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Friday, July 12, 2013

How to Meet (in person) People Online


How to Meet (in person) People Online
Subtitle: I flew across an ocean to stay with someone I met on Twitter. She didn't kill me. In fact, we cried when I left. A lot. And am already making plans to go back.



Step 1: Ok, ok, ok. I've discussed Social Media, but it was more for the losers that are too scared to actually leave their mother's basement and venture into the sunlight of reality. The reality if the situation is meeting people online you find someone who you share real interests with, not just someone who lives down the street and you have to wave to as you run by and they stare like there is something wrong with you because you are not sitting on your fat ass eating bon bons (shut up Jodie - I will not take a cab!). You meet people who are just insane enough to dress up as fictional characters and jump celebrities with you. WIN.

Step 2: Well, then ya have to get there, which starts with convincing your spouse that this is a good idea, followed by your mother, father, brother, best friend and anyone in a five mile radius that had ever watched a crime drama. The conversation might go something like this:

Me: Hey, let’s go to London for summer vacation.
Hot Roommate: We tried that last year? Remember, the Olympics?
Me: Yeah, but everyone and their mama had a damn baby, got married, or some other life changing event that chained us to damn Beaverdam.
Hot Roommate: I drove you FOURTEEN hours to meet Michael Shanks. Did we forget that?
Me: I love you, can we go to London?
Hot Roommate: And do what?
Me: Stay with Jodie....
Hot Roommate: Twitter Jodie?
Me: Yes...
Hot Roommate: You’ve bought the tickets already, haven’t you?

Yeah, buy the tickets first. Your spouse still thinks it’s 1982 and they are non-refundable :)

After that, you just need to make sure that everyone you know speaks with your Twitter friend on Skype, etc. to insure that they believe that he/she is not going to axe-murder you. Give your best friend her address and he will save the number to Interpol in his phone. Your father, I mean sperm donor because that man NEVER calls you, EVER, will start calling because he thinks you’re gonna die. Just go about your business as usual, continue planning the damn trip, start the countdown.

You’re going to England.

Holy Shit.



Step 3: Don’t panic when they are not at the airport.

Hot Roommate: Where are they?
Me: Coming...
Hot Roommate: What if they don’t come?
Me: Seriously? Did you think we planned this for MONTHS only for her to go, haha, screw you! I’m leaving you at the airport! Really?
Hot Roommate: *Looks at floor*

She’s coming, she is, with a sign reading “Dumbass Rednecks” (Oh bitch just WAIT until I pick you up at Dulles someday, just WAIT) and you tackle her. People look at you funny. Really funny. After all, you are an American. You might have a gun.

All the while in England “Twitter Jodie” as I seem to now be called, has been pacing my home for months making sure it is ready for an invasion from the Yankies (which included having to get a new shower so we don’t all end up bathing in the Thames - or making them shower outside in the rain, which according to Hil they will be more than happy to do)
Just before the flight is due to touchdown I leave with a friend to meet them at the airport, but end up running late (typical that their flight was the only one in recorded history that actually landed early) she’s gonna be freaking out and thinking I’m not coming. We park and literally sprint into arrivals with my sign, to be greeting by a squee’d “JODIE!” which was the only warning I got before I was hugged so hard I’m sure my boobs came outta my back.. or burst.



I didn’t mean to kill you. Now see how Shanks felt. I think he is scared of me ;P ←---Bri

Ok, so I am now in the presence of English, REAL English, not TV English and they are putting me in their car.

Which is TINY.

And drives on the WRONG side of the road.

Graham, please don’t kill my family.

Clare hold on to me because these bitches drive like your father.

So, what does one do in England after you arrive, hug the Littlest Shanks Fan and the Snarky British Teen.

You get a beer, of course! (This is MY blog and I am honestly afraid of their wine. Do the British make wine? And there was no Spanish at the shop, so we went with Chilean. Just FYI). Allow crazy Twitter friend to take you down to the Thames (Holy shit it’s the THAMES!!) and then to the pub to get a REAL drink (And so it begins - where are you from you accent is.... Redneck Dude, I know, just say it...) and sit and enjoy.

Holy shit I am in England.  Where they have road sign that say “Humps for 1/2 mile” I shit you not! (Like for real can I GET a half mile of... NEVERMIND....stopping NOW)

And she appears NOT to own an axe.

Thank Athena.

Oh! But never fear!! That whole accent thing, you can pass it off. Not THREE hours into my arrival does Jodie come dashing into the kids’ (yes I took my children too, and my sister, aren’t we really glad there was no axe) room shouting “I just said “ya’ll” TWICE in ONE sentence!”

My mission is complete.

