This post is of a similar vibe as my State one. A collection of stories from Nationals but hopefully creating it in advanced I’ll be able to update it this time. (I’m hoping to add at least one story ever Bookmark this as well because there will be a live broadcast of it eventually (if they do this year like last year) and I can post the link and the event I am in.

Curse you, Alaska (and to a lesser extent Puerto Rico)!

So far my entire “experience” has consisted of just wandering around Anaheim to see what there is to do. In addition to that wonderful activity we’ve also received this year’s trading pins. The trading pins are a set of pins unique to your state you receive in order to trade with people from other states. Right now one of the rarest pins is from Alaska. The people in Alaska clearly know the value of their pins far too well because not only are they trading these pins but they are making ridiculously high demands for their pins. I guess some people are doing it but I never would because even if you get an Alaska all you really get is a bunch of people bugging you the rest of the conference. I remember getting a Puerto Rico pin last year which was a pretty big deal as well as their pins are hard to come by. I guess even though it’s not really a state Puerto Rico still gets to participate in Nationals making finding their pins possible but difficult. Basically the less participating students a state has the rarer the pins are (since each student gets 5 freebies). Indiana’s pins are actually quite common because we’re a state of champions. Anyway, the moral of the story is don’t be a jerk even if your pins are in demand because then you won’t get my approval.

Who is Ocean Walters?

To put it lightly getting a nickname unexpectedly is the greatest thing that can happen to a person in their entire life. At NLC I got that high honor. It actually all happened on accident. As part of the conference we all have to wear name tags this helps make sure the right people are at events and you know… you can remember what your name is I guess I dunno. Anyway, there’s another Indiana member trying to read my nametag for the goal of as accurate a story as possible I’m just going to go ahead and write out the quote.

“I’m seeing uh… Ocean? uh… Sean? Erwin?”

“It’s Owen, but you were probably closest with Ocean”

From then on I was known as Ocean. Among the like 7 people who were there specifically, but I’m sure it’ll spread a little.