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July 27, 2009

Our Worldcon schedule
Posted by Patrick at 11:56 AM * 122 comments

Which is to say, my and Teresa’s various appearances at Anticipation, the 67th World Science Fiction Convention, August 6-10, in Montreal. Details after the jump.

(Aside from the events we’re on, the one we most assiduously want to attend is the planned dialogue between Charles Stross and Paul Krugman, now scheduled for Thursday night at 9 PM. It’s like Crooked Timber is running the Worldcon all of a sudden.)

Thursday

Patrick, 2:00 to 3:30 PM: “The History of Tor,” P-512BF, with Tom Doherty, Harriet McDougal, Beth Meacham, David Hartwell, and Graham Sleight

Patrick & Teresa, 5:00 to 6:30 PM: “The Life and Work of John M. Ford,” P-511D, with Neil Gaiman, David Hartwell, Harriet McDougal, and Jo Walton

Patrick & Teresa, 9:00 PM until all hours: Tor party, suite 2823, Delta Hotel
(We’ll probably arrive sometime after 10:30, once the Stross/Krugman show lets out)

Friday

Patrick, 10:00 to 11:00 AM: “Intellectual Property and Creative Commons,” P-512CG, with Cory Doctorow and Laura Majerus

Teresa, 10:00 to 11:00 AM: “How does ‘creationist science’ work?”, P-516D, with Andy Duncan, Edward James, Jay Lake, Leigh Ann, and Randy Smith

Teresa, 11:00 AM to noon: “The Ethics of Dollhouse,” P-524B, with Dan Kimmel, Eric Van, Gayle Blake, and Kell Brown

Teresa, 2:00 to 3:30 PM: “The Greatest Fan Writer,” P-511D, with Martin Hoare, Moshe Feder, Niall Harrison, Richard Lynch, Joe Siclari, and James Bacon

Patrick, 8:00 to 9:00 PM, Prometheus Awards ceremony, P-524A

Teresa, 8:00 to 9:00 PM, “The Work of Betty Ballantine,” P-524B, with Tom Doherty, David Hartwell, Jim Minz, and Gary K. Wolfe

Patrick & Teresa, Friday evening passim: Tor.com party, suite 2827, Delta Hotel, and the Making Light party, Delta hotel
(Note that the Tor.com party is distinct from the Tor Books party; the latter is the previous night)

Saturday

Patrick, 11:00 AM to noon, “Tor Books presentation,” P-511CF, with Tom Doherty, Beth Meacham, David Hartwell, and Moshe Feder

Teresa, 2:00 to 3:30 PM, “Reading the Bloggers,” P-512AE, with Alvaro Zinos-Amaro, Hal Duncan, Karen Burnham, and Pablo Defendini

Patrick, 3:30 to 4:30 PM, “The City of the Future,” P-524A, with Anne Whiston Spirn, Cara C. Sloat, Chandra Rooney, Kristin Norwood, and Mike Gallaher

Teresa, 9:00 to 10:00 PM, “The Art of Conversation,” P-512CG, with Candas Jane Dorsey, James Morrow, and Jon Singer

Sunday

Teresa, 11:00 AM to 12:30 PM, “Art Show docent tour,” P-Art Show, with Ctein

Patrick, 12:30 to 1:30 PM, The New York Review of Science Fiction,” P-514AB, with David Hartwell, Kevin Maroney, and Michael Swanwick

Teresa, 12:30 to 2:00 PM, “What Fans Don’t Know About Publishing Scams,” P-512BF, with Jim Macdonald and Ginjer Buchanan

Patrick & Teresa, 8:00 to 10:30 PM, Hugo Awards ceremony, P-517ABC

Patrick & Teresa, 10:30 PM passim: Hugo Losers’ party, wherever that may be

Monday

Patrick, 10:00 to 11:00 AM, kaffeeklatsch (advance signup required)

Patrick, 12:30 to 2:00 PM, “Cultural Memory, Societal Resilience, and Change”, P-512F, with Blind Lemming Chiffon, David Anthony Durham, Geoff Ryman, and Lancer Kind

Patrick, 2:00 to 3:00 PM, “Fans Aren’t Slans: Pathologies of Fannish Culture,” P-512BF, with Chad Orzel, Kate Nepveu, and Steve Green

Teresa, 2:00 to 3:00 PM, kaffeeklatsch (advance signup required)

Comments on Our Worldcon schedule:
#1 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 12:27 PM:

Have a marvelous time -- I'd love to be there, but I won't.

#2 ::: Daniel Klein ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 12:33 PM:

If only something could be done about the Atlantic Ocean. I hope someone's going to film and upload "The Life and Work of John M. Ford". And "How does 'Creationist science' work?" And "The Ethics of Dollhouse"

And the entire con :/

This stuff sounds fantastically interesting. I am fantastically envious of everyone who gets to go.

#3 ::: Christopher Davis ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 12:44 PM:

I'm really looking forward[1] to Worldcon; there's so much good stuff on the schedule.

[1] (Overused pun carefully not made.)

#4 ::: abi ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 12:47 PM:

I'd love to be there to see Teresa talk about the Art of Conversation.

#5 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 12:52 PM:

How does one sign up for a Kaffeeklatsch?

#6 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 01:13 PM:

abi #4: So would I.

