By: Pia
Pictures: Pia
Edited by: Marcy
Gallery: [day 1] [day 2] [day 3]

Day 1 - Saturday October 30th 2010

The Randy!parts of the convention only started in the afternoon. It was slightly late in schedule and to our disappointment they only showed L-Word videos before the panel. Finally the Q&A got started. It was shared between Randy and Laurel Holloman but I concentrated just on Randy. The floor was opened to questions from the audience. The actors were also given three "wildcards" that allowed them to pass questions if they so wished. There was no need to use those. Fans were also given the chance to play out a scene from either show if they so wished. One girl did get on the stage and he acted the reunion scene from 309 with Randy.

Right before the panel ended this guy decided that it would be a great idea to walk across the stage carrying a carbage bag. At first we thought it was a joke of some kind but the guy actually was an employee of the place and he needed to get to the other side of the stage for some reason and couldn’t care less that there was actually something going on on the stage. And he was in no hurry but walked across the stage veeeery slowly. The expressions on Randy’s, Laurel’s and the presenters’ faces were quite priceless. I was laughing too hard and also with my mouth hanging open.

After the Q&A ended it was time for me to go crazy. They told us that they still had one VIP pass to auction. They started the bidding at €250. I started bidding on it. First it looked good since there weren’t that many people bidding but soon it became evident that those that were, were quite determined. In the end it was just me and another girl. I totally went crazy and just kept on bidding. I went way past what I could actually afford. Gave up at €920 and the VIP pass went to the other girl with €950. So um yeah, maybe a good thing I gave up. *g* I really couldn’t have afford that. But I did feel disappointed since the VIP pass would have included a dinner with the guests. Next they started the bidding on coffee moments with the guests. So there I went again bidding for those. Ended up winning one of the spots at a coffee moment with Randy. Paid quite a lot for it but at that moment I didn’t really care since I knew I was going to have some more private time with Randy and that was all that mattered. I took care of paying for the coffee and was informed that it was going to happen a bit later and that I needed to be at a certain spot at a certain time.

About then they started photoshoots with Randy. Officially my number wasn’t going to be called that day but I decided to go and join the queue anyway since I wanted my first contact with Randy even if I knew I had the coffee coming up. Was feeling a bit nervous while I stood in the queue and I really hoped I wouldn’t end up doing anything stupid or making a fool of myself.

When it was my turn I walked to Randy. He shook my hand and said hello, first in French but when I replied in English, he also said hello in English. I replied and then he placed his hand on my waist I put mine on his. It is possible I forgot to breathe for a while. After the picture was taken, I said my thanks and left. The whole thing took something like 15 seconds so not a very long meeting. *g* Felt slightly jittery. I walked to my friends and stood there watching while other people got their pictures taken. Did snap a few candid shots but they didn’t come out too well.

Then it was time for my coffee moment. Too bad Randy hadn’t been told that he was supposed to be there. We had to wait for him for quite a while. There were three other girls with me waiting for him. One of them said to me that she had seen pictures of me and Gale from earlier in the year when I went to see him in Orpheus Descending.
Finally Randy arrived and we went to this really small room with him. I did a tactical move and remained standing so that I was closest to Randy and when they finally brought us chairs I got to sit pretty close. Before the chairs were brought Randy shook all our hands and told us his name. I silently thought inside my head that “as if we don’t know who you are” but I guess his intention with that was for us to introduce ourselves, which we did. While we were still standing around and waiting for the chairs I commented about not speaking a word of French and how that makes it occasionally a bit difficult to keep up with what’s happening. That prompted him to ask us where we were from. I told I was from Finland. He asked me what it was like there and I said it’s quite cold in the winter and that we have quite a lot of snow. Couldn’t come up with anything more intelligent at that point. He also asked which part of Finland I was from and said that I live in Helsinki, even if that isn’t totally true since I live in the city next to Helsinki but the capital is usually known for people, while the smaller cities probably aren’t. Then Randy proceeded to ask the others where they were from. Two of the girls were from Paris and one girl was from Russia. The Russian girl gave Randy a bottle of Russian vodka as a present. At that point I regretted that I hadn’t gotten the bottle of special Finnish vodka for him, which I had thought about but never went through with. It was too late then. The girl from Russia did mention that she was actually living in France at the moment with student visa in the Bordeaux area. Randy mentioned that he had spent a month in Bordeaux learning French a few years ago and that he really liked it there.

