. . . and the crazies descended upon Atlanta.

No, no no. I’m not talking about these crazies:I will talk about the football game in my next post.

No, there were other crazies in Atlanta this weekend. Crazies that made all of the tailgating, facepainted, Bear Bryant and Denny Chimes Tattooed, Toilet Paper/Tide Box wearing, Screaming and high-fiving total stranger-Alabama fans look like boring accountants (such as myself – the accountant part, that is).

Yes. It’s true.

It all started Friday night. When we were on our way to our Greek Dinner Adventure, we noticed a whole bunch of people dressed up in wild costumes waiting around the block of a large building. We figured some new, out-there reality show was auditioning.

Then, Saturday morning as we were laying in bed and relaxing, we heard much cheering. We figured that we could just hear GameDay from our hotel.

THEN we looked out the window. And alas, there was a . . .very interesting. . .parade going on right outside!!

Chris took a peek at the Atlanta paper, and discovered that Dragon*Con was going on, which is “the largest multi-media, popular culture convention focusing on science fiction and fantasy, gaming, comics, literature, art, music, and film in the US.” And oh boy, were they cultural.

The first set of pics are taken with my zoom from our 11th story hotel room, so pardon the quality.

Here was my first view:
. . . interesting.

Then came some toddler-colored stormtroopers of some variety:
Then the. . . umm. . . the Hundred Dollar band??
Some “dignitaries”:A dragon and his related bounty hunters?
I dunno on this one. . . the protector of the Bunny Race?
Some Pirates,
And their mother ship. Pulled by an Econoline, of course.
An oddly placed military brigade (maybe they’ll catch the Pirates):Oh yes, the Trekkies:Could someone please tell me what this car is supposed to look like?
This looked to me like the cast of a very unentertaining Australian children’s show:Xena Warrior Princess and her entourage??
It was inevitable: it was time for the Star Wars “enthusiasts” to start their part of the Parade.
Why not start out with Pez renditions?Then the Luke Skywalkers:
All of the Leia’s:
I don’t remember what these guys are called:
The scary general guys and the Darth’s:
Um. . . I don’t remember a bagpipe player in Star Wars, but ok. . .He was very good at the theme song.
Enough stormtroopers to make anyone worry about terrorist activity:
ugly people:
Scary Scary bad guys:
Phew! Those were just some of the shots of the parade, and we missed the first half hour of it!

Later, we got out to go find some lunch. That’s when the fun really began.

It was unbelievably crowded, with all of the sidewalks cram packed with Alabama fans, Clemson fans, and people dressed in the most bizarre costumes walking around as if they were completely normal. This is when the crazies really applies. At least the parade seemed to be made up of themed outfits. Some of the following outfits you will see. . . well if you can tell me what they are supposed to be, I’ll be amazed.

I love how there’s Old-conservative-white-guy-Alabama-fan waiting to cross the street with Alice in Wonderland and . . . I don’t remember the other character’s name.
Then, while I was trying to photograph this character. . .
I managed to spot (through the camera) some of our tailgating buddies / one of Chris’ co-workers. Thank goodness for all of the crazies giving me my ultra-attunedness to the crowds around me!
Oh – and in case you were concerned, Dragon*Con is handicap-accessible:
Chris’ favorite: we saw Sir Galahad from the Ever-famous Monty Python and the Holy Grail! He offered to knight Chris:
So happy to be an official M.P. Knight!!!
Don’t know who these guys are, but they were glad to pose to get their pics taken.
. . . which was a theme that I found across the crazie board. Here I am, stalking and sneaking around to get pictures, and they are more than willing to pose. In fact, in the most controversial photo I have (we debated whether to even publish it), as I was gawking at the girl’s costumes, the guy (mr. orange suit), was apparently trying to get my attention to tell me that they’d be glad to pose with me for a picture. Of course I wasn’t paying any attention to him, but by the time I did, he was mad at me for ignoring him, threw his hands up in the air, and kept walking. Here they are, trying to hold their skirts over their rears, because this was all they had on, people, in the middle of Downtown Atlanta!!! And yes, this is the most modest photo I had of them:
Moving along (quickly!!), here are some. . .male angels?
. . . I have the song “Teen Angel” stuck in my head with a slight lyrical change. . .

