"Is that van following us?"
"No, no. It's just one of the cosplayer's moms."
It is easy to forget that easily half the geeks you meet in Sri Lanka, are under 21. They are the energy behind any event, but that energy was permitted by parents - who more often than not struggle with what it is their children are so excited about.
Moms seem to have one - or all - of three opinions about geek culture:
1 - I'm a Geek too, and always have been.
2 - Seems like a good crowd.
3 - What are these children doing, men?
"I'm a Geek Too, And Always Have Been"
Whether vindicated or perplexed, Comic Con's moms are quite supportive of their children's efforts. Taking them to meet ups, allowing them to volunteer, or building a 1:1 scale styrofoam statue (you think I'm kidding).
"I started becoming a geek by reading Herge's 'The Adventures of Tin Tin' Books and also Asterix books," said Visakha Tennekoon, mother of Aishwarya Tennekoon - builder of last year's Barad-dur sculpture.
"I was very happy to see him with such a big crowd last year. He got hundreds of likes and comments for his epic creation. And the people who came there were very friendly!"
"I am thrilled that my boys are geeks!" said Jessica Kwatick Perera. "With all the academic pressure on children in this society, I am so glad that they have a creative outlet like this. I think that geekiness is truly a form of creativity, and their geekiness is not the same as my geekiness, or my husband's geekiness, and that is perfectly okay."
"Seems Like a Good Crowd"
"Seeing everyone on the day of the LCC promo tour was exciting, especially the ones running around in their costumes," said Kanchanamala Marage, mother of "Chucky" Chakrapani Marage. "Even at the movie shoot, everyone was extremely friendly and it’s actually good to know such geeky, cheerful souls existed!"
"I have always been an open-minded and hands off mother," said Aleifia Rozais, mother of LCC organizer, Naveed Rozais. "I am very happy that he has got involved, and really appreciate how they treat him."
While it's quite self-serving for us to share these "Geeks! They're so friendly!" perspectives, it is what's being said. It also helps remind that outside of these spaces, geeks are not always welcome, to be themselves.
"What are these children doing, men?"
"We would have called them nerds," said Shirani Samarasinha, Mom of Lanka Comic Con's principal organizer, Thilani Samarasinha. "But now, its a more of a fun thing. People dress up, even weirdos like these Twilight Book people."
There are no shortage it seems, of moms who are perplexed. However, they are just as supportive of their children.
"I was shocked," said Karen Bahar of her son Kashan's cosplaying. "But later, i thought it was cool. Otherwise I wouldn't have gone on the road when he was dressed up."
Lanka Comic Con would like to thank all the supportive Moms (and Dads), who are helping us along. Thank you for encouraging your kids to be themselves.