Jodie: And I’ve been ruin. Always said I don’t have an accent, apparently I do now... and it’s not even mine. WTF

Step 4: How to do London in 12 hours while NOT suffering a hypoglycemic attack.

Maybe I should not be writing this step since said day ended in my staggering into Jodie’s house, glass-eyed, while she and Kriss raced to make me tea. (Which works. For EVERYTHING. I AM NOT KIDDING. Sick? Tea. Hungover? Tea. Stressed? Tea. Lost a limb? Tea. Seriously I think they carry bags in their ambulances “Clear...Clear!...Clear...Nope, didn’t work, put the kettle on”... Abducted by Aliens? I’ll make you a cuppa. So, first thing I did when I got home? I bought a Kettle. Ok, back to the story...)

We had this crazy idea to smash as much as walk-by London as we could in ONE day because the rest of the week was PACKED with things that would take longer. First stop Abbey Road, because who DOESN’T love the Beetles? Sorry to butt in (Karen here) it’s ‘The BEATLES’ not ‘Beetles’. Beetles are crawly ikie things. The Beatles were and are one of the best bands ever. Thank you, now handing you back to Bri.

(Shakes head, THAT was autocorrect, we KNOW how to spell Beatles. Just like my damn google just changed ‘shakes’ to SHANKS and asked me it I was sure I wanted shakes. Yes, I am. AND I am also sure 99% of the time I wanted SHIT and not SHOT)

Here is what I learned at Abbey Road.   

1) It is a BUSY road and you have to dash out like an asshole to get your picture taken. Thank ATHENA this was not in America, because bitches would be playing Grand Theft Auto if it was.


2) Japanese tourists do not care that a) it IS a busy road, they just RUN OUT THERE LIKE THE CARS SHOULD STOP! and b) that there is a line of fellow idiots forming that want their picture as well and c) they treat the damn road like it is a photo shoot with make-up, hair brushes and A BAZILLION retakes. They are lucky I had tea for breakfast. Were I on coffee, it might not have been pretty.

After this, and my figuring out the underground and street system in about fifteen minutes (Yes, I am bragging. Screw you, that was pretty damn good for my FIRST time in the UK) we were off to the Sherlock Holmes museum where I quickly learned that my sister was not a kid anymore. She was a grown crazy college fan girl. At the Sherlock Holmes museum I learned that Sherlock, as my sister put it, was a Sassy Pants (why did I NOT read these books) AND that it is WAY too much fun to carry around a Flat friend. See, our friend Nikki couldn’t join us, so we took a 4x6 photo of her and glued a stick to the back and carried her around. People told me I was so sweet for doing it LOL. IT WAS FUN AS HELL. We just made her do everything insane.

Dashing to the British Museum, we were greeted by crowds to rival Black Friday (Jodie you need to come for THAT) and a phone call that Michael Shanks will not be coming to Comic Con. First reaction, uh, can I swap that shit for Norman Reedus?? Don’t get me wrong, it would have been cool to get a pic of him with me, Jodie and Karen, considering he is the reason we met, but this isn’t about him. Never was. It was about the rest of this crazy blog as you will see.

Rant over.

And we DID get to jump Daniel Jackson.

And MO-MO-A...

Ahhhh....

Refocusing...

I cried like a BABY when I saw the Rosetta Stone, a BABY (for real there is NO way that human did that shit with simple chisels, I need to have a chat with Dr. Adrienne Rowan because Dr. Daniel Jackson is most certainly NOT wearing a cone of foil in his head). 

My sister and I reenacted scenes from The Neverending Story, I found the REAL version of my Athena tattoo (Corin it is REAL!! - For those lost, I have a fan girl crush on Corin Nemec who, quite by sheer coincidence had the SAME Owl tattoo as me), and finally saw the Elgin Marbles. Look Greece, all I gotta say to you is this. I’ve seen the display. The British have NO INTENTION of giving that shit back.

EVER.

EVER. EVER. EVER.

You’ll just need to wait for the zombie apocalypse like I am, but if I beat you there, I will fire on you as I am claiming the British Museum as my bunker for the last days.

And I’m a pretty good shot, please bear this in mind.

Amidst all of this, my sister has a complete Fan Girl list of every single damn site ever mentioned in Dr. Who or Sherlock. Which she (well me since I was the navigator) dragged us too. Crazy part? She is not alone! People LEFT messages for Sherlock Holmes at these places which caused my sister to go bonkers and take pics and babble nerd nonsense. We went to St. Barts (sister squealing), St. Pauls (more sister squealing), Roman Wall (Bri squealing and hugging of ancient objects - oh, I hug things, it’s what I do) and just generally roaming around the city.

Meanwhile...back at the ranch...