#7 ::: beth meacham ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 01:37 PM:

@texanne -- you find out where programming keeps the signup sheets, and sign up. Often they're at Registration. Sometimes they're near the Kaffeeklatsch room/rooms.

#8 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 01:39 PM:

Has anybody thought of inviting Krugman to ML's Friday night gathering?

My own schedule...

Thursday... Book release party for GoH Elisabeth Vonarburg.
Friday... Helping Kathryn with ML's party in whatever capacitor I can.
Saturday... Ninja duty for someone's masquerade presentation. I apparently have this reputation for reliability.
Sunday... Volunteer work.

#9 ::: Chris Quinones ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 01:41 PM:

the planned dialogue between Charles Stross and Paul Krugman, now scheduled for Thursday night at 9 PM

Excellent! Now to persuade Krugman to attend the Mike Ford panel...

#10 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 01:43 PM:

#5, TexAnne: "How does one sign up for a kaffeeklatsch?"

Don't know exactly. I imagine there will be info at registration. Possibly as simple as writing your name on a clipboard.

The basic idea of these kaffeeklatsch-type events, run by larger conventions for the last ten or fifteen years, is that the number of seats are usually limited to something like ten or twelve, so people can be guaranteed a chance to have actual conversations with writers, artists, and editors they're particularly interested in. Teresa and I are generally happy to do these, although this is the first time (I think) that a Worldcon has scheduled separate kaffeeklatsches for the two of us. (Teresa has already laid claim to one of the seats at mine, so if you want to catch us both at once, that's the one to go for.)

#11 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 01:47 PM:

I'm told that Krugman will be at Worldcon on Thursday and Friday only. The original plan was for Saturday and Sunday, but it turned out he needed to be at a conference in Malaysia earlier than he'd thought.

I don't know what occasioned him coming to Worldcon, but if it was someone from Anticipation inviting him, that was a brilliant stroke. Certainly he's made his fondness for SF clear on several occasions in the last couple of years.

I did invite him to the Tor party on Thursday night...

#12 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 01:53 PM:

Thanks, Beth! I'll begin sharpening my elbows.

#13 ::: Skwid ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 01:54 PM:

I've only had the time to work out my Thursday and Friday shortlists, so far, but y'all are on several of my first choices, and I'll definitely be seeing you at the Krugman/Stross event...thanks for linking to that, too...I didn't know it had been moved up from 1700 hours!

Teresa was scheduled for a Thu 1900 panel "The World is Large and Strange;" will she not be making it to that one?

Also, is the Tor party closed invite?

#14 ::: Another Damned Medievalist ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 02:00 PM:

Sooooo wish I were going to be there.

#15 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 02:06 PM:

TexAnne @ 12... By the way, bring your own caffeine. In spite of the name of those events, coffee is seldom if ever served.

#16 ::: Christopher Davis ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 02:13 PM:

Chris Quinones (#9): If only we could get Mike Ford to attend the Krugman/Stross discussion.

#17 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 02:20 PM:

Beyond the Making Light party, I've not the foggiest clue what I'll be attending -- perhaps I'll sort that out on the train...

#18 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 02:24 PM:

... or more graciously, the Making Light party is the one 'must attend' item on my list -- the rest pale by comparison.

#19 ::: Randolph ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 02:28 PM:

Now, if they get Margaret Atwood to attend, our work is done. :-)

#20 ::: Kayjayoh ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 02:31 PM:

Man, Thursday is going to be a long haul from the eastern edge of Maine. About a 10 hour drive. And yet there are so many things I want to see early in the day.

Sadly, I think the earliest we would conceivably get on the road is 8 AM. :(

#21 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 02:44 PM:

My WorldCon schedule: Ummm...stuff...arrive...eat...

What day is it? Did I miss that party again this year? Damn.

Wander aimlessly, looking for someone I know and getting hungrier and hungrier. Eat something, then immediately run into a whole lot of people who are starving.

Oh, that panel I wanted to go to is right...rats, it's just ending.

Sigh.

Talk a lot with friends and strangers. Wander aimlessly some more.

Maybe I'll try to do better this year. We'll see how I do.

#22 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 02:54 PM:

Xeger @ 18... But of course.

#23 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 03:16 PM:

Xopher, my plans include the Making Light party and seeing friends. I'll be at the Travelodge, and I'll have my netbook with me. Wanna hang out?

#24 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 03:46 PM:

OH YES, TexAnne! VERY MUCH YES.

#25 ::: Joyce Reynolds-Ward ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 03:47 PM:

Aha. Will be a late night on Thursday, as I am definitely going to be at the Stross-Krugman panel, then the Making Light party.

So much to do...so little time...so many things I want to do at Worldcon this year!

Le sigh (of happiness)!

#26 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 03:54 PM:

Xopher: Woo-hoo!! Has your email changed? Mine hasn't.

#27 ::: Avram ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 03:57 PM:

I've been hoping the concom would publish a copy of the program on Google Calendar, or make a .ical file available, or something. I suppose they still might, with more than a week to go and details still being hammered out.

Instead I stayed up past 2 AM last night, looking through the PDF for panels that sounded interesting. Too much stuff overlapping on Thursday.

#28 ::: Andrew Plotkin ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 03:59 PM:

I shall be around. I shall see people who are around.

I think somebody owes me a better seen-at-party photo. Patrick took a photo of me last year, eating a Xopher truffle. The truffle was excellent but the photo is terrible -- I look like like my head is melting down into my collar, due to the combination of the heat (remember the heat?) and truffle-eating jaw position. And there's chocolate on my thumb.

