Older Congoers

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eidna
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Older Congoers

Post by eidna » Mon Apr 09, 2012 9:12 am

This year marked my first convention where I felt a bit out of place among all the young congoers. My husband and I are 25 and though we're not old by any means we FELT old at AB this year. I can only handle having people screech and yell and run around so long before I need a break - I don't find it fun anymore, just annoying. Nor do we fit in with the drunken college crowd. We both still like anime and enjoy the convention events and seeing all the cosplay...just feeling a bit like relics I suppose ;)

Has anyone else experienced this? How do you continue to enjoy anime conventions as you get older, and a large part of the subculture in general which tends to be built around the 21 and under crowd? Share your experiences!
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Gale » Mon Apr 09, 2012 9:40 am

A friend and I actually almost did a panel on this. It's one he's run before, and I've helped plan (but was never at the con where he ran it).

I'll be 25 the end of the month and almost all my friends are older than me (may around 30 now, a few even older) and we've been having this experience at most anime cons we attend for several years now. In my experience, as the years go on and the masses around us seem less and less mature (either actually or relatively, it's hard to say) I find myself turning inwardly to my group of friends to make my convention experience. Yes, we still go to panels, cosplay in the hall, and often enter the masquerade, but, at least personally, I find myself interacting less with random congoers. Those I meet and befriend anew now are more likely to be friends of friends.

I find that as one ages, in order to keep congoing fun, you have to reinvent how you spend your time at the event. A lot of my friends now staff at least one convention (I'm now working two), we also run panels, and we tend to challenge ourselves with more intricate costume projects. In addition, we've started branching out to attend more science fiction-themed cons (like Arisia in Boston, or Dragon*Con down in Atlanta) which tend to have an older crowd. That's not to say we don't still love the anime cons, but the sci fi ones give us something that the anime ones can't.

I did feel the crowd, so often screaming "marco polo" and other nonsense, was more annoying than usual, but then my last convention was Dragon*Con so my perceptions may simply be skewed and I just am not remembering the annoyance of last year.

I try to combat the obnoxiousness by keeping an advice blog geared at newbies, and some of the information covered is of a "betterment" and "etiquette" nature. Granted, they have to read it first, but if enough people start talking down inappropriate behavior the idea that it's wrong will eventually seep into the masses. For example, excessive "glomping" does not seem as prevalent as it used to be some 5 or 6 years ago, all because so many more level-headed cosplayers spoke out about how annoying and dangerous the habit was.

Maybe I'm just being naive because I want to believe that I can keep anime cons fun for myself, but I don't see any reason they can't be. For the moment I plan on continuing attending as long as my career and finances will allow it!

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Shizuma » Mon Apr 09, 2012 9:59 am

Well I personally don't have a problem with feeling old at all and i'm quite a bit older than you, i'm 34, of course I also don't look like i'm 34 and have a more youthful personality than one would except from my age, so I always have a blast, and really wish I had more friends that were like the over-excited younger con goers.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Estarose » Mon Apr 09, 2012 10:18 am

I'm 18 but I feel the same way you do. I wish I were 21 so I could go to Nauticon. Of course I've never been (pretty sure it's new) but I would suggest you check it out :)

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by shyranelle » Mon Apr 09, 2012 10:27 am

Gale wrote:A friend and I actually almost did a panel on this. It's one he's run before, and I've helped plan (but was never at the con where he ran it).

I'll be 25 the end of the month and almost all my friends are older than me (may around 30 now, a few even older) and we've been having this experience at most anime cons we attend for several years now. In my experience, as the years go on and the masses around us seem less and less mature (either actually or relatively, it's hard to say) I find myself turning inwardly to my group of friends to make my convention experience. Yes, we still go to panels, cosplay in the hall, and often enter the masquerade, but, at least personally, I find myself interacting less with random congoers. Those I meet and befriend anew now are more likely to be friends of friends.

I find that as one ages, in order to keep congoing fun, you have to reinvent how you spend your time at the event. A lot of my friends now staff at least one convention (I'm now working two), we also run panels, and we tend to challenge ourselves with more intricate costume projects. In addition, we've started branching out to attend more science fiction-themed cons (like Arisia in Boston, or Dragon*Con down in Atlanta) which tend to have an older crowd. That's not to say we don't still love the anime cons, but the sci fi ones give us something that the anime ones can't.

I did feel the crowd, so often screaming "marco polo" and other nonsense, was more annoying than usual, but then my last convention was Dragon*Con so my perceptions may simply be skewed and I just am not remembering the annoyance of last year.

I try to combat the obnoxiousness by keeping an advice blog geared at newbies, and some of the information covered is of a "betterment" and "etiquette" nature. Granted, they have to read it first, but if enough people start talking down inappropriate behavior the idea that it's wrong will eventually seep into the masses. For example, excessive "glomping" does not seem as prevalent as it used to be some 5 or 6 years ago, all because so many more level-headed cosplayers spoke out about how annoying and dangerous the habit was.

Maybe I'm just being naive because I want to believe that I can keep anime cons fun for myself, but I don't see any reason they can't be. For the moment I plan on continuing attending as long as my career and finances will allow it!
Well stated.

I'm 26 and my husband and his friend are both 30. We had to take some time in our hotel rooms to have a little downtime because there was just so much going on. Not just in terms of activities and events, but with all the people running around and being crazy too. I have no problem with that personally - people are supposed to have fun at these events and people have different ways of having fun.

