of feels like taunting.
The seagulls invaded. At first it was kind of funny that a bunch of seagulls came into the park. Then, it started getting a bit creepy, as it was well over a hundred of them swarming the upper deck down the first base side.
I was a huge fan of Guns 'n Roses back in the day. They were unapologetic and had songs to crank up and scream along with. When I saw them in 1988 in Seattle opening for Iron Maiden it still is the best double bill I have ever witnessed.
That being said, I more or less ignored Chinese Democracy when it came out. Guns 'n Roses had not released a record in 15 years and the band on this record was not the band I liked. This band was the singer with a bunch of new guys. I once joked it was "Axl Rose and the Hired Guns".
Had there been activity over the years I would have accepted the changes, they happen. But, Velvet Revolver, essentially the band without Axl had moved on and released a record I really liked a few years earlier. And, let's face it, Axl really is hard to sympathize with. So, the record came out, I heard a song or two on the radio, and promptly ignored it.
Axl Rose recently posted an open letter explaining his choice to not accept or be involved in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction of Guns 'n Roses. I read it. Okay ... a new level of diva has emerged, even for him. But, I also realized I had not given his new version of the band an actual chance. I checked out a library copy of Chinese Democracy and let it spin a few times the way I do with new records. Well,, there are some interesting pieces on the record, I will give Axl that. At times it sounds like the same band, but it also is pretty uneven in style, like it was recorded over a long period with a bunch of different members ... which it was. Basically, when my son asked I used St. Anger from Metallica as an example. See, it too was recorded over a long time of turmoil, is really personal to the guys in the band, but is lacking in those songs that really grab you and want to crank it up. Chinese Democracy is lacking that Paradise City or November Rain, the songs you just turn up when they come on. Sure, some good stuff here and there, but not record I really would want to just grab and crank up. I wanted to like this more, like a huge surprise gift, but I didn't.
This year we had some jobs within the Minion Corps that had titles. I was a Wrangler, sort of like First Amongst Equals in communism. It had a radio, a name not number badge, and somehow more authority that I thought would come along with it. There were moments of drama, a couple of dept heads that knew what they were doing, and Corey and the Minions doing the actual work. Organization matters, ECCC has it. I do not have time for poorly run activities, I could easily go back to being an attendee.
Roy, Ashley, Abby, Holly, George, Robbin, Stephanie, Annie … Todd and Jason … thank god for the minion lair and Carly and team. I did not learn everyone’s name. As the facebook requests came in I found myself saying, "Oh," a few times.
I made fun of Carly last year and how she would sort of drift off when the radio in her ear would kick in. it happened to me this year and I have to apologize. However, with the ear piece and the microphone a crowd will part like the rest see. There is power in that. Walkie talkies and earpieces are like a signal to get the f*ck out of the way.
On Friday night, Wil Wheaton still had a line. He stuck around to finish it with everyone else cleared out. As he sprinted to take a quick potty break I got a few minions in line and as he emerged from the men’s room he saw up, smiled, and ran by giving the six of us high fives. Video is on facebook.
I recruited a few friends. My good friend Tim worked Saturday, that was cool.
A gap of 23 years was filled when I got to see my old dorm friend from Wazzu Stephanie and meet her husband at the con. I have long maintained that finding old friends and seeing that they are well helps me realize that the world is not crashing and ending. It was awesome and I hope she had a good time.
We take care of our own. Yes, I taped up her ankles.
I posed for photos for people, more than once.
Our job was to get people in lines; if they are fair and clear, no problem. But, some people are never happy, and we can only turn so many frowns into smiles. Do the right thing for people, bring them tears of joy, they take pictures with you. Drama, yes, but offset by happy people. The perception was that I had the authority. We tried to have a policy of yes. Hopefully, the minions in my care got to see the panels and do the photo ops and signings they wanted to do.
The sheer volume of people this year. 30K on Saturday alone. 53k reported for the weekend. They all came through my room. But, I imagine the show floor, panels, and admissions all faced exactly the same problems.
On Sunday afternoon I wandered through the convention floor eating my sandwich and chips. I took a quick break by veering the long way back to my post. It was a chance to see some of the artist alley and the booths. Phil Foglio signed my Girl Genius postcard. I got to the escalator to head downstairs but held off putting back on my green shirt, ate my cookie and surveyed the scene. No fires, no injuries, no animals harmed. Good people doing their jobs in an environment set up for success. Organization matters. I had not met most of these people, including my girl Friday Corey, 48 hours earlier, yet we worked well together right away.
I got my earpiece back and boom, the questions came right back at me … but still.
Fist bumps, fist bumps, get your fist bumps here. There were a lot of people to juggle, so I made a point of constantly checking in with people. If they knew I was around they could do their job better and have a better experience. We were all grown ups there, let people do their jobs, but let them know they were supported.
Did not get books signed this year, although I tried on Friday. Bill S. is awesome with the fans at his table, but I just didn’t have time to wait. I ended up with some magic cards signed by Foglio and Snoddy, a girl Genius postcard signed, my program signed by Wil Wheaton … got a pic with Wil, should have with Eddie M. Eddie M was awesome, walked past at one point and patted me on the shoulder and shook my hand. EJO is a gentlemen and I got to make him chuckle. Judge did me a solid with some people hosed by a schedule change. The rest of the guests I got to see up close and they seemed pretty easy to work with.
There are three types of costumes. There is nice, what were they thinking, and smoking hot. I wanted to thank one particular Batwoman by being bad and giving her the chance to … you know, apprehend me.
I lost my notes from running the floor, but that happens. I had my camera, took no pictures, but got a couple of camera phone shots.
I chose health and skipped some of the evening activities. Would have loved to see Kracklefest. But, Sleep matters. I had a commute. A beard will tingle from too much caffeine. Shoot a five hour energy with a Wired chaser … a frightening result.
A hug from a pretty girl? Yes, please. It was good to see people I only know through the con. Seeing Jenna on Saturday was very, very cool.
I did make a few jokes that surprised people … Astroglide for crowded lines indeed.
Almost 36 hours at the con. This was work. Fun … maybe, worthwhile ... yes.