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March 17, 2009


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I'll be at Lunacon. Hope to see you there!

I'm doing a demonstration of my Weird Stuffed Animals Friday evening at 9:00, and two panels on Saturday. I'll also have a half-table in the Art Show, including the demonstration animal, a flying pig.

I'll probably go to the Artists' Reception, which is also Friday evening at 10:00, and then go crash, so I expect I'll miss your ball. :(

Have a wonderful time, I hope that your ball has just enough attendants to be full, but not so full that there isn't enough room to dance!

Mary Aileen,
I will be sure to find your table and will try to get at least pop into the end of one of your panels as well to say hi!

By the way, going to Lunacon does not mean I'll be offline. I remember from last year that the hotel has wireless at least in the lobby area, so I'll be around now and then.

Have a good time, all of you.

Susan... "boil the fur" and "dissect pantyhose"

I'm not going to ask.

Susan, I'll look for you, too. Did you notice the panel on Repo: The Genetic Opera on Saturday afternoon?

Oh, wow, no I hadn't!

I'll have to think about trying to get myself added to it. The only problem is that I find both the other panelists...um...not my favorite persons to be on panels with. (Not that I hate them or anything, just...well.) It might be more amusing to be in the audience.

Susan... It might be more amusing to be in the audience.

I see the Locus headline:
"Repo fan gets repulsed out of conference room!"

In case you're interested... Tales of the Brass Griffin appears to be a steampunk fiction's site, what with the Griffin being an airship, albeit one with sails. No idea if its any good, but I thought I'd bring it to your attention.

If Rixo were a jungle, and if I were Major Squick, I'd say "It's quiet. Too quiet."

Clearly I am not being interesting lately!

We need more photos of unusual boots.

Sadly I will not be attending as the Atlantic Ocean is inconveniently in the way. Good Luck!

Serge, if you were Major Squick ...(Brain stalls for a moment - too much celebration with my brother last night before a tough day at the school)... then you would certainly have unusual boots. I can't identify the material from the closest distance I'm willing to approach.

Alas, Neil, my répertoire of chaussures is limited to sneakers, hiking boots, and some flipflops. Oh, and my Time Traveller black shoes.

grumble, grumble, grumble

I could have sworn I had a pair of short black high heeled boots that came to about midcalf and were much like the Inventory Girl boots. But I couldn't find them anywhere this morning. So now I am stuck with either chunky-heeled Victorian boots which are too short or various thigh-high boots which are too long. Fooey! I can't decide whether to wear my new ones (which are patent and squeak and have too much platform, but are comfortable), or my old leather ones (5" heel, no platform, less comfortable), or my suede ones (totally flat so comfortable, but IGs wear heels), or just wear black platform shoes (height good, platform not, semi-comfortable).

On the bright side: an excuse to buy more boots!

Susan... an excuse to buy more boots!

I will reiterate that Rixo needs more boot photos. By the way, since when do ladies need an excuse to buy shoes?

I don't know if it's just me, but the idea of a con being held at a Hilton called Escher sounds vaguely disquieting.

It's very simple to navigate the Escher Hilton once you realize that the seventh floor is the fourth floor and also the ground floor.

Susan... the seventh floor is the fourth floor and also the ground floor

Why does that not reassure me?

Seriously, google "Escher Hilton" and read all about it. It's been Lunacon's hotel for but a couple of years since 1992.

Today's postal haul: netting for my red hat (not quite the right stuff, but close enough for the short term) and my dubiously legal GeneCo patch. And a copy of the Repo soundtrack from mom, who is a wonderful person.

Have a good time this weekend, Susan. And remember.


My first year at the Escher Hilton, I kept being reminded of my high school. That school's North Building (which is west of its Main Building) has its front entrance on the fifth floor. The side entrance is between the fourth and fifth floors. And the other side entrance is in the 3rd sub-basement. The Main Building is even weirder.

Mary Aileen... Oh goodness. I thought that Susan was joking, Well, I wish you too a good weekend. And don't take a wrong turn into the Twilight Zone.

Serge: This jungle denizen is quiet because her brother-in-law is visiting from NY! He and the husband are playing arcade classic games (not an interest of mine), so I'm taking a few minutes to catch up on my various internet addictions.

I like Ms. Pacman and have a permanent fondness for Tetris because I kne(o)w two of the people who worked on the arcade version. (One of them is now among my many Dead Friends, alas.)

I think not being interesting lately (and I don't claim this is true of you) is better than being too interesting. For example, the reason why my youngest brother was not evacuated from his condo due to an explosion yesterday around 2:30 am is because he was in the hospital having unpleasant things done to him (it seems the doctors first thought he might have that flesh-eating disease, but it is not that).