So then Randy asked if we had some questions for him. Unfortunately I can’t remember everything that was talked but below are the subjects and anwers I do remember. We were also given small cups of coffee. There were some cookies on offer but no one touched those. Randy managed to spill half of his coffee on the floor but luckily he didn’t spill it on himself.

The ending of QaF Randy pretty much repeated what he had said on stage about him being happy about the way they ended the show and how he felt that Justin could have never really grown up if he had stayed with Brian. He needed to learn and take care of himself. He felt that Brian’s and Justin’s relatioship wasn’t equal at any point and that it was more like an older mentor and a young apprentice. He felt that Justin needed to stand on his own two feet. I mentioned something about maybe being able to accept the ending but how I thought it was wrong that Justin wasn’t there even for the reopening of Babylon and how I felt he should have been there.

Him working in general Randy also repeated some of what he had said on stage about his work situation at the moment. He said that he’s looking for interesting projects and that he actually did have the chance to audition for something but he didn’t go because he didn’t want anything conflicting with him attending the convention. I went all “aawwww” in my head at that point but luckily didn’t say anything. Randy did again talk about being ready to do TV again. He said that he suffers from ADD and that makes it hard for him to keep on doing the same thing for a long time and after QaF finished he couldn’t keep on doing TV anymore and just had to concentrate on something else.

Show's at Joe's Pub I asked him if he had any plans to make another show at Joe's Pub anytime soon. He did say that he did have some plans and maybe there was going to be another thing from him. I mentioned seeing the previous performances from YouTube. I did add it of course wasn't nearly the same thing but all I had access to. He did agree that YouTube maybe wasn't the best channel to see them.

Traveling We talked about how easy it was to travel around the EU countries but how difficult it could be to get visas from other countries. Randy asked me if Finland was part of EU and I said yes. While we were at the subject of traveling I happened to mention that it was pretty easy for us to travel to US as well, or that we didn’t need visas for that. He then asked about work permits but to that I said that wasn’t easy for us and talked about how we did have permission to stay in the country for three months at a time. I happened to mention that I had visited the US for the first time last February and went to LA. Randy asked me what I had done there and someone else told him that I had gone to see Gale and I sat there with my face probably beet red. He then asked me what I had thought about the play and if I had liked it. I told him I had thought it was really great but that occasionally I did have some problems understanding the really southern accents they had in it since my English wasn’t that fluent. Randy immediately told me that he thought my English was very good. I probably blushed even more and stammered my thanks.

Drinking Don’t remember how this came up but there was talk about how it seemed that people who are from cold countries seem to drink more. I did mention that Finnish people are quite heavy drinkers. Randy continued to mention a few cities in the US that are famous for a lot of drinking. One of them was Minneapolis and I mentioned that I need to see if that’s true when I go there next February. Randy immediately told me that he knows that there is a really great theater group in Minneapolis and that I should definitely go see their production while I was there, if they had anything on. I told him that I need to check it out. I then continued to tell him that I was going to travel around a bit with a friend and mentioned all the cities we were going to visit. One of them was San Francisco and Randy said that he’s never been there but that he’s heard that it’s really beautiful there.