As for next year, we're already planning on it. I'm not sure if we're going to take our daughter with us or if we're going to wait a few more years. But if we do, that will be a whole new set of fun and challenges.
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Shinobi Kitsune » Mon Apr 09, 2012 10:56 am

I'm 27, my boyfriend's 25...except he's right in there with everyone yelling out the "marco polo" and "buttscratcher" stuff. It's silly and sometimes annoying but I just tune it out. My issue is...not so much the yelling and screaming and acting like little kids bit. I don't look 27, I have had people at work be totally shocked at the age, thinking I was 19, so I think I still have maybe 3 years before that catches up with me....and I can't do the younger looking cosplays anymore. So I just enjoy it all while I can. Ignore all the childish mayham and enjoy YOUR time at the con...not everyone else'.
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by eidna » Mon Apr 09, 2012 11:02 am

Gale wrote: I find that as one ages, in order to keep congoing fun, you have to reinvent how you spend your time at the event. A lot of my friends now staff at least one convention (I'm now working two), we also run panels, and we tend to challenge ourselves with more intricate costume projects. In addition, we've started branching out to attend more science fiction-themed cons (like Arisia in Boston, or Dragon*Con down in Atlanta) which tend to have an older crowd. That's not to say we don't still love the anime cons, but the sci fi ones give us something that the anime ones can't.
I think you're right. I'm at the point where I need to reinvent how I spend my time - I've never interacted much with other congoers to begin with though. I am accustomed to spending all my time at the con, and this year I found myself coming and going a lot because I just needed a break (especially after popular fandom events like anything Hetalia related...my goodness. I love Hetalia but...yeah). I've been attending AB since 2004 so the annoyance I felt this year was a bit surprising and disappointing to me. It also doesn't help that, being older/married/having a mortgage and all that boring stuff, I have less time to devote to watching new shows, playing games, etc - and less money to consume said things. So I sometimes feel like I'm one step away from going "Back in my day we had to search high and low in stores for our anime and by golly, we didn't complain!" XD

I was considering whether next year I want to stay all weekend...I really do like it but if I'm only there for a few hours a day is it worth it? I was considering cosplaying next year, maybe that will help. I skipped this year as a lot of anime I watch tends to have younger characters, and I feel like I look a bit awkward now, dressing as a character who is supposed to be 16 (I don't look old, but I definitely look too mature/woman-ish to be in high school, haha). However, there are many characters in their 20's out there that I could try! It's not like I feel like I look ridiculous, but I'd like to get weird looks in my cosplay because it's unusual, not because I look like a 20-something trying to be 14, you know?

I think I should source out other cons, too. I meant to go to the Star Trek con last year but ended up missing it. I hadn't heard of Arisia or Nauticon so I'll definitely check those out!
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Ryan227 » Mon Apr 09, 2012 11:41 am

I'm 26 and I've been going to AB since I was 19 and I've felt old for a few years now actually :lol: But it's weird because this year I felt old in a different way. In the past it was because I was irritated by noisy, annoying people so while I thought "Gah these kids are all so young... I feel old!" actually I was just bothered by the maturity level more so than the actual age of them. However this year I felt old when I realized that there are people who would consider the shows I started with very old or classics even. imo I haven't even been an anime fan for that long, I started pretty late so yeah when I hear people calling anime from the 00s old or classics it makes me feel super old! But I'm not really bothered by it, actually I feel I've mellowed a lot myself and I was able to enjoy the con this year just as much as always. One of the reasons could be because I'm very shy and I've never viewed the con as a social thing so it doesn't really matter to me how old anyone else is there anyways... well I guess the lack of maturity does still bother me but I spent less time wandering the halls this year so I didn't really have the time to be irritated by the stupid hallway games and stuff.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Caesar » Mon Apr 09, 2012 11:57 am

22... and I guess I'm not that old...
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by eidna » Mon Apr 09, 2012 12:09 pm

Ryan227 wrote:I'm 26 and I've been going to AB since I was 19 and I've felt old for a few years now actually :lol: But it's weird because this year I felt old in a different way. In the past it was because I was irritated by noisy, annoying people so while I thought "Gah these kids are all so young... I feel old!" actually I was just bothered by the maturity level more so than the actual age of them. However this year I felt old when I realized that there are people who would consider the shows I started with very old or classics even. imo I haven't even been an anime fan for that long, I started pretty late so yeah when I hear people calling anime from the 00s old or classics it makes me feel super old! But I'm not really bothered by it, actually I feel I've mellowed a lot myself and I was able to enjoy the con this year just as much as always. One of the reasons could be because I'm very shy and I've never viewed the con as a social thing so it doesn't really matter to me how old anyone else is there anyways... well I guess the lack of maturity does still bother me but I spent less time wandering the halls this year so I didn't really have the time to be irritated by the stupid hallway games and stuff.

For me it's not the age itself but like you said, the maturity. I know I sound like an old fart but I guess I can only stand being smashed into so many times before I get annoyed. I think it depends a lot not on your numbered age but your life experience - for example I've been working full time and living on my own since I was 19. Someone who is my age and still lives at home probably has an entirely different worldview and different experiences. So I end up seeming older than some of my peers - which is good and bad I suppose :) I prefer calmer discussions over glomping and running about. Which isn't to say some younger people aren't mature - I know many who are!
I've never socialized much but if I do I find that I have basically...nothing to relate to or shows in common nowadays because a whole lot of my favorites are 10-20 years old now(I've been going to AB since I was around 16, and into anime since...mid-90's I guess? I got into it pretty young). What do you mean Trigun is a classic now? ;) Same with video games. I haven't played much since the Gamecube/PS2/GBA generation and in game/internet time that is positively ancient.
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by wer » Mon Apr 09, 2012 12:40 pm

I turn 25 later this year and I've been attending AB since 2006. I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one slowly losing interest in things that I used to find really fun at cons... I guess you could compare the feeling to a child losing their interest in toys as they grow older, but manages to find new things to appeal to their imagination. I tend to make friends who are younger than me but are very mature, though regardless I try to make an effort to hang out with the friends I already know as opposed to trying to reach out and make new ones from random people in the halls. I used to get such a kick out of cosplaying and meeting new people but now, not so much... I've found this year that I'm much more interested in the arts and crafts in the artist's alley as well as being able to participate in events and meet some of the guests of honor. I'm really hoping the 21+ Jazz Bar comes back next year since I wasn't able to go this time!
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Fyrii » Mon Apr 09, 2012 12:56 pm

Although I'm 19, and can't really say I'm old, I know what all of you are talking about. My friends and I are all about having fun and having a good time, but I couldn't stand the Marco Polo and other screaming and such- I think it's fine if it's said a few times but of course it is always taken too far. I have to say it has improved since last year- last year here I heard it said constantly, so I think it was better this time around. Other than that, some people need to be wary of where they are running because I definitely got tripped into by several people who were running without looking, in a very crowded place no less.

