Octocon 2022 – missing to be there

The time flews by so fast! I was at Octocon 2022 just “a minute ago” and suddenly a few weeks passed by. What I regret is that I didn’t make it to Dublin. Don’t understand me wrong! I like the online cons. Yet somehow I was feeling that I miss out so much. Maybe the time has come for me to engage more in in-person events and skip a bit the hybrid ones?

Being there

Hybrid programme items – the blessing and the curse. On one hand I loved the opportunity to see the people on site. Listening to them – it was so good. At the same time – seeing people in the room and sitting in front of my PC was somehow sad. I am not sure whether the issue lies with me being “tired” of online cons, or the FOMO, or maybe it is because it was Octocon. I have been only to one Octocon in person yet I love Ireland and Dublin and I miss it so much. I am aware that I won’t be able to visit Octocon every year so the possibility to attend online is a great advantage to me. Yet maybe because I love the city so much it is especially painful?

I am not here to complain though. So let’s concentrate on the things I was doing. And this was attending the programme items and meeting people! What I remember the most? Two items were most remarkable to me. The History of Irish fandom and an Interview with Michael Carroll. The first one was important to me because of my interests in fandom and fanhistory. The panellists were talking about some interesting trivia and anecdotes. As for the second one – Michael Carroll is an excellent speaker. The interviewer also knew how to make this an interesting item. It was nice, funny, dynamic – really cool.

Picture is a screenshot taken inside the Zoom apllication. It is a screen shared by someone. The main theme is a Japanese blooming cherry tree. the rest of the picture is in pinkish colours. In the middle there is a text 'Octocon The National Irish Science Fiction Convention'. It is written on a green background.
The “Awaiting for programme” screen from Octocon 2022.

Meeting people

Attending online should not stop us from meeting other fans! Listening to programme is a great activity but conventions are about meeting others. I used a few occasions to talk to people on Zoom. There were social sessions scheduled and talking to friends there was a good thing. I also had some interactions on Discord (especially on Glasgow 2024 table). Yet in general I had the impression that Discord was not so socially active.

My longest social chat took place during one of the programme items. We watched Nosferatu – a silent movie from 1922. The accompanying music was set to low volume so that we were able to speak freely and comment. After one hundred years the movie was a bit silly and funny. I suppose that a century ago it was more scary than now. We had to discover how to watch it properly. As an example sometime during the screening we realized the colour coding for the part of the day. I came there only to talk to people expecting I will go to one breakout room and spend time talking. Instead I watched the full movie and enjoyed it.

My Happiness

I missed so much that I wasn’t there in person. Yet I was also happy to see people being able to meet each other. Seeing virtual guests from last year being finally in person was also good. I was simply happy for them. I hope to be able to visit Octocon “in flesh” again in the future. Still for now despite having some FOMO I am happy that I attended. It was a good weekend!

My next post should be ready within two or three weeks.

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