Twitter Jodie is NOT planning an axe murder. I (Jodie) am cutting hair, chatting to Karen on skype and Kriss who popped over to meet and greet the dumbass Rednecks and trying to make sure we can jump other Stargate stars since Shanks doesn’t love us and keep the Littlest Shanks fan out of Bri’s bed...Thank god for Tea

Last on the list that we could honestly do, the Tower of London, which was cool, because it was old, but cooler because we got to explain to Will the origin of his name.

He is NOT named after Will Smith.

I swear.

Well not totally...

Me: Ok, Will, are at the Tower of London. Founded by William the Conqueror the dude you’re named after.
Will: Cool (NO enthusiasm).
Me: Did you know that Aunt Susie had to research your dad’s family root for her PhD? You, through your dad, are a descendant of William the Conqueror.
Will: *Stops DEAD in his tracks. DEAD. Looks up at me* It’s my castle...
Me: What?
Will: That! *Points at Tower* It’s MY castle! *Dashes off to see*
Me: I’ve created a monster.

So we WANTED to walk across London Bridge, really badly, BUT there was a slight problem. I didn’t eat very much AT ALL. Roundabout this time, I looked at Hot Roommate and said some gobbledygook which meant that I needed to get the FRAK home ASAP. With me rambling incoherently we (with the help of my sister) made it back and GUESS what Kriss (after I hugged her - see TOTALLY out of it and I STILL hug) and Jodie said as SOON as they saw my face.

Jodie: Sit down. I’ll make you a sweet tea.
Kriss: And let me get you Yum Yums.

Now, granted, the tea worked, amazingly, it is kinda insane to be honest, but stupid me forgot that I still hadn’t really eaten.

Guess what I did?

Opened the Chilean wine.

And all insanity broke loose.

Insanity is right. This bitch can drink (I’m not used to that, I don’t drink “Shine” on the porch with a gun in my lap), and apparently my wine isn’t good enough for her.... so we open wine (that she choose after looking at my wine like it was something that dropped out of a dog’s bottom - that’s right “bottom” not “ass”.... while we’re on that subject it’s not a “fanny” either).

Jodie: Anyway back to the story, I don’t know if anyone has ever tried to shop online while on anesthetic, because that was what it was like... maybe Nitrous oxide would be a better example, because we giggle like Hyena’s in a happy farm. Three hours. Three bloody hours it took.... and we still forgot the rice... Blaming the Dumbass Redneck!

YOU are supposed to be the Tesco’s expert and drank FAR less. I was relying on YOU!

Jodie: I didn’t know what half the shit you wanted was!!! Plantains??? WTF are Plantains???

Giant ass delicious bananas. This country needs more Latinos.

Somehow, however, we managed to order something, enter my credit card and NOT pass out in the living room. I’m not, however, sure how we got to bed, how we didn’t die, how anything shut down for the night.

(Karen) I just want to add that I and two other twitter pals were on Google + linked to the Shanksters Shack and the whole scene was hysterical and priceless.  I have the sceencap to prove it. But I have promised never ever to publish it to save humanity from the sight.

Step 5: Remember that alarms SUCK in any timezone/country.

Ya drank too damn much and there is a beeping and Hot Roommate is not getting up because it is vacation. So, you stagger out of bed, roam around the house, realize that you are in England that it was NOT a drunken dream and find a cell phone alarm buzzing away. Grab phone and stagger upstairs...

Me: “Jodie?” (I am whispering SOOO quietly, like SOOO quietly).
Jodie: *BITCH POPS UP LIKE WOAH* (I shit you not, she IS Leesia. That was INHUMAN. Meanwhile I am trying not to fall into the floor). Hey, I’m awake. (Me again WTF)
Me: There is an alarm going off.
Jodie: *Says something really fast that I am too incoherent to understand*
Me: Ok
Jodie: *Pats foot of her bed*
Me: *Crawls in, takes blanket and pillow, returns to sleep*

Jodie: This bitch IS Addy... She’s snoring and everything! I only meant for her to sit so she could hear what I was saying without having to shout! WTF? Gonna need to fetch some water now, cuz she isn’t stirring for anything.

At some point however I do get up (don’t offer me a place to sleep, I will TAKE it) and once again tea is thrust into my hungover face.

And then I am fine!

THAT is Leesia’s secret....

It is Hampton Court Day, followed by Bushy park. We board the bus, Flat Nikki in tow, and head out to the home of the man most famous for founding a church because he was firing blanks. Good stuff this history is. When we arrive, we promptly shove all of the children into a phone booth to send them to the Ministry of Magic.



They don’t find this as amusing as Jodie and I do.

Shut up and get in there; we feed you.

