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August 17, 2014

MidAmericon 2
Posted by Patrick at 02:34 AM * 112 comments

Today in London, the right to host the 2016 World Science Fiction convention was granted to the group bidding to hold it in Kansas City, Missouri. Their Worldcon will happen 40 years after MidAmericon, the only previous Worldcon held there.

MidAmericon 2, the 74th World Science Fiction Convention
August 17-21, 2016, in Kansas City, Missouri

Guests of Honor:
Kinuko Y. Craft
Patrick & Teresa Nielsen Hayden
Tamora Pierce
Michael Swanwick

Toastmaster:
Pat Cadigan

The original MidAmericon, the 34th World Science Fiction Convention, was held September 2-6, 1976. It was my first Worldcon. I was seventeen years old. I can’t begin to list all the things that happened there that would affect the rest of my life. Some of them I was present for. Some I discovered only years later.

Among the people I met for the first time at MidAmericon: Paul Williams, whose later importance in our lives I have yet to manage to write about. In brief, Paul is the person who, in 1983, discerned that the two of us needed to be science fiction editors in New York City, instructed us in the steps necessary to accomplish that, and activated his remarkable network in support of making it happen. If we had never known Paul we would be living substantially different lives.

Another person I met for the first time at MidAmericon: The great science fiction editor Terry Carr, my and Teresa’s role model in so many things. Terry’s entire life was the canonical demo of how “fan” isn’t the larval form of “professional” but a co-existing state. He died in 1987, age 50. We’re still pissed at him about that.

Among the things that happened at MidAmericon: The scrappy, inexperienced, only slightly-organized science-fiction fans of Phoenix, Arizona, with whom I was socially affiliated despite not having lived there since May, 1975, unexpectedly defeated the long-established Los Angeles group in the site selection for the 1978 Worldcon. Which we promptly announced would be named “Iguanacon II.” (There was never, except in an obscure work of fanzine fiction, an “Iguanacon I.”) Setting in motion a tremendous cascade of events and connections, some good, some dreadful. We should never have tried to run a Worldcon. We pulled it off.

Among the people I didn’t meet at MidAmericon: Tom Doherty, then the new publisher of Ace Books. It was Tom’s first worldcon as well.

Among the people who weren’t at MidAmericon: The young Teresa Nielsen, who I knew through an APA of which we were both members. She had planned to attend but was waylaid by illness. We met in person, in Phoenix, just a few weeks later anyway. By then we were both members of the fledgling committee to actually run the 1978 Worldcon. We didn’t become Patrick-and-Teresa until a year and a half later, in the final epic pre-Iguanacon months of drama, bloodshed, heroism and betrayal. I think it was sometime after the Catalog of Ships but before the defeat of Achilles. Memory is treacherous. You’ll have to ask someone else.

Here in the endlessly strange future, I can’t begin to tell you how honored Teresa and I are to be among the guests of honor at a World Science Fiction Convention. And I can’t possibly express how appropriate it feels that this should be happening at a Worldcon in Kansas City. From both of us, thank you to the lovely KC people who invited us. We’re looking forward to it more than we can begin to say.

Comments on MidAmericon 2:
#1 ::: Geri Sullivan ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 05:31 AM:

So very thrilled. Huzzah!

#2 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 05:39 AM:

Amazed. Kind of dizzy. There are people walking around in t-shirts that have our names on them.

#3 ::: Arthur Hlavaty ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 06:29 AM:

Congrats

#4 ::: Sumana Harihareswara ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 06:45 AM:

Congratulations to both of you! And thank you for sharing the reminiscence.

The photo and biography are fun and familiar. :)

I bet there are people saying of you similar things to what you say of Paul Williams. I hope people say things like that about me someday.

#5 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 07:45 AM:

Felicitations, Teresa and Patrick!

#6 ::: Laramie Sasseville ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 08:52 AM:

Wow! What a cool story; I'm delighted to hear that life is bringing you back to Kansas City in such style.

Incidentally, a convention in Kansas City 1980 was the start of the hitch-hiking trip that brought Marty H and I via Boulder and a stay with Singer, to Seattle to stay with Ole K that summer...

It's no wonder they sing songs about Kansas City.

#7 ::: beth meacham ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 09:59 AM:

Hurrah! It'll be fun!

#8 ::: Allan Beatty ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 10:00 AM:

Congratulations on the well-deserved honor for PNH and TNH, and to Kansas City fandom on finally after 40 years being again able to mount an effort of this size.

The first Midamericon could have been my first Worldcon if I hadn't been busy moving across the country at the time. I certainly heard about a lot of goings-on from friends in apas.

Now this is going to be the first Worldcon I attend in decades. How could I miss it when it's in driving distance?