Also, I'd have to say I had a lot of fun at the 18+ panels, especially Extreme Geek which was hilarious. Still, I had a lot of fun this year regardless :]
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Master of NERV » Mon Apr 09, 2012 1:04 pm

Estarose wrote:I'm 18 but I feel the same way you do. I wish I were 21 so I could go to Nauticon. Of course I've never been (pretty sure it's new) but I would suggest you check it out :)
Nauticon 2012 is a first-year event, organized in large part by veteran AB staffers:

http://nauticons.com

I'm pre-reged myself and can't wait to see how this event works!
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Arakni666 » Mon Apr 09, 2012 1:06 pm

I'm only 21, so not really that old, but since I don't drink, I don't exactly fit in with the "drunken college crowd". But yeah, the Marco Polo got really annoying really fast, especially when people started trying to come up with new ways of answering it. No, "Homestuck" is not the correct way to reply to a shout of "Marco", no matter how much you love it.

One of my biggest problems this year was the lack of common courtesy. I was dressed as Link, so I had a shield attached to one arm and a sword in the other, and when I was in crowded areas I made sure to walk slightly sideways so I took up as little space as possible and wouldn't hit anyone with either of them. However, that certainly didn't stop people from walking right into them. I don't even mean a slight brush, I mean honestly walking right into them. One side of my shield is now covered with chipped paint from all the people who barreled right into it. I wouldn't even have minded if people at least tossed a "sorry" my way afterwards, but there were only one or two who did. What does this have to do with age? All the people who rammed into my shield/sword/side without apologizing looked much younger than me. Common decency doesn't stop at a convention.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Master of NERV » Mon Apr 09, 2012 1:29 pm

eidna wrote:Has anyone else experienced this? How do you continue to enjoy anime conventions as you get older, and a large part of the subculture in general which tends to be built around the 21 and under crowd? Share your experiences!
Full disclosure: age-wise, I'm staring down the barrel of 50. :roll:

I understand fully where you're coming from: I often wonder when this syndrome will eventually strike me down, too...every year, it seems I'm waiting for it to happen. I'm no partier, neither was my late wife who shared AB with me from the beginning to 2008. Nonetheless, there are a few things I do to keep the con spirit both alive and true to a man of my years.

First and foremost is the company I keep. For the last two years, I've had the good fortune of the company of congoers from their late 20s to early 30s. We tend to meet up in informal groups on Thursday night, and cluster together during the event.

Another is always remembering to give respect first and see if it's reciprocated, whether the congoer is 12 or 62. It can work wonders; this year, I fell into a conversation of younger attendees in line for "Bad Anime, Bad!" I treated these young folk (I'd say 17-20) as my peers, and always made sure to talk to them, not down to them. The next morning, I met up with them again, and they asked me whether I had a Facebook page. I don't, but I was a bit touched by the request, and said so.

Third, "Marco Polo" and other bellowed tropes wear on my nerves, too. At such times, I try to remember the advice of Marcus Aurelius in his Meditations: "...correct by teaching those that do wrong, but if you cannot, remember that indulgence is given to you for this purpose." I take this to mean that if you can, just treat the irritation like waves--they come and go, so just wait it out. A little indulgence can go a long way.

Next, I've been in anime fandom a long time, and I enjoy sharing my knowledge of anime's history with the younger crowd. It must be something about my approach (I have no experience as a teacher or lecturer), but younger fans are often attentive to what I have to say. And quite often they have tidbits about the latest and greatest, and I'm the student! :)

My last approach may seem odd at first, but I make it a point to attend industry panels and screenings of the most recent releases. In this, the younger and older fan are sharing something new together, and new experiences for all is a good binding agent for any sort of fandom.
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Elli21486 » Mon Apr 09, 2012 1:43 pm

I can definitely understand the feeling of being old. This was my fifth AB and as a 26 year old, I definitely felt old at times this year. Luckily, I can still be mistaken for a late teen. Yes, I agree, Marco Polo is annoying but at least I didn't hear anyone say that they Tom Selleck'ed it up. With that, I did sit with a group of random college students at the food court and I did feel a little unease, more likely since they were more hyped than anything else and the fact that I'm usually a loner.

Now, I do agree that for us older con goers, we need to reinvent how we experience it. Last year was the first year I took pictures and videos and this year, I did even more. Hopefully, I might be going with a small group who have told me that they would have gone if they knew for next year. If not, I'll probably still go for the photo opportunity I can have.
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by eidna » Mon Apr 09, 2012 2:14 pm

Master of NERV wrote:
Nauticon 2012 is a first-year event, organized in large part by veteran AB staffers:

http://nauticons.com

I'm pre-reged myself and can't wait to see how this event works!
I wish it wasn't so far - I'd like to check it out on a one-day basis but Provincetown is so far from the north shore where I live @_@
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by GMSenpai » Mon Apr 09, 2012 2:18 pm

I'm going to give the short of it as best I can as I'm writing a con report for my blog which will address this as well.

But this year I came in feeling old, worn down and completely out of place. I left being able to earnestly and easily say "I feel young." The great part about attending Anime Boston, be you new, a con going vet, old, young, in cosplay, out of cosplay and so on... everyone is so completely awesome that you don't feel anything but a part of the crowd.

I'd say what also helps is... think about who's in charge of everything... older people. The people who ultimately call the shots are older adults. They're creating a set of fun that is literally fun for all ages and doesn't necessarily date you.

