Giant Robot Appreciation Society
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Starla Robinson holds forth. ^_^

How did you become a coordinator?

98-99 School Year: The first thing I did when I got my acceptance letter was email G.R.A.S. When I got there it had lapsed into nonexistence... Somehow, Ken Koontz, David Rigert, Kim Kelsey and I started meeting in the Mods activity room. Eventually we joined up with Mikel Reparaz in A-building, and about that time we did the paperwork to become an official club again. I would occasionally dress up and use my (pause) personality (kee hee hee) to draw attention to the club! My view has been: Anime is good, it is worth sharing, and it is great to see other peopleís reactions.

By invoking my social avatar Oniko Tomodatchi, I could be far more social and outgoing then I was during my day to day life. GRAS gave me something to talk about which gave me a way to make friends. It also provided escape into good stories, and the opportunity to dance until I couldnít walk the next day! I also met my husband through the Oniko Tomodatchi promotions and the 1999 GeoCon. He still insists that we should have renamed G.R.A.S. the Anime Student Society. =]

What did you guys watch?

Lots of Lum, Armitage, the occasional 13 hours of Neogenesis Evangelion, everything in the laserdisc collection... Whatever we could get a hold of, actually. In the beginning, anime was still new to America and the selection was sparse. Very soon we were graced with Ghost in the Shell, Kodomo no Omocha, and ANYTHING GHIBLI!!! Trigun and Cowboy Bebop... In the end we were watching the latest fan subs, Fruits Basket, Naruto, Ghost in the Shell Stand Alone Complex, in the Lecture Halls. Four years of anime is a lot to remember! Sometimes we tried to do movies or self contained episodes so people could come in without knowing the back story.

How'd the soot ball from Spirited Away become the club's mascot? (Was it the club's mascot back then?)

I think Ken had a part in this. One year we made dust bunnies out of black fuzzy balls and bobbley eyes and print outs. I have one that lives in my coat. I think it evolved on from that. It probably started in 2001 or 2002.

Do you happen to have any old photos from the club? I'm trying to start an Obaa-san and Ojii-san portion in the Members section for photos of the club from the past. ^_^

I will look for some. Not Obaa-san!!!! Now I feel old and feeble, sonny boy! How about OTA-KINGÖKun.. Ko?. OtaKINGkoKun? Well I guess I will be an Obaa-san soon enough. Itís not a bad idea, since the Anime club has to exist forever and ever and ever.

So how did Chibi Chibi Con start, anyway? I've heard that GeoCon was having some sort of trouble in 2000, and that G.R.A.S. had had an anime room there for the past couple of years, but I don't really know any of the details.

GeoCon was a large production. Preparation started a year ahead of time (which is a good idea regardless size) and I think it took about 9 people in 1999 to coordinate. There was a person overseeing every aspect of the convention: the dances and big events, gaming rooms, Camarilla, security, hospitality, advertising, registration, and of course the anime room. The college had to charge us for the spaces because of the vendors, so we had to charge an entrance fee and try to get as many people in to cover our costs. 1999 was my first GeoCon. A lot of the people who were running it graduated that year.

In 2000 Mog of the Gaming Guild (the sponsor group), with help from the Anime Club (Ken and I), put on the final GeoCon. We didnít have enough dedicated members or as much experience as the 1999 group, so it was very stressful. After that, G.R.A.S. took over and we decided to go small and free. Thus was born Chibi Chibi Con.

Last updated by Jonah, 3/14/09