The first day was quite hectic for me, as I had to catch a flight at about 8 in the morning, meaning I had to wake up around 5 am. Being the extremely smart lad that I am, I slept at 2 am on that night, and still managed to wake up, change, get stuff and scurry off to the airport. Two uneventful flights later, I was at Ohio, and after accidentaly passing by her once, I met up with CJ/Jamie and her motley crew.
We went to a nearby shopping mall to grab some food, and we went to a video game arcade - possibly one of the only ones I've ever seen in American. I caught up with some new games like Time Crisis 4, and played an old favourite, The Keisatsukan (though it's obviously Police 911 here). After a while, we eventually sat down and had some...er.. lunch I think, at a fairly good burger joint of which its name escapes me at the moment.
After another drive, we eventually got to Holly's place (one of CJ's friends) and stayed the night in that interesting, cat filled place. Yes, I managed to not freak out. Go me.
The next day, we said goodbye to a few friends, and got joined by Sam, CJ's boyfriend. The four of us - me, CJ, Sam and Rebecca, then headed off for Lexington. The drive was long, but always interesting. It's great to be in a truck with people who ALL can geek talk TF with you, and we had a blast discussing what we felt about characters, story ideas, RP ideas etc. Got to see a good bit of the countryside of America too, which was a huge eye-opener for me. Being quite a city slicker myself, it’s quite an experience to see a place that doesn’t have many highways, but instead has lush fields and stores that sell apple cider and pumpkins.
Anyway we finally hit Lexington and after checking into our hotel, we made our way to the convention center! I’ll not lie and admit that the instant we paid our registration fee (170 USD. WTF?!?!), I instantly dashed in and spazzed out. I probably covered the entire room in about 15 minutes.
When I had calmed down however, that was when I finally started taking a slower walk through, soaking in the one crazy fact – I’m here!!! Sure, it was like any other convention, and frankly, that’s nothing too fantastic. But still…it was a taste of things to come…
Like Saturday! Saturday finally came and that was D-day, aka MEET PETER CULLEN DAY!!!!!!!! We all woke up really early, and sped to the convention center, where I instantly got in line while CJ and the rest went to get stuff for Cullen to sign. The line seemed to have lasted for an eternity, but it was fun in a way. Hanging around people who were as excited as I was, chatting about where we came from, about TFs and how much we collect and all, was really a great experience.
But enough about that, I eventually got to Mr. Cullen himself and….and I really don’t know how to fully describe how I felt. I was hit with a wave of emotions so hard it could’ve buried several large countries. Here he was, the man that gave a voice and soul to one of my biggest childhood heroes EVER.
And there I was, greeting him, shaking his hand, getting him to sign my stuff, and eventually giving him a hug (wow he gives strong hugs) and wishing him good luck for the movie. The only damper to this phenomenal moment was that photos weren’t allowed, for the sake of moving the line faster. Still, I was not too disappointed….
Until later! I was even more fortunate to be able to catch him later after an interview with G4 TV and after asking him nicely, took a picture with him!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! He had absolutely no obligation to grant me that wish, but the great man did so anyway!!
As if that wasn’t already icing on the cake, his Q&A panel was just as amusing too. Always the one to start off with a light-hearted tone, the first thing he said?
“I know all of you had a long day and all, so I won’t take too much of your time,” *gets up and pretends to leave*
Sure Cullen, SUUUUURE XD
Anyway, lots of questions were asked ranging from useless:
“Has Frank Welker been accepted as Megatron?”
-Moron, he wouldn’t fucking know!!! Ask Michael fucking Bay for that.
”What did you think when you first had the role of Prime?”
- Amusingly, he commented on how he went ‘What the heck is this?!’ when he first saw a pic of ol’ Optimus XD
to even MORE typical:
“Who do you like voicing best?”
-“Oh c’mon now! Don’t yew be dissin ol’ Ironhide!!!”
“In episode 23 of My Little Pony, the (title), what were your thoughts on that?!”
-“I can’t, for the life of me, remember that darn show!”
I managed to ask my question, which was:
“With us living in such troubled times today, with things like 9/11 and terrorists attacks. If you could BE Optimus Prime for a day, what would you do to make a difference?”
- “I don’t know whether to respond to that as a Republican or an Autobot, but Ironhide would probably say ‘Let’s get in ther’ an’ kick some butt!!!!!’. But we all know that Prime wouldn’t stand for that and would want to think and talk things out. And that’s the way it should be. In the very end, cooler heads will prevail and cooler heads will get things done,”
Admittedly not quite the answer I was looking for, but what the fuck, it came from CULLEN HIMSELF. I will accept it ;).
And in a blink of an eye…it was all over. 4 days had flown by and so many things had happened. I met great people that I had known for years (like CJ). Got to know people better (like Marissa). And I even met some great new people (like Sam, Rebecca, Holly and many many more).
Oh, and I got to meet PETER FUCKING CULLEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
All in all? Mission Accomplished. Thank you CJ for flying me down there in the first place. I will forever be in your debt for helping me meet up with one of the biggest heroes - both as a cartoon hero and as a professional hero. Thanks to all you guys who were happy for me. And thank you Mr. Cullen, for being well, Prime!
UPDATE: Botcon pics