I learned a lot this year at AnimeFest. I’m by no means new to this world but this year taught me a few things that I will never forget and has inspired and reminded me that not only are we as cosplayers wonderful; we are supportive and when we put our minds to something we can move mountains or at least a very large Totoro plush. I have never been more in awe of the graces of humanity. So here’s what I learned:
- Cosplayers can and will dance for food and will do so fabulously.
- Swimming involves more than just flailing around and wiggling your butt in the water.
- Use the escalators while you can!
- Don’t forget to keep your phone charged.
- People will judge you when you walk up to a pastry counter with a basket full of pastries and you are proud to say “No,these are all for me.”
- Cosplayers stick together and take care of each other!
- Sometimes, your nicer shoes are far more comfortable than your gross shoes.
- There is nothing wrong with civilian clothes at convention.
- Always stick your pose.
- Eating edible paper feels unnatural.
- Taking a selfie with your favorite voice actor is cool, doing it twice with another beloved voice actor is just fantastic. Add 2 autographs to that and just accept the fangirl puddle and love every minute of it.
- When the guest of honor takes a picture of the crowd, pose!
- The Dropkix are the best band ever.
- The kiddie pool sometimes happens to be a hot tub.
- Swimming will leave you unexpectedly sore.
- Free breakfast is fabulous.
But this is probably the most important lesson I learned this year is: when there is trouble and things get really really bad, a woman in a formal gown will step in, stop traffic and keep everyone safe and proved to be the most capable person in the entire convention.
I won’t forget being rushed out of the convention hall during an evacuation and running back in across the street in a hurried frenzy with my fellow con goers. I won’t forget the friends I made in line, the obscure references I made to those in costume and the ones I received on my costumes. I won’t forget taking pictures with some of my voice acting idols and them being honestly the coolest people ever. I won’t forget dancing for my lunch only to realize, I was actually just dancing for me. I won’t forget being pinned into my dress, or the fez I made from a flower pot. I won’t forget the runs in my tights, the blisters on my feet or the tears I shed as my bus drove past the Dallas skyline. The posters I got, the bows I made, the contacts shared I’ll remember them always. The pictures don’t describe half of what I experienced and felt. And I’ll treasure that always.