One area where Phil’s disenchantment probably leapt ahead of mine was cosplay. I remember doing a show with him where he got visibly and vocally irritated with cosplayers running around and yelling much like the costumed attendee in panel 3. Unpredictable loud noises close to your ear will not improve your mood on the best sales day.

Although the real cosplay problems from our end of the table were practical issues and personal embarrassment. Most people wearing Bionicle suits or skintight leotards aren’t compromising their look by carrying wallets or purses, so trying to sell anything to them was a lost cause, and sometimes they were all that was in our field of vision.

And the most eye-catching costumes of the female variety required additional vigilance from us both. I don’t mean to shame anyone here, certainly not someone who’d been waiting all year to display their cosplay talents, show their fitness, and/or overcome any body-image issues. But the boredom that settles in around hour three of a typical con day could at times lead our eyes to wander– and I’m not always great at eye contact anyway, so I’m pretty sure mine looked like they were wandering more than they were. I don’t mean to portray us as drooling idiots either– we took respectful interaction with fans very seriously– but if you’ve got a conscience, it doesn’t take much to feel like you’ve turned into a lech. “We’re going to hell,” Phil said to me calmly as four Mistys of indeterminate age passed our table.