Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

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Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Tue Jun 16, 2020 3:13 pm

Well, since we have no new Origins, i thought i would share moments from the old ones and try to roll together a combined greatest moments. Years will bounce around and blend but i will try to post to the proper day of the week and roughly the right time of day.

Feel free to toss in your own experiences if you want.

It is 3:00 on Tuesday. Mark is leaving me a message on my phone. He is on route 76 and passing the town i grew up in. This will become a regular thing between us.
I don't mind growing old... but I hate growing up.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Tue Jun 16, 2020 6:09 pm

It is about 6 pm on tuesday.
I am officially done with work and on Origins vacation (in the years i have gone on wednesday) over the next hour, i will finish packing and loading everything into the car. (I even load it in the car if somebody else is picking me up, easiest way to make sure i have everything)

It takes me an extra few minutes to find my badge holder, i never remember that it has been in the glovebox for the last few years.

When the car is loaded, i seriously consider ditching Jeremy and leaving tonight with plans to bribe Mark or Charlie into letting me crash on their hotel floor for the night. I have this thought every year. I will opt to wait and take Jeremy along in the morning.

Depending on the year, i will either get a good meal in me, finish whatever is perishable in the house or subsist on junk food while rushing to finish printing stuff for the con. That depends on how much i jave left to do.

There have been probably 4 years where i still needed to print Mega paranoia at this time on a tuesday. 2 when i still needed to write Mega Paranoia at this hour.

And don't tell Mark, but there are 2 years when the PA was not done yet. On those years i will be typing and printing out a copy around 11:30 tonight.

And I shall be posting about wednesday starting in the morning. (Hint, Jeremy wasn't ready on time so o will probably start around 9)
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby cpugs » Tue Jun 16, 2020 6:24 pm

Has Jeremy ever been on time???
Last edited by cpugs on Tue Jun 16, 2020 8:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby Black Jack Rackham » Tue Jun 16, 2020 6:35 pm

It is 9pm Monday. This is when the con starts for me since I have to go to bed early to get up early to drive. Don't take this away from me, THIS is when Origins starts. (I know this because if I go to bed later, I feel like I am late getting to Origins).

It is 5am Tues. Time to start the drive with the traditional tune, The Biggest Ball of Twine in Minnesota. It got started that one time Eric caught a ride with us to GenCon, and as we all know, once geeks latch onto a thing it's there forever....

Also at 5am Tues, we begin our search for Schrodinger's Deer (alive or dead makes no difference) and I wait patiently for someone to mention the orange bottles (which someone will definitely mention, even if I am alone-especially if I am alone)

It is approximately 6:30am and Laura makes the call. She wants to check on me to make sure I didn't forget anything and to make sure I am wearing clean underwear (ok that was a joke). She will also ask about the deer count and the orange bottles. It is very sweet.

It is 7:30am and we are entering the only high traffic part of our whole drive, I-84 near the Taconic Parkway exit. I learned after the first year that if I stay in the fast lane I can just race on by. LOVE DOING THAT

Sometime around 9am we reach the promised land. Or more accurately the Promised Land Exxon station. Again another tradition. We must stop. I call the children to make sure they know I'm alright and everything is on schedule as normal.

10am rolls around and I am as close to Centralia PA as I will get this (and every) trip. I have never been more conflicted about going to visit a place. I am desperate to see it with my own eyes and at the same time I do not want to die gasping for air. This is also, btw, the point at which we start on (to use my son's term) The Long and Boring Road (I-80 for those keeping track at home).

Just before 2pm it's almost time to call Dave (actually we've just crossed the PA/OH border, but close enough and now I'm getting excited.)

It is 3pm Tuesday. I have actually ALMOST called Dave several times and am beginning to get worried he thinks this is idiotic. But hey tradition's tradition.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby cpugs » Tue Jun 16, 2020 7:37 pm

It's 4:45 and right about now I be stepping off the plane in Columbus, picking my bag up, and catching a cab to the Hyatt. At 6, I'd be meeting up with Mark, Ken, and crew and figuring out where we were going to dine tonight. We'd have a lovely dinner with good company, head back to the hotel, Mark would head off to bed after his 13 hour drive, and I head down to the Big Bar on 2 and reacquaint myself with the bartenders. Then I'd wake up early tomorrow morning, pick up my preregistration, and I'd be off on hands down my best 5 best days of the year. I'm planning on howling at the moon tonight, it is cathartic. Miss you all, terribly. Be safe...
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby CaitlinCallahan » Tue Jun 16, 2020 7:46 pm

It is 6:30 on Tuesday night, and I am finalizing my packing for the con. (This is really more of a final check, since I would have made a mental list at least a week ago, and actually started packing on Saturday.) My excitement level is high (i.e. won't be getting much sleep tonight), as I anticipate seeing all of you tomorrow night.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Tue Jun 16, 2020 8:28 pm

Jeremy was on time one year. That year, a different guy was driving and HE was an hour late and needed to stop at the credit union before we headed south.

