It’s Supernatural premiere week, so this will be a drive by Toronto con write up. As in, I’m writing this at the con between panels since I’m not a vendor here. That’s my only hope of actually getting a con report posted before the season premiere. Squeeeee!!!
This was reputed to be the last Toronto con, though it looks like Creation might now be considering coming back in 2019. But the chance of it being the last one was enough to make it emotional for me – for anyone who was here the year that Rob Benedict had the stroke here at the con, or for anyone who was here the next year for his triumphant return. When I first read Rob’s intimate first person account of having the stroke that he wrote for Family Don’t End With Blood, I couldn’t make it through without reaching for the tissues – not many other people have told me they could either. All those emotions come up when I’m here in Toronto, but it makes this con a special one.
The other thing that made me emotional was having Rob and Rich back. I loved NJCon (as you know if you read my con report) and I think Jason Manns and company did a fabulous amazing job. But I just miss Rob and Rich when they’re not here. They’re part of the family, and not having them with us just feels wrong. Unfortunately I got here so late that I missed their intro and rushed to my seat just as Julian Richings was starting his panel.
New Jersey con holds a special place in my heart, simply because it’s the closest con to my hometown of Philly. That means I can actually drive there instead of flying, which makes being a vendor a bit easier. That also meant I could caption this con ‘Adventures in Vending’ because we definitely had some adventures – and some misadventures.
Being a Supernatural con vendor is like joining a tribe of frankly awesome people. For the SPN Creation cons, it’s mostly the same group of friendly, creative, resourceful folks at every convention – and because those cons happen a few times a month on average, the vendors get to know each other very well. They’re like a group of traveling carnies, moving their wares from one city to the next. They have each other’s backs just like the rest of the SPNFamily does, and I would trust any one of them if I was in a tight spot.
That doesn’t mean vending is easy. My friend Karen offered to help me out at NJCon, so we drove up together. The day before, the FedEx guy delivered my many many boxes of books, each of which weighs over 40 pounds. I bolted out the door as soon as he pulled up and asked what the policy was for leaving the books in my car instead of on my doorstep, and luckily the very nice FedEx man agreed. When Karen and I got in the car the next day, I swear it felt sort of like getting into a rocket ship – the boxes of books in the trunk and back seat made the front of the car point dangerously towards the sky.
With apologies to my poor overburdened Honda Civic, we started out, slowly making our way north to scenic Secaucus. The giant convention center had a back loading dock where we could unload the books, so we drove up there and asked where we could park to unload lots of boxes of books. The bored looking man waved us into a spot and said we could park there. Karen and I looked at the very long ramp across the lot where we would have to enter the convention center and exchanged a look of dismay. That was a steep ramp and a long way with forty pound boxes of books!
True to my always-frantically-busy-and-not-quite-prepared state, I hadn’t been able to find an actual hand cart but I’d brought along my green and white striped beach chair on wheels that doubles as a transport cart. You know, for taking your cooler to the beach or whatever. If it can transport a cooler, I thought, why not a box of books? So Karen and I heaved a box out of the trunk and onto the beach chair. The canvas sagged but didn’t break, so we counted that as a win. Then we began the trek up the long steep ramp. After a few minutes of struggling, we finally got up and into the convention center, wheeled the books and the chair down the hall and found our vendor table. One box down, ten to go!
At the Salute to Supernatural Convention in Pittsburgh earlier this month, Misha Collins told us about his eye mask. He explained he received a toiletries set a few years ago, and it included an eye mask. He tucked that mask into his bag, and he wears it while traveling.
As he described it: “It looks like an oil rag that one would see at a gas station… so disgustingly filthy.”
A few minutes later, Richard and Rob brought said mask to Misha onstage.
Rob’s face really says it all…
Eventually, Misha threw the mask into the crowd. Well, “throw” is a strong word. Think of it more like an attempt to throw the mask, much like he attempted to throw that paper airplane at Jared and Jensen a few years back. Suffice it to say, the mask did not go very far. In fact, it landed on the floor in front of the first row.
And most of the people in the first row actually just watched it fall to the floor, perhaps cringing a little in disgust. An inspired young woman in the first row did, however, reach down and pick it up. She laid it gently on her lap. And Misha’s panel continued. Afterwards, that young woman approached us, telling us she’d like to give it to charity, and asking if we could help. We talked about some options, and the plan began to take shape.
The young woman asked Misha to sign the mask during autos. At that time, she explained to him that she would be giving it to us to auction, with the proceeds to benefit Random Acts. At first, he was a bit surprised. “Why would anyone want this mask? It’s so nasty.” But despite his skepticism, he signed the mask and happily approved her choice to donate it for a charity auction. Hey, it’s for a good cause!
So without further ado…
Charity Auction: Misha’s Eye Mask! See Misha in your dreams every time you close your eyes!
Okay, but seriously, all proceeds benefit Random Acts and their Hurricane Relief Effort.
Also included is a copy of Family Don’t End With Blood, which includes a chapter written by Misha! (And twelve other Supernatural actors, who all told their personal stories about how the show and the fandom have impacted them). Every copy of Family Don’t End With Blood also benefits Random Acts, and Attitudes in Reverse. Misha, Jared, Jensen and everyone who wrote chapters are proud of that — and of the powerful chapters they wrote too. (If you don’t win this auction, you can still purchase a copy of the book and make a contribution to Random Acts – links at the top of the page).
Here’s Misha in his Family Don’t End With Blood shirt inspiring you. How can you not be inspired by that face??
This auction is worldwide, and we will pay for the shipping!
The auction runs for 10 days beginning September 26th, 2017.
Please support this auction, Random Acts, and the Hurricane Relief Effort.
Sunday at Pittcon was J2 day, as always. It would have been J3 day, except Jeffrey Dean Morgan wasn’t able to come. Though I guess it was still J3 day, since Jim Beaver filled in for him last minute.
Lynn: I still get nervous on Sundays, even after all these years and even after working with all three of these J’s on writing their chapters of Family Don’t End With Blood. I guess that’s a good thing though – if my tummy is ever totally okay on a con Sunday, that might mean it’s time to hand in my fangirl card. I live tweeted the morning gold panel including some phone pics, but didn’t bother taking out my camera – since Kim was sitting right beside me.
Kim: I don’t usually take a lot of pictures during the gold panel. Partly because it is quiet in the theater, and I suddenly feel self conscious about the clicking of my camera. But mostly I don’t take a lot of pics because Jensen tends to stand right in front of the mic, which is frustrating, and Jared tends to move around a lot… so basically most of the gold panel pictures suck. Unless you stan the mic. Lol
Jensen confessed right off the bat that he was tired, since he couldn’t sleep the night before. Even reading something boring didn’t work.
I have written several articles about the Saturday Night Special and my love for these events. I don’t think I could find the words to say it any differently this time – I simply love Rob and Billy and Mike and Stephen. I love to watch Mike play that guitar. I love to watch Stephen as he passionately pounds the drums. I love to watch Billy pour his heart and soul into his guitar. And I love to watch Rob sing, and dance, and smile as he commands the center of the stage. Simply put, Louden Swain gives me joy. This concert gives me joy. I have said it before, and I know that I will say it many more times to come… the Saturday Night Special is special because of Louden Swain.
The concert in Pittsburgh apparently had some technical issues – mics not working properly, guitar issues, and so on. But let’s be honest, I didn’t care, not even a little. These guys could come on stage and sing the phone book completely a capella and I’d be so okay with that.
So without further ado, and without a lot of commentary, here’s a recap of PittCon’s Saturday Night Special.
The night got off to a rockin’ start as Jake Abel introduced the band.