One of my favorites. Can anyone explain who she is supposed to be??
Got a glimpse of Professor Snape. Wish I’d gotten a front shot – it was very accurate!!
Mrs. Pirate with her schooly boyfriend?
And last but not least, one of my favorites because she reminds me of my bad-fake-tanning-junior-high days:My favorite memory of this extremely entertaining photo shoot:

I’m standing outside of Hard Rock Cafe waiting for our table (for a very long time, due to all of the football crazies and crazie crazies in town), waiting for Chris to get back from his mission of trying to find a less crowded restaurant and mad at myself for not getting the camera from him because of all of the crazie photo ops I was missing, and a male and female crazie walk up to me and the male crazie says in a run on sentance:

“may we look at your shirt? this is exactly what i’m talking about!! it’s perfect!! see? don’t you think they’d love it? (then to me) I’m a t-shirt designer and i’ve been trying to sell this design to my bosses and they don’t get it.”

female: “yes, i see! you want to get a picture of it?”

male (sounding dejected): “it’s ok. . .”

me, highly amused at the thought of a crazie photographing me: “it’s ok, you can take a picture of it!”

male, gushing: “oh thank you!!! (female pulls out camera phone) pardon us while we photograph your chest!!”

Of course, Chris walks up at this very moment.

I quickly explain to Chris that he designs t-shirts and SHE is taking a picture because he was trying to explain the idea of my shirt to his bosses.

Later I assure Chris that I would have never let a crazie photograph my chest if it had been only male crazies, but since there was a female, I assumed that this wasn’t an awkward crazie pickup line, but that he was indeed a t-shirt designer.

Chris was appeased, I think.

By the way, my “shirt” is my new gear that I told you I would have to buy to get myself in the mood for football season. Which I promise, football will be included in my next post!!!

Dragon*Con Visitors: Thanks for stopping by! I wrote a post as follow up to this one here.

For a recap of my 2009 Dragon*Con visit, you can click here.

Leave your comment below!

Comments

  1. Sounds like you guys had fun. :) The crazies do look pretty out there…

  2. That car was supposed to be one of the ships from Star Trek. I can’t remember if it’s a Kling-on or Romulan, or maybe even some other alien world’s ship. (I’m married to a Trekkie. He would be ashamed that I can’t remember whose ship that was.)

    And the character with Alice in Wonderland is the Mad Hatter – who was male in the story, and did not wear black fish net tights…

    Glad your weekend was more entertaining than you bargained for!

  3. Thanks, Jennifer!! You get an A+ on your Pop Culture Quiz!!

    I will admit that Chris and I enjoy Star Trek (The Next Generation ONLY) also – but not quite enough to dress up and certainly not enough to retrofit a car to look like a spaceship.

  4. O My Gosh! I have never seen anything like this in my whole entire life!! WOW! And I thought football fans were crazy!
    Giann aka Kelly

  5. That’s great! Omegacon was here in Birmingham in March. It’s about the same thing. The same kind of people marched downtown in the St. Patrick’s Day parade since it was going on the same weekend. Go fig?

  6. Ann Marie & Scott says:

    ha that’s so entertaining! i have to admit that when I was a LOTR Crazie, I did want to go to one of these things, just to dress up as Arwen…pathetic, i know…and I cant believe I am admitting this on “paper”…
    FYI LOTR (Lord of the Rings) had its own Crazie Convention called RingCon for a few years surrounding the movies. not sure if they still do, but I’m sure they make appearences at this one and ComicCon, OmegaCon, etc.
    I was (*am) a hardcore fan…

  7. Ann Marie & Scott says:

    ha that’s so entertaining! i have to admit that when I was a LOTR Crazie, I did want to go to one of these things, just to dress up as Arwen…pathetic, i know…and I cant believe I am admitting this on “paper”…
    FYI LOTR (Lord of the Rings) had its own Crazie Convention called RingCon for a few years surrounding the movies. not sure if they still do, but I’m sure they make appearences at this one and ComicCon, OmegaCon, etc.
    I was (*am) a hardcore fan…

