I am a geek


1. I just bought this:I love Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal, dinosaurs, and surrealism. How could I not resist?

2. Next weekend I’m going to PAX Prime, the ginormous gamer festival that’s the brain child of the guys who make the webcomic Penny Arcade. When I say ginormous, I mean ginormous – over 60,000 people have attended in the past. I’m a huge video game geek and haven’t been to any sort of geeky convention since ACen in high school, so I’m looking forward to it. The tournaments haven’t been announced yet, but I’m hoping at least something I’m good at will pop up. Mario Kart plz? Or if we’re going esoteric, Pokemon Puzzle League?

And unlike the poor shmucks who are flying in and have to deal with hotel, transportation, and food confusion, I can just hop on my same ol’ bus to downtown! Huzzah!

Upon further reflection, I just realized I’ve been reading Penny Arcade for over 10 years now. I feel old.

3. I became overly excited when I found out that there’s an unofficial Pokemon League taking place during PAX. Yeeessssss! Time to tweak my party in Pokemon White, charge my DS, and prepare to get my ass kicked. Seriously, I’m great at in-game battles, but I’ve never played competitively. People get pretty hard core about Pokemon. IV breeding and EV training lolwut?

If you’re going and can hunt me down in the crowd of 60,000, feel free to challenge me to a battle (or say hello, if you’re not a Pokemon geek like I am). I’m sure I’ll be tweeting the whole time, making con-stalking even easier.

4. Speaking of Pokemon… I’m currently constructing my cosplay as Hilda from Pokemon White:Don’t judge.

I have to give a shout out to my mom, who’s dealing with my geekery. I made her hunt through my old bedroom for my Burger King Pokeballs (which apparently suffocated small children) and mail them to me to complete the costume. Now I’m just trying to hunt down some cheap boots and a hat that I can alter with pink paint. May have to give up on a pink purse. EDIT: Boots and purse acquired at thrift store! Now just for the hat, shoelaces, and wrist band thingies. I AM GOING TO BE SO COOL.

5. And if that’s not enough, I just bought my ticket to Geek Girl Con in October.

I am in geek heaven.


  1. says

    Yeah, I was thinking Goodwill or an Army Surplus store for cheap boots that I can immediately ruin. Thanks for the tip about Michael’s – I’ll check out other craft stores too. Or Walmart if I get desperate.

  2. says

    Back in the day, McDonalds gave out glasses with characters from McDonald Land (Hamburgler, Mayor McCheese — yes, I’m old) and as a bonus the characters were painted with lead paint. On the plus side lead paint tastes sweet.

  3. says

    Since I’m too far away/too buried with work to make it to PAX, think you can reprise the Hilda Cosplay for GeekGirlCon? The urge to high-five you for that cosplay is too strong to resist, and virtual fives won’t cut it. Also, that shirt is fantastic.

  4. Heisenberg says

    Jen, as a new reader I must know, do you consider all 646 created Pokemon as Real Pokemon® or just the first 251 like myself and others do? Also, if you could have a Pokemon as a pet, as I might have fantastized about 10 years ago and maybe one or two times last week, which would it be? Umbreon all the way here!

  5. Heisenberg says

    first gen, yes, but the second gen I’d argue is canon since Ho-oh appears in episode one of the television series, thus showing some foresight to another generation and not just made up for the sake of selling more games!

  6. says

    And Goodwill for the pink purse, too. I would dye my hair gray, grab a lab coat, and forget everybody’s name, including, perhaps especially, those of my immediate family.

  7. Raiki says

    Can’t make it all the way to the west coast for PAX, but a group of friends and I recently went to Otakon.  We, being real cool folks like yourself, did a group cosplay of Team ____ Grunts.  We had Rocket, Magma (that was me!  Fire Ninja FTW!), Aqua and Plasma.  Unfortunately we couldnt’ find anyone with little enough fashion sense to want to cosplay galactic.~R~

  8. Laurence says

    If they have a Starcraft 2 Tournament, you should check it out.  It’s one of the best games to watch people play competitively.

  9. says

    I’m glad you’re having fun!  You mom sounds sweet.  My mom, even when she might not share my interests, still gets really excited for stuff that I’m excited about, because she wants me to be happy.  (Example:  She’s being impatient with me as I wait for my email to get into Pottermore.)  Have a great time!

  10. says

    My sentence makes it sound like she’s being impatient at me, but what I meant was that I’m being impatient and she’s joining in, getting really excited with me about it.

  11. Malkyrian says

    Yeah, don’t worry about the Pokemon tournament thing. Way too much work goes into those teams, even as one of those hardcore competitive players I just use a simulator. So much easier.Also, that shirt is win and I want one so badly now.