Jeremy avenged us by dumping a smoothie on the floor of his van when the driver backed into a light pole in the parking lot.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Wed Jun 17, 2020 6:26 am

It's 6:30 am, couldn't sleep. Been up since about 5...this could be every year. I'm ready to go, way too early for Jeremy. I will go out for breakfast and the meal will not last long enough to fill the gap time.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby kenderleech » Wed Jun 17, 2020 7:20 am

It's almost 7:30. The Firestone calls and wakes me up. The brakes on my van need replaced
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Wed Jun 17, 2020 8:41 am

I'm gonna bend my own rule a bit most of the driving stories are going in this morning regardless 9f hapoening wednesday, thursday or friday (with a distinct year one exception, that i will do friday)

Had to force Jeremy to take half his gear back in the house. He wanted to bring 16 boardgames, 4 warmachine miniatures armies, and some other games on the premise "we might find free time to play one of them" he is not even signed up to play war machine.

Another year, Jeremy is not my passenger...cash is tight, not sure i have enough to cover the weekend. I mention this now for a great moment to appear sunday. It does have the weirdest road trip moment. The state is paving my road directly in front of my driveway. I cannot get to the road. I drive my ford contour through the yard, across a field until i reach the golf course driveway. I have officially travelled off road "through the wilds" to an Origins.

I know this one was a friday...I pick up my passengers in Mentor, Ohio at a friend's apartment. I have found a CD by the band Trio with the Da da da song that was on a volkswagen commercial. We are 15 minutes up the road when they realize it is not incredibly long but on repeat. 5 minutes later, i get an ultimatum...shut it off or they are leaving my body in a ditch amd taking my car to Origins. I feel that is fair.
I don't mind growing old... but I hate growing up.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby Black Jack Rackham » Wed Jun 17, 2020 8:49 am

salamanca wrote:...a CD by the band Trio with the Da da da song...

GAAAA NOW I AM HEARING IT IN MY HEAD! AND IT WILL NOT GO AWAY!!!
smafdi wrote:STOP BEING SO DARN POPULAR GUYZ SRSLY I NEEDZ MEH GAMEZ TIHS YAER!!!

kenderleech wrote:If the cows were not meant to be ridden, why would they be so close to the chase scenes?
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby Lady Grace » Wed Jun 17, 2020 9:21 am

It's 9:19 am, and I am triple-checking that I have not forgotten my Prozac again like that one year. Or my butt pillow. I am telling my cats that I love them dearly and I'll be back soon.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Wed Jun 17, 2020 9:46 am

Jeremy is asleep... so much for company on the ride down.

Different year, he has decided to play me multiple episode of Welcome to Nightvale. I am not a fan after the first one. But the ensue for the whole trip.

Different year, it is podcasts about War Machine tactics. Might sleep the rest of the drive myself if this keeps up.

I have been bogged down on the freeway by construction. It happens every year. One year, i went without seeing an orange barrel or closed lane until i turned onto High Street a block from the convention. The name "KHANNNNNN!!!!!" was invoked.

Jim's car is about to break down near Ashland. We send most of the people with us ahead crammed in the second car. I stick around with him and a couple people that didn't fit waiting for them to diagnose and replace the alternator. This 8s the year 7th Sea debuts at Origins and i miss my event that afternoon (the adventure where they shanghai you in the tavern and take you out to sea) i am signed up for 3 more this weekend, shouldn't be a problem. I resolve to stop going to Origins with carloads of people.

It is last year, on the road, Jeremy and i figure out a way to meld the DC, Marvel and Sentinels backstories into a functional history.

Time for the annual request to stop at Grandpa's Cheesebarn. Not happening on the way down. Maybe on the way home.

Just got passed by a caravan of guys in 60's muscle cars and one guy in a honda that snuck into their parade. Cars must be on the way to a show because they are polished to death.