I like the way AJ refers to her significant other as 'the husband'. Heheheh...

Carol Witt... Sometimes boring can be good. Have they figured out what your brother's problem is?

Here is an awesome steampunk photo.

Carol, I hope that they find out what's wrong with your brother and that it's easily treatable.

Yes, my husband is the husband. At least, the one in my house.

AJ... Does the husband refer to you as the wife? Hmm. I wonder what my wife calls me when I'm not around.

Serge, I think he does sometimes, though more often I hear him calling me "my wife" or using my name with people who actually know me.

What he really hates is when I refer to him as hubby, which is okay, because I find wifey to be very annoying, too. It sounds condescending.

When it's just my wife and me, she calls me 'hubby' while I'll say 'mon bébé' to her. It's all about what the other person likes. Meanwhile, we call our youngest dog 'Monkey Boy', and our youngest cat 'Bad Cat' although she almost became 'Coyote Skat' this morning.

I wonder what my wife calls me when I'm not around.

If his wife calls for Serge in a forest, but noone hears, is it still his fault?

Hah! Found the right boots!

Neil... Probably. It's always the hubby's fault.

Susan.. Good. Now, remember. Photos, even though cameras supposedly don't like you. (Me, they derisively laugh at.)

Serge, AJ: He was released today. It turned out to be a large and fast-growing abscess on his thigh, which was removed. He also had a liver biopsy (he had a transplant a number of years ago, among other surgeries, and his kidneys are acting up again); the results won't be known until Monday. His leg is sore and he's limping, but his mood is good.

Given that they still aren't allowing people into his building, he'll be staying at his girlfriend's. Officials had moved his cat to a shelter, so I may have a temporary cat until he's allowed home.

I'm keeping my fingers crossed, Carol.

Serge, It's definitely a matter of taste re: spouse nicknames. What works for one couple may be to twee or not endearing enough for another.

Carol, oh no! Abscesses are so gross. But better than a flesh eating disease, I suppose. I sure hope he can go home soon.

Oh, and Susan... Do you mean that you found the boots that you were sure you had, hidden in some silly spot, or that you found new boots that are perfect?


1. I don't like having my picture taken.
2. I can hardly take pictures of myself, so telling me to do so is pointless.

I found the boots that I had. They were just in an unexpected location.

Susan... I don't know why photos are such a hit-or-miss thing for some of us. It has certainly been more hit than miss for me - the only pictures taken of me throughout my life that I liked can be seen in my blog. That's it. Anyway, I hope you have a good time at Lunacon.

I'm having a good time! I'm wearing the shiny new thigh-high boots with the fabulous red hat (and some less interesting stuff in between) and getting lots of compliments. I put on eye makeup for the first time in decades and am looking vaguely goth, for values of goth that include a gigantic red hat.

The ball last night went really well. My Airship Pirates quadrille figure was a big hit. We went til past 1am!

THe best wifi in the hotel seem to be in the restaurant...

Yay! Glad to hear that the ball was a success :)

The Airship Pirates dance was such a hit we did it three times in a row! I was so happy.

I have taken a couple of photos of other people in costumes. And I tried to get one of my hat with its Blind Mag trimmings.

I just got a hall costume award for the general pseudo-goth outfit with the hat and boots. Hah!

I managed to get put on the Repo panel at 5pm, so I'll probably change into my GeneCo Inventory Girl costume before that. I have a feeling those boots will be less comfortable than the long ones, alas.

I'm glad your brother was neither exploded in his apartment nor afflicted with flesh-eating bacteria. Hopefully his kidney problems will turn out to be treatable.

And I'm glad they saved the kitty.

A good time and an award? Huzzah!

Now in my Inventory Girl outfit, but I decided to keep the long boots on instead of shifting to the short ones, despite all the fuss over finding them. The long ones are just So Cool and more comfortable.

The reaction from the het male attendance has been quite positive. It's gratifying to be something vaguely resembling sexy again.

Susan... What? And before then, you used to be followed by whispers that said "The horror. The horror!" ? Heheheh.

Yay for the ball and award!

Thanks, all. It sounds like he could be kept out of his condo for at least a week, although they let him in for five minutes to gather what he could (medications and a bit of clothing).

I retrieved the kitten from Animal Services this afternoon following a shopping trip for cat supplies. They said she was nervous the whole time she was there, and she continues to be terrified: she went directly from the cat carrier to hiding under my kitchen cart and hasn't moved since. My brother is going to visit tomorrow to try to provide comfort from a familiar person.

