Have You Experienced the Comfort Slide?

About an hour ago, I passed the 24-hour mark at Dragon*Con. No, I haven’t been awake for all of them; sleep is my friend. But something happens to my brain when I’m bathing in the pool of Dragon*Con euphoria and this change tends to happen somewhere around the 24- hour mark.

I call the phenomenon the comfort slide, or TCS, for short.

Before I arrive in Atlanta, I go about my business in a typical and uneventful Canadian manner. I set aside time for writing and editing, I keep my life in a relative state of cohesion, and I perform my duties as a parent.

Then, after a short plane ride, I check into the convention hotel, pick up my badge, and within 24 hours or so…wham! Every aspect of my life turns at an angle somewhere between 90 and 180 degrees.

For instance, last night, as I fought to ignore all of the exuberant enthusiasm wafting up from the lobby-party (not to mention the party in the room next door), I couldn’t fall asleep because I literally could not stop obsessing over whether to wear my new-skirt-plus-corset outfit or my awesome-purple-jacket-plus-business-attire outfit in the morning.

I mean, crap! Most days I think for less than 20 seconds about what clothes I’m going to wear and last night, I lost an hour’s sleep (and I really needed that hour) over the dilemma. Who am I and what has this convention done to my common sense?

Answer: TCS.

Tomorrow, I will put on a corset and believe that this costume choice is not only perfectly natural, but fun. Think about that statement for a moment. I will be comfortable wearing an undergarment on the outside of my clothes; a device that is designed to squish all of my organs together. I will be dressed in an item that the other 361 days of the year I would never even dream of taking out of the closet, let alone wearing in public.

Has this change happened to you? Then, welcome to the TCS ranks, my friend. You will not regret the decision (unless alcohol was involved, in which case, you have my pity).

Practice reasonable judgment, my peeps, and remember that first and foremost, a towel is not a costume, and the following corollaries apply:

  1. What happens at Dragon*Con stays at Dragon*Con.
  2. Your corset should never, under any circumstances, be worn to work or school on Tuesday morning.
  3. With the proper amount of recovery sleep, nutrition, and hydration, the symptoms of the comfort slide will ease and you will return to your regularly scheduled life.

Author of the article

When Suzanne Church isn't chasing characters through other realms, she's hanging with her two children. Her short fiction has appeared in Clarkesworld, On Spec, and Cicada and in several anthologies including Urban Green Man and When the Hero Comes Home 2. Her collection Elements: A Collection of Speculative Fiction is due out in spring 2014 from EDGE Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing. She is a three time finalist and 2012 winner of the Prix Aurora Award in the Short Fiction category.

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