QaF in general Randy has never seen the finished fourth season of QaF and that he only saw season five only a while ago. There was talk about how many fans don’t like seasons four and five and especially the fact that Brian and Justin don’t end up together in the end. We again returned to the subject that Randy felt that Justin couldn’t really grow up if he stayed. I said something about people possibly wanting a happy ending and Randy commented something on the lines of, why can't Justin be happy when he's alone. Being single can be fun too. Then the cancer arc was mentioned from season four and I said how that was one of my favorite arcs. And also mentioned the scene where after Brian has thrown Justin out, he comes back, makes him chicken soup and tells him to "fuckin’ eat it". While we were discussing the whole series it came out that one of the girls hadn’t actually seen all of the series yet but was somewhere in the middle of season four. So we sort of totally spoiled her by accident, but she didn’t say anything beforehand so there was no way we could have known. Randy seemed genuiely sorry for that. After that people were a bit more careful what they said. Someone did mention that it seemed he wasn’t so enthusiastic about his part on seasons four and five and he claimed that wasn’t the case at all. Randy said that he did like his part until the end but just had to do something completely different after the series finished. Someone asked about him shaving his hair for the pink posse arc and he said that his hair was actually shaved right there and then when the scene was filmed.

Gay rights It was discussed that the way Brian saves the day in season three felt a bit out of character for him. Randy started talking about how the creators did have a strong political agenda with the series (A/N: no kidding!!!) and how they wanted to address many of the things that gays face in the US even nowadays. From there the discussion continued to gay rights over all and how gays still have really hard time in many countries. Randy remembered hearing about people being arrested when they tried to organize a Pride parade in Russia. I told about this huge debate that is going on in Finland right now about gays’ right to marry. He seemed surprised that gays weren’t allowed to marry in Finland. I told him that there was this civil partnership thing but that it wasn’t the same thing as marriage since it didn’t give inheritance rights or automatically give the right to take the other’s name. I did mention we had elections coming up next spring and that how it seemed the gay rights were going to be one of the big questions there. Did talk about rewatching QaF just a while ago and how I had noticed the political influences there and how they fit quite well since a lot of discussion was going around in Finland too.

Internet Randy told us that he really doesn’t go and read what’s written about him in the Internet since he knows that stuff can upset. He said he did it in the beginning but stopped after he read some bad stuff. He also said that he had to be really careful what he said since things could return to haunt him at a later stage. From there it was jumped to the next subject.

Fanfiction This discussion wasn’t started by me but by someone else but I do admit that I took part in the discussion in some parts. Randy seemed surprised people were still interested in that and it was explained that people use it as sort of way to survive the disappointment that was the series finale and how quite a lot of the stuff is concentrated on the time after the finale. Randy asked if a lot of it is graphic. He was told that if he went searching and found fics that were marked NC-17 it probably was quite graphic. I started gringing when he was told how to find those fics if he so wished. And the gringing really started when RPS was brought up. I felt like yelling, haven’t you heard that you should NEVER EVER bring up RPS in front of the actors. Randy didn’t know what it meant and the term was explained to him. I remained carefully quiet. Randy seemed quite shocked when he found out what RPS is. He really was puzzled and said that people confuse him with his character and wondered how people could write things about him when they only knew him as Justin. He was told that sometimes people take stuff from interviews and things. I stared at the floor. To me it seemed that Randy felt quite uncomfortable by the idea that someone was actually writing fics about him as the person and not just his character.

Fat, middle aged fans From the RPS and taking stuff from interview we got to him making the comment in some interview about fat middle aged fangirls. At first Randy denied saying anything like that but when the subject was explored further he did seem to remember something. He repeated what he had said earlier about having to be really careful what he said in interviews since his saying could easily be taken out of context and cause problems. He suspected he had been annoyed by the rumours that someone had taken photos of him in the nude while he had been doing a play where he was completely naked. He was assured that it was quite probable those pictures didn’t exist since if they did, we would have seen them because everything spreads so quickly in the Net. He said something on the lines of being glad about that.