*This photo is now my representation on Wikipedia.*

I realize that many, many people in the world have worse problems. But I'd like to think that it's a solvable problem.

#29 ::: Linkmeister ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 04:00 PM:

Serge @ #8, "Helping Kathryn with ML's party in whatever capacitor I can."

I trust you'll get no resistance.

#30 ::: Kate Nepveu ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 04:02 PM:

Avram, someone on LJ pulled out the program data into text form, including CSV & tab delimited: http://community.livejournal.com/anticipation_09/86878.html

#31 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 04:04 PM:

#25, Joyce Reynolds-Ward: "Will be a late night on Thursday, as I am definitely going to be at the Stross-Krugman panel, then the Making Light party."

A very late night, since the Making Light party is on Friday.

#13, Skwid: "Is the Tor party closed invite?" Not really. Basically, it's a private party and we don't list it on the party board, but pretty much anyone who knows people there is welcome. Until we decide they aren't. As the old joke goes, we reserve the right to serve refuse to anybody. The Tor party does tend to be incredibly crowded, at least until around midnight.

Skwid also asks about the 7PM panel that Teresa is listed as being on. Regrettably, yes, she's bailing on that. We generally tell convention programmers not to put us on panels during the dinner hour, since taking writers out for meals is one of the reasons editors go to cons. In the case of this Worldcon, either we forgot or they did. But either way, we have a Thursday-evening commitment that precludes panels at 7PM.

#32 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 04:10 PM:

Patrick @ 31... we reserve the right to serve refuse to anybody

Now I understand what meant about how the non-ML parties will pail in comparison.

#33 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 04:11 PM:

By the way, if someone wanted to tell us where the ML party is, that would be okay.

#34 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 04:12 PM:

Dropped a word. Should say "...I understand what xeger meant..."

#35 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 04:20 PM:

Andrew Plotkin, #31: Gracious, that is a bad picture. Tell you what, we can make a date: Sometime at Worldcon, we'll each take a bunch of pictures of one another, then we'll select a better picture of you which I'll upload to your Wikipedia page, and vice versa.

(The Wikipedia snapshot of me, taken by David Dyer-Bennet at the Mike Ford memorial event a few years ago, is okay; it's just a bit out of date.)

#36 ::: Jennifer Barber ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 04:23 PM:

the planned dialogue between Charles Stross and Paul Krugman, now scheduled for Thursday night at 9 PM

So glad to hear this. Especially since I didn't already have anything I wanted to attend in that time slot.

#37 ::: abi ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 04:24 PM:

Ah, the joys of non-notability...

#38 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 04:30 PM:

And here is a photo of abi from last year's ML party.

#39 ::: Skwid ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 04:39 PM:

Oi, Xopher, TexAnne...I want in on this hanging-out thingamahoozits! I should be easily contactable via various internet-connected widgets...

Thanks for the clarification, Patrick. I would be rather surprised if the oversight were on y'all's end...there seem to have been...more than a few issues with Programming, this year. Meh.

#40 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 04:51 PM:

There are always issues. The Worldcon is run by volunteers. (Is it still the largest annual convention in the country run entirely by unsalaried volunteers? It was at one point.) It looks like a good program to me, and the glitches are forgiveable.

#41 ::: Skwid ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 05:13 PM:

There are always issues with volunteer-run events, of course. Often people commit to things when they have plenty of time on their hands, and then life happens and they don't have enough time anymore. Or they commit to something without any real idea of just how much work they just signed up for. It's just particularly troublesome when these things occur in such prominent areas.

As an example, at a recent event I attended where noise levels at different parts of the event were a known concern, a loud group took it upon itself to relocate from its designated and approved location, and the volunteer framework failed to identify and resolve the problem. As a result, that event space might not be available to us next year, which is truly tragic.

These things happen, but that recent experience makes me particularly wary with regards to such glitches.

#42 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 05:41 PM:

Patrick @ 40... Indeed. Concoms put a lot of time and effort in throwing those big parties. We should remember that rather than pick on glitches.

#43 ::: Charlie Stross ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 06:01 PM:

Patrick: I was approached by the programming committee to put them in touch with Paul Krugman, and thanks to the Crooked Timber symposium I managed to do that.

(I am now hoping I can hold up my end of the conversation without sounding like a numpty.)

And I do indeed expect to be at the Hugo Losers party, on the basis of prior probability (if nothing else)!

#44 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 06:01 PM:

Skwid: Of course you're included! (So is anyone else who should happen to care.) The joy of this crowd is the conversation, so the more Fluorospherian socializing I get, the happier I'll be.

#45 ::: Joel Polowin ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 06:46 PM:

Patrick @ 33: The ML party is listed for Conference Suite 631 in the most recent list I've got.

(They call me "Party Maven". It seems... inappropriate, since I don't know much about parties and generally prefer small quiet social gatherings. But I volunteered to help, and that's what they put me on.)

I'm on five programming items, ranging from a filk concert on Thursday afternoon (eek!) to helping kids make sock puppets on Friday evening (uh... interesting) to a discussion of realism in near-future SF on Sunday morning (I think I disagree with some of the premises of the topic as described in the program guide). I'll be going to the ML party, of course.

#46 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 07:08 PM:

Regarding the ML party, would someone mind volunteering to be the official photographer of the event?

