C2E2 (Post 2 of 3)

Day 2 had us up a bit earlier so we’d have time to grab Sbux before heading on to the show floor. While waiting in line, we struck up conversation with a nice woman behind us. She had a loose button on her sweater, and I was quite pleased with myself for having a sewing kit on me. Not that I was so prepared that I brought one, but grabbed a couple from the hotel front desk because I needed to do some repairs on CatBug.

Fueling up for the day ahead.

After getting brekkie for The Girl and caffeinating for myself, we made our way through security and onto the show floor with the rest of the crowd, which, BTW, was much bigger than the day before. Still, there was no pushing, shoving, craziness. Everyone was just as kind as on Friday. What a fantastic environment for letting your freak flag fly. The body-positivity was amazing and If there was any judgement, I didn’t see it. I swear, if geeks ran the world, we’d all be so much better off.

This day promised to be just as great, if not better than the last, because today, The Girl’s posse was joining us. With a couple of hours to kill before their arrival, The Girl and went to Family HQ and signed her up for the kids’ cosplay contest on Sunday. We also did some more browsing around the floor. Of course we had to visit the reptiles again. And I needed to visit the Iron Throne (not a euphemism).

I saw the perfect wine glass for myself, but resisted buying it.

Again with the GOT reference. I drink and I know things.

As we roamed, we stopped by the Chicago Tardis booth to get pics with Winston, the Dalek.

Next, we grabbed Connie’s pizza for lunch for the second day in a row. Then, we headed to just outside security to meet up with our friends. Special thanks to Nissa for braving the traffic and crowds to help make it all possible. Did I mention that this weekend was The Girl’s birthday gift? Am I the best mom ever, or what?

After making sure all parties had everyone’s cell numbers, and briefing the girls on what to do if they get separated (but NOT to get separated), we set them free to wander and shop while Nissa and I did a little wandering ourselves before it was time to line up for a true Chicago treat. An autograph and photo with Svengoolie! I’ve been watching him and his campy old horror movies since I was 4!

Rich Koz (Svengoolie) was so awesome to do free autographs and photos for fans. So Chicago!
But, why does my hair look so grey?

As we waited in line, I took the opportunity to rest my barking dogs and sat on the floor. Ooooh, did that feel nice. We struck up a conversation with the woman in front of us. She was an interesting lady who lives just north of us over the IL/WI border. Among other things, she fences (reminding me that I’m supposed to sign The Girl up for fencing classes. Somehow, Tenuta’s Deli (a Kenosha staple) came up in conversation, and I had an ah-ha moment (to be explained shortly).

After our Svengoolie experience, we made our way to The Yard, where the beer was flowing. We very much enjoyed our $12 beers, then moseyed back towards autographs and photo ops for the main event of the day… meeting Mark Ruffalo! The kiddos know him as Bruce Banner/The Hulk, but I’ve had a crush on him since I saw him in Just Like Heaven with Reese Witherspoon.

Did you know that he’s from Kenosha,WI? That’s where Tenuta’s comes in! I was trying to think of something to say besides, “Hi. I love you and you’re on my list.” See, I remembered that I had a photo on Flickr of the old dude who sometimes plays (played?) keyboard in the entryway of the store. I’ve never been so happy that I’m a stickler for keyword tagging.

Not the best quality photo, but I think it works for the subject.

This was my in! They really try to get you in and out of these photo ops quickly, so if you want extra time, you’ve got to make a connection. All five of us were all so excited to see him in person. I swear, he is every bit as handsome face-to-face. And, he’s short! I love that! Anyway, after what felt like an eternal wait in line, it was our group’s turn. I walked right up, held up the photo on my phone, and asked if he recognized it. He zoomed in with his fingers and squinted (I’m guessing he needed his glasses). I helped him out and said, “That’s at Tenuta’s.” His eyes got wide and he said, “It is! Are you guys from K-town?!” His smile was so adorable. I told him no, but we’re not far from there but we make it up that way all the time.

Next, as we were getting in position to pose for our pic, Nissa and I had to elbow our daughters out of the way so we could be the ones next to him. Wrong? Not at all! As our kids tried to argue about it, even Mark said, “Moms,” meaning, yeah, we get the prime spot. Then, he said, “Is this your family? So sweet.” That part didn’t quite register in my brain until a few moments later. He thought Nissa and I were moms to all three girls – TOGETHER. Hee hee. Oopsie. Not that it matters, seeing as each of us is married. I’m just thrilled for the fangirl moment, the connection, and the memory that will last a long time.

We were all so giddy! As we parted, I said, “Maybe we’ll run into you up in K-town sometime.” He’s headed there soon. I might just have to do some stalking (JK).

As we walked out of the photo area, we were all squealing and giggling about how cute and nice and awesome he was. Seriously, such a great guy! We rode that high for the next couple of hours. I totally had a perma-grin.

Soon after, the kids realized they were hungry, so we headed back to the hotel taco truck for dinner. We were going spend another hour on the show floor afterwards, but I misread the time and we got back there just as it was closing for the night. Ah well. It was a super-fun day, and the girls got one more photo (apologies for the bad lighting).

They had to get a pic with the pretty, sparkly drag queen. I’m not sure she was anyone specific, but she was beautiful. He? I don’t know – I never asked about preferred pronouns.

Once our friends left, we got ready for bed, watched “The Trouble with Tribbles,” and went to bed. I think we were out by 9:30, and I’m not surprised. It was a loooooong day.

Stay tuned for tales of our final day at C2E2!

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