June 28, 2016

Why I didn't enjoy J-Popcon 2016 + updates

I wanted to make an update on everything but seeing as I never did a round-up on my last post, I decided to write one such post first and afterwards make a new - actual update - one.

Jasmin has been away around 4 months now and she'll come home again either next month or the month after that. Maria and I talked about going there but Maria's exams kept her from doing so. I visited her this month though but more about that in the next post!

The test results from my grandma's last scan came back negative and since then she has been 100% cancer free so that has been a great relief for all of us! These days she's doing fine.

J-popcon came and went but wasn't as great an experience as I had been hoping for. I usually see myself as a tolerant person but these maids' and butlers' attitudes towards preparing for the con was as far from satisfactory as I could ever think of and I was just super disappointed.
First of all almost no one came to help sewing the outfits that we would be wearing so those of us who showed including Andreas, Emil, and Isa, who were our teamleaders and/or experienced with the maid café ending up doing all the work. I tried to go but couldn't help every weekend because of school work but they gathered every weekend - every hour of it! At first we wanted to sew our own Café Sweet Vanilla uniforms but the people in charge of the con changed their minds and said that we had to make normal black ones - that was a bummer too. We ended up with enough dresses but not aprons for the maids and had to share those during the con. That was fine seeing as we didn't all have shifts at once but Andreas, Emil, and Isa told me that some of the maids had complained about this last year. After such a lack of interest in helping us sew the uniforms, I was ready to go at the other maids if they even thought about complaining but luckily no one did.. at last from what I know of.
Also when it came to baking the cakes that we would be selling there was NO HELP AT ALL FROM THE MAIDS OR BUTLERS (except for like 2-3 of them). I came to help and told our leaders that even if I'd have to stay up all night like I'd done for the last J-Popcon and GEEKcore, I'd do it. But I hadn't even finished my own cosplay at that time and had to go home for a couple of hours to prepare for the con. When I returned I brought Chris and his friend with me to help. We finished late, like 3am, and had a third of the amount of cookies we'd planned to sell.
At last there is Café Sweet Vanilla - an idea I had supported from the beginning and looked forward to but which, disappointingly, will never be more than that, an idea. The people in charge of applying for fonds never did, the PR people did nothing, and some of them we couldn't get in contact with at all.
Now that we didn't get to attend as Café Sweet Vanilla, "outsiders" could become maids as well. As part of it though, I was prioritized but one of the conditions for this was that I got a hygiene certificate. It wasn't a requirement for the outsiders though. This resulted in all of ud with hygiene certificate (and maid experience) being forced to take kitchen shifts while all the outsiders got the serving shifts - shifts where they had to deal with costumers and which everyone wanted. Tl;dr everything was unfair and I was more salty than a Pringles chip.
This year's maid café brought many challenges but luckily I am friends with Andreas, Emil, and Isa so after (and during the con) we talked a lot about what went wrong. At least now we know what not to do next time.
Sadly our members' lack of interest caused so much stress to our leaders that Isa decided that she would have nothing to the with the maid café at the next con.

The con wasn't aaaas bad though. But I ended up with the worst shifts ever. I had the opening shifts, closing shifts and then the opening shift the next morning, 4 hour shifts in the kitchen, and had to take extra shifts because some of our maids got sick and none of the other maids wanted to help.
I got little sleep and was sort of grumpy as a result - mostly due to the maids though. Also, because of the time of my shifts, I only had time to cosplay one of the days for a couple of hours.
Whenever I was in the café though, Andreas, Emil, and Isa were good at taking care of me and they let me do a couple of things that the others weren't allowed to do. Let's not talk too much about that ^^;
However, some of the things I CAN tell was what happened Saturday. I randomly came to the café and the moment Andreas and Emil saw me, their faces lit up with happiness. Some of the higher ups had requested that we bring cake to one of the cosplay judges as it was her birthday that day and thus they needed a 'petite and pretty' maid to do so. They thought I fit that description well and since all the other maids were busy with their shifts anyways, I really couldn't have come at a better time. We bought flags, decorated the cake, and then went inside the locked room, in which the judges were doing some pre-judging on the craftmandhip contest, and sang her a birthday song. Right as we returned to the café I was hijacked for another job. This team of guys were doing a documentary styled sketch on J-Popcom amd had come to the maid café to do a scene where one of them got to experience being a butler and being training to be so by a maid (me).
Chris was at the con too with some osu! friends and his best friend Daniel. Chris wanted to make a Steve Irwin inspired funny documentary on J-Popcon and had filmed a lot of great things but to everyone's disappointment his SD card with the recordings and one of the lenses to his camera was stolen.
The Japan student, Nynne, who wrote a paper about cosplay in Denmark joined J-Popcon amd once in a blie moon when I had time, we met up and watched cosplay shows. She also came to the maid café and even cosplayed herself. She finished her paper and sent me the file but I have yet to read it since she sent it around the time I was having exams. I think it went well though!

We held the big international Korean studies event at our school and overall it went well. Although we informed the canteen that we would have a lot of people visiting, they forgot about it and were taken by surprise when they suddenly had to feed 65 additional professors from all over the west. The foreign teachers were impressed by how helpful we were and our own teachers were as thankful as they could be.

So this was a round-up on the things that happened some time ago. The next post will be on more recent events and will be up shortly~

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