#47 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 07:50 PM:

Serge @ 46 ...
... and hopefully whoever volunteers will also have the grace to understand that not everybody wishes to be anywhere near having their photo taken...

#48 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 08:00 PM:

xeger @ 47... Which is why I didn't take photos at last Christmas's ML gathering. You know what? Let's pretend I didn't ask for a photographer, either official or officious.

#49 ::: Skwid ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 08:18 PM:

Serge, I'll bring my camera. Thanks to Burn events (where one of the only real rules is "No photography of people without permission") I'm used to consulting with my subjects before and after taking photographs of people.

#50 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 08:21 PM:

Skwid @ 49... I'm used to consulting with my subjects before and after taking photographs of people

"Cameras do not love me!"

What's a Burn event, by the way?

#51 ::: Bill Higgins-- Beam Jockey ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 09:40 PM:

Here are highlights of my own schedule; consult my blog for dates, times, and places.

Contrary to the published schedule, I will NOT be moderating "Is French SF Sexier?" Thursday at 7 PM. I begged off.

This news should come as a relief to all who appreciate either French SF or sexiness.

Title: First Contact: Finding Other Civilizations
Description: How do we get (back) out into space? How do we find other intelligent life? What do we say when we get there?
All Participants: Bill Higgins, David Clements, Eric Choi, Michael Sestak, Paul Abell, Kim Binsted

Title: Tall Technical Tales
Description: True, humourous and occasionally educational stories from the front lines of science. Just what should you do if you swallow Liquid Nitrogen? Listen to our panel's stories, then share your own.
All Participants: Bill Higgins, Chuck Walther, David Clements, Mark Olson

Title: Tales of Super Science: Making the Unworkable Work
Description: Astounding Tales of Super Science: making the unworkable work.
All Participants: Alice Bentley, Bill Higgins, Keith Kato, Mark Olson, Pat Lundrigan

Title: How Antimatter Became a Plaything of Science Fiction
Description: Antimatter, a bizarre family of particles first discovered by physicists in the 1930s, eventually became commonplace in science fiction stories. We trace the path from science to fiction, which passes through astronomy and the study of meteorites before arriving at John Campbell, Robert Heinlein, and Jack Williamson.
All Participants: Bill Higgins

[Be aware that this antimatter talk is a late addition that is NOT LISTED IN THE PUBLISHED PROGRAM. If you know anybody with an interest in this topic, kindly spread the word.]

Title: A Century of Atom Smashing
Description: Ernest Rutherford, the first atom smasher, won a Nobel prize for his work at McGill University in Montreal. We discuss his work, what he did and what it led to.
All Participants: Bill Higgins, Laurel Anne Hill, Stephen R. Cooper

#52 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 10:03 PM:

Bill Higgins @ 51... What DO you do when you've swallowed liquid nitrogen? As for your panel on anti-matter, couldn't you combine it with the panel about sexy French SF? As for the latter being sexier, my answer would be no unless French SF has changed drastically since the days when I had easy access to it.

#53 ::: Madeleine Robins ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 10:14 PM:

Boy, howdy, do I wish I could be there. Have a fabulous time.

#54 ::: Linkmeister ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 10:37 PM:

News flash: Serge missed a pun, one made at his expense.

Heh.

#55 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 10:39 PM:

Linkmeister @ 54 ...
I'm shocked, simply shocked that you're getting such a charge out of it, too!

#56 ::: Linkmeister ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 10:41 PM:

xeger @ #55, it's a rare occurrence when I beat him at his own game.

#57 ::: Leroy F. Berven ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 10:41 PM:

Linkmeister @ 54:

Somebody must have installed a Serge protector on that line of discussion . . .

#58 ::: Craig R. ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 10:47 PM:

D**n

I'm pining for my salad days when I had (a) more free time and (b) more expendable monies

these years I only make one con a year (ARISIA) and that one I am usually being Officious In Some Capacity.

But I really did like going to them. Besides the programming ("wait, there were panels to see?") there are the people (Wordcon: party where you renew annual acquaintance with 5,000+ of your most intimate friends -- at least 10% of you haven't met yet )

Like a lot of people in Fandom (Service Mark registered), though, I seldom get to see much of the programming, because I'd be working as a functionary of some sort, unless forcibly dragged off to be off-duty (Which I the only way that I actually managed to meet Andre Norton, Ann McCaffrey and pat McKillup) -- but being re-assigned at the last minute from something else was how I managed to finally meet Judith Merrill and Ursula LeGuin -- else the conventions they were at would all have gone by with my working other areas)_

#59 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 11:00 PM:

Linkmeister @ 54... Oh, I didn't miss the pun. I was impeded by a shortage of inspiration.

#60 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 11:05 PM:

Patrick@40: depends on how you define "convention"; Pennsic, where Davey is now (and will be in place of Anticipation -- something about keeping an eye on people throwing sharp objects) has been over 10K attendance for some time (Worldcon has only once broken 8K), and AFAIK is still run by volunteers. Don't take my word for the volunteerism as I've been out of touch a long time, but IMO it has all the properties of conventions (reunion of the clan, massive partying, panels ranging from the general to the obsessive, hucksters, rituals, ...).

PS wrt the Mike panel: she asked me to pass on that she still has the bibliography in hostable condition; absent a host, she'll be willing to mail it to anyone interested.

