Convention Philosophy

The Best Endings Are Sad

Went to Connecticon last weekend and
took this picture: ConnecticonFromStairs

I very rarely take photos, but I got a new camera so here was a good place
to test it out. Turns out this is a pretty good spot to sit and watch. You can
see the almost the entire floor from these stairs and during the middle of the
day the place is packed with people. I really like watching people these days,
especially at conventions. Not sure when this became a fancy of mine. I like
compiling data and learning about things I do not know nor understand. In that
sense observing people is just an extension of my desire to learn. Consider it
my attempt to gain insight on how people other than myself interact. It is a
bit more than that though, it is a little glimpse into the lives of others. It
is watching how a person waves to someone they know, how they carry a backpack
or purse, what they do with their hands. All these little micro-movements,
these tiny gestures tell a lot about a person. Maybe they favor a particular
leg or they add a little regal flourish when they go in for a handshake. It is
the story of their life demonstrated through their physical actions. How a
person acts tells so much about them and we constantly ignore it. The way a
person moves is a story, a play, and from my perch on those stairs I can see so
many stories in motion below me.

And yet, upon seeing so much I am saddened. Because this flicker of motion
is all I will ever get to experience with most of the people here. I could
spend all day meeting each person, or better yet, I could have a booth and a
line for every congoer to go through (a congo line if you will). Even with all
that I still could not meet everyone, not even a tenth. It is that realization
that spreads like the night on a summer eve every convention Sunday. You are
going to leave, waiting for your train, badge hidden away in a pocket somewhere
when you remember what just happened. I had a chance to meet so many people and
I met so few. So many people with shared interests and common ground. So many
possible friends I failed to see to fruition. It is sad to think of what could
have been. Yet consider the alternative. Consider leaving and not being sad.
Not being sad because there was no one to meet, because there was no one worth

I consider myself an old hat with conventions at this point having been to
so many. Each time I leave sad, but that is ok. The time I leave a convention
not feeling sad, is the time I stop going to conventions.

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