For such independent beasts, cats are really bad at handling change. My previous cat, Monster, hid behind my toilet for days after I moved to my house, or tried to -- he was such a fat cat that he could only get his front half wedged back there, so he did the ostrich routine of pretending that was enough to hide him fully.

...must... not!... mock Susan's... kitty...

Monster (deceased now) was a very easy cat to mock. He was grey and white, enormously fat, and seems to have thought he was a puppy when he wasn't enacting the feline version of "shark attack!" that earned him his name. He would follow me around, cry if I shut him out of a room, and sleep flat on his back with all four legs spread, which in an enormously fat, mostly-white cat is the most unflattering pose possible. He looked like a beached whale. And he would try to jump onto my lap when I was typing on my computer and (being so large) fail to balance there and fall off again. His usual expression was a sort of goofy grin.

My current cats, Audrey & Phoebe, are much less ridiculous in everything except markings. Other than being incredibly neurotic and fearful of any human but me, they're very good cats.

Our male cat Jefferson is quite mellow, but, when starngers show up, he disappears. Or so he thinks. I mean, when he hides under the bed's comforter, he can't be seen, but his considerable bulk makes for a rather obvious lump in the middle of the bed.

As for Agatha the Cat Genius, this morning she did an impersonation of the book After Man's far-future cats. It suggests that they might evolve into monkey-like tree-inhabiting creatures. Agatha, who was adamant about going outside, climbed our glass-paned backdoor all the way to the top.

The reaction from the het male attendance has been quite positive. It's gratifying to be something vaguely resembling sexy again.

You know, that sounds like the kind of thing I'd like to see pict...

What? The subjects been brought up, is now closed and we're talking about cats? Sorry. Shall I put the kettle on?

My current cats, Audrey & Phoebe, are much less ridiculous in everything except markings.

Ridiculous markings? I'd like to see pictures of tha...

Oh right. Anyway, I've performed my filial duty on Mothering Sunday of cooking the largest chicken I've ever seen for my parents, so it's time to go down the pub. Where I will try to avoid bringing up the wrong topics.

Phoebe hides under the bed. Audrey hides inside my box spring, which now has a cat-sized hole in one corner. She crawls to the far diagonal corner from the hole and stays there until the scary people leave. I haven't had the heart to patch the hole and deprive her of her refuge.

A few of my friends have seen Phoebe, who occasionally ventures out and looks at people from a safe distance. Audrey is generally considered to be some sort of imaginary cat.

I have a baby picture of Audrey & Phoebe in a bathroom sink. They have black and white splotchy markings, as I'm sure everyone who knows me would have guessed from their names.

Pictures were taken of me. I will see how they look.

Neil... I've performed my filial duty on Mothering Sunday of cooking the largest chicken

I'd like to see pict..

So, nowe that Lunacon is over, does your earlier verdict hold, Susan? How did the Repo panel go?

It was good to run into Susan at the masquerade. The cookies are very good (not too hard at all) and the CD is terrific. Thanks, Susan!

I knew the CD was terrific, but I'm glad the cookies are okay. I'm sure they were not improved by being carried around in my laptop bag all day Saturday.

Thanks for being obvious at the masquerade and for correctly translating my "Oh, sh*t, I know the face but am blanking on the name" expression, which is standard for me with my very visual memory.

I didn't think it was that strong a masquerade, alas, though I no doubt suffer from serious Golden-Ageism because I ran it myself for seven or eight years and thought it was much better then. And I still feel I'm a better MC.

Susan... I no doubt suffer from serious Golden-Ageism because I ran it myself for seven or eight years

"You kids get off my stage!"

I never expect myself to be particularly memorable, so I was half expecting your reaction. :)

There were some good costumes, it was just small. I've been spoiled by Worldcon masquerades. My favorites was the kids doing Little Red Riding Hood. That wolf costume was terrific.

I really liked the Moon Woman with the asymmetrical hoops and the doll costume done by Laura Kovalcin and her friend. (I've watched Laura grow up in fandom for the past two decades, and she is one talented kid.)

Susan... Must you remind me of my inexorable decrepitude? It's bad enough that I realize that, when you went to the 1982 worldcon, you were as young as the kid who was our masquerade presentation's gopher.

I remember how old Laura is because I remember that her mother skipped Nolacon due to pregnancy.

Mary Aileen... I don't suppose you're planning to go to the worldcon.

I can't help it, must poke at Serge! I was BORN in 82 ;)

I guess I'll now do my impersonation of Clint Eastwood telling kids to get off his lawn.

Hey, it's my lawn here!

"Go ahead. Make my hay."