#61 ::: Earl Cooley III ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 11:25 PM:

Craig R. #58: these years I only make one con a year (ARISIA)

My one convention a year is ArmadilloCon, which is August 14-16 this year.

#62 ::: Erik Nelson ::: (view all by) ::: July 27, 2009, 11:28 PM:

If you have to fly across the great lakes to get to the con, would you be a transponder?

#63 ::: Kayjayoh ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 12:25 AM:

I am so very excited to be able to meet some of you wonderful, luminous folks in person.

I may well have my camera with me. As a person who generally hates being photographed, myself (I'm working on that), I try to be very conscious of other people's desire to not be caught on film. (Though sometime people end up in the background by accident.) I am also reasonable good at not taking unflattering photos.

#64 ::: Amanda ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 07:05 AM:

Patrick @ 40:

(Is it still the largest annual convention in the country run entirely by unsalaried volunteers? It was at one point.)

Otakon. If the use of hired temps to supplement Registration takes them out of the running, just go back 8 years. Even then it was still many times the size of Worldcon, as I personally observed after being a gofer at the 98 Worldcon and the 2001 Otakon (in the same space, but Otakon used the whole Baltimore convention center, and has spilled over into additional venues in at least one recent year!)

#65 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 07:17 AM:

A question for people in the Montréal area or who've been there since 2004...

Is coffee as easy to find up there as it is in the US (although probably not as easily as in the state of Washington)?

The reason I ask is because, when I fly there this coming Thursday, it'll have been a long day and, as soon as I've checked out, I'll hop into a rental car and drive 200 miles east, to Québec City.

#66 ::: Dave Bell ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 07:27 AM:

Photographs: if there's a fairly uncluttered wall in the room, it makes a good background for photographs, and if people are aware of that, the ones who don't want to be in front of a camera can avoid it.

(But room parties tend to be too crowded for good pictures.)

#67 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 08:35 AM:

Serge @ 65 ...
Yes.

#68 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 09:13 AM:

xeger @ 67... That's a relief.

#69 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 09:31 AM:

Serge @ 68 ...
No -- the 'relief' will be what's hard to find...

#70 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 09:38 AM:

Montreal has abundant good coffee.

Basically, while it's possible to find mediocre food and drink in Montreal, it takes more work than in most places. It's not that it's full of world-class cuisine like Paris or New York; it's that the average quality of the routine food and drink on offer--in unpreposessing coffee shops, bakeries, neighborhood restaurants--is impressively high.

Incidentally, if you like really good tea, the Camellia Sinensis Tea House is just a few blocks away, and it's a mind-blowingly good combination tea store and sit-down restaurant. I got hooked on them when Jo Walton brought some of their Darjeeling to New York; it was so good that I've been ordering it via their web site ever since.

#71 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 09:53 AM:

Patrick Nielsen Hayden @ 70
... the Camellia Sinensis Tea House is just a few blocks away, and it's a mind-blowingly good combination tea store and sit-down restaurant

Ooooh! Now that sounds like it needs an expedition!

#72 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 10:36 AM:

xeger @ 69... As I wrote that, I did wonder if some people would let their gutter mind make that joke.

#73 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 10:39 AM:

Patrick @ 70... It sounds like this worldcon will make it hard for me to maintain my boyish figure.

#74 ::: Skwid ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 11:13 AM:

Xeger @ 71: seconded!

#75 ::: Terry Karney ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 11:25 AM:

Serge: If it's anything like Ottawa (which I was in during the bus strike) good coffee is trivially easy to find.

That's even if you don't think Timmie's is acceptable.

#76 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 11:33 AM:

Amanda, #64: Probably any other large anime-con as well. The ones I know about are all volunteer-run, at any rate -- and at that scale, sometimes it's really obvious.

#77 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 11:34 AM:

Terry Karney @ 75... I'm easy to please. If there's caffeine in it, lots of it, I'll be happy. And awake.

#78 ::: Mez ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 03:11 PM:

Daniel (#2), once the Atlantic Ocean Situation is well on the way to solution, I'd like to register a high-priority work ticket for the Pacific Ocean Problem. *sends gloomily envious gaze E-NE§*

§Which may mean I'm envying Mexico City gloomily, but it's the thought that's important.

#79 ::: Madeline Ashby ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 03:12 PM:

Thanks for the rec for Camellia Sinensis!

I've posted my schedule at my own site -- basically if you're into anime or manga, I'm there, and I get to ask my fellow workshop members questions about their history together on Friday night. Considering that some have known each other since I was in middle school, it should be interesting. I may open by asking everyone for a Judith Merril impression.

#80 ::: Linkmeister ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 03:35 PM:

Mez @ # 78, "I'd like to register a high-priority work ticket for the Pacific Ocean Problem"

And even before that, how about the Cost of Trip Problem, which could be solved by improving the Income Problem?

#81 ::: Paula Lieberman ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 04:06 PM:

#65 Serge
The last time I was in Montreal, the drivers there made Boston drivers look polite, calm, patient, well-intentioned, well-behaved, and unaggressive.

I don't know if that's changed, but I suspect not.

I figured you out to be given the warning.....

#82 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 04:22 PM:

Paula Lieberman @ 81 ...
The last time I was in Montreal, the drivers there made Boston drivers look polite, calm, patient, well-intentioned, well-behaved, and unaggressive.