The other thing to mention, if you're an adult and have children, go together. Some of the people I run into and talk to are there with their families.

And for the folks who mentioned Nauticon... you make me wish I could go. If I had more notice I'd have made arrangements. I love the concept of a 21+ convention, I absolutely loved PAC when the NEAS tried their hand at it(and if you guys want to do it again, please do).

But its all in how you feel and what you get out of the convention, and if you ask me for older congoers, Anime Boston is a fandom fountain of youth.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Yukito Kunisaki » Mon Apr 09, 2012 2:19 pm

I am 24, turning 25 in a few days, but I don't feel old. Then again, I am a child at heart tbh.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by President Aria » Mon Apr 09, 2012 2:20 pm

As a 35 year old, I also find that I have little interest and waning patience for various shouted memes and such, but this year I actually felt that there were less of them, or at the very least, much less participation of them. Marco Polo felt like it nearly died out, since on several occasions someone would shout it out, and there would literally be no response, or only a couple voices responding. I didn't hear much of the Adventure Time bit, although I did hear a few Red Robin's, which was a new one on me. Also a nice bonus was that I only saw a couple of boomboxes being used, and only one was what I'd consider a bit louder than it needed to be, but it was a vast improvement over last year. Perhaps I was lucky and just was in the right places.

Anyways, I've found that over the years my tastes in panels have changed. I don't really care to go to the geek fest type panels, where everyone is talking about how much they adore Sailor Moon or Hetalia or what have you. I'd much rather go to panels that can make me laugh, or ones that inform me about a broad variety of things. For example, Anime Hell was a great panel in my opinion. I had many laugh out loud, tears in my eyes sort of moments during there. Admittedly, I didn't get into the con scene until I was 28 years old, so I already didn't feel like I had to socialize or run around like a maniac to have fun. So, the whole con experience has felt pretty much the same to me as it did when I first started. The younger kids will do their thing, and us older kids will do ours, and if we find any common middle ground, great. If not, that's fine, I have a hentai panel to attend.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Master of NERV » Mon Apr 09, 2012 2:48 pm

Shinobi Kitsune wrote:I don't look 27, I have had people at work be totally shocked at the age, thinking I was 19, so I think I still have maybe 3 years before that catches up with me....and I can't do the younger looking cosplays anymore.
Please don't sell yourself short! ;) Like you, time has been very kind to me (when I'm clean-shaven, people often take me for man 10 years my junior), and I've cosplayed characters in their 20s well into my 40s! :D As I see it, cosplay is all about the skill and care of the costume and the ability of the cosplayer to effectively channel their character.
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Yukito Kunisaki » Mon Apr 09, 2012 4:37 pm

President Aria wrote:As a 35 year old, I also find that I have little interest and waning patience for various shouted memes and such, but this year I actually felt that there were less of them, or at the very least, much less participation of them. Marco Polo felt like it nearly died out, since on several occasions someone would shout it out, and there would literally be no response, or only a couple voices responding. I didn't hear much of the Adventure Time bit, although I did hear a few Red Robin's, which was a new one on me. Also a nice bonus was that I only saw a couple of boomboxes being used, and only one was what I'd consider a bit louder than it needed to be, but it was a vast improvement over last year. Perhaps I was lucky and just was in the right places.

Anyways, I've found that over the years my tastes in panels have changed. I don't really care to go to the geek fest type panels, where everyone is talking about how much they adore Sailor Moon or Hetalia or what have you. I'd much rather go to panels that can make me laugh, or ones that inform me about a broad variety of things. For example, Anime Hell was a great panel in my opinion. I had many laugh out loud, tears in my eyes sort of moments during there. Admittedly, I didn't get into the con scene until I was 28 years old, so I already didn't feel like I had to socialize or run around like a maniac to have fun. So, the whole con experience has felt pretty much the same to me as it did when I first started. The younger kids will do their thing, and us older kids will do ours, and if we find any common middle ground, great. If not, that's fine, I have a hentai panel to attend.

Now, see, THAT made me feel a BIT old. The "What time is it?"..... I was thinking that "TOOL TIME" was going to be shouted.

Anywho, yeah, I also only heard buttscratcher once or twice this year, and Marco polo definitely did die out a bit. I wouldn't mind if the Roadie thing kicked around a little bit (Not ALOT) though. I freaking love the Roadie.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by ZenErik » Mon Apr 09, 2012 4:44 pm

I've found there to be a lot more annoying people at Anime Boston and Otakon compared to a con like Katsucon. Young people just seem to feel the need to yell memes and screech and scream at AB and Ota... At some other cons I have been to (like Katsu and ANEXT) there is little if any of that, thankfully.

I'm not sure why I keep going to AB and Ota, haha. Perhaps it is because they are larger and have better dealer rooms.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Godhumanmonster » Mon Apr 09, 2012 4:50 pm

Funny enough, I'm 25 and I feel better about Anime Boston this year than last year.

A big part of that is just learning to accept the younger kids and their ways. Don't get me wrong, I flinch after every sonic boom that accompanies a "MARCO" or "POLO", but at the same time, what do you think under-18s are going to do at an anime con? As annoying as it is, I remember being like that once, and that in turn makes me all warm and fuzzy that I can be with a crowd that returns me to such a feeling, even if I have to constantly crash into cardboard cosplays to do it.

I also find myself getting more out of the con as time goes by. Whereas when I was younger, I would gawk around taking photos and clog up the hallways whenever an impromptu dance-off happened, as I get older I'm more likely to stop by the manga library and have a quiet moment, attend an informative panel about Japanese culture, but things I actually want or need at the Dealer's Room, and generally feel healthier during the day because I'm adult enough to know how to plan well.