Steve is driving this year, he has us running over an hour late. Gonna need sone luck to even get to the table to run HoA on time at 1. Jeremy is still whining about the smoothie he spilled all over the floor when Steve backed into the light pole. Steve is still grousing about it too. Jim is helping by reminding everyone that Steve's van has no AC by yelling warm every 6 seconds. I resolve again to stop traveling to the con with groups.

Stephen just texted me wondering when i am arriving. Jeremy takes my phone and we start an elaborate ruse about how i am still in Jeremy's driveway waiting for him so we can leave. At this point we are maybe 30 minutes outside Columbus.

Different year, same text from Stephen. Apparently he and Amanda had spent 9 months that year working on some project he wanted to show off. I drive a little faster because...baby.

It is 9:45 am...we will be hitting columbus a little sooner than i thought, traffic was good.

There is a checklist of sights coming into town. The brewery, the soccer stadium, the glimpse of downtown at a distance...and the exit for the first hotel we stayed at offsite. Behind a waffle house and stripper bar. Skeevy spot but the rates were cheap for a handful of guys in their early 20's.
I don't mind growing old... but I hate growing up.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Wed Jun 17, 2020 11:15 am

It is just after 11. Made good time. Jeremy is inside the Drury checking in and i am alone in the car with the Gin Blossoms on the radio, the window down amd i am watching gamers trek uo Nationwide ave. from either the surface lot or the red roof inn up the block. They have their gamer packs, geek culture black t-shirts and khaki shorts on. One big guy has a rainbow unicorn on his head but he looks like a younger, taller, and blonder version of Mike Bisberg.

We are here, the room will not be ready yet. Stuff will have to wait in the car. Jeremy will forget to pass along my room key until about 10 tonight when i pound on the door to get in.

But this 5 minute wait is the last time i will be alone with my thoughts (except for the shower) for the next 5 days. It will not BE a great day, it is already a great day.
I don't mind growing old... but I hate growing up.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Wed Jun 17, 2020 11:57 am

I am walking into the convention complex on Wednesday. Most years, this involves the skywalk from the Drury. I haven't reached the breezeway without seeing someone i know since 1999.
In a blur of years, the following impressions stick.

The guy sitting right next to the door eating a sandwich played in a Children of the Sun hame with me back in 2002...i think his name is frank.

Stephen and Amanda are in the food court, it is Anastasia's first Origins. I pick her up while they sort some stuff out and she stops crying. I forgot to tell them i am a baby whisperer. I carry her all the way through registration and the minis room telling people i know that one of the booths is giving away babies if you sit through a demo. My friend Lisa looks her husband square in the eye and says, " You are NOT to go near that booth!"

Other people i pass in that food court 8nclude a couple that played HoA twice, a guy i played with at a con in Akron, a guy that was in the d20 7th sea demo with me, a couple Paranoia people and a big dude with a black and red flame print club shirt. I never met this guy but he wears that shirt every year and ends up in line in front of me at least once a year to refill his soda.

Different year and i am following my semi traditional climb up the atrium steps. They are really too wide to be steps but whatever. This is one of those fewl good spots for me amd this year, Mark, Stephen, Charlie and pretty much everybody i care about seeing that year are standing at the top just outside the big bar waiting for me. Best welcome a guy could get to a 5 day vacation.

Different year, i am crossing the breezeway and Bull Ratkovich is there...we have a little game between the old home crowd to see who goes the longest without seeing him. 1minute 48 seconds and i have lost.

Most years there is a sidestep into our hallway to see all of you before badge and to wave at the Matinee team.
I don't mind growing old... but I hate growing up.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Wed Jun 17, 2020 12:39 pm

I am standing on top of the stairs down to the convention hall. There are crowds waiting for badges. The smell and the sound hit as one. It seeps in as i walk down the steps. I walk the steps instead of the escalator because it lets me steal more energy from all these unsuspecting gamers. Even at this distance i see a couple people i know.

Bill amd Steph just got through the line a bit ago and are heading to a game. Different Jeremy and Nikki are in line as i head to the end. They tell me how long the wait is. Two more occasional HoA people walk past and say hi. A guy i played Fuzzyy heroes with ages ago nods. A guy who works in my mall drifts by and we nod. We see each other here and there and the renn faire but have never spoken. The volunteer dressed as the joker comes by. Amusing on wednesday, sad when he is still in the outfit and makeup on sunday.

I start lying to people looking for the end of the line, i cut the wait time in half to give them hope and eventual disappointment as that time passes. I am a jerk.

Jeremy and i rough out rules for a convention line laro where you get to slip ahead or fall back places for doing stuff like asking how long or not saying hello.

