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Monday, November 05, 2007

Don't Blunder With Dunder

Are you geeky about a TV Show? Many of us are -there's no shame in it. I talk to a lot of people each day at the store who love Heroes, Battlestar Galactica, Star Gate, some incarnation of Star Trek, or lament the need to bring back Firefly. While I don't watch any of those shows, I do have my own little TV obsession: The Office. And now just like all the Trekkies (or are you Trekkers?), us fans of The Office had our own convention, October 26-28th, in the Electric City, Scranton, Pennsylvania!

My friend Kate and I attended the second day of the convention, and it was a blast! We waited in line at registration for a good 45 minutes for our intern passes Kate ordered online, but luckily it was a good time to be in line that morning because we each scored one of the limited tickets to the Q&A session that evening with the cast which is what we really wanted in on. Once we had our badges, tickets, and NBC packets we headed downtown for the street fair, where all sorts of local businesses joined in on the fun. We got to see stands for some of the real businesses that are part of the world of the show like Poor Richard's Pub and Alfredo's Pizza Cafe("The Good Pizza") . Poor Richard's had the best stuff for sale like their "Ain't No Party Like A Scranton Party!" shot glasses and pub glasses. We also got a pretty cool bag of free office supplies from One Point. Yes, I really am so weird that a free bag of office supplies seemed very cool! I love highlighters!

After wandering around through the fair, we dodged the rain inside Fagley's Pub (a spot Kevin talks fondly of), and after talking a bit to a couple at another table, we got a tip that if we headed back to the NBC tent, we might luck out and get through the crowds and snag some autographs. This was great because we thought you had to be a higher level ticket holder than we were to get in for autographs, but it turns out that wasn't the case at all. We got to see Phyllis Smith (Phyllis Lapin) and her other half on the show Bobby Ray Shafer (Bob Vance, Vance Refrigeration). Creed was there and so were Calvin Robinson(Darryl) and Melora Harding(Jan), but we had just missed them. So we bolted from the tent to the main stage to see the Scrantones do the Office theme and then suddenly they were joined by none other than Crazy Creed Bratton, who I'm not sure even knows he's a character on a TV Show. The whole day he was just Creed, and he was hilarious! I think my favourite moment with him was his telling of the saga of how he came to be the "four toed Creed". So for those of you who remember the episode "Take Your Daughter To Work", but have never heard the story:

"Creed was orphaned at a very early age and left on the doorstep of a poor Chinese family. Upon taking Creed in, they bound his feet to make him more attractive to potential future suitors. However, in time the family came to discover this tradition is performed on little girls, and they tried to undo what they'd done, but their folly cost Creed a toe on each foot. Fortunately Rogain could be used to get the hair on his feet to grow thick enough to cover the place where the toe had been."

How crazy is that story?!? I'd love to know if that was scripted or an ad lib!

So in addition to sharing some odd anecdotes of Creed's life, he also played us "I Got the Hots for You Blues", proving to the crowd that really was him playing on the "Booze Cruise" episode. He was also joined on stage by Craig Robinson (Darryl) and Kate Flannery (Meredith). The most random thing about this was probably Craig and the band just randomly breaking out their version of Radiohead's "Creep". It was awesome!

After the Scrantones and company, we rushed to the University of Scranton Athletic Building for the Q&A, and that was just amazing! For over two hour series creator Greg Daniels and nearly all of the cast answered fan questions and dropped some hints at things to come in the show. I couldn't believe how much my face and my stomach hurt afterwards from all the laughing I'd done during the session. It was so much fun!

Once the Q&A wrapped up, we headed downtown to get some more pictures, including the "Welcome to Scranton" sign the show uses in its opening, which is on display in the food court at the Steam Town Mall, and then we had to head to Poor Richard's to have a beer and relax before hitting the road.

So that's a summary of my Office Convention experience. I could go on and on, but I think I've recounted enough here. I think from the turn out of over 50,000 people they'll do it again next year.

If they do, I'd definitely get on this and do it again.

That's what she said.


At 11/07/2007 1:56 AM, Blogger Bill at Comix Connection said...

That is a great story, Joe. Hard to believe that 50K people showed up! Veddy cool. And the Creed 4-toe story is HIlarious!


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