Ironically, I also saw far less generic cosplays for kid-friendly shows like Naruto or Bleach this year. That helps a bit as one grows older, their tolerance for rather bland cosplays from shows they grew past becomes weaker.
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by royalbakaness » Mon Apr 09, 2012 4:56 pm

Yukito Kunisaki wrote:Now, see, THAT made me feel a BIT old. The "What time is it?"..... I was thinking that "TOOL TIME" was going to be shouted.
Funny you say that...my brother was getting tired of the Adventure Time bit, and a girl in line with us wouldn't stop shouting it, so he responded at one point with a very loud "TOOL TIME!" While I didn't approve of him adding to the noise pollution, I couldn't stop myself from laughing a bit.
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Kevin Z » Mon Apr 09, 2012 6:57 pm

I'm turning 26 tomorrow.

This is just a suggestion, but maybe next year we can have this 21+ group up? Or 25+? Like keeping in touch with contacts with private messages and such. (Not sure how safe that is)

I was okay with kids saying Marco Polo. It's just going to happen one way or another. I like the raves but I almost can't dance with anyone because of the AGE factor. I played lots of DDR to pass the time and bought some shirts and hat from dealer's room. I'm never much of an anime person. I went because most my friends are going and I just hang out with them a little. Still, a group around my age would be nice.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Caesar » Mon Apr 09, 2012 7:56 pm

Master of NERV wrote:
Estarose wrote:I'm 18 but I feel the same way you do. I wish I were 21 so I could go to Nauticon. Of course I've never been (pretty sure it's new) but I would suggest you check it out :)
Nauticon 2012 is a first-year event, organized in large part by veteran AB staffers:

http://nauticons.com

I'm pre-reged myself and can't wait to see how this event works!
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Aviflora » Mon Apr 09, 2012 8:03 pm

While standing in line for one of the 18+ shows, I had a guy in front of me ask me if I was 12. D:>

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by APimpNamedGendo » Mon Apr 09, 2012 8:09 pm

....well, I guess old is what you make of it.

I've been to all 10 Anime Bostons and am not sitting at a happy age of 31.... image wise Im not so sure it shows... if only because in 08 (line-con) I was pinned for 18 by a young girl I had pinned as 16 or so. I... still don't understand why she thought that a few years later, as I've been Commander Ikari every... damn... year... with pretty good success and at most shaving off a mustache. Even this year at the AMV competition I met a couple who I think were in their late teens who seemed unware I had a good 10 years on them. Good people... had a lot of fun joking around a bit with them. But I dont think they knew how old I was at all.

But THAT said, I subscribe highly to the 13 going on 30 and 30 going on 13 theory of life: LITTLE about maturity has to do with age. If Im the old-fogey, so be it. The same things that annoyed me in the halls 10 years ago annoy me today, while the same things that amused in the halls then also amuse me. (I've been known to yell BUtscratcher for example, but I HATE "Marco polo." Maybe it's because one is a Family Guy reference while the other is just... random? I don't know.)

Honestly, have fun and don't worry about it. And if you can pass a series or two to the kids to check out, great! If they can aim you towards something new, ALSO great! We are all here nerding it out on anime (or in this con, Dr. Who), so let's nerd it up! And if you need to rest a little, it's ok. The magic of the con will be there when you come back out of your hotel room.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by AnimeAnthropologist » Mon Apr 09, 2012 8:27 pm

We evolve as we get older, but that doesn't mean we still can't enjoy ourselves. We just need to get from the con what we want, and understand that it likely will fall on our own shoulders to both dictate and implement that idea.

Look on the bright side- you can also dictate your own post-con activities. Often without needing to worry about those kids. I've been doing cons since I was 17, and these days I'm always jazzed to go out for some actual jazz after my day is done, sit with other like-minded and mature people, and discuss rather than shout. I let the kids be kids, and I get to be the grown up. There's no one way everybody needs to experience the con, which is the wonder and joy about anime cons- they are what you want them to be, plain and simple.
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by jessikwa » Mon Apr 09, 2012 8:32 pm

Master of NERV wrote:Full disclosure: age-wise, I'm staring down the barrel of 50. :roll:
Completely off the topic of the thread: I saw you cosplaying Commander Ikari over the weekend and was blown away! You did such a great job. I'm sad I didn't get a chance to snap a picture, but my boyfriend and I were rushing to meeting our friends at the time and I didn't see you again after that. :(

As for the topic at hand.. I would tend to agree with almost everything being said here. I'm not "old" by any means, but the antics of some of the more -ahem- high energy con-goers can be a bit much. I'm 21, but much more reserved than my 25 year old boyfriend, who seems to be more accepting of the loud and silly behavior than myself. Regardless, it's never really bothered me to the point of the con being any less fun. I love Anime Boston, even in all it's silliness. <3
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by NobiZero » Mon Apr 09, 2012 8:39 pm

I'm 27, the eldest of my close friends that still cosplays. Yes, the hyperactivity bugs me a bit, but I used to be the same way. If anything, I just think about how that used to be me, chuckle, and move on with my day.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by DriftRoot » Mon Apr 09, 2012 8:50 pm

I'm 34, and started attending AB back in 2004...I think (memory is starting to go in my old age). I'm not crazy hyped up like I *used* to be about the con (back when I was a young thing of 26 - I tend to lag 5-7 years behind my peers, in this regard) and I feel it more and more every year. Going to a more adult event like Nauticon really doesn't interest me, though. I still wish I had the passion and the energy to thoroughly enjoy every aspect of the entire weekend at AB - from standing in line to staying up for the late-night panels to wandering the exhibitor's room five times over - but I just don't, and I don't think that changing venues is going to give that those things back to me.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by ErinErin » Tue Apr 10, 2012 6:15 pm

I'm a few weeks shy of 26, but I have been attending anime cons since I was 15, so I can totally understand where you are coming from. I started to feel too old for conventions when I was 22 or 23, but I didn't stop going, I just changed the way I attended.

