Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Wondercon - The Day Before

My two loyal readers (hi Mom and Obie, my friends' Boston Terrier!) are probably wondering what happened to this past Friday's "Friday Slice of Heaven, Slice Into the Woods" entry.  Well...there was none, because I was at the San Francisco Wondercon and no where near a computer.  So this weeks FSoH/SItW will probably spill into a couple of days because I hit the bonanza of great and wonderful books and tomorrow's releases will only compound the matter...not a bad problem to have.

Anyhow, the next few entries will cover the day before Wondercon, the first and second days and a wrap-up of the loot that I came away with and that subsequently put me in the poor house; Top Ramen never tasted so good...seriously, that shit never tasted good.

Obie (my worst critic)
and Tulip (smiling).
We left around 10:30 AM on Thursday morning after dropping Tulip off at our friends' house so that she could spend the weekend with them and her brother, Obie--yes, that Obie.  This practically tore my heart from my chest only to place it under the front wheel of the car.  The look she gave Amy and I as we walked out the door and wondering where we were going...hate it.

After about a half an hour, I was recovered enough from my canine separation anxiety and we listened to the latest installment of the Savage Love Podcast that everyone should be listening to and then went onto the excellent audio book Dresden Files: Storm Front by Jim Butcher and narrated by James Marsters aka Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  Despite our interest in the book, the drive seemed to last forever until right around Gilroy we were near starvation and believed that we could find something good to eat near the outlets; we were wrong.  We ended up driving around labyrinthian outlet parking lots and had great difficulty escaping.  I could have sworn I saw a half-bull, half-man running after us, but it was probably just the hunger.  We eventually settled on Applebees, which wasn't terrible, but they are a chain and being uppity Santa Barbara snobs with a dislike of crisco-infused fried foods we were not happy with the choice.  I can only hope that there are some decent locally-owned restaurants hidden somewhere in the depths of the town that is Gilroy.

Jeff and I at Thirsty Bear.  Yes, I
got all the good looks
We arrived at my brother Jeff's house around 4:30 PM, ditched our car there for the weekend and subsequently saved ourselves around $180 in parking fees.  A hop, skip and a jump into his car and we were on the way to San Francisco to pick up his wife, Jessica, from work and went to find our hotel.  We got lost.  The truth is that the iPhone lied.  The iPhone was a stinking liar, liar, pants on fire because it said that the Marriott Marquis Hotel was dead center of the Moscone Center, which it was not.  But luckily after Jeff and Jessica dropped us off to find the hotel on foot while they parked the car, we found some help in locating the place.  We also found the area for the early Wondercon badge pickup, which was highly convenient, and moments later we were checked in and dumping bags at the spectacular room.  We were on the 23rd floor with a 160 degree view of the city and at $129.00 per night with a king-sized bed, all I needed was Tulip and we could have stayed there for ages.

Amy and I at the SkyView.
This angle makes me look fat!
We freshened up and went to the SkyView top floor to order some pay-for-the-view priced drinks and took a booth right on the window overlooking the city.  We were chatting and enjoying our drinks when a man, from the amorous couple sitting across from us, interrupted our conversation to ask us at what time we felt a proper booty call occurred.  Jeff answered that midnight was a prime booty call hour and I responded that that was true in San Francisco, but if they were in New York that 2:00 AM was more appropriate.  They laughed and went back to getting not-so-much-hot-and-heavy as luke-warm and barely appropriate, and the man kept pulling fancy underwear out of a bag that the woman kept trying to hide.  Cute.  Oh to be in love and at Wondercon.  Yeah, they probably were not there for comic books and their booty call probably happened at approximately 6:30 PM.

It's not Hollister Brewing Co Beer,
but it is heavenly none the less.
Afterwards, we went to the amazing and expensive Thirsty Bear brewery and tapas bar for dinner and drinks.  Jeff and I each ordered the nine beer sampler with my favorites being the IPA, the stout, the Polar Bear and the vanilla beers.  The asparagus and garlic soup was wickedly tasty and the albondigas blew me away.  Being morning people, Amy and I were in bed at 11:30 PM and after reading a Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson Swamp Thing story I was out like a light.

Tomorrow, the actual Wondercon....

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