  8. Ann Marie & Scott says:

    ha that’s so entertaining! i have to admit that when I was a LOTR Crazie, I did want to go to one of these things, just to dress up as Arwen…pathetic, i know…and I cant believe I am admitting this on “paper”…
    FYI LOTR (Lord of the Rings) had its own Crazie Convention called RingCon for a few years surrounding the movies. not sure if they still do, but I’m sure they make appearences at this one and ComicCon, OmegaCon, etc.
    I was (*am) a hardcore fan…

  9. Ann Marie & Scott says:

    ha that’s so entertaining! i have to admit that when I was a LOTR Crazie, I did want to go to one of these things, just to dress up as Arwen…pathetic, i know…and I cant believe I am admitting this on “paper”…
    FYI LOTR (Lord of the Rings) had its own Crazie Convention called RingCon for a few years surrounding the movies. not sure if they still do, but I’m sure they make appearences at this one and ComicCon, OmegaCon, etc.
    I was (*am) a hardcore fan…

  10. freddywindham says:

    Come on lets not start labeling people!
    Fyi…
    *The toddler-colored stormtroopers are from the very popular video game Halo. If you want to get to know these characters a bit better I highly suggest heading over and checking out the show Red vs Blue it’s an awesome bit of machinima.

    **Next “A dragon” please, please, please stop what you are doing and immediately rent the Aliens movies. The crazies would say they are classics.

    ***I think the more accepted term for “the Luke Skywalkers” would be Jedi. I’m also pretty sure that these “jedi” are from waaay before Luke was Born. You know when Samuel L. Jackson(a jedi) wasn’t down with Luke’s young father becoming a full blown jedi?

    **** Those guys in the spiffy orange suits are the star wars pilots who blew up the Death Star.
    ***** I’m sure the Storm Trooper in the Kilt would have been seriously reprimanded for such a modification to his shiny white armor.
    ****** The “ugly peope” would prefer to be called Tusken Raiders. Some politically incorrect people have referred to them as Sand People. I’m sure their sandy planet of Tatooine is loaded with natural resources.

    ******* “Scary Scary bad guys”= Imperial Guard. I mean come on they were just doing their job.
    ******** I see some one has already pointed out that Alice’s friend is obviously the Mad Hatter with an alternative twist!

    ******* I’m not sure but the fellow in the wheelchair reminds me a lot of Patches O’Houlihan from Dodgeball. Remember kids. Dodge, duck, dip, dive, and dodge.

    ******** Ohhhh my heart hurts. Lets say it together BATMAN! The smiley fellow is…….wait for it…….the Joker. The bluish fellow is Mr. Freeze and yes it’s a medical condition. His green lady friend is Poison Ivy she’s a nasty eco-terrorist.

    Geek….. OUT!

  11. WOW – Thank you Freddy! I kept waiting for someone to “School” me on all these characters. . . I knew it would come!! :) You are quite full of valuable pop culture information!! That just leaves one question. . . which one were you?? ;) And I hope you know that I mean the term “crazie” in only the most endearing way. Otherwise, why would I have created a new spelling for the word? If I thought that they were really crazy, I would’ve just spelled it right.

    Ann Marie – I THINK I saw Arwen, but then I decided it was the Elf Princess or whoever the other pretty girl in the movie was? You know I refused to watch LOTR after the first movie when we all went at Midnight and I couldn’t sleep all night after it, so I’m not up on the characters. But she was pretty, anyway – sorry I didn’t get her picture for you.

  12. Ann Marie & Scott says:

    haha thats ok Rach.
    Arwen is the Elven princess but you couldve seen Galadriel, the high Elven queen (arguably the oldest living Elf on Middle Earth at the time), and the other main female character is the Rohirrim princess Eowyn, who is human.
    just so ya know… ;)

  13. Ann Marie & Scott says:

    haha thats ok Rach.
    Arwen is the Elven princess but you couldve seen Galadriel, the high Elven queen (arguably the oldest living Elf on Middle Earth at the time), and the other main female character is the Rohirrim princess Eowyn, who is human.
    just so ya know… ;)

  14. Ann Marie & Scott says:

    haha thats ok Rach.
    Arwen is the Elven princess but you couldve seen Galadriel, the high Elven queen (arguably the oldest living Elf on Middle Earth at the time), and the other main female character is the Rohirrim princess Eowyn, who is human.
    just so ya know… ;)

  15. Ann Marie & Scott says:

    haha thats ok Rach.
    Arwen is the Elven princess but you couldve seen Galadriel, the high Elven queen (arguably the oldest living Elf on Middle Earth at the time), and the other main female character is the Rohirrim princess Eowyn, who is human.
    just so ya know… ;)

  16. Maura, or the Maddy says:

    The Australian children’s show one as you labeled it is the Beatles as the Sgt. Peppers Lonley Hearts Club Band.