One of the biggest changes was attending Anime Boston regularly (I had previously only been a few years here and there). When I came in 2010 I was amazed at how professional and thought provoking most of the panels I attended were. Sure there are a lot of kids running around the halls, but usually I find AB's panel & video programming content geared more towards a mature crowd. Also AB is the only con I've been to that has the 21+ event which is a great way to escape from the wild crowds and chat with folks your own age, even if you're not a drinker.

With age also came (for me) more stable finances which means I can now afford to stay in a hotel room that doesn't have 10 people crammed into it. I can sit at the hotel bar and sip a few cocktails while meeting other attendees closer to my age. I can afford to go to a nicer sit down restaurant for a quiet meal instead of dealing with the masses in the food court. These things all lead to a more relaxed convention experience.

I also attend completely different types of programming now that I'm older. As I've mentioned before, I'm all about a well presented, thought-provoking panel run by someone who knows what they're talking about. There are some panel topics that could be interesting, but given the subject, sound like they'll be full of screaming teenagers so I avoid those. I like attending the evening programming that is scheduled against the masquerade, since the younger crowd tends to go to that. I don't mind escaping to my hotel room for a few hours for break/nap if it means I'll have more fun later in the day. I also find myself exploring Artist Alley for a good chunk of time at every con I attend (and it's not just because my friend started selling her stuff there).

Finally, the best thing I did with a con near home was join their staff. I was still able to enjoy the convention atmosphere, but gave myself something to do to stay busy all day (as well as contribute to the success of the con).

I can get really annoyed by some younger attendee's behavior really quickly but learning how to keep myself amused and happy, and away from the parts of conventions I dislike, has given me a whole new appreciation for anime cons in general.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by thepolishpixie » Wed Apr 11, 2012 1:29 pm

The individuals in my group ranged from 28-32, and we had a blast at the con! True, I didn't make many new friends, but I was too busy cosplaying and enjoying the time with the friends I came with. We avoided most things >18, including the Informal Dances (tried that one year, did not enjoy being stomped on and elbowed repeatedly). I loved the Formal Ball and the 21+ Lounge! I spoke with the organizers, and they agreed to help push through a couple of rooms that would be set aside for 21+ for the entirety of the con. It could have a small dance floor, a bar, some munchies, gaming stations...just a place for us "older" folk to go and get away from the louder, young'uns. I think in an area such as that, we would feel comfortable chatting with strangers;)

I'm a costumer, I enjoy sewing and constructing a costume, and then walking around showing it off! Because of how much work I put into it, I prefer to stay away from crowds of loud, rowdy teens, who tend to bump into people. But I still check out the artist alley and deal hall, but that's about it. The 21+ Lounge was the perfect setting for me- some drinks (albeit expensive!), some jazz, a little dancing. Perfect.
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Legato » Wed Apr 11, 2012 2:51 pm

I've been going since 08 and I'm 32 this year. I have my most fun seeing cosplayers. I honestly don't go to many panels outside of the humorous ones (Bad anime,Bad is Epic!) or the 18+ ones. Most of the day panels aren't my type of stuff. Not to say it isn't good, I hope people enjoy it. But I geek out other ways. .. I just do what i enjoy. I spend 3/4 of the day before 7 or 8pm just watching people and taking pictures. I love it. I love seeing the creativity. Do I feel old at times. Yeah. But not too much cause i see others my age all over and some even older. And i don't care what's appropriate for my age. I just care about enjoying life. LoL

Things that do get on my nerves are the obvious Marco Polo, to which I shout "fish out of water, you are all out." Usually got me scowls and looks of disgust. I guess they never really played marco polo before... *shrug* You deal though.

Overall even if i feel old at times, even if the 3 or 4 hours sleep plus hour commute each way kills me, (Worked 12 days straight going into the con), I still walk away smiling every year. I'm still happy with what I saw. I guess what I'm trying to say is find what makes you happy about the con and roll with it. Don't focus on the stuff you don't enjoy and ignore stuff that annoys you. You paid good money to enjoy the event. So enjoy it. :-D
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by hop-is-my-hero » Thu Apr 12, 2012 1:49 pm

I think my friend Erinerin put it in a good way. We hit a rut around 22 and 23 where we almost stopped going to cons (I am 26). I just wasn't having fun anymore. The problem wasn't the con itself, or my like of anime (I think I am actually more of a fan now then I was then). It really was with how we were attending cons. We had to change the way we looked at them. To me they had become a way to see friends I only saw one time a year.

I started being able to afford more things as our financial situations became better. A few years ago we attended Zenkaikon on my birthday. We were the oldest attendees there. Everyone else our age who was there was on staff. It was that convention that we really started looking at how to change our experience at a convention. I started looking into selling at the Artist Alley and my other friends started to volunteer for the staff of conventions near them.

Strangely enough due to selling at anime conventions we have been attending more and more every year. we are branching out having money allows us to travel further out and attend some conventions that my college and high school self never would have imagined being able to attend. In fact there seem to be more and more conventions each year as well.

Having more money (and sometimes more time) allows me to elaborate on my cosplay as well. Sewing seems to take up a lot of my free time. and is quite a conversation starter. I even make costumes for my friends to wears so that we can group cosplay. They put up with my antics (as usually they are amusing)

I love that even at this age I still find things to talk about with people. in line, I spent about an hour talking to some young college age kids near the elevators on my hotel floor on friday night. I love being able to point out older shows that they may have bypassed. Even guessing ages (they did not do well haha). While the maturity level does get a little low in the hallways I generally find things that make me happy and enthralled with being at the convention. (although I do sometimes think that my Alley table has a chain attached to it, i missed a lot of panels that I would've loved to attend) But even having an alley table has allowed me to meet more of the people behind those tables and what a lovely community to be a part of.

It seems to me that you have hit a rut in your con-road. It's time to re-evaluate. Remember a convention is only as much fun as you allow yourself to have and find. Find something that engages you in your new older world.