My experience with driving in Montreal is that the drivers expect that you know what you're doing, and where you're going -- and while they do follow closer than in many other places, they also often seem to be more capable as well.

I'd expect that the "better know what you're doing/where you're going" comes across quite badly if you don't, however.

#83 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 04:26 PM:

Paula Lieberman @ 81... I haven't driven much on Quebec roads since I moved to the US, but this sounds about right. It was interesting, in 2004, to drive on the highway between Montreal and Quebec City on Labor Day. Lots of traffic? Yes. Fast? Yes. Bumper to bumper? Let's put it this way: Groucho Marx would have said that, if the car behind had gotten any closer, it'd have been in the front of his.

#84 ::: Xopher ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 04:29 PM:

Well, I'm all booked. Flying in Wednesday, flying out Monday. Staying at the Intercontinental.

TexAnne, my email is the same. Even my cellphone is the same.

I'm getting all excited. But now I have to make chocolates!

#85 ::: Paula Lieberman ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 04:39 PM:

#83 Serge

But for your family. it's all tax deductible grist for the writer's mill, and a setting of scene for paranormal romance twixt Montreal and Quebec City....

#86 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 04:56 PM:

Paula Lieberman @ 85... It'll be just me this time around. My wife has tight deadlines so she's staying home. Still, I could do the gathering of information for her. (Note to myself: go to the Chateau Frontenac and force myself to have a glass of wine in the sumptuous decor.) On the other hand, there's little if any market for romance novels set in Quebec in the 21st Century.

#87 ::: Linkmeister ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 06:23 PM:

Serge @ #86, "there's little if any market for romance novels set in Quebec in the 21st Century."

How do you know?

Wolfe and Montcalm, reincarnated, vying for the hand of a Parti Quebecois sublieutenant? What's not to like?

#88 ::: Cheryl ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 06:50 PM:

#65 Serge

A question for people in the Montréal area or who've been there since 2004...

Is coffee as easy to find up there as it is in the US (although probably not as easily as in the state of Washington)?

Good coffee is trivially easy to find in Montreal, as is good food. Of course, this is my hometown, so I think everything here is wonderful and it's the best place ever. I'm glad Patrick said it first, so you won't think it's just talking up my city.

I would love to be at Making Lumiere on the Friday, although it seems unlikely that anyone there will know who I am. I'm not exactly a well-known Fluorospherian (Fluorospheroid?). Anything I can bring? Since I live here, I at least won't have to schlep it in a suitcase.

#89 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 06:55 PM:

Cheryl: du cidre de glace, si ça te dérange pas?

#90 ::: Cheryl ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 07:16 PM:

#89 TexAnne

Cheryl: du cidre de glace, si ça te dérange pas?

Ça ne me dérange pas de tout! As-tu une marque préférée?

#91 ::: Cheryl ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 07:17 PM:

Actually, with the caveat that I don't know if I can get there yet... my schedule is not always under my control. I'll know more next week.

#92 ::: Cally Soukup ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 07:53 PM:

My one driving experience in Montreal was a bit disconcerting until I realized that the street name signs were approximately two feet higher than I was accustomed to looking for them. It's very hard to navigate around a city when you can't figure out what the street names are.

So if you don't see a street name, look up further.

#93 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 08:55 PM:

Cheryl, no, I've only ever tasted one kind, and I don't remember what it was. But boy was it good.

#94 ::: Bill Higgins-- Beam Jockey ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 09:10 PM:

Serge writes in #52:

What DO you do when you've swallowed liquid nitrogen?

I hope never to find out.

My freshman physics professor, Darwin J. Mead, was renowned among students for his nitrogen-drinking stunt. But as far as I know he never swallowed. His expectorations were impressive, though.

(One guy allegedly found out. Here is one of many, many places on the Web his story appears.

#95 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 09:18 PM:

Bill Higgins-- Beam Jockey @ 94 ...
But as far as I know he never swallowed.

Would that be in the same class of denial as "didn't inhale" ;)

#96 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 09:20 PM:

Cheryl, #88: I have a bunch of "hometowns," and I don't necessarily think that "everything is wonderful" in them or that they're the "best place ever."

Montreal, on the other hand, seriously rocks. So maybe you're not just being a local chauvinist.

Regarding Montreal traffic, Teresa--the actual automobile driver in the Nielsen Hayden co-prosperity sphere--rates Montreal as significantly less challenging than Rome, Boston, or New York. Definitely more aggressive than your average Canadian city, which is kind of like saying "hardest-driving gangbanger in the third-grade Montessori class."

#97 ::: Skwid ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 09:48 PM:

My schedule of interesting (to me) and first choice panels up through Saturday is now up on my LJ. I should get done going through Sunday either tonight or tomorrow. Sadly, I'm leaving abysmally early Monday morning and can't make the Fans aren't Slans panel, which I desperately wish I could attend!

Also possibly of interest to the Fluorosphere, there appears to be a respectably sized pub crawl taking shape over on LJ. Looks promising!

#98 ::: Christopher Davis ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 10:06 PM:

Patrick (#96): Teresa [...] rates Montreal as significantly less challenging than [...] Boston

It'd have to be; as Cally says, they have street signs in Montreal!

#99 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 10:07 PM:

Bill Higgins @ 94... Ah, those wacky science teachers... I had a chemistry teacher in high school, this little old guy, always dead-pan even on the day when his demonstration involved a sizable amount of iron oxyde plus a magnesium strip plus a match, the result of which was a room filled with smoke, and a lump of hot iron on his desk.