I also wanted to say, regarding AJ's being born in 1982, that she probably was the baby who kept bawling during the worldcon's Masquerade. What bawling baby? Oh, I made that up just to get back at the uppity kid.

Serge: No, I'm going to miss Worldcon this year.

Susan: Those were both very impressive, also. Their awards were well-deserved.

Marilee... Phooee.

Serge, that would be in keeping with my parents' trend of taking me to cool places when I was too young to remember, and then forcing me to spend my formative years in a boring nowhere in CA. (and now we know why AJ spent her childhood with her nose in a book)

Sorry about the bawling. I was prone to ear infections :P

AJ... Typical of you kids, blaming your parents.

Serge: Typical of you old-timers, not understanding the plight of the younger generation.

Off topic, but...

Happy Birthday, Mary Aileen!

There is no off-topic here!

Happy birthday, Mary Aileen!

(And note that the best way to get me to remember the name that goes with a face is to be embarrassed by blanking on it once. Very motivational.)

Thank you. I'm celebrating by taking the day off work, and by eating some of the cake I made last night. (Having to make one's own birthday cake is no fair, but I don't like the bought kind much.)

My birthday usually falls near Memorial Day, so if I weren't nearly always at a con I'd celebrate that weekend by default (I don't really like celebrating at cons, though it was amusing the year I turned 21.) At this point I tend not to actually celebrate it all that much, since the accumulation of years is getting depressing.

One of my favorite birthdays was at 1984's worldcon in LA. My not-yet-wife invited a few people to our hotel room. One of them was a writer we were both fans of, and the writer brought in her publishers - Elsie and Don Wollheim. The latter gratified me with a pun when I mentionned the troubles we had had with our Budget rental car.

Happy birthday, Mary Aileen!

I spent much of the 1984 worldcon severely hung over, but I still have clearer memories of that con than of many worldcons since, during which I drank not a drop. Going back to the same hotel in 1996 was a very odd experience.

Susan... That'd have been your 3rd worldcon, right? It was probably still so new as to overcome excessive imbibing's effects on your memory. I wonder if our paths crossed that year or at the NASFiC and worldcon that were held there before 2006.

1984 was my third worldcon, yes. I was not at that NASFiC, but I was at both the 1996 and 2006 L.A.Cons (and most North American worldcons since 1982, though not quite all.)

As for myself, I went to most the the worldcons of the 1980s, until 1986. After that, there was San Diego in 1990, then nothing until San José in 2002. Since then I've been to all American worldcons.

1982, 1983, 1984
1987, 1988, 1989
1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998
2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008

1985, 1999 - Australia (no money)
1986 - Atlanta (freshman orientation at college; bad decision)
1990 - Holland (had just graduated college; again, no money)

I plan to be at 2009 and 2011. 2010 (Australia again) is unlikely but not impossible. Annoyingly, this time I have the money but my current job will probably not let me take the time off right around then.

Unless something disastrous happens, I'll be at the Reno worldcon in 2011. For one thing, the drive between there and Albuquerque is easily feasible. Also, the Bay Area is only 3 hours away from Reno.

By the way... Who here is planning to go to Montreal, besides wood-smuggler Susan and yours truly?

Thanks, AJ.

Worldcons I've been to:
1983, 1986, 1988, 1989, 1991, 1992, 1994, 1997, 1998, 2000, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2008.

Plus the NASFiC in 1995.

1998 was the year I first entered the art show. 2004 was the first year I was in the masquerade (as a flunky).

Awww, Reno won instead of Seattle? Oh well. I've never been to a WorldCon, but I might try for 2011. 2010 would be fun, but probably not do-able.

AJ... Reno didn't really win instead of Seattle. Seattle had to withdraw its bid because others had put their filthy paws on the facilities. So, you coming in 2011?

Mary Aileen... 2004 was the first year I was in the masquerade (as a flunky)

So your path may have crossed Susan's, since she was the emcee of the first masquerade I attended where the emcee had to warn people not just against flash photo but about putting cell phones on buzz.

2004 was brutal to MC, with 50% of the entries being Terry Pratchett/Discworld-related. I completely gave up on trying to find clever ways to mention this and just started an audience participation schtick.

Susan... Like I said when I discovered that you had emceed that masquerade, you did a fine job.

Serge, that just sucks! Darn those "others" and their filthy paws.

It's too soon to say whether I'll be there in 2011, but it's something I'll try for.

I still don't know about Montreal. A course I'm considering has its last class on the 6th, and the exam period starts on the 10th.

On the other hand, it is seeming more likely that I will go to Kalamazoo. I haven't registered yet, but I have reserved a room.

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