Thursday, September 24, 2015

Wipeout Run

Last month I joined a few friends (and my brother) and did the Wipeout Run (my sister-in-law and baby girl joined to cheer us on).  Much like the TV show (although a lot easier), we faced obstacles, all while running a 5k in the South Bay heat.  Luckily, this day wasn't one of those 100 degree days.  I think it was only in the mid-80's, however, running around without cover in the blazing sun still lead to overheating and a sunburn.

Leading up to the event, my only true concern was not whether I would injure myself, it was whether or not the life jacket would fit over my monster boobs.  My second (minor) concern was whether I would be able to keep up with the rest of my group, who were way more fit than me.  When we arrived and joined the cattle call to wait for our turn to run, there was a guy hyping up the crowd.  We were laughing and dancing (and preparing ourselves for our sunburns).  Once the horn blew, we were off.  Our group ran off toward obstacle one.  I almost ran the entire way.  But after that, I was too tired and too hot to keep up that pace.  My group didn't complain much (although Jessica DID make us walk the entire 5k instead of letting me cheat and take shortcuts in a couple of places).  Boo.  

Most of the obstacles were fun and had very little danger of actually hurting us.  However, the big red balls were a little more daunting.  My experience in watching the show, and others who went ahead of me, is that the danger is bouncing off ball 1, face planting into ball 2 and then backwards taco'ing and kicking yourself in the back of the head, thereby destroying your back.  NCPP was the following weekend, and I just couldn't afford an injury.  So, I bitched out and just kind of jumped around the sides of the balls and made half-assed attempts to actually jump on the balls from the ground (instead of jumping off the platform).  I left lots of face sweat on the balls for the next person though.  I was okay with that.

As I was walking with my crowd toward an obstacle in the middle, I hear: Is that Lori?!  It seems like I can't go anywhere without seeing someone I know!  Danielle, another Twirly Girl, was running the course with her husband and some friends.  We bounced through the next obstacle together and then they were off (because they were actually running).

The next stressor came towards the end, when I had to try on that life jacket.  I had watched videos, which showed zip-up life jackets.  Those would never fit.  I even e-mailed the promoters to explain my plight.  I was assured that their life jackets went up to XL and I would be just fine.  XL.  hahaha!  This chick has never seen my boobs!!!!  As we walked up, I saw a really big dude with a jacket on, completely un-done.  But I noticed, it had buckles!!  No zippers!  I picked up my XL, let out the straps and put my life jacket on.

The whole course took us two hours to walk, but we had the best time.  I would definitely do it again, so I hope it comes around again next year!

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Chunky Girl Comics at Wizard World San Jose

Labor Day weekend, I had the pleasure of once again donning the Candy costume and joining my fellow Chunky Girls (and boy) for a panel discussion at Wizard World in San Jose.

Although we knew our body diversity panel was set to be the first discussion of the day, when Marisa and I turned to corner to our room, and saw it was already full of people, we backed out, believing we had accidentally walked into the end of a previous panel.  We sat outside for a few minutes, then looked at the sign again, which reminded us that we were first up that day.  Holy shit, all those people were there...waiting...for us!  We peeked around the corner, noticed the panel table was empty and our name tents were there, so we sheepishly walked into the room and took our places.

The panel was fantastic!  I realize I am a nerd-in-training, and so some of the conversation was over my head, but the discussion was not only about diversity in body type but also in race (both in comics and movies).  It could very easily been an uncomfortable or heated conversation but everyone was extremely respectful and I felt like it was very productive.

I would like to (once again) thank Marisa of Chunky Girl Comics for including me on these awesome adventures, Gia for being reliable and fun-sized, and Ray of Tragic Hero Comics for being our Chunky Boy nerd in the know.  His knowledge of comics always impresses me.

After the panel, we stayed to sign autographs and take photos.  Again, we were so surprised and humbled by the number of people willing to wait to talk to us.  It was just such a great day and an amazing experience.  Of course, there were plenty of shenanigans, including celebrity stalking and planned debauchery (which really didn't go down as I had hoped).

On Sunday, we headed into Wizard World one last time before leaving for the weekend,  We happened past Josh McDermitt and Michael Cudlitz from The Walking Dead in the hotel lobby.  Marisa and I stood just close enough (but we thought, just far enough away), trying to decide whether we should say hi.  Suddenly, we hear one of them say loudly (pretty sure it was Josh): "And then I killed a goat and spread its blood all over my body!"  Soooooooo, we left.  The bonus was Marisa got to meet Dean Cain (of Superman fame) at Peet's two seconds later.  We still should have gone over to talk to TWD dudes!

As always, pictures speak louder than words, so enjoy a few photos of our adventures from that weekend.  We are very much looking forward to Wizard World Reno in November!

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

NCPP - Pat the Bear Turns Two

Well, we did it again.  Call us crazy, but Ellen and I survived another year and brought Northern California Pole Presentational to the Bay Area once again.  

I have to be honest.  I was tired this year.  New job (love it but it has longer hours and I had to completely re-do my after-work schedule so as not to burn myself out).  Less pole.  I just wasn't sure I wanted to keep doing this.  So many late nights and long weekends spent on the computer.  Planning.  Sending e-mails.  Gathering music.  Spreadsheets.  Scheduling.  Stressing.  But when the day arrived, I was reminded why it was all worth it.  We certainly aren't doing this for the money.  I'm barely doing it for the love of pole.  We do this to be part of a larger community.  For me, it is all worth it because of all the happy faces that I saw coming off that stage.

I really do want to personally thank each and every person who participated that day -- the judges, volunteers, vendors, sponsors, studios, audience members.  I am grateful to The Stage for providing us with a legit theater.  I am eternally grateful to Ellen, who keeps me on track and helps balance our workload.  I could not do this without her.  And I am ever so grateful for the dancers.  This show is for THEM.  I am not a natural performer (or even that great of an unnatural performer).  I am always terrified to perform, so I have the utmost respect for the performers who are spending their time and effort preparing to dance for us.  This year, thanks to the awesome cyborg headsets, Ellen and I got to actually watch a good portion of the show.  I am always amazed by the artistic beauty that pole dance inspires.  NCPP performers did not disappoint!

We posted a note on the NCPP blog yesterday.  Please visit that post and check out the eloquent thank you posted by Ellen on Facebook.  We have just signed the contract for next year and will be announcing the new date soon!  Please keep an eye on our Facebook page for updates and photos and we will see you next year!

Thanks for fulfilling my fantasies -- so many groups and duos!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Chunky Girl Comics on KTVU!

Marisa and I recently filmed a segment about Chunky Girl Comics with Bay Area People on KTVU Channel 2.  We had such a great time.  As soon as I walked into the room, I just wanted to sit on the newsroom desk.  Claudine Wong said, why not?!  So up I went!  Thank you, Claudine for being so awesome!  I feel so grateful for Marisa and the adventures we are experiencing with Chunky Girl Comics.  If you are going to a local comic book convention, let them know you want to see Chunky Girl Comics there!

Check out the segment below!