The video that shouldn’t have been public While we were in the subject of everything spreading quickly in the Net, a certain video was mentioned that was up on Vimeo and obviously meant as a private video. It was available only for about a day or two but during that time everyone and their brother saw it and it was shared all over. He seemed really confused about the video and didn’t even seem to know what we were talking about after the video was described to him and he was told who was in it with him. I don’t know if he was being dense on purpose or if he really had no recollection of making that video but we dropped that subject quite quickly. Someone from the group did say to Randy that we were sorry that we had seen the video and that we were also sorry in case any fans had ever upset him. He assured that he didn’t take things personally.

At some point Randy felt a bit sorry for the French girls since they were pretty much sitting there quiet since their English wasn’t that good and me and the other girl were pretty much dominating the conversation. He did talk in French with them for a while. About what, I have no idea, since I don’t understand French, as has probably already been established. *g*

I have no idea how long we actually ended up having with him but it seemed like time flew and way too soon we were told that the session had ended. Randy thanked us all and said that he was going to see us all later in the photoshoots as well as autographs. Someone also asked him if he was going to be at the party that night and he said that probably not since he was feeling quite jetlagged. I did say to him that I hoped he would get some nice theater project and that maybe I could then get to see him on stage whey I go to NY next February.

A while later Randy started doing autographs. After some consideration I decided to join the queue to get the free autograph that came with my ticket. I knew I would have two other days as well to get his autograph but I knew myself and guessed I was probably going to buy extra ones any way so decided to get one that day. I wanted to maximize my time with Randy. *g* While we queued again tried to snap a few pictures even if you weren’t actually allowed to do that. There was this security guy who kept yelling "no pictures" at us.

I was surprised to see that you were actually allowed some peace and quiet while you got your autograph. The queue was formed so that the head of it was about two meters from the table where Randy was sitting and everyone got to walk to the table on their turn to have their moment with him. Even if I had just had the coffee with him, I still felt nervous. When my turn came I walked to the table and said hi. He said something on the lines “hello again”. I had written my name on a piece of paper just in case and placed that so that he could see it. Said something about my name being short and easy. For some reason I decided to share him what I was going to be dressed as in the party that night, i.e. Elfaba from Wicked. I did add I was going to do that if I got it to work out. He said that he was sure I would do great. I did ask him the one question I had forgotten to ask during the coffee about how it would be best to keep up with his work and what he’s up to. He didn’t really have an answer for that. I then asked him if I should just keep my eyes and ears open and he said that it was probably the best. He then joked that sometimes it felt like the fans knew what he was up to before he himself did. The whole time I was there he kept looking at me and that made me stammer a little. I got him to sign a shot from the episode 510 where Brian and Justin are standing in front of an ambulance (the ILU-scene *g*) and told him that it was one of my favorite scenes too. He said that it was a meaningful scene but that he hadn’t wanted to talk about it at our coffee moment because that one girl hadn’t seen those episodes yet. He wrote "Pia, my Finnish fan. All the best. Randy" on the picture. After that I thanked him again for the coffee moment as well as for the auto and left. I hung around and waited while Angie got her autograph and her moment with Randy. When she was done we headed out of the building since there wasn’t anything else on before the party that night. We knew we had quite a lot of preparations to do and we also needed to get something to eat.

Day 2 - Sunday October 31st 2010

On Sunday morning I met a few people from our group in the hotel lobby and we walked together to the convention hall. There were quite a few people already waiting for there but we did hope we’d get good seats anyway. Soon we were let in and we again formed a queue outside the actual hall. What did surprise me was that even after the queue was formed people just came from the sides and went past us. Did throw a few comments into air about peoples’ rudeness. I could have maybe sort of understood if it was just one or two people joining their friends but there were people who didn’t know anyone at the front of the line but obviously thought they had some right to plant themselves there. I’m so used to being in conventions where people queue in a sophisticated matter, that this behavior sort of surprised me. Sorry for ranting.When we were let into the hall we got our seats from the second row on the right side. Not bad seats at all.

