I spent the weekend at one of my non-brony friend's house, and his girlfriend who does tours throughout Baltimore told me, there was one drink all the bars in town had run out of. Know which one?
This was a fantastic weekend, even better than last year! For me, not only did I get to experience the fun of being around 8,500 fans of friendship and magic, but also I got to spend time with some old friends from my hometown who live there now, who had no idea until now what ponies are or that I like to draw them.
Standing on the intersection of my friends bewildered by what bronies are, and the massive celebration of pony known as Bronycon, I found myself wondering often, how do I explain this to someone else? How do I explain this celebration of life, laughter, happiness, and friendship, centered around colorful cartoon ponies? And do I really understand it, myself?
When we see a major convention center packed with guys and girls celebrating this simple show, we must remember, we are only seeing a minority of fans, just the tip of the iceberg. These are the people who love ponies enough to travel here, who are old enough to make the trip, who are financially capable of doing so, and who have broken through their shyness or uncertainty and decided to make the plunge into the pleasantly strange environment we call a Brony convention. Bronycon represented the small minority, the 1%, or less, of what this community is. It is something fantastic which rises to the surface in the volume of millions of fans, most of whom could not be there this weekend. I found myself stumbling on this metaphor, that when a body feels good, happy, at peace, the face on that body will smile to show it. But a smile isn't the same thing as the happiness which causes it, it is just a window, a display, a sign. If the world is a body, now connected by the fibers of a million new friendships this show and the community has made possible over the last three years, then the spectacular event that was Bronycon was what happens when the collective of bronies, which usually resides in it's relatively quiet enclave on the internet, gets a chance to burst out and show their smile to the world. I thought, Bronycon is what happens when the world smiles. And at the end, driving away from Baltimare and seeing it leave in the distance, it couldn't have felt more true.
So even if you couldn't make it in person, you were there.
There was something for everypony at Bronycon. Personally I was most excited about the concert, which they call Bronypalooza. Some of the biggest names in pony music were there, and I had an incredible time dancing, singing, enjoying that feeling of camaraderie and friendship. Though I looked forward to that the most, there was so much more to do! There were panels and groups and events for everything: Video games, writing, music production, plushie making, character design, autographs, voice acting, brony psychology, philosophy, cosplay.
I messed up my own schedule a bit though, spending the days in the city, and sleeping late because Bronypalooza ended at 3 am every night, I didnt spend nearly as much time at the panels and art vendors as I wanted!
One thing about me is I find it pretty hard to just talk to people, I spent most of the con walking on my own. But, throughout the halls there are spontaneous cheers, sing-a-longs, parades and chants and fun things, it's really hard to feel left out! I spent the most time with
and it was great to meet
I came home from the convention feeling absolutely wonderful, to see how happy all of these people are, how this show and the community brings them together, there are few things in the world quite like it. 8,500 different types of people, older, younger, guys, girls, different political views, different religions, different races, shy and introverted, or excited and extroverted, all fitting together in friendship not unlike the six ponies we love, in harmony, stronger not despite of, but because of their differences. The only thing about the convention that made me sad, was when it was over.
Thank you everyone out there, who made the convention possible and who gave me the courage and reason to discover and keep up with drawing, so that I had the courage and confidence to go to a convention where I had one of the best times of my life. I hope to seem many more of you again, next time!
Thanks for reading!