Wednesday, August 12, 2015

My Little Brony

Several months ago, in our continued quest to ensure that our daughter enjoys 24-hour entertainment throughout her childhood, we purchased tickets to the One Direction concert in Baltimore. We decided to make a weekend of it, as we planned to attend the concert with our friends and their daughters.

And early this spring, we figured we should reserve our hotel rooms for the getaway. While we knew the band was extremely popular, it was still surprising that a quick check of available hotel rooms turned up almost nothing for the weekend of the show. Especially after hearing that a number of organizations had shied away from Baltimore as a conference destination after the rioting and increase in crime that has plagued the city in recent months.

The lack of accommodations remained a mystery until our friend, Emily, happened to discover that BronyCon was being held in Baltimore the exact same weekend as the One Direction show.

For those not in the know (and wow…do I miss those blissful, innocent days of not knowing that such an event existed), BronyCon is an annual gathering of more than EIGHT THOUSAND people who enjoy dressing and mingling as characters from My Little Pony.

Lest you think this is the same (young, female) demographic who might attend a One Direction concert, please know that the bulk of attendees are adults...and that many of them are men...

...who pay as much as $2000 for a weekend registration package at a My Little Pony convention...


This Venn Diagram may illustrate my point more effectively:

If anyone needs me, I'll be bleaching my eyeballs.
(Aside: This blog is nothing if not educational -- this is the second time I have made reference to a Venn Diagram here at Brutalism. Perhaps Brutalism will become part of the Common Core.)  

We eventually found accommodations at the Admiral Fell Inn, a quirky little hotel in the heart of Fells Point. To wit: while waiting to check in, a creepy, gangly guy wearing a captain's hat and carving a piece of wood who looked exactly like the bad guy in every episode of Scooby Doo asked if we wanted to go on a ghost tour of the hotel. He explained, "a lot of people say this hotel is haunted," while not registering the fact that one little girl in our group was terrified that her hotel room might be haunted and her chin began quivering. We moved away from him and did not see him again until we checked out the next morning...while he was inexplicably playing the violin in the lobby (?)

The gentlemen in our group, budget-conscious as they are, felt the concert should be enjoyed by the ladies only, while they took one for the team and hung out at the many establishments in Fells Point during the concert.

We girls took an Uber from the Admiral Fell Inn to the stadium, during which I excitedly informed our Uber driver all about BronyCon and told him he should go after he dropped us off. When we arrived at our destination, he awarded me five stars as a passenger.

I'm pretty sure those two things are related.

(Later that night, my 9-year-old daughter noted, "It was weird that you told someone you just met about BronyCon." And I died a little inside, because it's like she does not even know me. But then I realized "BronyCon" was now part of her lexicon and felt a little better.)

We are actually more Team Niall/Harry. (Now that Zayn is gone, anyway.)
And yes, I am wearing a 1D t-shirt. Unironically.
The show was awesome. Seriously -- one of the best shows I have ever attended. (Apologies to the Ramones. And the Grateful Dead. And Fugazi.)

Finding a cab on the way home proved to be a bit of a challenge, so we walked to the inner harbor and (inadvertently) into the Brony HQ hotel – where we celebrated great moments in parenting by taking pics of our little innocents in front of the BronyCon signage at midnight.

Future Bronys.
The guys got back to the hotel shortly after we did, and we learned over breakfast the next morning that we had identical experiences of the guys being just fortified enough to tell us the same exact story (loudly, and several times in a row) about some band they saw at The Horse You Came In On.

After breakfast, we spent some time walking through a flea market and looking at all kinds of ridiculous flea market finds. Which is when one of the little girls in our group pointed to a crucifix necklace and exclaimed, “Look, Mommy! We can get this for Tricia because it’s a “T”!

We'll say "Hi" to all the Bronys in hell,