  17. Hello from the guy driving the minivan with the inflatable Darth Vader on top!

  18. Hello from one of the male angels (the one with horns)

  19. gypsychilde says:

    Just helping out:
    That last pic – the one of the overly orange girl in metallic purple is Starfire from DC Comic’s Teen Titans.
    There is a more kid-friendly version of the comic group in a cartoon that used to be on TV and Starfire was dressed not-as-skimpy.

    ^_^

  20. Hi Dragon*Con-ners!! Thanks for visiting “clueless”‘s site. ;) And thanks for the further identification of the photo’d characters.

    And how fun that some of you have actually found yourselves in my pictures!!

    Check out my latest post for an explanation of this post if you like:

    http://rachelzcallahan.blogspot.com/2008/09/they-found-me.html

  21. There were a lot of us who were non-costumes crazie crazies there, too. Some of us even shouted Roll Tide to fellow Alabama fans (hey, even geeks can like football!)

  22. This is funny stuff, Rach :).

  23. Heh. Those “military guys” are supposed to be USAF from the tv show Stargate, which the Air Force administration (and regular guys) love.

    I know, because one of those guys is my husband and he really is USAF. :)

  24. The fellow in the wheelchair is a Browncoat (“Firefly” TV show fan) with the 76th Battalion!

  25. speakerwiggin says:

    BTW – Thanks for acknowledging the football “crazies” ;)

    I’ve been a geek my whole life and went to UA in Tuscaloosa and so many football geeks forget it’s the same enthusiasm just for two vastly different things.

    Sadly, my wife and I weren’t caught in any of your photos, but I’m pretty sure some football fans at least caught her on film saturday night at the marriot because they were running around giggling with no badges.

    BTW – costume photo-ops are a tradition at D*C, which is why everyone was so open about it. :)

  26. Where are the Klingons on motorcycles? : )

  27. i LOVE how completely innocent you are on the geekdom front. :) ITs awesome that outsiders are calling us “crazies” :) you should have been INSIDE the hotels! :)

  28. Northside Food says:

    The “dignitaries” are fans of Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series. I was the lady in the blue dress wearing the stripy thing on my neck.

  29. I didn’t get to go to Dragon Con this year and was really sad I didn’t get to see the Merging of the Crazies in action. I’m glad some fun was had with it and it sounds like folks had a good time interacting with our so very different/yet similar worlds. Rumor has it that we’ll be playing together again next year as Dragon Con is Always the same place and same weekend. So, maybe I’ll See ya Next Year!

  30. I didn’t get to go to Dragon Con this year and was really sad I didn’t get to see the Merging of the Crazies in action. I’m glad some fun was had with it and it sounds like folks had a good time interacting with our so very different/yet similar worlds. Rumor has it that we’ll be playing together again next year as Dragon Con is Always the same place and same weekend. So, maybe I’ll See ya Next Year!

  31. I didn’t get to go to Dragon Con this year and was really sad I didn’t get to see the Merging of the Crazies in action. I’m glad some fun was had with it and it sounds like folks had a good time interacting with our so very different/yet similar worlds. Rumor has it that we’ll be playing together again next year as Dragon Con is Always the same place and same weekend. So, maybe I’ll See ya Next Year!

  32. I didn’t get to go to Dragon Con this year and was really sad I didn’t get to see the Merging of the Crazies in action. I’m glad some fun was had with it and it sounds like folks had a good time interacting with our so very different/yet similar worlds. Rumor has it that we’ll be playing together again next year as Dragon Con is Always the same place and same weekend. So, maybe I’ll See ya Next Year!