I let someone jump ahead of me and tell them they are now in the game. I shift spots with them 4 or 5 more times on calvinball rules about the line.

The machines are down, the machines work but you need to stop in 3 lines to get your stuff. GMs are now in that line. It actually goes right a couple times.

A short brown haired girl dressed as Velma runs up and hugs me. It is my hard to recognize friend, Lisa. I honestly don't recognize her for a good minute. (She is the one that told her husband to not go to any baby giving booths in the last post.

Swag bag has dice and cards for games i don't play. More dice, no dice, no bag just a coupon book...i hate coupons.

Jim shouts at me from registration command, team Origins is psyched for paranoia and bringing a new bunch of victims...i mean players.

New reg area was a walk...i remember parking my car in a lot where the giant digital head is now and walking across a street into the con. Now that lot is an exhibition hall.

Wander the minis room. Need to track down Lisa and her husband, Alex. They are setting up their Smurfs game and other stuff. Really cool couple, hyper organized and over scheduled because they want to do everything. We chat a bit, gripe about the organizational snafus and get to work.

Time to find the Aerodrome guys. But first i will hop over to north market for a bite. Maybe peirogis, maybe just some fresh fruit. I don't need food here but i like wandering in and i will not have time after 2 today.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Wed Jun 17, 2020 2:19 pm

Aerodrome...time for a game. Poacher only runs wednesday now. Some years i do ok, most years i get my butt handed to me. One time, i get to play with a family from tennesee against all the old hands. It goes better for us than it should have. (Still have a photo of that as my phone lock screen) Trash is talked, good times. One year, i shoot the same kid down 4 times in the first couple turns of each game. We get to play more when the beginners die fast. Wednesday games make me miss Steve Lloyd and his Dad. They don't come to the con anymore.

Different year. Year two of HoA. I am running my first event. I am feeling out of practice. I am also worried about messing up Mark's well practiced and planned adventure. I want to present the best possible experience AND make sure i cover everything Mark put in for down the line.

Laura is at the table because it is episode one and she has only played it 6 times at that point. I need to direct partial focus just on keeping her from dropping spoilers. I know i had a couple of my home folk around for it and the session goes just fine.

It is time for a 7th sea event from last season, Sam is at the table with another alt character. We have 9 people at the table, things go very well.

Copy and paste the previous paragraph.

ibid

Ken and Mark conspire to give me the afternoon off when all i want to do this year is get a game in to warm up my GM chops because i have not run since last Origins. There are no games scheduled with an opening that i wish to play. I end up in the minis room wandering the handful of vendor booths. With nothing better to do, i start reverse pitching the products to the booth staff. I get a couple people to buy their own stuff.

With no game until 7, I sit with Deb and catch up. These are good times old stories, word of mutual friends. Gaming stories that make me jealous of good home campaigns i am not writing and players that participate in story creation (which i have never had)

Wandering the boardgame room, i teach some people a game i played once about 7 years ago. I get invited by each of them to run events at their con...all 4 are with different cons.

I run a HoA session neither Sam or Laura are in. We keep half of those players.
I don't mind growing old... but I hate growing up.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby kenderleech » Wed Jun 17, 2020 3:14 pm

Right.. about.. NOW.... is when el vago dies.




Because you know im running episode 2 to open the con.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Wed Jun 17, 2020 5:16 pm

It's time for Buca.

What?
Of course Mark is not done on time. How many we got? Yeah, i counted Ken and Shane.

After years of that, someone at Buca will tell the nice people with a child in a wheelchair that there is an elevator at the back of the restaurant. Thanks, Buca! And now, Mark and Jeremy are thinking about that Pesto stuffed chicken dish. And they ate craving it.

Meals shall be eaten, battles will be fought over checks, laughter will ensue, waiters will be confused. Eventually, one of us will need to return and run a session or two.
I don't mind growing old... but I hate growing up.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Wed Jun 17, 2020 6:32 pm

An idea gets floated at dinner. A year at Origis where i bring a crate of adventures and pregens for all the cool out of print games i have used over the years. We situate me at a table in our favorite hallway and celebrate my 40 yers as a GM under the title, "Dave runs something". And it ends up player choice.

Charlie likes the idea bit says it needs to happens sooner because he will be too old to still be attending Origins by that year. HoA gets in the way of ever following through.

But it was suppossed to be this year.

