My alarm went off at 8:30 and i did a little better about not snoozing and getting straight into the shower, and then didn't stop to write up the previous day before heading off, so i got to AX around 12:30.
I was feeling really tired for some reason when i first got there, so i took a brief break and got a frappuccino from Starbucks and ate a couple packages of cookies i'd thought to bring along. Then i spent a couple hours taking pictures and looking about the exhibit hall before going to wait in line for the AMV reshow.
It turns out that i wouldn't have had to wait in line at all to get inside, but by showing up when i did i did get to see _most_ of the preshow again and take notes. Originally i thought they cut the preshow off early because my notes from the contest itself said there were a couple videos after the last one they showed at the rescreen, however some later forum trawling indicated that for the contest they actually restarted the preshow for a while because they were having issues with the lights and needed to kill some more time.
They announced, either right at the beginning or right before showing the Drama winner, that all the winners would be reshown during the Masquerade intermission, which was good because i was planning on cutting out after the Drama category so i could grab dinner. So they showed all the Drama videos, then announced the Drama winner. The winner was neither the video i'd voted for for Best Drama, nor the one i'd voted for for Best of Show, but it was a good video. (And i'll post a list of all the winners plus the preshow AMVs later =)
So as soon as that was done i ran off and started heading towards Yard House, with a brief pause to text +Andrew Schoonmaker to see if he and his friend were interested in dinner as well. Andrew was, and said he'd meet me there. Then a little later he texted me to say he was there and ask where i was. Apparently he'd tried to go out the south side of the convention, been blocked by the X Games, and was sent around the via the short detour. I on the other hand tried to go out the north side, was blocked by the X Games, and was sent around the long detour, going a whole block north, then past Yard House and back south and then having to back track a little. And between approaching from the wrong direction and all the extra stuff that had been put up for the X Games i missed the first turn, got confused by some of the signs, and ended up going around three sides of the building that the Yard House was in =P
So we went in and put our names down for a table, then a few minutes later Andrew's friend called and said he was going to be able to make it over after all (after having apparently lost in the first round of the Magic tournament he was in) but thankfully they were able to change our reservation without affecting the time at all. (Though as Andrew pointed out, it's not like they had very many two people tables anyways.)
Since i was going to the Masquerade immediately afterwards and not driving home for at least five or six hours i indulged myself and got three drinks, a Black Velvet (Pear Cider & Guinness) a Snakebite (Pear Cider & Harp) and a Youngberry Chocolate (Chocolate Stout & Framboise.) I also go some food of course :) We split an artichoke appetizer, and just to be different i got a salad and jambalaya instead of my usual salad and Mac & Cheese^2. The jambalaya was good, though not as good as BJ's jambalaya IMHO.
When we were done we headed back towards the con, following Andrew's superior detour, and i split off about halfway back so i could dump my stuff in my car before going to the Masquerade.
Just like at the AMV contest there were a lot of empty seats throughout the front sections, but this was even odder because in theory people had paid for those seats.
So question for other AX people, is it a new thing for them to split the "walk ons" and the skits into two different groups and do all the walk ons first? In any case there were some awesome costumes and some okay skits, but nothing that really blew me away as far as i can remember. It looks like there's a collection of YouTube videos here, so perhaps i should look through them again to double-check.
After the contest was over they went into the intermission while voting took place. The first half of the intermission was a performance by a japanese voice actor/singer who i didn't recognize. (Okay, that's a bit redundant, i don't recognize any voice actors/singers.) I stuck around through that though because the second half was the announcement of the AMV contest winners.
I'm going to do another post about AMVs later which will include the winners. The notable parts were that A: they didn't show the winning video of the AMV Chef contest :( and B: they're introducing a new category for next year, "Masquerade."
The Masquerade contest is a combination of cosplay and AMVs. You can pretty much do whatever you want as long as it involves clips of real life people, presumably in cosplay though i suppose you might be able to figure out some way to work around that if you really wanted. I'll include the three demo videos in the AMV post.
As soon as the AMV part was over i ran off for the dance, and found the longest line yet. I was there a bit earlier than on friday, so i was hopping i'd still get in at a reasonable time. However the line was moving pretty slowly. Perhaps people were less inclined to leave on the last night? Other people in line were starting up random games of pseudo-hackysack and kick the can.
By the time i finally got in i believe it was close to 12:30. It was a much less interesting night than the previous one. No one wanted to dance with me, or even seemed to notice me. So i got about an hour and fifteen minutes of dancing in before they shut it down around 1:50 or 2.
I got home around 3ish, and got to sleep around 4:30 or 5.
I'd originally been wondering if i was going to make it back on monday, but since i totally failed to actually do any shopping on the previous days i "had" to go back so i could buy stuff :)
So the downside to putting off shopping to the last day is that they run out of some stuff. In my case, they ran out of medium size for two of the shirts i wanted, the Tron Pony shirt, and the "Keep Calm And Continue Testing" shirt. When i asked them if they had those in the shop they said they were actually having trouble keeping the Tron Pony shirt in stock, so i ended up deciding to get both shirts in small. After doing the shirt shopping i wandered about for a bit to take pictures and stuff before going back to the exhibit hall to check out the artist alley.
In total i picked up ten shirts, a couple plush things, and a couple pieces of fan art. One artist table that caught my attention had some Chrono Trigger art and some Secret of Mana art. They also had a mashup of Okami and Bayonetta which i felt compelled to pick up since those were two of shelleycat's favorite games.
After they closed down the exhibit hall at 3 i hung around for another 30 minutes or so taking a few more pictures before heading home.
[Edit: Okay, that got long, added some cuts]