#9 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 10:14 AM:

1) Congratulations! I look forward to seeing you there.

2) I'm confused. How could the bid for the 1978 Worldcon have been voted on in 1976? That was before the switch from the 3-year to the 2-year cycle.

#10 ::: Cathy Doyle ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 10:19 AM:

What a great story. Whoever thought all those years ago that you'd be guests of honor at a Worldcon yourself! Enjoy!

#11 ::: janetl ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 10:29 AM:

What a wonderful history, coming full circle. Congratulations!

#12 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 10:54 AM:

Lee (9): If I remember correctly*, Worldcon bids had been on a two-year cycle for a long time before going to a three-year cycle for a while. The current two-year cycle is thus a reversion, not a new thing.

*I'm sure someone here can--and will--correct me if I'm wrong.

#13 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 10:54 AM:

trying to shake loose a comment caught in the dread Internal Server Error

#14 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 11:00 AM:

Congratulations to our hosts!

#15 ::: Devin Singer of many names ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 11:14 AM:

Congratulations! That's awesome. I look forward to going back to Kansas City - it was one of my favorite stops in my roadie days.

#16 ::: D. Potter ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 11:18 AM:

Mazel tov!

(In fuzzy memory, the stories people brought back that year included reports of some act called the Flying Karamazov Brothers.)

#17 ::: Geri Sullivan ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 11:29 AM:

#12 Mary Aileen, you remember correctly. I'm going to trust the Wikipedia page for the specifics: "Worldcons through 1970 were selected one year in advance, from 1971 through 1986 two years in advance, from 1987 to 2007, three years in advance, then from 2008 to the present, two years in advance again."

The fact that 2-year lead time was on the agenda is the thing that prompted me to attend my first WSFS Business Meeting. There's a longer story behind what kept me going back. These days, I'm a sick enough puppy that I've already watched all of the Business Meeting videos that have been uploaded, and have done so for all of the other Worldcons I've been unable to attend in the intervening years.

#18 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 11:38 AM:

Congratulations (I think)!

(Iggy was my first Worldcon. Not, fortunately, the first convention I'd ever been to.)

#19 ::: Misha ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 11:53 AM:

In partially-related news, it was a pleasure to have Teresa helping us out on the Info Desk at Loncon 3 today.

#20 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 12:14 PM:

Giving out information! It's what we do.*

(*) Note: Not all the information we give out is necessarily true.**

(**) In related news, sixty people wearing LonCon badges showed up at the Excel Centre DLR station this afternoon to demand their free archaeopteryx.

#21 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 12:59 PM:

Geri, #17: Okay, that makes sense. And I wouldn't have been likely to notice, because I didn't get involved in Worldcon fandom (as opposed to regional-con fandom) until 1986, when I suddenly realized that I now had both the money and the time to attend Worldcons, and there was a string of them which were feasible for me to reach. Still not every year, but at least they were above the event horizon.

#22 ::: Michael Johnston ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 01:11 PM:

As Kansas City, MO is the birthplace of my late father, and a place I am connected to even today despite never having been there, I think I am going to have to make it to that Con. Seeing the two of you as GoH is an additional inducement.

#23 ::: Stephen Frug ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 02:09 PM:

Congratulations!! Wonderful news. (And Swanwick too, one of my favorite SF writers.)

It's fun imagining the unlikely series of events that would lead me to having enough money & time (both at once!) to go. Here's hoping.

#24 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 02:21 PM:

The drive from Albuquerque to Kansas City is less than 800 miles. That's only 10.5 hours. Not bad, not bad at all.

#25 ::: Lizzy L ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 03:15 PM:

Congratulations!

I remember (dimly, I admit) MidAmericon. It was my first Worldcon. Hard to believe it was 40 years ago.

#26 ::: Paula Helm Murray ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 03:33 PM:

My family was deeply and expensively involved in trying for 2006 and 2009, in which we lost to Los Angeles and Montreal. I'm excited, I'm a little bit scared but the core group of folks and the LOLs (our chair triad) are very good and very organized.

I've never had a bad time at a worldcon. Difficult at times... (NOLACon - never could find programming I wanted to go to, most recent ChiCon I had one foot and the elevator to the exhibit areas was a bear) but I enjoyed them all. Since I know how to throw a huge party at the drop of a hat, having a small room salon party if stuff is going weird at the con is not a problem.

And I love my home town. I can't wait to let you all see it, the new stuff that has been happening. Our video on YouTube shows off a lot of it, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cr_S5iVEB5I

Comer on down! We will be happy to have you here!

#27 ::: Mary Aileen ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 03:53 PM:

I haven't been going to Worldcons lately unless they were within driving distance or an easy train ride from NYC. (And I missed Montreal despite that.) But I may well make an exception for this one.