Charlie is still young enough for Origins.
But Origins fears my crate of odd games.
I don't mind growing old... but I hate growing up.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Wed Jun 17, 2020 8:58 pm

This is a busy set of memory time, tomorrow will be worse.
The 7-11 block is the first time Romeo met most of the other characters. It is the start of play for almost all of you. This is when my character decided Aleksei is the gypsy his mother threatened to sell him to.

Mike B falls asleep at the table literally as Marknis turning his attention towards him for a spotlight opportunity.

Stephen misunderstands the age of an NPC and flirts in character. Mark over reacts and reduces the age making it worse.

I play a session of Are You a Werewolf with Stpven Black among others, he gets me murdered first turn over my long hair in every round.

Jeremy's HoA guy uses a rock to make a threat and Mark humors it enough to turn it into a thing.

Cows are surfed for the first time.

Mark discovers the Batelle restrooms r at least finally owns up to it.

The Anachist has checked in with the men's room earliest grafitti mark in 7 years. His tagging lasts 9 years. No sign of him in 2019.

The event staff interrupts me twice to sort out some organizational issues. During episode 3 where i am trying to create a sense of urgency. Ay have to kill that staffer.
I don't mind growing old... but I hate growing up.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Wed Jun 17, 2020 9:23 pm

I run episode 4, the party fails to discover the evidence and solve the mystery. This becomes a thing. But only when i run.

The games are so intertwined i cannot sort out a key moment from any. Wednesday night games happen, fun is had. John, Deb, Jeremy, Charlie, Laura, Mike B. are at the table in all these thoughts. This group in my head is what i call "the primary team" because they are almost always the first group to play the Origins sessions.
I don't mind growing old... but I hate growing up.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby Black Jack Rackham » Wed Jun 17, 2020 10:04 pm

I got misty-eyed reading that. I remember everything now that you mention it.
smafdi wrote:STOP BEING SO DARN POPULAR GUYZ SRSLY I NEEDZ MEH GAMEZ TIHS YAER!!!

kenderleech wrote:If the cows were not meant to be ridden, why would they be so close to the chase scenes?
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby CaitlinCallahan » Wed Jun 17, 2020 10:24 pm

It is Wednesday night, and I don't have a ticket for the game. I stop by to say hi to everyone, and find out from John that the only way I will get to sit at a table with him all weekend is if I play in Mark's game that night. Good thing I have generics. :D And I played the episode for a second time on Friday night, using my official ticket, so I could sit at the table with Dave. Although if I'm being honest, "played" might be overstating my participation a bit, since if I recall correctly, there were an ungodly number of players at Dave's table. But it was a ton of fun to observe the chaos, and what else was I going to do with the ticket.
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Re: Dr. Manhatten goes to Origins

Postby salamanca » Thu Jun 18, 2020 7:03 am

There are always a ton at my table. Second run catches everybody that was blocked out the year before, everybody that missed the year before and everybody who got in late and is trying to catch up. I am big with procrastinators.

And Mark does not remember everything...there are names, Mark. Those faces have names besides their characters.

It is thursday morning. I am up early because 1-body clock says "time for work". That will reset Sunday when time for work is also "finally go to bed" 2- Mike got up for his morning run. I live alone all these people wake me just by proximity no fault or offense taken in that. 3- Somebody needs to be in the clark room for our early arrivals because we are responsible, good GMs. 4- (the real reason) there is less of a wait for the waffle maker downstairs right now.

Breakfast at the Drury...everyone is a little foggy at the tables. Someone is hovering over their waffle as if fearful we will take it. His long dark hair washed, wet, slicked back and dampening his club shirt that designates him as gaming staff for one of the other groups. The other machine, also in use, but that person has walked away carefree, trusting her waffle to be safe with her fellow gamers as she pours her coffee, gathers a banana, and plates some other food. The line for the rest of the food proceeds as a zombie shuffle, biscuits, sausage patties, pan gravy, diced potatos, scrambled eggs, a small container of salsa and an empty container of shredded cheese (the cheese is always empty)

The room fills with a repeated beep. 4 times. Waffle is done. The wet haired guy struggles to pry his waffle free because he forgot to spray the iron first. Over time, the faces here will be Origins familiar to me. Both game clubs and vendors. Some friends from the home area, a few from afar. Sonje stops at the table with a stack of food for her family to ask about HoA schedule. She swears she will get to one of the sessions this year. But small kids + con makes that a 50/50 chance. Beep. Waffle is ready, another mostly awake soul pries his sustenance from the iron.
I don't mind growing old... but I hate growing up.
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