Things were again started with a dance performance but I just kept waiting for Randy to get on stage. When the dance ended they obviously began to work on showing some video. I waited them to show something with Randy in it and we did get a clip of him doing the King of Babylon dancing scene, with horrible quality and half without sound. I’m sure Randy was very glad they decided to show just that scene since he has said in several occasions that he hated the go-go dancing they made him do. After that clip they started working on showing us some more videos. Since it was only going to be Randy on stage, I expected there to be more clips with him. I couldn’t have been more wrong. They started showing clips from the L-Word, or tried. The sound was missing half the time and they started the same clip over and over again. I just kept on thinking, let Randy get on stage already, please. We don’t care about clips of L-Word when they are taking time away from us seeing Randy.

So finally they got Randy on stage for the Q&A. After that it was again time for photoshoots. I had bought an extra photoshoot with Randy so I went to queue for that. I was planning on taking a picture with my crown on. When it was my turn at the photo I walked to Randy. He obviously did remember seeing me before and obviousy wasn’t prepared to shake my hand again but I gave my hand for him to shake anyway, before I realized that, and it caused a slightly awkward moment. He did say that he liked my shirt that had the text "I am what I am" on it. I managed to say thank you but somehow the situation was quite awkward otherwise and wasn’t really sure if I should talk with him first or just take the picture and then talk to him. In the end I went with the picture first. I again had my arm around his waist and he had his around mine. After that I said my thanks but the photographer told me that she wanted to take another shot. I was more than happy to put my arm around Randy’s waist again. Afterwards I thanked him again and walked to the side.

After everyone had gotten their picture taken we headed for lunch. We had decided to go the central Paris since there was quite a lot of time before anything interesting was going to happen. The afternoon was going to be started with L-Word stuff and we weren’t that interested in that.
The whole group took the metro and we went to eat on Champs Elysee. Okay, just McDonald’s again but at least it was on Champs Elysee. Doesn’t that make it a bit more special? *g* After lunch I decided to head back to the convention place with Angie since I wanted to get an autograph from Randy that day too and his autographs were starting soon. The others still stayed in the city a while longer.

It took us a bit longer than we thought to reach the convention hall and for a while we were worried that we might miss it but in the end we found out that there was still plenty of time. They were also doing autographs with Rachel and Laurel but we joined Randy’s queue first since that was the most important for us.

When it was my moment to go and talk to him I had the DVD cover of Thinking for him to sign. I did tell him that I was excited about seeing it later when they were doing a showing. He did tell me that it was just a short film but that he did think it was really good and that he hoped I would enjoy it. I also thanked him again for complimenting my shirt earlier and told him that I was sort of trying to adapt the text as my motto and that I was trying to learn to live my life so that I didn’t care so much about what other people thought about me. He said it was a good goal and that he was trying to live like that too. I might have ended up oversharing a bit but he was watching me the whole time and it did seem he paid attention. There were no signs of him getting impatient with me or looking like he wished I would already be gone and I totally love him for that. I gave my thanks and went to the side to wait for Angie who was in the queue after me. When she got her autograph we decided to try our luck with also getting Marci Adilman, who had directed the film as well as starred there along Randy, to sign the DVD cover as well. She was sitting at the side behind a table where they were selling the DVDs. We didn’t have the courage to ask her directly in case we stepped over some lines so we found a staff member and asked her. She had no idea but she asked Marci herself, if she was willing to sign the DVDs for us. She seemed genuinely surprised that we actually wanted her autograph as well and said that sure she would sign them. She was really nice. We talked with her for a while and she signed the DVD covers. She also told us that she hoped we would enjoy the film when they showed it later.

At that point it was quite close to the time they were going to start showing Thinking so I got myself a seat from the hall. They showed the film and luckily everything worked well so that our enjoyment wasn’t ruined by any technical difficulties or anything. It really was a lovely small film. Basically told a story of a girl that goes to this silent meditation thing and while there, her thoughts start running into quite inappropriate directions. There was no dialogue in the film but only some music and then some sounds. If you get the chance, you should definitely check the film out. I quite enjoyed it.

