I don't drink at cons. I mean, I'll have a beer or maybe a glass of wine with dinner, but I don't go out drinking the way young people go out drinking, even though I usually see people I love and it would be a lot of fun to go out to a pub for some pints. I figure that I'm already pushing my body past its regular limits just by talking for hours at a time, and I don't see a lot of benefit in taxing it further with the introduction of excessive amounts of wonderful, wonderful booze. Besides, I have a responsiblity to be fresh and 100% present when I'm meeting fans and performing, and I take that responsibility very seriously.
So last night, I went to a special FedCon reception for everyone who was appearing here. It was a great time, and I enjoyed the conversation and company (along with two drinks) over about four hours. When I realized how late it was, I said my goodnights, and went back to my room. I suppose it was about 1am.
I got ready for bed, and looked at my laptop ... its wallpaper is the Aperture Science loading screen from Portal 2. "Oh, I'll just play one or two levels before bed..." I thought.
The next thing I knew, it was 3am. "Oh shit. Okay, it's not the worst thing in the world. I don't have to do anything until 1pm tomorrow, so surely I can get my 8 hours of sleep and I'll be ready to go."
I logged off (by the way, GLaDOS really holds a grudge, doesn't she?) and jumped into bed. My mind replayed the level I'm currently stuck on -- the hallmark of a truly great game -- and I guess I drifted off to sleep after about 15 or 20 minutes.
The next thing I knew, Stephan was knocking on my door. It was 12:45pm.
I jumped out of bed in a mostly-awake panic, and flew to the door. "I overslept," I said. "I'll be ready in 10 minutes."
I showered as fast as I ever have, and put myself together in 12 minutes.
"I guess I'll have to add 'don't play video games late at night' to the list of things I don't do at cons," I thought with a tired grin.
I woke up in the lift on my way to the stage, and any residual cobwebs were thrown off by the reception the audience gave Marina and me when we walked out on stage.
For the next hour, she and I told stories about working together, answered questions from the crowd, and had a really, really good time. I loved every second of it, and I couldn't help but remember how nervous and anxious I felt years ago when I spoke at The Galaxy Ball. Man, what a long, strange trip it's been since then.
Now I'm relaxing with a cup of coffee and Matthew Sweet on the CBGB I Heart Radio station while I write this up. I'm going to head down to the vendor's room to get a birthday present for a friend, eat some lunch, and then relax until the closing ceremonies tonight. I'm looking forward to going home to my wife and our pets, but I can tell that I'm going to miss being here.
FedCon has been amazing for me. I've had a wonderful time, and I hope I am invited back again.