I suppose and a word about Nauticon. I heard about it first at AAC and it somewhat got advertized to me as a 24 hour hotel party. I was like that's awesome. Then I actually attended a hotel party that night... by the next morning I was like.. perhaps I do not want to attend Nauticon. I am assuming the con itself is more involved then that. And some people really like that kind of thing. I do enjoy a good social hour in a hotel room but at the same time. I also enjoy sleeping. Remember just because it has an age restriction doesn't necessarily solve all the problems.
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by ModifierMR » Thu Apr 12, 2012 9:05 pm

My fiance and I are 25, and we kinda thought the same thing. I noticed how all the kids looked like they were in middle school (probably highschool :lol:) so at times I kinda felt like i was at a highschool, or playground or something. But I remembered that I am an anime fan and anime fans are younger and younger these days (seems like its caught on alot more then when I was their age). I remember when I was 14, that I was the only one who watched anime other than Dragon Ball Z. All my friends could care less. Now it seems any young kid you talk to knows of at least a few.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Elli21486 » Fri Apr 13, 2012 1:16 am

ModifierMR wrote:My fiance and I are 25, and we kinda thought the same thing. I noticed how all the kids looked like they were in middle school (probably highschool :lol:) so at times I kinda felt like i was at a highschool, or playground or something. But I remembered that I am an anime fan and anime fans are younger and younger these days (seems like its caught on alot more then when I was their age). I remember when I was 14, that I was the only one who watched anime other than Dragon Ball Z. All my friends could care less. Now it seems any young kid you talk to knows of at least a few.
So true; after all, we are the Toonami generation. We were introduced to anime due to Toonami and such programming during our youth. Now, this generation has the internet which, of course, has a bigger collection than anything we would have had and watched at the same age.
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Caesar » Fri Apr 13, 2012 3:53 am

I'm not sure I agree with all the "you crazy kids and your meme shouting" lamentations. Really a bit of hyperactive revelry and impromptu singing seems to me a fair way of making light of the absurdly long lines that form for most of the major events.

Now if its just screeching then that's another matter. But I guess I'm at the younger end of the older crowd anyway. Though due to the change in schedule I'll be 24 next year.

I think a degree of tolerance and humor about the creative ways con goers find to amuse themselves is a better way to deal with it. I recall one example of ending up in a random elevator party complete with music glow sticks, and the certain knowledge that every floor had been selected. I thought it was funny, my friend, who lead me out 2 floors up, did not.

I'm not saying the con should be an excuse to be immature, but I would say that in trying to act our age, we not inadvertently embrace curmudgeonism. Which is ironic coming from me, who most often gets mistaken for a man in his 30s for that very reason.

For me, its the difference between silly merrymaking and active mischief and abuse. Better to have the kids playing con marco pollo than bullying each other or instigating fights, which has ever been the habit of teenagers, (my past self included.) Let them dance in the elevator if it means they won't spray paint the walls.
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by thepolishpixie » Fri Apr 13, 2012 9:14 am

For me, its the difference between silly merrymaking and active mischief and abuse. Better to have the kids playing con marco pollo than bullying each other or instigating fights, which has ever been the habit of teenagers, (my past self included.) Let them dance in the elevator if it means they won't spray paint the walls.
Well said! Certainly yelling 'Marco Polo!' is the lesser of many evils;) Personally, I enjoy the general pop culture cons more b/c I feel it caters to an older, more mature crowd. Whenever I attend an anime convention, I EXPECT there to be a huge crowd under the age of 18, and with that age bracket, expect lots of kookiness and harmless meme shouting. It does make me happy to see the crowds though, so happy to know there are a growing number of nerds/geeks out there. United we stand;D
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by eidna » Fri Apr 13, 2012 9:21 am

Caesar wrote: I'm not saying the con should be an excuse to be immature, but I would say that in trying to act our age, we not inadvertently embrace curmudgeonism. Which is ironic coming from me, who most often gets mistaken for a man in his 30s for that very reason.

For me, its the difference between silly merrymaking and active mischief and abuse. Better to have the kids playing con marco pollo than bullying each other or instigating fights, which has ever been the habit of teenagers, (my past self included.) Let them dance in the elevator if it means they won't spray paint the walls.

The meme shouting, for me personally, is an incredibly trivial issue and I don't honestly care about it. I know my original post mentioned the screaming, and it DOES get annoying after 2 days which is the mindset I was in immediately post-con, but after thinking more on it that's not the main issue. It's more the typical nature of young teens to act as if their group is the only one at the con, being loud and often rude- either passively by way of cutting people off or blocking pathways, or actively- to the people around them. Elevator parties are a great example of this - it may be fun for you, but what about all the other people who need to have access? By doing things like this, you are creating massive delays. Some people waiting down below need to get to their room because they are ill, or need sleep, or any number of reasons. Some people waiting on a floor above may need to leave in a hurry due to some personal emergency and are stuck waiting.
We are not the only people who occupy the Sheraton during Anime Boston - these types of antics may make other guests uncomfortable at least, and very angry at worst.

Not to mention, I believe it's against the code of conduct.

I'm all for having fun, but moreover I expect to have the same common courtesy extended at AB as anyone would extend in other public places. Yes, it's a fun place and it's awesome to be able to speak in internet memes/show references and be understood for once! However it is still a public convention attended by thousands, and not everyone enjoys the same things. Many may not be bothered by rude congoers, or elevator holdups, but many are. Just as an example.

Again, I know it's a young crowd and to a point I expect that hyperactivity and excitement, and it doesn't bother me. I was that kid way back in 2004. It's the lack of courtesy and the rudeness displayed by a lot of congoers of ANY age that really gets me. I'm happy AB keeps growing, it was my first convention and still is the one I look forward to every single year.
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Shiva » Tue Apr 17, 2012 12:07 am

Haha, I don't think its age as much as maturity; I'm 29, but even when I was 19 I never felt the need to express my "excitement" by thinking to myself "OMG I'M IN A HOTEL ROOM W/OUT MY PARENTS LETS PRESS ALL THE BUTTONS IN THE ELEVATOR HAHAHAHA" I mean, I don't care if people are going to play duck duck goose or tag or whatever, but don't do it jumping around somebody else's expensive and/or fragile stuff. Yay, you're excited to see a cosplayer, but don't tackle and hurt them because you got excited. There's no need to run around oblivious to knocking people over or screaming and shouting throughout the public areas of the Pru giving us all a bad name. I would expect better behavior of a elementary school aged child - the age when most of us learn to control our excitement so that it doesn't negatively impact others - so it's no wonder its annoying when this lack of empathy is displayed by near-adults.