I should be able to afford it. A roommate would help.

#28 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 03:55 PM:

Lee @9: No, it was before the switch from the two-year cycle to the three-year cycle, and after the switch from the one-year cycle to the two-year cycle. So, while it was before the switch from 3 to 2, it was indeed two years. I remember the one-year days.... I see that Geri got there before I did, but it seems worth mentioning again.

P&T: congratulations, and a singularly well-deserved honor it is as well (or honour, since you're currently in England). I don't think we actually met until Iggy, but I was at MidAmeriCon too. How did we get to be oldfarts, again? Oh yeah -- time on for bad behavior.

Nice lineup of guests. I may have to attend this one.

#29 ::: James Harvey ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 06:33 PM:

Congratulations on GoH: that's wonderful.

#30 ::: Laurence Brothers ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 07:40 PM:

The Nielsen Haydens and Swanwick will be there as GoHs? Okay, okay, I'll go, I'll go.

#31 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 08:33 PM:

Congratulations! I sure hope I'll make it to that one.

#32 ::: Heather Rose Jones ::: (view all by) ::: August 17, 2014, 09:13 PM:

Congratulations to Kansas City and all the Guests of Honor! I've decided to get back in the habit of going to Worldcons (and not just when local!) although it's possible that in 2016 I'll be saving up for Helsinki (I hope!).

#33 ::: Bill Higgins-- Beam Jockey ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 12:56 AM:

In #24 Serge Broom writes:

The drive from Albuquerque to Kansas City is less than 800 miles. That's only 10.5 hours. Not bad, not bad at all.

You're driving?

I might take a train. I might take a plane. But if I have to walk, I'm gonna get there just the same.

#34 ::: Chad Orzel ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 02:09 AM:

Congratulations! Couldn't happen to a nicer couple of bloggers.

#35 ::: Adam Lipkin ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 09:27 AM:

Woohoo! I suspect I'll likely be no more able to afford the 2016 WorldCon than any of the previous ones in recent memory, but I still enjoy them vicariously, and their initial guest list is impressive.

#36 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 09:27 AM:

Bill Higgins @ 33... It *is* a longuish drive, but it can all be done within one day. That means it'll be cheaper a way of going than having two adults flying there. Train would be nice though, but I don't think it's much of an option in the town made famous by Bugs Bunny.

#37 ::: jane yolen ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 10:13 AM:

Well, we met long after the Fall of Achilles but well before the last Faerie Doctor left Ireland.

Just reminding you, it was in KC that Briar Rose was burned on the steps of the Board of Education! So I have history there as well.

Congratulations.

xxxJane

#38 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 10:18 AM:

Congratulations to Patrick and Teresa! I see this time the KC committee realizes that some MAC-1 attendees aren't dead yet (cf a junior bidder's foot-in-mouth explanation of why MAC-1 wasn't being referenced by the 2006 bid).

Lee etc: I was on the first bid committee to be voted in three years ahead (Boston in 1989 / Noreascon 3). We didn't have strong competition, but there was a heated race for 1988; I remember how crowded the voting area (not spacious to begin with) was -- especially with people buying memberships after the winners were announced.
      The move to a 3-year rotation was an attempt to avoid having facilities snatched out from under bids by groups whose continuing committees could make plans further ahead; bids get first refusal ("pencilled in") on the facilities they agree with, but no sane bid would sign a formal contract before being awarded a Worldcon. This hope didn't last long; a few months before N3 happened, the DC in 92 bid lost its largest hotel and left the field to Orlando. (Who would have won a straight contest is arguable; I remember this especially vividly because I'd just finished assembling a massive bidder questionnaire that became irrelevant shortly after it was mailed.) Ironies abound: the Boston in 98 bid also lost its main hotel (far enough ahead that it morphed without a gap to Boston in 01, becoming possibly the only committee to bid continuously for 6.4 years), and when a Boston Worldcon finally happened again (2004), it held the last 3-year-lead-time ballot -- enough people concluded that the 3-year lead had no win and enough loss that it had been voted out. (Some of the dramatically oriented among us, observing how we rated with possible facilities, had taken to saying "We're bottom feeders, Henry.")

#39 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 10:22 AM:

And I hadn't realized that Paul Williams was the one who got you both into professional editing; that's another big thing the field owes him. (I knew of him primarily from the complete Sturgeon.)

#40 ::: Lila ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 10:44 AM:

jane yolen: it was in KC that Briar Rose was burned on the steps of the Board of Education!

WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK?

(Astounding book, btw. Thank you.)

#41 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 11:15 AM:

It was burned by a bunch of religious extremists, but to the best of my knowledge it didn't result in the book being actually banned or removed anywhere in KC.