After a quick walk of the grounds, the place is massive, we pass through the rose garden (I am feeling like this needs to be a Daniel & Addy side ‘fun’ story because the smell of these roses is driving me to fanfic land) and take the kids over to the maze. Now it’s an easy maze (apparently Mr. Firing Blanks was also second cousin to Cletus of West Virginia, get it? get it? stupid b/c of inbreeding ok?) but nevertheless Jodie and I are able to stand OUTSIDE and listen to Hot Roommate and the kids argue about how to get through.

Thank hun, for making us look like ‘THOSE’ Americans.

Jodie, let’s take Flat Nikki for a walk.

So, as my ever so intelligent mate for life navigates the maze with the children, Jodie and I had Flat Nikki pee in bushes, marry her off to Henry the Eighth, pose with the Littlest Shanks fan (who was NOT impressed, again, these kids need to lighten up cuz Jodie and I find all of this to be HILARIOUS) and stand at the Lion’s Gate. Nikki also looked at me funny when I tried to steal the smaller lions outside of the pub not caring that Jodie has friends in the force that can get me out.

I guess it does weigh more than my allotted 75 lbs for a second carry on.



Dammit.

And I’m not dragging that thing on and off of buses! ←---- Jodie


Finally, the maze clan is out and Jodie takes us through Bushy park and to the playground.

Now America, you need to get a grip. I am SOOO sick of PLASTIC playgrounds!! So sick of them! This amazing place had the TALLEST slide I had ever seen, a climbing structure that was essentially a collection of fake trees with NO foamy crap underneath to catch you AND a basket swing. I played and I am 32 years old! That place was great! Yes, I am getting excited over a playground, but really, maybe more Bigguns in the USA would play with their kids if the structures were about FUN and not Avoiding Lawsuits.

Rant #2 over.

After a quick play break, even Flat Nikki came out to play, we started to make our way through Bushy Park to see the Queen’s deer (they look like a cross between Reindeer and our deer here in VA). Now, Jodie knew a shortcut to get us to the train station where we would split up and me, Beth and Mary and Will would head into London for a Jack the Ripper tour.

So we walked.

And walked.

And walked.

Jodie: I think we’re lost.
Me: I’m following you.
Jodie: Well the path might have changed. I last did this when I was 15...
Me: (thoughts - oh shit, there’s an ax in the stroller, I KNEW IT!)

Jodie: It’s a pushchair dumbass. Really? American’s change all the words to what they are “Dustbins - waste paper basket” “pavement, at the side of the road you walk on, become “Sidewalks”  etc, and yet the one thing that is exactly what it sounds like “A PUSHchair” and they change it to stroller.... It rolls for christ sake, not strolls. It’s a chair that you push *Rolls eyes*... anyway...no, there was no axe in whatever you wanna call it. So I gather my bearings and finally work out where I went wrong (Luckily Jack took FOREVER to film the deer, so I didn’t look like I was a total moron while I worked it all out)  and got us all out of the park and a well deserved ice-cream, ones they don’t get in the states. I had made it my personal mission to prove that English food isn’t the shit that they make it out to be.

And it IS good, really good, because right after this we sent Jodie, Jack, Clare and Pookie home while I got the freaks, Will, Beth and Mary to go to the Jack the Ripper tour. Although we were our separate ways, everyone went and got fish and chips and mushy peas.

IT WAS SOOOOOOO GOOOD!!

SOOOO GOOD!!!



Did I mention it was SOOOO good?

As far as the tour goes I will say this. I finally know why he was called ‘The Ripper’ and am planning on watching “From Hell.” He was sick, insane, crazy and the tour only encouraged Will that much more to be an FBI agent.

We almost didn’t make it back as tube trains and whatnot were being closed due to technical difficulties right after we disembarked. When it was all said and done, it was 11 p.m. and I had a two teens and a Woobus dancing on an empty train.

We went to bed. Exhausted.

Step 6: Try not to hate other tourists. I have this feeling of superiority because I am not staying at a hotel with a tour group, I am staying with a real life Brit. So when we arrived at the changing of guard it was PACKED. This, by the way, is Thursday morning and I am spending my July 4th watching the Queen’s guard changing and heading to Stonehenge.

I’m such a good ‘Merican.

Anyway, the Changing of the Guard was ok, after the nice Parisian woman and the Italian family helped me get past the RUDE German and Japanese tourists and held my kids up so they could see. 


It was cool, not super exciting, but my favorite part was the son in the Italian family looking back at us (their family group and my group) telling us in Italian that they were gonna change any minute now. EVERY two minutes he would look back and go...

“Y ahora el cambio,” or whatever is the Italian, either way I understood it.

He did this about seven times, knowing I spoke Spanish which is why he was talking to us too when I finally said...

