A Trip Not Taken: ComiCon

In the summer of 1977 I saw a movie that changed my life: Star Wars.  I was only 4 years old, yet I remember that first viewing quite vividly.  My geekdom continued just a few years later when the second movie, The Empire Strikes Back, was released.  The original Star Wars trilogy along with other other sci-fi films of the late 1970s/early 1980s secured my love of all things science fiction.

So it is all the more frustrating that for the last four years I have been trying to acquire tickets to the greatest sc-fi/fantasy event of them all: ComiCon International.  Each year, thousands of fans visit the hallowed halls of the San Diego Convention Center to meet their favorite stars, attend panel discussions, and peruse the vendor booths.  Truly a wonderland of pop culture.

So far this experience has existed only in fantasy (and in episodes of The Big Bang Theory).   Every February, I visit the ComiCon website, reading all the information about purchasing tickets.  I mark my calendar when the Sale Day is announced.  I pre-register weeks in advance.  Then comes the day:

I enter my password shortly before the sale begins (usually 10am on the designated Saturday).  As the clock strikes, all of the hopefuls are shuffled into a queue and must wait. And wait. And wait.  Since I don’t know when I have been placed, I simply stare at my laptop.  If near the top, I want to be ready when my turn comes.  To finally bask in my success.  But then, if placed near the bottom…I simply wait.   Usually at this time, my friend Dave (and fellow ComiCon hopeful) calls and starts asking if we have tickets yet, not understanding the work I have done so far.

Now don’t get me wrong, I have many other interests.  And I am definitely not as obsessed as the two guys in the movie Paul (although comparisons have been made).  I simply want to attend the single largest celebration of the science fiction/fantasy/comic book genres under one roof.  Of the four day convention, I’d be happy to get a single-day ticket.  If 130,000 others can go…why can’t I?

So here I am,  in the virtual waiting room.  Waiting for my number to be called.  Then a banner appears on the screen: SATURDAY SOLD OUT!  My heart drops.  Don’t they realize how much I want this.  FRIDAY SOLD OUT!  I’m now thinking, “now everyone is going to give up, leaving me to purchase a Thursday or Sunday pass”.  Then those immortal words…


Although disappointed, I make plans to attend the much closer Planet ComiCon in Kansas City.  Dallas also has a good one.  Then I can simply try again next year.  Yep, that’s it.  I definitely have a shot at ComiCon in 2015.  I hope.


Do you have a destination that has eluded you?  A trip that you can’t seem to get scheduled?  Let us know!