  12. says

    Thrift stores/Goodwill on the purse.  It’s UNBELIEVABLE the stuff you find there. I scored $10 knee-high riding boots for my Medal Ceremony Luke Skywalker costume.Also, you gotta hit up Dragon*Con next year!  Surely you can score a guest spot on Skeptrack or the Science track…best con for cosplay of the year, hands down.

  13. says

    I have to agree with hematophage about the purse.  I had a pink purse when I was in middle school.  I got it from the mall, but it was in the sale/clearance bin for a lower price.

  14. Nicholas says

    Please just tell me you’re not going to actually train your team on the game. Look up Project Pokemon/Pokegen and a GTS trasmitter to create your team on your computer and transmit them onto your cart so that you at least stand a chance.

  15. says

    I do feel a certain nostalgia toward the original 251. The original 151 because, obviously, they’re the original, and the ones from Gold/Silver because 1. Some were in the original anime and 2. I was so freaking excited to have it come out. New pokemon were this awesome novel thing back then. Once you get to 646, it’s not so awesome anymore.But I still consider all of them real. I went into Black and White snarking about how I hated that the whole game would be new pokemon, and how stupid they would be. But by the end I was still going OMFG MY DARMANITAN KICKS ASS YEEAAAHHH!

  16. says

    They claim that the gym leaders aren’t going to be competitively build teams, in order to let people have fun and have a chance. But random people going to PAX will probably wipe the floor with me.

  17. Wildy says

    Are you saying this because Pokemon fighting is serious business and there is no place for fun in it at all?

  18. Nicholas says

    Oh fine, you can have your friends. (I actually enjoyed my SoulSilver game far more by designing my team entirely from the start and starting the entire game with a team of 6 L5 pokemon, so I was able to play with the team I actually *wanted* from the start, rather than just “who I could find”.)Mind you, my character was “Doc” and my team included “Leukemia the Lapras”, “Influeza the Absol”, “Herpes the Ampharos”, and “Lupus the Ninetails”, so I’m probably not the best person to talk to about “friends”.

  19. Nicholas says

    See my response with my SS team above, there’s totally place for fun, but that’s no reason to not take full advantage of the tools available to you.

  20. says

    My current manbag looks somewhat like that, there’s a xMas faire in Manchester (UK) that has lots of maker stalls from all over Europe and the bag I bought from one stall had just that style in a huge selection of colours. Cheap too and it’s survived all my junk and a netbook ^_^ for 18 months.So lots of hope for you yet in this brave new world of people making stuff with real creativity and individualism.

  21. Alisa Sannikova says

    I dunno, I can see that the soles of the shoes are a dusky pink, but to me the hat and bag look more like a dull red than pink. And I think dull red is a better colour anyway, it’s got strength to it rather than just screaming “I’m a girl in society’s stereotypical girl colours, look how much of a girl I am”

  22. Kaleberg says

    What are the white things dangling from Hilda’s shorts? Are those her extra deep pockets? If they are, I’ll bet they’re very handy.

  23. Michael Sadowsky says

    I’m also a Pokemon geek, but a lazy one, so I use the Pokemon Online simulator to make my teams with the right evs/ivs. I like to make a lot of fun gimmicky teams, but one of my teams is pure evil. I also love the “challenge cup” mode where each person gets random pokemon for a match.

  24. Azkyroth says

    I recall them being a bit tone-deaf and some of their fans going a bit farther.  I didn’t see it rising to the level of flounce-sticking, but I had gotten lazy about reading years earlier and accidentally stopped, so…

  25. says

    If this is about the dickwolves thing, that got so stupidly overblown. They certainly made some mistakes in how they handled it (I personally think the original comic was fine), but most people make those same exact mistakes when first confronted about privilege. I’m going to hope they learned from it instead of just rage quitting an otherwise good comic about video games. If it was a comic about feminism, then maybe I’d give it up. Context and all.

  26. Oiram71317 says

    Pictures please?… I’d buy a T- shirt :)…though I’m waaaay to old to have gotten the Pokemon bug (I remember nicknaming my kids “jeremon” and “benjamon” during the Pokemon craze, but they were too little to get it and everyone else was probably too sane).

  27. Chris says

    Hmmm… my 17 year old daughter will miss that one.  She will be at http://www.akicon.org/AkiCon.h… , which is the same weekend.  Then she might end up at http://www.sakuracon.org/ next spring.I am the “cool mom” who helps her create her various “Link” costumes from the Legend of Zelda games, though she is doing more of the work these days.  This last weekend she went to “Cos and Effect” in Vancouver, BC on the Univ. of British Columbia campus.  She went has some blue bird version of Link, while her friend (who lives only three blocks from Kitsilano Beach in Vancouver, BC!) was a red version from the same game.  I have no clue what they are.  I only helped with the cosplay, and her father and I attempted to find parking near her friend’s mother’s townhouse (similar to finding parking in the U-district, or worse)… and find her on the UBC campus late at night.I think I would have great commiserating conversations with your mother!