“Nos prometes?” (Do you promise us?)

They still didn’t change.

We both laughed.

However, finally they did and we made a mad rude American dash to meet our coach to Stonehenge.

WHICH WAS LATE.

Like RESCHEDULED LATE.

Email went to my damn Spam folder.

Eventually we made it there and it was AMAZING. Simply amazing. Words cannot describe how I felt to be standing there, at Stonehenge, which I never thought I’d see. I am not sure how they did that (Unless Daniel Jackson was right, about everything) but it was simply breathtaking. 

We got cheesy pics, Will, the nerd in training directed us with the audio guide (Athena FORBID we walked ahead of the audio guide because Will was ALL OVER THAT) and Mary met another Whovian taking her picture with the Sonic Screwdriver. The chic yelled ‘BROTHER’ and raced to Mary’s side, muttering away in that geek language that I don’t understand because I speak the ‘Stars’ (Trek, Wars & Gate). 



We even did this weird jumpy thing at Stonehenge that EVERYONE was doing and we’re NOT sure why??? (If you know please explain, I am STILL confused).

Back to the ranch at nearly 10, the kids stood on their heads MOST of the ride back. I needed a drink. I needed to get out of there. Fast...

Jodie - Luckily I already had that sorted and as soon as Bri got back she was ordered to get changed because Phil and I were ready and waiting to taking her to Ali-G land for a drink (or 3).

And what better way to do it than to let me fan girl over Sasha Baron Cohen. For real, why in the hell does he NOT do any cons. I want to jump him and have him act like Bruno or something. Anyway, Jodie and Phil (who by the way a) acts JUST like he did on Britain’s Got Talent and b) is the sweetest guy EVER and NEEDS a TV show of his own, do you hear me people, put this man on TV) took me to George’s for a pint or three. Met a fun bartender who liked Stargate, woo hoo, was tatted and pierced and complained that they would not let him make me a margarita b/c it was not on the menu, LOVE. We sat around a small pub table, yammering on, making me want to not only shove Jodie into my suitcase but smash Phil into Jack’s.

Forget Axe-murdering.

THEIR family is gonna have to call Interpol for kidnapping.

Lo and behold, at midnight, we are asked to leave. MIDNIGHT. Now see, my Euro-experience is Spain, France and Italy where nothing closes ever when it comes to booze...

Jodie: So with the pub closing around us it was time to introduce Bri to the Brit tradition of getting a kebab after drinkies. So dragging flat Nikki along (who we actually forgot and went back for) we marched down Staines high street, still giggling and yammering away and I ordered Bri a doner (without telling her what was in it of course) and she forked with Phil while we waiting for it.

It was dirty, the forking, very dirty and public. Be jealous. I forked a celebrity :P ←----Bri

Oh and the kebabs? The Addy inside of me died a slow painful death AFTER Jodie told me what I was eating...

Jodie: Then it was back to the Thames to another movie spot, one I know Bri was looking forward to, even if me and Phil were bricking it a bit - The church from The Omen

Chickens ←--- Bri

Jodie: We still went didn’t we?!?!

True, true. It was COOL AS SHIT!! I went all horror movie nerd and demanded more ghost hunting! So they drove me around and showed me a bunch of crazy shit while the Pimms hit me HARD. Jodie, what in the HELL is in that??

Jodie: That’s rich coming from Little Miss Moonshine.

Least with Shine you KNOW what you are getting in to....

Jodie: “Dead” “Dead” “Should be dead” “Dead” “No Penis” (You’ll get that later)

I should hope not O.o

Speaking of, let me get some...

Jodie: We’re getting distracted (This is why the crossover took so long) anyway, so once we get back from ghost hunting, we upload some pictures and have a heart attack. Well, I did, Bri just wanted to go back and check it out more. Because one of them had what we first thought was a ghost in it....Turns out it was just a blurry Phil, but it was freaky for a moment there.



It was a bit AWESOME for a moment... <------ Bri

Phil can impersonate ghosts too heehee

At some point though, we did sleep, because we knew what was coming...

THE SCOT!

Step 7: Realize that King’s Cross is accurately portrayed in Harry Potter. It is loud, busy, nuts and full. But first you have to get there.

The morning started off good enough. For the first time since we landed we slept in, something that as a Mom and Teacher I am not totally sure how to do. It was a phone call that woke all of us up, Kriss calling to say she wanted to come to King’s Cross and before that wanted to take the kiddos to see 4 Privet Drive (nerd points if you get the reference). So kiddos off to indulge in the beginning of a nerdy day, I set out to teach Jodie what us Southerners do about birthdays....

