The food and company were great at Hard Rock. Everyone I spoke to said it was better than last year, and I agree, although keep into account that now we had experience on what worked and what didn't. I got to see fadedblackrose, which again to those who asked, "She's got a journal? Where??" is JEDI AND TERESA'S daughter, although I hope you'll think of her as a separate entity instead of a historical footnote of the old FanTek video room. She's studying in school to be an EMT/Firefighter... well, just read her journal. She's wicked awesome. Someone take her to dinner and introduce her to handsome men.
Made new friends this year as well, even if I knew them from before, some people just drift into my field of view. There was Crash, Liz (and her son), somebody with two adorable kids named Brian and Kathleen (ages 5 and 3), Oji (we'll get you fried eggs one of these days), and some other Staff Suite sweeties that helped out like Carl.
I really liked Mike from AMV. Jesus, he's hyper, but his enthusiasm is infectious. aksident kept laughing, because she's never met an adult THAT hyper. Speaking of which, having her as an assistant was one of my high points of the con. It was good to have her backstage, and she did a superb job keeping me alive. A lot of people commented how mature she was (both mentally and physically). I don't know about physically, I always thought she looked around 12/13, but when we put makeup on her, a lot of people were shocked how good she looked, especially with black cat ears. I was so happy that she got to see convention life, meet ninjacooter (I have been trying to get them alone together with each other for ages, and they had great girl talk late at night). ninjacooter is not known for liking children very much, but if she likes your kids? Consider it a high complement. Because in reality, she just hates brats and is impatient with rude, uppity, and snobby kids. She's babysat CR when he was little a few times, and we've let him be with her on outings to DC and Dupont Circle. She's got such a big heart, even though she doesn't ever want to have children, she makes a great "eccentric aunt."
Again, deep thanks to Moria and Matt for their help in Staff Suite. And MSD. And my stuff. Just in general, those two rock.
Final count, according to Colette, was 5100 reg, and 7100 total (which I guess includes one-day, or maybe plus staff/merchants/guests). That's huge. No wonder that reg line wrapped around the programming area like brain coral. At least the line for the merchant's hall moved pretty quickly, if there was a line at all.
I stayed out of the drama. I heard about things, I saw things, but I stayed the hell away. I am sure none of it was very deep, anyway. Ignorance is the key to happiness with con politics.