Blerdcon or otherwise known as “Black Nerd Con” took place in Virginia/DC area this past weekend. I made a vlog about it on my Trill La Trill Cosplay youtube channel. You can watch the link here:
I wanted to say how much Blerdcon meant for me, and how much it meant that people cared enough to make it. I didn’t know how long I would have to wait for a space to be made where we could simply relax and be ourselves and not have to hide or be ashamed of our race and ethnicity while cosplaying and being expressive of our nerdiness.
I myself have not personally experienced a lot of the major negativity that I have witnessed other cosplayers of color experience on the internet but it is very real and no one should have to endure that.
It also stuck out to me that there was finally a convention that was highlighting the reality of being doubly stigmatized. To be nerdy and queer and black and female and disabled and fat are a lot of things to deal with at once. Our own Black communities stigmatize nerdiness too, so it’s not simply about the heat we deal with from White people. For some reason Black people are expected to be cool and badass 24/7. Idk why but it’s a real thing and there’s a real pressure to be “hip, down, and full of swag” in everything that we do or else you’re failing as a Black person. Hence why I love Issa Rae’s series “Awkward Black Girl.”
My favorite moment was taking a picture with a little girl who ran up to me and held my hand. She seemed so enamored with me and she was full of wonder and pure joy. I know that representation matters and seeing me means the world to her. I wish that I had that growing up but I am glad I get to be that ebony super hero for her to see and admire and emulate. There are so few that she has to do so but hopefully in the future that will change. Hence why I am looking forward to Black Panther in 2018.
It was very cool to see people making cosplays their own like seeing Sailor Moon cosplays with locs, dreads, afro puffs and braids. There were so many melanated folk at this convention and I didn’t feel like I stuck out or didn’t belong. It felt normalized and I was among my own and visually I was the same. That was so significant to look around and see nerdy folk who looked just like me. People also creatively altered some of their outfits but changing some colors.
It was a really awesome time and I very much enjoyed myself. It was a chill event with family and kind people everywhere. I am so proud that I was a part of the first one and I plan to continue attending every year I can from now on!