Stargate Convention 2010

     Friday morning I found out David Hewlett was going to be in Chicago Saturday. I didn't even know the convention was this weekend because I'd decided not to attend any more of them - unless David Hewlett or Richard Dean Anderson showed up.

     (Creation Cons are just too much about the money. I am spoiled by Doctor Who Conventions of old - $30 bucks gets you in, you sit where you want (pretty much), you get three signatures free for each actor/writer/producer... and can wait in line again if you want. You get pictures with them for free. And the actors stay and talked for the three days. Now THOSE were Conventions you could be proud to attend.)

     But there goes David Hewlett so I cleared my schedule and dutifully went to the hotel. He is one of my two all-time favorite actors. I'm inspired by his acting, envious of his attitude and love the way he treats his fans.

     I got to 'meet' him. He was so funny and genuine and humble and goofy and entertaining. (I didn't meet him in the sense of any real conversation but I did get to hug him so I'm going to say that counts!)

     Around 11:30, Hewlett & Flanigan walked on stage and Flanigan started talking about the chairs they sat in (director's chairs) and wondered why they're made that way. The chairs are tall and uncomfortable and he can't think of any other industry in which they're used. He asked Hewlett if it's for the make up and hair artists because they couldn't possibly bend down long enough to work their magic.

     Hewlett just stared at him. He spoke in the microphone, adopting an aloof tone. "So I went to Chicago to see Joe and David talk about the history of chairs."

     Flanigan looked embarrassed and shut his mouth - such a funny start!

     The questions started and a group presented Flanigan with the 'Twitter Actor of the Month Award' and Hewlett got the runner-up Award.

     I have been following David Hewlett's Twitter for years now, from the beginning. (I learned about Twitter through him, in fact.) I didn't even know Flanigan Tweeted. (Of course, as I said, Hewlett is one of my two all-time favorite actors.)

     Hewlett was beside himself. Again, he picked up the microphone, this time doing an impression of Flanigan. "So David, what's this Twitter thing?"

     Flanigan said, "It's true. I didn't even know what Twitter was. I just signed up three weeks ago." He turned to Hewlett, smugly. "Now I'm the 'Twitter Actor of the Month'."

     Hewlett shook his head. "Always Joe's sidekick." Then he looked at us and blurted, "I've been Tweeting and writing and typing for years!"

     He's so funny and I really do adore the way in which he treats his fans. He includes them. Talks to them. Answers them. Never once takes them for granted.

     If I'm blessed enough to develop a fan base of my own when I publish my mysteries, I'm prepared to model my attitude after this inspiring writer/actor/producer talented man.

     Later, he craned his neck to see someone at the microphone on one side and fell out of his chair. The funny thing was, it looked like he gracefully slid off of it. (At least from my angle in the nosebleed section!) I thought nothing of it until he said, "That was a rock star move right there. I totally meant to do that."

     He talked about family and what he's up to now (some movie with evil snow monkeys as his Twitter's been mentioning - come on! I want to see him in a cool, weekly program again!!) and a little about Atlantis. He said they should make the next show in the franchise Stargate McKay: SGM.

     There was lots of applause.

     I would totally watch that.

     I never would have known how short Hewlett & Flanigan are! I thought I was short but these guys barely stood over the top of my head. (Well, I guess Flanigan is a bit tall...) I remember when I saw Jason Momoa - he was gargantuan!

     It took four hours to get Hewlett's autograph. Michael Shanks was done long before - but he wouldn't do personalizations. Hewlett did.

     I didn't feel bad for Hewlett or his writing hand because this is part of his job and he chooses to do it. He's getting paid for it - he's at work. I do stuff in my job that isn't fun. But then, I don't know, around 9:30 or 10:00 I did start to feel for the poor man and his poor right hand/wrist!

     As a writer myself, I know how a bout of muse can cramp a hand fast. By the time I got up to him, a dozen or so people in front of me, Hewlett looked at this woman and said, "If I'd known I'd get up to 500 I'd have brought a balloon to give away."

     She was autograph number 500! How awesome for him. I only hope I could be as graceful, humble, humorous and in good spirits after four hours, 500 signatures and eleven o'clock at night if I ever got the chance...

     (His Twitter this morning is: "Chicago you owe me one signing arm! Thanks so much for the long and happy lines...See you soon!")

     I had him sign the DVD cover of his movie, A Dog's Breakfast. He said, "I see McGillion signed over my name. How about I sign my forehead?"

     "Wherever you want is perfect." It's past 11PM. I don't care where he signs! He then signed a picture for me. "Jenny. I have a Jenny." His sister's name is Jenny. Then he made a mark over the picture of Mars, his dog. "And there's Mars' signature for you."

     "Oh, how cool!" He signed for his dog - that's awesome! Who does that? (I love fun. Thank god I didn't have to pay extra :) )

     Oh, that's another thing. This guy adopted Mars from a shelter. The shelter thought Mars was sick or injured or something but it turned out he just had a slight deformity and is a perfectly healthy dog. Hewlett put him in his movie. Someone asked him about writing for the dog and Hewlett said he literally wrote the movie around the dog and the dog's facial expressions.

     As usual, the convention became more about the people I met then the actors I came to see. I met a funny woman who, it turns out, was in the group that gave the Twitter Awards away that morning. I met another lovely lady from Texas, also quite funny and enjoyable to talk to. I met up with an old friend, Matt. Met a new gal who is a photographer. Then I met a writer - published! In fact, she lives off her writing. (That's my dream that I work toward every day.)

     She's published over 20 books - historical romances. I'm going to check her out and you can too here. Her name is Teresa Medeiros.
     Do you know what she and her friend did? (Forgive me, Sir, I don't remember your name despite our having talked nearly four hours!!! And I'm not sure if you are her husband or friend or family...yikes! I'm so bad - my excuse is that I'm simply not my best (i.e. smartest) at night...)

     They walked me to my car. I parked a block away. I had to walk under a bridge and in a neighbornhood I'm not too familar with - certainly not at night. They both walked me to my car about 11:30 PM. I mean that is something I will forever be grateful for.

     I have met some of the nicest people on this earth in the audience at Conventions. It's amazing how, not only do writers/actors/artists keep me going through the darkest times in life, giving hope where there was only darkness and pushing people to be better than they think they are, but our love of the art brings us together.

     There are a lot of quotes about life and moments  such as "Life is not about how many breaths you take but about how many moments in life that take your breath away" and it's times like these that prove it so true.