#100 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 10:11 PM:

Cheryl @ 88... People will know you if you identify yourself. And if you bring in that delectable cider. As for whether or not you'll recognize anybody... Abi will be the person inside a laptop. For an idea of who the rest of us are, I suggest you take a look here.

#101 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 10:14 PM:

Christopher Davis @ 98... I dunno. After 2004's worldcon, I had no problem leaving Boston even though the MapQuest directions had not taken into account the detours caused by roadwork.

#102 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: July 28, 2009, 10:33 PM:

Erik@62: they aren't big enough to be ponds.

Paula@81: I've been in Montreal around the last two Labor Days; the drivers did not strike me as being as vicious as Bostonians.
Serge@83: not just on that route. We left Niagara heading for Torcon at ~10pm on a Tuesday -- midweek, light traffic, right? Wrong. Dense and fast. Apparently that area is getting very built up, but even so that traffic was one of the most unnerving I've driven in. Going on up the lake, at the same time a week later, was easy in my post-Worldcon down.

#103 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 29, 2009, 10:19 AM:

Seen on Comcast's site:

U.S. Terror Arrests Spur Warnings: Officials are increasingly worried about U.S. extremists who travel abroad for terror training.

They must have heard about Bill Higgins and that anti-matter panel.

#104 ::: Cheryl ::: (view all by) ::: July 29, 2009, 12:24 PM:

#100 Serge

Cheryl @ 88... People will know you if you identify yourself. And if you bring in that delectable cider.

It comes in 200ml bottles, but it's so sweet about 30mls is a serving. Do you have a suggestion as to quantity? I've been to the Making Lumiere page, but I don't see how many are expected.

As to driving in Montreal - it's my normal; the other drivers follow the rules I expect them to follow, so I'm probably not a good judge. I certainly prefer it to driving in Toronto, where drivers seem to pay attention to what's in the square meter in front of their car and nothing else; or Philadelphia, where drivers seem to be paying attention to that quarter that fell somewhere under the back seat...

I did have a friend visit who was disconcerted by the streetlights. He was accustomed to the type that hang out over the intersections, whereas downtown Montreal will mostly have the kind that sit on top of a pole at the corner, so he kept blowing red lights and not noticing. Luckily, no accidents occurred, but he did get stopped.

#105 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 29, 2009, 12:34 PM:

Cheryl @ 104... You might want to go here and talk to Kathryn from Sunnyvale. She's the organizer. Me, I'm a helper.

#106 ::: Cheryl ::: (view all by) ::: July 29, 2009, 02:23 PM:

Kathryn from Sunnyvale seems to only allow comment posting from registered LJ users on that page. I'm not an LJ user, and have no desire to be one.

She's free to email me, though. AgentMtl at yahoo.com is my address; I'm only online during the weekday, I'm afraid.

I have a car; I'm still settling up my schedule for the week, but I'll probably be able to run some errands ahead of time.

#107 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: July 29, 2009, 02:38 PM:

Cheryl, #106: FYI, she's not doing that to be unfriendly. If anonymous commenting is allowed on an LJ community, it tends to become overrun with spam very quickly. The way around it, if you want to comment there, is to get yourself a free LJ account that you only use for commenting. There's no requirement that you post anything on your own account; I know several people who have LJ accounts that they use only for reading/commenting.

#108 ::: Serge ::: (view all by) ::: July 29, 2009, 02:39 PM:

Cheryl @ 106... It's my understanding that a thread will be created in ML for the party.

#109 ::: Catherine Crockett ::: (view all by) ::: July 29, 2009, 06:29 PM:

I find Montreal about as easy to drive in as Toronto or Chicago, possibly easier. People do drive faster and cut it closer than in some cities, but they seem skillful and attentive.

No right on red on the island of Montreal, BTW. Also, it's useful to know the cardinal directions: NEWS == NEOS. Ouest == West is the only one with a different initial. The others are Sud, Nord, Est.

Even the very plainest SAQs [provincial liquor store] usually have ice cider. There are four grades of liquor store, ranging from convenience oriented ones that have a basic selection and long hours, to ones with a massive selection albeit shorter hours.

There are all sorts of fascinating Quebecois alcoholic beverages. L'Orleane makes a variety of fruit cordials, including blackcurrant [cassis], cloudberry, and ground cherry [amour en cage/cerise du terre]. The SAQ website implies they stock Amelanchier sp. cordial, as well as strawberry, raspberry, mixed berries, elderberry [if I've translated sureau blanc correctly], rhubarb, plum, and wild cherry. Sortilege is interesting if you like maple--it's a mixture of Canadian rye whisky and maple syrup. It's similar to Drambuie.

Colin Hinz and I will be running the evening fan lounge. We'd like to encourage the fluorospherians to come check it out [and the daytime lounge in the Palais]. We'll be open 7pm--late, Thursday onwards, suite 2811 in the Delta.

We're also having a reception to honour the fan fund delegates 4--6pm Thursday, Delta, suite 2811. I hope to see lots of you there. [The fan funds being CUFF, DUFF, and TAFF.]

#110 ::: Henry Troup ::: (view all by) ::: July 29, 2009, 08:24 PM:

I live in Ottawa and have spent a fair bit of time in Montreal. My employer-before-this was headquartered there. (Across the street from Place Ville Marie.) The only bad cup of coffee I've had in Montreal was at the Delta - con goers staying there, take note. The Delta also has the most outrageously overpriced breakfast, IMO.