  33. I was the “dignitary” in the white dress and green shawl. :D

  34. lilredriding says:

    it’s great to see the view of dragon*con from someone, other than someone that entended on being there for dragon*con….and the barely clothed ladies, are slave leia’s from Return of the Jedi. :)

    -cami

  35. The marriage of Star Wars and Pez dispensers has actually become pretty popular in the past several years. I have a mint-in-the-box set of nine dispensers from a couple of years ago. Some day I’ll sell them for a fortune, I’m sure. ;)

  36. tomreedtoon says:

    Well, it’s fortunate that “crazy” people are far more tolerant of Mundanes like you than you were of them. It’s a good thing that a lot of genre fandom is made up of weak white guys. If you went to New Orleans and you spoke about black people that way…well…

    In the words of a song by a gentleman named Tom Smith, whom you will probably never hear, said about one of those “crazies”…

    “He wargames on weekends,
    leads armies and legions;
    He doesn’t care
    how well you putted.
    He’s browsing reality’s
    infinite palate…
    He’s seen yours, and
    yours doesn’t cut it.”

  37. tomreedtoon says:

    Okay, minor correction. The song was written by Jonathan Coulton, a gentleman whom we have been desperately trying to get to Atlanta one year. (Although Tom Smith did sing the song, “Rich Fantasy Lives,” in a duet with Mr. Coulton which won the Pegasus Award for best fantasy folk (“filk”) song of 2007.)

    That I missed such an important point indicates my level of fury at the David Letterman intolerant smugness of the original post.

  38. Hi… meet one of the “crazies”. I was there though I did not do a costume. The “dignitaries” were from my group. They dressed as characters from Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series.

    Most of the rest have been answered.. but the skantily clad ladies were Leia’s from when she was Jabba’s slave.

  39. The “cast of an unentertaining children’s show” are actually dressed up as the Beatles in the Sgt. Pepper outfits. :)

  40. You make me sad for you. You use the term ‘crazie’ like its a bad thing when in reality, the folks at Dragoncon are some of the most interesting I’ve ever met. They are people who embrace who they are and aren’t ashamed to be different than the boring average person. They live life. They don’t just stand around taking pictures of it so they can have something interesting to talk about and denigrate on their _blog_.

  41. As a Dragon*Con attendee who happened to stumble across this entry all I can say is this:

    Thank you, random blogging person. I haven’t laughed this hard in a long time. Your outsider’s view of nerd culture has been a delight to behold. I’m temped to write something sarcastic about your point of view about the parade, but your cheery flowered border keeps distracting me…

  42. *laughs* Hello from the woman who photographed your chest! Weird though it was, you actually helped us out a lot. Chris had been trying to explain the style of your shirt for days at that point – seeing it finally helped me understand what he was talking about.

  43. That’s hilarious!! It’s amazing you found me – but I wondered if you would!! Here’s to hoping he makes a million dollars off of my t-shirt. ;)

  44. It is pretty mind-boggling, especially since we were brainstorming just this morning about possible applications for the style.

    You’re an awesome sport – and I’m sorry if we weirded your Chris out at all.

  45. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for the photos, I now know a lot more about Dragon Con, especially the documentation of the parade, which I had not seen before.

    MT

  46. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for making me laugh. As a die hard nerd/geek/fanboy, it was a pleasure to read a mundanian review of what I wish could be an annual pilgrimage.
    I can't wait to see what you say about this year. I'll be looking for myself in your pics.

  47. Anonymous says:

    "Crazies"? "Crazie crazies"!? We're geeks, thank you very much.

  48. Yup, the young lady who seems overly tanned in indeed Starfire, from Teen Titans. She actually IS orange skinned.

  49. That picture of a Dragon*con attendee in a wheelchair with the "Oh – and in case you were concerned, Dragon*Con is handicap-accessible:" caption was uncalled for. How would you have liked it if a Dragon*Con attendee posted a picture of a fooball fan with a similar caption? Especially if it was you in the wheelchair (not that I'm the person in the photo, but you get the point).

    And I agree that "crazies" is the wrong word to use here. The terms "geeks" and "nerds" are actually less offensive.

  50. Awesome pictures, I have some pretty good ones from Comic Con in San Diego, and I am one of those crazies in costume. And I think the word you're looking for to describe the costumed nerds is cos-players. It looks like people were having fun.

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