After the screening Marci Adilman came on stage to do a small Q&A. I think Randy was supposed to join her too but I guess they changed their mind. Maybe he was too tired or something. Marci talked about making the film and how the whole idea had actually come from Randy since he had gone to this silent retreat some years back and then made her go too. There had been this guy in there that Marci thought was giving her the eye, or not. She couldn’t be quite sure of it. And since there was no talking there, she couldn’t really find out. She actually wrote the story for the film while at that retreat.

She also told a few other tidbits about the process and how they had almost gotten thrown out of the place they were filming in because the owner of the place thought they were doing pornography there because at one point there were just stage notes in the script that said, Marci making out with Randy in the hottub, Marci making out with Lucy at the hottub, everyone making out in the hottub. The guy had confronted Marci about that and made her cry. After that a few bulky guys who were part of the production had told the guy that they weren’t making pornography and that he had no right to talk to Marci that way. They told the guy that if he had a problem in the future, he should come and talk to them.

Marci and Randy have been friends since they were 12 and they established (t)AB to give their friends who hadn’t had the exposure Randy has had a chance to get their work out there too. She talked about how they had already as teens talked about moving to NY together and doing something there. She wasn’t living in NY anymore, though. Someone asked her what she thought was Randy’s best character quality. She had hard time answering that since she thought there were so many good qualities in Randy. In the end she went with his enthusiasm and how when he got excited about something, he really went for it and was passionate about it.

There were some other questions too but I just can’t remember them now. She was really adorable on stage. While I had talked with her earlier she appeared a bit nervous about the thought of getting in front of all the people to talk about the film but I do think she did well.

Day 3 - Monday November 1st 2010

The This day I decided to wear a shirt that had the text "I'm a fuckin' princess" on it. Did hesitate for a while but then just went with it.

We were there slightly later than usual and the doors had already been opened so we could just walk straight in. We took seats at the tables they had outside the hall and just sat there spending time. When we saw that the boutique, where they sold the extra photoshoots and autographs, had opened, we went to buy our stuff for that day. I had done some careful counting of finances and noticed that if I wanted I could well afford two photoshoots with Randy so that’s what I did. I also bought and autograph with him since I wanted to maximize the time spent with him.

Then we just sat there and spent our time waiting for the photoshoot to start. I had bought a birthday card for Randy, since his birthday was coming up, and was trying to come up with something intelligent to write there. Finally they announced photoshoots with Randy. The Italian part of our group joined the queue first and we remained behind to watch their stuff. I knew they were planning on doing a group shot with Randy. When I saw them getting closer I moved to stand so that I could see them when they got that shot. It cracked me up when I saw them all doing the “shark” impression with Randy.

When they came back from their photoshoot it was time for us others to join the queue. I handed in my photoshoot tickets and walked to Randy. He said his "Hello again" to me and I replied. Then I asked if we could take a "huggy" photo this time around. He said "sure" and I wrapped my arms around his waist. He had his other hand on my arm and another around my shoulders. I could have stayed there longer too.

Next he said thank you and obviously expected me to leave but I told him that I still had another shot and asked if we could do one back to back. He seemed alright with that and we took that picture. I said thanks but then also asked if I could still ask him something. He nodded and leaned towards me to hear me better. Nervewrecking anyone! I asked if he had had any input in the drawings Justin had done in the series. He said no and that he had just done some of the coloring and retracing so that it looked like he had done it. I still asked him if he could draw at all. He gave a small laugh and said that not really. At that point I was ready to take my leave but when I said my thanks and turned to leave, the photographer told us that he wanted to take another shot of the back to back picture, just in case. I was more than happy to go through with that, so we again posed. I did change my pose a little, though. Without me knowing Randy did the exactly same thing. *g* I again said my thanks (for the third time, or something *g*) and walked back to my friends.