BTW, has anyone taken note that Anticipation overlaps Les FrancoFolies, one of Montreal's music festivals? Like the Jazz Festival, many concerts are free. And they encourage you to buy beer and drink it in the closed-off streets. (It funds the festival.)

Looking forward to meeting some of you, and re-meeting some others.

#111 ::: abi ::: (view all by) ::: July 30, 2009, 08:20 AM:

OK, there's a signup thread here, and the LJ's been set so anyone can comment on it.

Put your ML handle in the comment thread unless it's really blindingly obvious who you are from your LJ handle. Or even then.

#112 ::: Cheryl ::: (view all by) ::: July 30, 2009, 12:15 PM:

I didn't see this link on the Anticipation site (it's a big site, maybe I just didn't see it), but this might be helpful for anyone planning on using public transit to get around Montreal -

The main STM website, English version:
http://www.stm.info/English/a-somm.htm

Info on the STM tourist card:
http://www.stm.info/English/info/a-cartet.htm

Tous Azimuts is probably my favourite tool on that site. From the front page, click 'Plan my trip', then 'Tous Azimuts'. Put in your departure point and destination, and voila! it tells you the bus/metro/train(s) you need to take to get there. I use it constantly to get around town.

It's integrated with Google, too, if you prefer that interface.

#113 ::: Nicole J. LeBoeuf-Little ::: (view all by) ::: August 02, 2009, 10:30 AM:

I have just now just yesterday* RSVPd at the Making Lumiere LJ for the party.

I'll be on site by the opening ceremonies, but sadly I'll miss the Mike Ford panel. I'd like to second the request for some kind Fluorospherian to record it for posterity.

To those I met for the first time at Denvention: I am terrible with names and faces, even with Making Light And Faces for a cheat sheet. It generally takes me about two or three times before the association cements. So I may need a reintroduction. Please forgive!

*Nothing like hitting "Preview" and then forgetting to hit "Post" until the next day to make one feel silly.

#114 ::: TexAnne ::: (view all by) ::: August 02, 2009, 01:03 PM:

To make it easier for y'all to find me, I've dyed my hair purple.

#115 ::: Nancy Lebovitz ::: (view all by) ::: August 02, 2009, 07:43 PM:

Does anyone have recommendations for things to see or do in Montreal?

I'm going to be there without my business, and I might just leave the magic circle of the convention and do a little sight-seeing.

#116 ::: Cally Soukup ::: (view all by) ::: August 02, 2009, 07:59 PM:

Nancy @ 115

I enjoyed the Museum of Fine Arts, but found the science museum really disappointing. The Botanic Gardens are lovely, and quite large. If you're like me, and don't know a lot about plants, take someone like Jon Singer along. Heck, take Singer anyway!

#117 ::: Joel Polowin ::: (view all by) ::: August 02, 2009, 11:10 PM:

I'll second the recommendation for the Botanical Gardens, though I haven't been there in many years. When I was in high school, we day-tripped to Montreal from Ottawa and did a breakneck sightseeing tour, and the Gardens were the nicest part of it. (Of course, part of that was just because they were a peaceful break from the running-around-ness of the day. Regardless, very pleasant.)

#118 ::: Andrew Plotkin ::: (view all by) ::: August 02, 2009, 11:53 PM:

Ooh, Museum of Fine Arts looks good. They have a collection of "decorative arts" (a term which is terrible in at least two directions, but which represents things I like).

#119 ::: Erik Nelson ::: (view all by) ::: August 03, 2009, 02:19 PM:

Wish I could be there. Is there a book I could read instead?

#120 ::: Henry Troup ::: (view all by) ::: August 05, 2009, 12:22 AM:

#115 - there's a big French music festival, Les Francofolies, just across a couple streets at Place des Arts. In the other direction, a little further but still a short walk is the Old Port, including a Circus Promenade.

#121 ::: xeger ::: (view all by) ::: August 05, 2009, 01:02 AM:

Erik Nelson @ 119 ...
Wish I could be there. Is there a book I could read instead?

Although I'm sure it'll fade once I'm there, I've just taken a look at the 104 page program guide, and all I can thinking "Uh... too much information, head 'splody!"

OTOH, it might meet your criteria for 'book' ;)

#122 ::: Dave Howell ::: (view all by) ::: August 05, 2009, 02:28 AM:

all re: #116: If you fall into the category described ("Planning to go to Botanic Gardens; wish you could go with somebody who could tell you more about what you're seeing"), I know that my husband Eric will not leave Montreal without visiting the gardens, and I can also confidently say that, in regards to Functional Botany (plants used by people for reasons other than decoration, medicine in particular), he's even more knowledgeable than Jon. It's hard to know more about a topic of interest to Jon than Jon does, I know. {chuckle} I offer the textbook Clinical Botanical Medicine as evidence.

I don't know when he's going; we'll figure that out after we arrive Wednesday evening. The idea of offering some kind of guided tour hadn't crossed our minds, but Interested Persons can drop me a line at dh.botgarden.2009@GrandFenwick.net and I will Make Inquiries.

P.S. To any who might be concerned by the apparent blithe disregard shown by the presence of an email address out where spammer scrapers can apparently seize it, fret not.

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