I would just like to point out that if Super Kriss hadn’t come to the rescue we wouldn’t have had time to do the Southern thing, therefore my way would have been better :P

Yuck, impersonal like WOAH lol (hee hee). Anyway, I knew she was coming so I baked a cake (yep, I am a glee club / show choir nerd too, laugh it up) and the kids went to Potter land.

Now my London Underground Powers were greatly challenged when we had to navigate five yanks, A crazy twitter friend, another crazy twitter friend, her teen daughter and the littlest Shanks fan through this madness. I felt like I was taking students all over Europe again, doing head counts at every stop. Somehow we made it and after riding the elevators up and down and up and down and for real Jack how long does it take to piss we FIND Karen!

(Karen) My day began with the alarm sounding off at around 5:45am. After staggering out of bed, shower and getting dressed I trundled my suitcase up to the bus stop for the start of the journey south. Bus arrived promptly (Lothian Buses best in the UK) and arrived at Waverley Train Station with time for a Burger King breakfast and a last shop.  Now one of the moments I had been looking forward to. I travelled to London in style, First Class style. With complementary drinkies and food and comfy seats, heaven. As the train approached Kings Cross I received a text from Kat’s hubby Dave saying he was up in the new part of the station sat outside one of the cafes.  I managed to find him (totally unaware that the others were coming to meet me) and was chatting away thinking of how to get to Waterloo and train to Jodie’s.  Next thing I know I’m surrounded by grinning English and Yanks. Kriss puts her arms round me as I’m seated, grins down at me and says ‘Hello’, then Bri is squeeing at me and I’m hauled into the tightest hug I’ve ever had. I quickly say hi to the others, hugging Jodie to, and then...well back to Bri.

Again, this all SHOULD be weird, right? Because we have never met in person!



It’s not. It’s not at all. It’s just like we’re all together all of the time anyway.

Group complete, we headed over to platform 9 ¾ to have our picture take ala Harry Potter where Jodie’s first remark is something like this:

“Bloody hell, you can’t just walk up to it? Leave it to the British to create a queue.”



Now, let’s stop for a moment and discuss queueing. There were a few things that Jodie warned me about when it came to the Brits, the tea for one, but now I get to experience the queueing first hand. It’s not a joke.

They queue for escalators.
They queue for tourist attractions.
They queue for the sake of queueing.

Now, firstly, I gotta respect it, really, because when we were queueing (lining up for my American readers) for Jason Momoa we had to create our own queue because the person in front of him was running late. Once the normal queue area was clear (and by area, I mean tape on the floor no ropes, no barriers, nothing) the Showmasters gentleman asked us to shift the queue. Being an American I expected a MAD dash to get there first.

NO.

Everyone just shifted left. Like in a little queue shuffle.

I was a little dumbfounded (or, to use British slang, gobsmacked).

Now, just to note, as nice and polite as it was, I would like to point out one thing: THIS is why you lost the Revolution. YOU were trying to queue up to fight. We were shooting you from the trees.

I guess everything has an up and down.

So, we got our cute picture done (one with flat Nikki too, or “the girl on a stick” as the photographer called her) and went back to Jodie’s for Karen’s birthday party.

I cooked Mexican, best I could since they seem to lack all things spicy in England other than curry, which, in case you haven’t tried, doesn’t go that well with Mexican. Phil stopped by too, to shoot the shit and sew costumes, including mine.

In other words, a celeb touched my boob.

Shanks, you’re falling behind, let’s get on this...

At some point though Phil, requests, as any good Brit would that “We need tea”

And I, ME, the AMERICAN, reply:  “I’ll put the kettle on”

What has happened to me????

(Karen) We have trained you well my Padawan, that is what has happened to you.

Somewhere around two in the morning we decided we needed sleep. Sleep, what’s that? I’ve barely gotten in any all week...

Step 8: Always dress like a barbarian overlord. I have to say that Saturday was the pinnacle of my nerdom. I dressed as Daeneyrs Stormborn of House Targaryen, the Mother of Dragons, Heir to the Iron Throne.

And I rode like this on the trains and underground.



At least Jodie looked like military and dumbass passersby might not pay attention to the Earth Chevron on her shoulder, but Beth was a little risque in her Adria outfit, yet it was the green plastic dragon that got the looks. Some people just did the British stare, while others nearly fell over to get a look (sending me and Jodie into hysterical laughter).  ((Karen) Beth and I spent the train ride spotting the sneaky stares and reporting them to the giggling twosome.) We did this all the way to the con, until we arrived at a place full of our people.

Now, let me explain the con.