There were just some things in French going on so we decided to have our lunch break at that point so that we would be back early for the next Q&A that was going to have Randy in it. When we got back to the convention center there was already some queue in front of it but since it obviously was the custom there, I was rude and walked almost to the front of the queue where I could see some of my friends standing. *g* So there we stood and waited for them to open the doors. Finally the doors opened and people ran to the hall to get their seats. I again took seats from the third row on the right, where I had sat before too. I thought those seats were pretty good since that was the side where the Q&As were held.

After the dance performance there was a small break before the Q&A started. At that point we were around 40 minutes late of the schedule. I really did hope they would stretch the schedule from the other end too as much. I know that in many conventions things don’t start in time and it’s actually an ongoing joke in some circles that there’s this thing called SCT (Standard Convention Time) that doesn’t follow any real time zones. But in those cases, if things start late, they also run later. In this convention I got the feeling that even if things started late, they still finished on time, which of course cut our time to see the actors on stage. I sort of found this funny since it was the actors at least I had paid to come and see there, not all the side programs the organizers had come up with. While I did appreciate the effort they put to those shows and all, I’d still preferred to have more time with the actors on stage.

Anyway, back to the Q&A. Before they allowed the actors on stage, they again talked about the "wild cards" and really encouraged people to try and come up with some questions that would force the actors to use them. Again something I found weird. I’m sorry to say, but if there’s an actor I want to ask questions from on stage for around 30 minutes a day, of which time quite a lot goes to translating questions and answers back and forth, I want to ask proper questions that I really want an answer to and not some joke questions. I just think they could have kind of allowed more time for the Q&As since they didn’t have time for so many questions. Before the Q&A started the organizers had told us that they had been in some cons in the UK and there the joke questions had been very popular and funny. Yes, I’ve been to several Torchwood conventions myself where there’s been all kinds of weird questions but in those you get all the actors on stage twice every day, so there’s time for serious questions and then during the final panel with all the actors together, people usually go at least slightly crazy. That’s the spirit of those conventions. The atmosphere in this convention was completely different and as said before every actor was on stage only once per day and only for a short time.

That was then all for the Q&A. The actors left the stage and people got up from their chairs to clap. Next up where the autographs but since I guessed there was going to be a long queue, I remained behind in the hall to see if anything was happening. They started playing some game where you had to guess the season and episode of the screenshot they showed. They were doing screenshots from both QaF and the L-Word. I did try my luck with a few of the QaF ones. I did get the season right usually but the episodes were slightly more difficult. When that ended I made my way towards the autograph queue. I saw there were quite a few people there but I decided to join the end of the queue anyway. To my disappointment we had been told that the pictures we had taken that day wouldn’t be back in time for the autographs since there had been some trouble with them. I had thought about getting either the huggy or the back-to-back picture autographed but had to go with another picture instead.

While in the queue I went through in my head things I wanted to say to him this time around. I knew it was going to be my last chance to talk to him so I wanted to be sure I got everything said, that I wanted. Way too quickly it was my turn and I walked towards him. I heard him calling me by my name which made me feel all fluttery inside. I know I have a short and easy to remember name and I had been pestering him more than enough during the weekend, but it was still nice he remembered my name.