  28. says

    ACen?!  EWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!I tried going to that one year.  Spent 9 hours in line waiting to get in and then gave up and stayed in my hotel room all weekend.

  29. Azkyroth says

    Hah.  Well, I don’t even wear t-shirts.  They don’t have breast pockets.(No, that’s not a boobquake joke.  You’ve seen my pe…collection of writing implements. >.>)

  30. Svlad Cjelli says

    That comic wouldn’t have a joke in it without an assumption of rape being bad. The debate that followed was pretty much on the same level of civility as the elevator-thing, though.

  31. Svlad Cjelli says

    By “pure evil”, do you mean “LOL Shadow Force every turn, why isn’t my Shadow Force working on Normal types, I must use MOAR Shadow Force”?

  32. Svlad Cjelli says

    You should talk more about your pokemon. So that we may criticise you.(Or whatever. I’ll press the lack of pokemon posts on the next annual reader-whatevermajig.)

  33. Michael Sadowsky says

    I mean I have a choice scarf ambipom/manectric whose item I trick onto a pokemon using a fighting/ground/normal attack, letting my ambipom/manetric die. Then I send in my shadow tag balloon lampent (chandelure is banned), boost to full speed and special attack, and sweep.

  34. Flameraven42 says

    Those kinds of hacks can’t be used in official tournaments, though, right? I considered entering the VGC tournament, but didn’t have time to train anything. I know Nintendo grudgingly admitted that RNG’d pokemon were acceptable (“but not part of the spirit of the game”) but I’d think that a generated pokemon would get caught as a hack.

  35. Flameraven42 says

    It helps to prereg first. Though granted I haven’t been since 2004 and I was in the Artist’s Alley, so I didn’t see much of the con.

  36. Marian says

    You just made my day!   I love Pokemon and I am going to PAX (I will be one of those poor shmucks in a hotel).  The chance to see you again IRL (I attended a talk you gave at the U of O) and maybe meet your Pokemon is exciting.  I am now in geek heaven too.-Marian

  37. says

    Your plan is epic but is it epic enough?I suggest getting your friends to dress up as pokemon that you can summon for battles. This way your entire outfit is themed and “awesome”. Why think small when you can think amazing!

  38. Rednib says

    I love PAX! I’m not going this year sadly (a bit too pregnant for that much activity) but will enjoy hearing about your adventures. One tip: watch out for PAX pox! Wash your hands and/or use hand sanitizer frequently.  A couple years ago there was a nasty cold/flu thing that many of us came down with.

  39. Svlad Cjelli says

    As long as the pokemon is within legal parameters, it’s a legal pokemon. Not everywhere, but that’s a pretty standard approach.

  40. says

    My friends that I’m going with are already shaming me for cosplaying. Not sure I could get them to dress up as anything :P

  41. Michael Sadowsky says

    Yeah, choice trick is a piece of the strategy. It works surprisingly well in UU.

  42. Nicholas says

    Right, what Svlad said, there’s no difference between the bytes contained within a pokemon generated by the game’s RNG and the bytes contained within a pokemon generated by an outside program, so long as you don’t violate legality status (in 4th gen games this could be verified with a Primary ID to IV calculator which can calculate whether it’s possible for the in-game RNG to have ever spawned the consecutive calls that composed your pokemon).

  43. Marian says

    I remember that.  It was the swine flu.  My brother and I got it and had to skip the last day.

  44. says

    Have you considered bribery and extortion? The x makes it sound cool!Make the suggestion after a few drinks, it helps me herd my sheep… I mean encourage my friends to get upto hijinks.

  45. Della Street says

    Geek Heaven cannot be attained without reading and owning, “I was kidnapped by Lesbian Pirates from Outer Space!”You can get it from Megan Rosalarian Gedris. All other comics PALE in comparison. Or pastel. Or something. Anyway, one the scale of 1 to IWKBLPFOS, nothing else scores higher than 0.5that is all.

  46. Azkyroth says

    No one is old unless they meet at least one of two criteria:1) they reflexively suspect the motives and integrity of unfamiliar teenagers.  (Bonus points if they show by their actions that they consider anyone under about 25 to be “teenagers”)2) they refuse to learn how to send txt messages even given appropriate equipment, ample opportunity, and personal or familial relationships with multiple young people who find having their thought processes trainwrecked by a phone braying genuinely distressing.(I’ve been forced to add 2 recently).

  47. psmith123456 says

    Cosplay?  Aren’t you a bit old for that?  (He said enviously because cosplay didn’t exist when he was in college, while still watching his anime collection in 2011….).

  48. Gomer says

    I, for one, approve of the Pokemon geekiness! =D…I need to get back to work on my Pokemon game now. >.>

  49. says

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  50. says

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