It is CHAOS and to be honest I’m REALLY glad Shanks cancelled because I prefer my first meeting him was the small area of Chicago. There is really no narrative here, just a list of bullets of what I remember:

- It was Will day, and he got to meet each and every person he wanted and get a photo. Nerd Heaven.
- Norman Reedus is the sweetest thing. I mean the SWEETEST. Sorry Shanks, you lose this one.
- Dressing at the Mother of Dragons will get your bowed to. At lot. And that’s cool.
- I am still not over how sweet Norman Reedus is...
- Where’s Jodie?
- “Mommy, Samantha Carter picked me up and said I was a sweetheart.”
- Flat Nikki is a con whore, like big time.
- Are you in line to meet Norman Reedus? Because he is the sweetest man alive.
- At this moment I’m unsure as to who has whose kids....
- HOLY ATHENA I LOOK ASS KICKING ON THE IRON THRONE!!


- We jumped Daniel Jackson, and it was AWESOME. Flat Nikki went a little too far though. Thank God he was a good sport, cuz Flat Nikki is a perv.  And it REALLY was Daniel Jackson! Like REALLY! Not only was this guy sporting a eye of Rah necklace, but he had tissues, antihistamines, a notebook filled with chevrons, C4, clip on shades and a POWERBAR (NOT FOOD ;P) in his tac pockets... no words, well, one WOW!.





- Jason Momoa was not acting as Ronon Dex. He is Ronon Dex. “Dead. Dead. No Penis. Dead. Who in the hell is that!?!”
- And he broke Jodie. “Damn you’re heavy!” “No shit I’m heavy!” ←--- see he’s Ronon Dex.
- Can I go hug Norman again?
- Holy crap these people can DRESS? Can I take your picture?
- THERE IS A MORD SITH!!!!! A MORD SITH!!!! I CAN’T BREATHE!!

- GREY WORM!!!
- Is Norman still here?

At some point we all made it back to Jodie’s and then chose to ramble on and not sleep. We did the pics, with celebs and other cosplayers. I went to a showing a Game of Thrones WITH Peter Dinkalage and Momoa that was hilarious!! It was a total nerd day.

Karen: My Con experience. Most of it was spent sat, as the pulled tendon in my right leg decided to complain, loudly.  I did however managed to find a great vendor that was selling pictures of Dr Who, Stargate and everything else you can think of, at great prices. I bought a Daniel Jackson one which, thank Athena, made it home in one piece. I spent the day character spotting while sitting (20 Dr Whos in various incarnations. Though the 10th version appeared the most), saw the cutest little Princess Leias and a mini Doctor Jackson.  I was kept company by my own little princess who was thrilled that Sam Carter picked her up and said called her ‘Sweetheart’.  My wee man also kept me company chatting about how tall Chewie was and ‘did you see how that man bowed to my Mom?!’  Ah yes, the highlight of the whole damn thing for me....peoples reaction to Bri as Daeneyrs.  Priceless, totally Priceless.

And we only have one day left :(

Step 9: Live up your last day.

The final full day of everything me, Mary and Jodie went to the con. It was Dr. Who day, so while Beth took the rest of the troops around Kingston...

Jack’s, Karen’s and Beth’s grand day out at Kingston with Will and Clare. Train ride to Kingston, then we walked through the Shopping CENTRE (it’s not a MALL Jack), promising Clare she will have shopping time after lunch, to TGI-Friday’s. Discussion ensues over menu and Jack is persuaded by the Scot to have the Aberdeen Angus beef burger.  Scot on the other hand plumps for chicken with JackDaniels glaze (oh come on how could I not!). Beth informs us she will have her usual (which seems to be a huge platters of sticky ribs and potato wedgies) and the kidlets have pizza strips (Will) and chicken nuggets and chips (Clare).  Thank you Jack for feeding us all.  After food it’s back to the Centre and Build-a-bear for Clare and Early Learning for Will. In Build-a-bear Miss Karen spoils Clare rotten to the point she pleads that I stop spending money on her. Bri, the bringing up? You’re doing it right. We then get the train back and after leaving me to collapse on the couch Beth takes Jack and kidlets off to nearby park.  One final note on the Sunday. Early evening I get a text from Jodie saying their train has been delayed and moving in a stop go fashion due to a fatality at Clapham. We never did find out any further information about it.  They did eventually stagger in around 10pm.

As for the rest of us, we went back to the con, the Dragon Queen and Space Bitch with a Tardis. Things to note concerning day two of cosplay.

Vala hair works better on day two. (Jodie: until Momoa ruins it! and did I mention OW)
Dragon prefers the right shoulder.
My sister is not allowed to look sexy, it creeps me out.

Back on the train for the looks, no dude in a backpack this time almost falling on his face to stare. I had a guy tell me that he thought the dragon was real though....

Con day two really had three objectives.

