I won’t say that ACEN was the worst convention I’ve ever been to, so you will have to infer it from the previous clause.

How bad was it?  It was so bad that I didn’t post anything here in a few months.  TRAGIC!  More importantly, it was so terrible that I was unable to find anything for sale that was worse than the convention itself; the equivalent of a 6 hanging out with a bunch of 4s and 5s to raise their own self esteem.  Everything there looked good by comparison.

I don’t want to give the impression that there was nothing terrible for sale at ACEN; there could be nothing further from the truth.  I’m fairly certain that a Rei Ayanami sex pillow could be had for a song.  The flora and fauna - mostly fat fauna - typically distracted the eyes from any potential terrible purchases.

Let’s not dawdle on the merchandise.  Instead, let’s focus on the most atrocious aspect of ACEN: the registration process.

Here is how I expect the process of purchasing a ticket and getting into a convention:  

  • I get in the cash/credit line
  • I wait in line 20-30 minutes max
  • I pay for the ticket/pass
  • I’m handed the ticket/pass

Not ones to let any process go un-optimized, the ACEN organizers went back to the lab and came up with a brand new process that looks something like this:

  • I wander around looking for the cash/credit line
  • I eventually start standing in the only line around
  • I wait
  • I wait
  • I wait
  • I kill the guy in front of me hoping to encourage others and drastically shorten the line
  • I wait for another hour
  • I get to the cashier, cash in hand
  • I’m forced to fill out the above registration form
  • I’m forced to pick out a stupid handle
  • I pay for the pass
  • I’m handed the pass
  • I stab the cashier in the throat with a bank pen

I waited in line around 2 and a half hours.  Two point five hours.  One hundred and fifty minutes.  8.3 million seconds.  All because these people wanted everyone in line to fill out a little card (which they had to then type in the computer when buying the pass) so they can create an account of some sort.  I’m assuming it also meant they wanted to send me a bunch of spam.  I don’t know because I didn’t give them a real email address.  Or my real name.  Or my real anything.  The only truthful part of my form was that I circled ‘one day’ for the type of pass I wanted.  I wasn’t lying about that part.  I really meant it.

There was only one redeeming part of the process.  When you get to pick your handle, you can pick anything you want as long as it’s not being used.  My pick: ACEN Registration is a joke.

The look on the guy’s face was priceless as he was forced to write it down.