"If the Penny Arcade Expo has a star, it's not Gabe or Tycho. It's not special guests like MC Frontalot or Wil Wheaton. It's not even veritable champions of nerdery like PAX '08 Omegathon winner Joey Gecko. No, it's geeky culture itself. And when we gather to celebrate our own, wackiness invariably ensues."
"Best Thing About PAX: Ownership. PAX is everyone's so everyone tends to add their bit, creating something new or innovating. It's just part of the makeup of this demographic that things don't get left alone. I think that's what I like best of all, is how most of the con goers think of it as their convention, not just one they attend."
The night before I left for PAX, I hardly got any sleep at all (thank you, ribacge, for picking Thursday night to hurt like a bitch) so by the time I got there on Friday afternoon, I was already down to single-digit hit points, and taking a -5 on all my rolls.
But an unexpected thing happened as soon as I set foot in the convention center. As explained by the quotes above, this weekend is our time. It's Goonie time, and the moment I walked in, I got +10 to all my stats and was restored to maximum HP.
Sometime on Friday night, though, I failed a critical save vs. ConSARS, and by the middle of the day on Saturday, I was feeling pretty terrible. I think I played though it pretty well, but I missed the concerts on Saturday night, and felt a little "off" for the first 15 minutes of my panel on Sunday, until I picked up another +10 from the ohmygodstandingroomonly crowd. By the time I got on the plane to come home yesterday, though, I was hovering around 2 HP, and I'd picked up a familiar I'll just call Wil's Sinusital Ooze (Level 4 Disgusting Annoyance. Gives owner -8 to all abilities, -15 CHA, and -6 to all reaction rolls. 5 successive Fortitude saves ends.)
I'll have to give a full report when Wil's Sinusital Ooze isn't launching Slimers out of my head every five minutes, but I think I can sum it up in five words I repeated dozens of times during the weekend: "This just keeps getting better!"