A) Let my sister geek the hell out on Dr. Who - a mission I believed that we accomplished given she wore the Tardis dress, had Colin Baker tell her the Tardis looked hot and was included in the LFCC Dr. Who photo shoot. Nerd.

B) Retake my Reedus pic because the way I was standing it looked awful. Yes, I know I have big arms because I lift weights and have not hit that perfect tone yet, but you could see my tummy and it looked AWFUL. AND I got to see Reedus again, who remembered me, hugged me and suggested a close face shot. Which meant I got to KISS HIM.



BOO YAH.

C) Jump Momoa. We took our Daniel’s bitches shirts so that we could best switch our allegiance after getting our cosplay on in the morning. After queueing up, and shifting the queue, in an organized fashion, I am still not over this, we got our chance. Here’s how it went down.

(Momoa is all of his glory)

Me: *Walks up to Mr. Somoan Hot Pants* Hi! So...since Shanks bailed on us, we are switching our allegiance. We don’t want to be Daniel’s bitches we want to be Dex’s bitches.

Jodie: We need you to claim us.

Jason: (Chuckles) Claim you how?

Me & Jodie (kinda together rambling): Maybe put your arm around us or something or point to shirts or ….

Jason : Look at the camera.

Us: Ok.....

AND HE GRABS OUR HAIR!!! 



Remember good Vala hair on day two. GONE. And it HURT. Ok, Jason, yeah, get into character much?? Damn Khal Drogo. Wait?? Hair grabbing?? Can I get....

Nevermind.

We are laughing hysterically, but we have a second pic, so I spin around and inform him.

Me: Now we need to claim you.

Jason: Laughs again.

Jodie: Can we kiss you on the cheek?

Jason: (Sheepishly) Well, I guess so...

And we get THIS!



Me: *Turns to him, rubs his back, oops hun, sorry, I’m Southern, not trying to cop a feel* Thanks for being such a good sport.

WE scurry off.

Jason : Fuckin’ Hell!!

We are SWARMED to get a look at the pics, which are AWESOME, as we repeat the story over and over, even right outside of the photo-op.

Mary: Uh, guys, Jason Momoa just came outside, looked right over here, shook his head and went back in.

SCORE.

And again, we head back, all smiles and silliness.

For now.

Because we leave tomorrow and I am trying not to think about it.

We stayed up at late as we could, Jodie crashing at about 2 a.m., me at 2:30 and Karen slipped out the next morning not wanting to wake us.

Which bring us to step 10.

Step 10: Don’t say goodbye. Say, I’ll see you later.

We were gutted that Karen left, but we get it (Karen - I’m glad you get it. Truly I didn’t have the heart to wake y’all up. Y’all looked so peaceful. I’m baaaad), because most of this morning was fighting back tears. We are packed, we are checking things twice, three times, over and over just to make sure. The cab is late and we are gonna have to say goodbye there until Phil comes and offers to drive Jodie to the airport behind us.

I’m not sure what else happened this morning other than trying not to cry. You aren’t supposed to meet people like this, to form real friendships that supercede just seeing someone here and there through a fan event. People are supposed to become friends because they have to, because they are the people who are just around, but we didn’t.

In 2012, I rejoined Twitter to goof off while I taught online because when the kids are taking tests, it gets boring and quiet.

In March of 2012 Michael Shanks joined Twitter and started shooting off his trademark smartass filthy mouth.

In late Spring of 2012, I started following other Stargate fans that looked like they were real people that I might share common interests with.

Now, it is July of 2013 and I have met MORE of these Twitter friends than I can keep track of and have made some AMAZING friends.

It’s not good-bye.

It’s see you next time.

Back to saving.


















5 comments:

  1. Thanks for letting me be a part of it...

    Big hugs

    Kriss:)

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  2. It was a blast ladies see ya in 2014!

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    1. Hope that'll include me! As disappointed as I was not to get my birthday pressie of double photo shoot with Amanda and Michael, and further downer of train late meaning I missed out on single photo with Amanda, what upset me most about my outing on Sunday was walking round LFCC for nearly five hours looking for some awesome tweetpeeps and not getting to meet a single one. All Becky's carefully crafted Stargate cookies came home with me, as broken as my heart!

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  3. By far, the best blog post you've(and Jodie and Karen lol) ever written! Now I don't just have pics of me there but, feel as though I got to experience it too! And I can't tell you how awesome it was that you included me in yer adventures (even if I am a lil shocked at some of my behaviors, lmao) really, I've no words to describe how amazing this read was ..and I'm pretty damn good with words ;) thank you (all) for sharing this incredible experience with us! And just in case you didn't already know this...I can not wait for the day that I will have the privilege of meeting y'all face to face, cos I truly consider the lot of you crazies to be some of the most amazing friends I have xox

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