That said, I experienced quite a bit of pleasant and good behavior from young attendees at this year's AB, moreso than in the past, so I do have hope that conventions are starting to mature as mini "societies" were there are standard rules of etiquette developing - from the near disappearance of the Yaoi Paddle to the decline of "glomping" as an accepted mode of greeting. As for memes, I don't find them annoying because I'm old - I find them annoying because THE MEMES ARE OLD. Just get a few new ones LOL

But as others have said, we all evolve with the hobby, and it is a whole different world going to cons which welcome all ages but nevertheless are largely attended by adults - I'd say the average age at Dragon*Con is mid 20s-early 40s rather than high school-college age kids who dominate anime-specific conventions, and the atmosphere there is radically different. However, spending time at AB with friends who are all mid-20-somethings makes my personal experience different from what it was as a college kid regardless of who the attendees are.

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Syagria
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Syagria » Thu Apr 19, 2012 8:50 am

eidna wrote:I wish it wasn't so far - I'd like to check it out on a one-day basis but Provincetown is so far from the north shore where I live @_@
I believe there is a ferry from Boston to P-Town ;-) Only takes 90 minutes!
hop-is-my-hero wrote:I suppose and a word about Nauticon. I heard about it first at AAC and it somewhat got advertized to me as a 24 hour hotel party. I was like that's awesome. Then I actually attended a hotel party that night... by the next morning I was like.. perhaps I do not want to attend Nauticon. I am assuming the con itself is more involved then that. And some people really like that kind of thing. I do enjoy a good social hour in a hotel room but at the same time. I also enjoy sleeping. Remember just because it has an age restriction doesn't necessarily solve all the problems.
The hotel for Nauticon is divided into a party block and a quiet block. I booked my room in the quiet block so I can sleep when I want to :) Also, there is additional panels and programming for Nauticon (most of which has been discussed more on the forums rather than the main announcement site). Anyway, I'm 30, and I so strongly believe that a 21+ con can be a success that I'd probably support Nauticon even if the only programming offered were a dancing monkey in a bowler hat. I'm hoping that Nauticon becomes a regular feature in the Northeast con circuit - and, just like at AB, it's the attendees more than anyone else who determine what programming is offered. Once Nauticon is established, attendees will have plenty of opportunities to tailor the programming to the sorts of panels they want to see (or to be panelists themselves, just like at AB).
Anime Boston Cosplays:
14: Death
13: Wonder Woman, Kitsune
12: Kyoshi Warrior Suki, Wonder Woman
11: Kyoshi Warrior Suki, Princess Eries Aston
10: Princess Eries Aston, Zatanna
09: Hermes (1st Place Intermediate), Lotis Master Alice Seno
08: Haruhara Haruko, Sumomo, Lotis Master Alice Seno
07: Haruhara Haruko, R. Dorothy Wayneright

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Naomi-Ai
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Naomi-Ai » Wed Apr 25, 2012 12:56 pm

Someone made a comment about it not being about age, but maturity and I completely agree with that. I'm almost 22 and I definitely felt "older" because of the maturity level of most of the con-goers. I always have fun regardless but definitely feeling older.

For me, I go now to hopefully score some stuff in the dealers room (so I don't have to deal with shipping/shopping online/importing/etc.), have some fun with the friends I go with and attend some panels/events/whatnot. As my sewing and crafting has become much better over the years, I've started to turn towards making increasingly more elaborate and well-constructed costumes rather than the quick costumes I started making.

Can't go to Nauticon this year, but since it's a "local" con, I am fully planning on attending in the future :3
AB 2013
-----
Fri - ???
Sat - Classic Lolita
Sun - lolita!fem!Sweden

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Gale
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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Gale » Thu Apr 26, 2012 6:11 pm

Naomi-Ai wrote:As my sewing and crafting has become much better over the years, I've started to turn towards making increasingly more elaborate and well-constructed costumes rather than the quick costumes I started making.
Not to judge from appearances, but I think there is something to this point: the older and more experienced/mature one gets, the more patience one has to achieve a higher degree of difficulty. I find a lot of the cosplayers I meet who are much more concerned with high craftsmanship tend to be less inclined to being crazy in the halls. Now, there are always exceptions, but this is simply a trend I've noticed.

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by Mamacass » Sat May 04, 2013 3:50 pm

My first Anime Boston was in 2010 (I was 43!!! :D ) But D*mn I had a great time and I've been coming every year since (and this will be the 2nd year I'm bringing my younger kids, too :D )
2019 Here We Come!!!!!

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Re: Older Congoers

Post by thepolishpixie » Thu May 16, 2013 9:49 am

Mamacass wrote:My first Anime Boston was in 2010 (I was 43!!! :D ) But D*mn I had a great time and I've been coming every year since (and this will be the 2nd year I'm bringing my younger kids, too :D )
Good on ya!! So glad you're getting the kiddies involved...I always wanted to attend a con when I was younger, but since I didn't have anyone to go with, I abstained. Thank goodness the boyfriend is just as big a nerd as me ;)

When I'm 43, I hope I'm as cool as you and coming to the con with my kids in tow....just think of all the cosplays we could do..... :D
2013 Cosplays
Korra- Legend of Korra
Rapunzel- Tangled-inspired (steampunk influence)

2012 Cosplays
Rapunzel- Tangled (short hair)

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