Saturday, December 24, 2016

Internet Cat Video Festival

Due to some poorly timed back problems, I wasn't able to post this immediately following the Internet Cat Video Festival, but it was such a delight I still wanted to talk about it.  This is the first year I have attended, however not the first year Indianapolis has hosted the festival.  What is the Internet Cat Video Festival?  Exactly what you would think it is, and so much more.

It is a highly curated program of internet cat videos, watched in a theater with other cat enthusiasts, but it also brings awareness to local shelters and cats in need of homes.  In Indianapolis it is hosted by the IMA and shown in their lovely Toby theater, but it is a touring festival with many stops.  Being a huge fan of cats, I had to check it out.

Prior to the start of the show, pictures and tiny bios of local adoptable cats were featured and workers from the Humane Society were on hand to answer questions and help with the adoption process.  Cat related merchandise were available, as was face painting and cat accessories.

The program is divided loosely by "plot" such as Action, Comedy and Drama, with a thoughtful mix of animation and more carefully produced videos, to simple short clips. I was pleasantly surprised to find that filmmaker and master curator William Braden was in attendance, providing a brief history of the festival and taking questions from the audience.  The selections for this year's festival were thoroughly enjoyable and it was a wonderful experience to watch cat videos with a community of cat enthusiasts.

 It was one of the first bitterly cold nights of the season, but people turned out in droves, proudly sporting cat related clothing and ready to laugh.  I am very much hoping the festival returns next year, I can't wait to go again! 

Monday, December 19, 2016

Attending Conventions With Social Anxiety

So full disclosure, I am not a medical professional, nor a trained therapist.  I’m just a geek with GAD and social anxiety who also likes to go to conventions.  These things often do not mix, but you can absolutely learn how to enjoy 4 days of chaotic geekdom and still come out relatively unscathed.  Read on to see some things I’ve learned and tips for making your convention visit a great one.