I handed the two autograph cards to his PA and then the promopicture of him as well as a picture of us together to Randy. He began signing the photo of us together first. I told him that I felt like I should apologize for my T-shirt since it was sort of a rude one. He gave me this really lovely smile and said that he didn’t think it was rude at all. I then said something about swearwords in it and he still disagreed with me. At that point he was already beginning to sign the promopicture. I watched amazed when he wrote the following text on it. "Pia, you ARE a fuckin’ princess". I had no idea what to say about that and I just stood there with this stupid smile on my face. Then I shook myself and said to him that I knew it was his birthday the next day and that I had a card for him. I handed the card to him and he gave it a cursory look but didn’t start reading it. I did mention that I had written Happy Birthday on the card in Finnish, at which point he did look at the text and stared at the words. He then asked me how to say it and I told him. He looked at me this weird look on his face and asked me to repeat it slower. I did and he tried to copy me, not with much success. I know the Finnish language is really difficult and it was amusing hearing him try to copy me. He did get it pretty close in the end. Then I told him that since I knew that he probably had already quite a lot of stuff to take with him, I hadn’t bought him any present. He said okay and looked at me a bit like he was thinking “and you are telling me this why?” I quickly continued that instead of the present I’d rather like to donate the money I would have spent on his birthday present to some charity of his choosing in his name. He looked quite pleased by that. I then asked him which organization that would be and he gave me a name. He continued to say that it was a really nice thought from me and that he really appreaciated it. Then he again gave me a smile. The PA started to look like she wished I would already be gone but I still encouraged my mind and asked if I could still give him a birthday hug and that I hoped I wasn’t overstepping any limits. He said sure and got up from his chair and leaned over the table to hug me. I wished him Happy Birthday in English while I hugged him. I then thanked him and once more said the Happy Birthday in Finnish. He said something on the lines of "Um, yeah, that" and smiled.

I’m glad I managed to get down the stairs without falling down to meet my friends who were waiting for me. I showed the autograph in the photoshoot to everyone and got quite excited reactions from people. I still couldn’t believe he had actually written that on the picture but I totally treasured it.

Next there was some time for us to just hang around before the final panel with the guests was starting. I managed to buy this poster they’d had hanging on the walls. It was a picture of the cast from season 4 and I’d been craving the poster for the whole weekend. Me and my friends got the final three posters they had for sale.

Then it was time for the closing ceremony with the guests. I also knew there was going to be the dancing routine they had been practicing the whole weekend. I had made up my mind that I wasn’t going to be doing any dancing but when I got to the hall I noticed that you weren’t allowed to on the side where I usually sat. You were supposed to be in the middle area if you were dancing and at the far left side if you weren’t doing the dancing. Since I wanted to get my final photos of the guests I resigned myself staying on the stairs next to the middle area and doing the dancing routine. I just hoped I wouldn’t mess it up too badly since I hadn’t been there for any of the rehearsals. When we had all take our places they started to play the music with quiet volume and went through the routine one more time. I found out that it was relatively easy to follow and there weren’t any too complicated moves so I thought I might be able to do it.

After the final rehearsal they told us to take our places, which meant that we were all standing with our backs to the stage. The curtains were closed so that the guests wouldn’t see us when they got on stage. We could hear them walking across the stage. I did wonder in my head about what they were thinking when they got on stage and the curtain was still closed since on the previous time it had always been open. We heard them moving around a little. Then someone obviously gave a sign that they were all settled and the curtains were opened. Even if we were supposed to be standing with our backs to the stage I couldn’t resist the temptation of looking over my shoulder. All the guests were sitting there with these confused expressions on their face and trying to see what was going on. It must have looked weird to them to have everyone with their back towards them. Then the music started and we started dancing. After the first moves we turned around so that we were standing with our faces towards them. They still had slightly confused expressions but only after a few moves, Rachel suddenly said something to the others and got up from her chair and started copying us. That got a cheer out of the crowd. She then obviously told the others to get up too and they did. Laurel did seem to be more into it than Randy who just stared for a while before he began to copy to moves too. It was quite hilarious looking when they tried to see what we were doing and copy that. I totally loved Randy’s version of running his hands down his body and then doing this side thing with his hands. To me he looked like a bunny rabbit doing that. *g*

Anyway, we got the dance routine done and then there was a lot of cheering. When things quieted down all the guests gave their thanks. The organizers also thanked all the crew that had been helping them out. Then they showed this short film one of the organizers had made. It was in French so I didn’t really understand much of it but it was a story of this gay superhero who saves the day and prevents this twink jumping off the roof. Sound familiar to anyone? *g* After that the guests said their goodbyes. We felt all blue since the con was over.

I hope you enjoyed and thanks for reading!

Copyright © 2010 | All rights reserved
Written by Pia - Edited by Marcy

Queer as folk convention:
Paris October 30th / November 1st 2010