I think Kansas City, Missouri frequently takes hits to its reputation as a cosmopolitan and tolerant place because people from elsewhere constantly associate it with stories they've heard about provincial pecksniffery somewhere or other in Kansas.

#42 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 11:25 AM:

#36 ::: Serge Broom
... the town made famous by Bugs Bunny.

Pismo Beach?!?!?

#43 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 11:36 AM:

Carol Kimball @ 42... The *other* town.

#44 ::: Joel Zakem ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 12:56 PM:

Congratulations to you and Teresa. MidAmericon was my second Worldcon (Torcon 2 was my first) and it was the second, and unfortunately, last time that I got to interact with Paul Williams in person (though we corresponded for a bit afterwards). I had a great time there (I don't remember meeting you, but it is possible), and I look forward to going back for the 40th anniversary.

#45 ::: Tom Whitmore ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 01:11 PM:

And here I thought the town made famous by Bugs was Albuquerque, because he should have turned left there.

#46 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 02:04 PM:

And I have misremembered it - I thought the quote was "we should have turned left at Pismo Beach". I can hear Mel Blanc saying that quite clearly.

Nonetheless, Tom Whitmore is right.

#47 ::: Daniel Boone ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 04:14 PM:

A Worldcon in easy driving distance of where I expect to be in 2016? Hmm. I never expected to go to a Worldcon; they usually seem impossibly trans-oceanic, or at least on the wrong coast. Hmm and hmmm. And it will have been 24 years since my last and only con (BayCon 92), which I did immensely enjoy. Hmm and hmmm and hmmmm....

#48 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 04:30 PM:

CHip, #38: I do remember the "facilities getting yanked out from under us" issue -- hell, it's still going on; that's what happened to the last Seattle Worldcon bid. But a 3-year lead time was never going to be enough to solve that problem, since a lot of better-funded organizations have a lead cycle of 5 years or more. Which is way too much to ask of people who are normally paying their travel expenses out of their own pockets.

#49 ::: Jacque ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 05:47 PM:

Iggy was my first convention, and was the Major Life Event that probably saved my life in so many ways. I remember hearing that there was strife behind the scenes (to the extent of people wearing badges that read "Kumquat" and "Not a kumquat"). But all I was conscious of was that I was having the best time of my life. (Oddly, it has been consistently my experience that my enjoyment of a con seems to be inversely proportional to how well organized it is reputed to be.)

It was there that I met Jon Singer, who introduced me to capital-F Fandom. It was from Jon that I first heard about *NH, (though at that time they were still N & H), and they became firmly ensconced in the Fantheon in my mind. (Hey, to run a Worldcon and survive, you got to have some kind of superpower, right?)

So: yeah. GoHs at a MAC? Seems entirely appropriate to me.

#50 ::: Dr. Paisley ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 07:04 PM:

As the Benevolent Artistic Dictator for the bid, I must, despite (or due to) my somewhat inebriated state, point out that it's MidAmeriCon II, with the "C" capitalized. Because Pedantry R Us (or at least me).

Hope to see all the Fluorospherians here in KC two years down the road.

#51 ::: Bill Stewart ::: (view all by) ::: August 18, 2014, 07:40 PM:

My experience from other kinds of conventions is that if you're big enough to need a very big hotel or a convention center, three years is a pretty typical lead time. (And even if you don't have Worldcon location-selection competition going on, you're probably big enough to have some equivalently time-dragging internal issues or politics or whatever.)

I don't remember my first trip to Kansas City, because once or twice a year my parents would throw however many kids they had by then into the back of the car and drive there to visit both sets of their parents and whichever of their siblings were in town, so those trips all blend together. I've occasionally been there for non-family reasons (business meetings, or because we were driving across the country anyway so why not stop and visit.) Plaza and art museum are still worth visiting.

#52 ::: Janet Brennan Croft ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 01:05 PM:

Of course, this would be after I leave Norman, OK, an easy drive to Kansas City, and move to New Jersey. But I may try for this one all the same...

#54 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 02:12 PM:

Must have been one of the people unhappy with the winners of the NoBeale Prize, as Fragano called this year's Hugos.

#56 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 03:19 PM:

Dr. Paisley, #50: Intercap C in MidAmeriCon noted, but is it "II" or "2"? Your URL says 2.

#57 ::: Teresa Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 03:20 PM:

The comment formerly known as #53 has been cast into the pit.

#58 ::: Patrick Nielsen Hayden ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 03:21 PM:

(My own bias is generally toward eliminating as much UpCasing and Gratuitous Capitalization as Possible Under the Circumstances, because if we keep Talking like Winnie the Pooh we'll Never Make It Out of the Hundred-Acre Wood.)

#59 ::: Theophylact ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 03:57 PM:

I remember an early 70's Wizard of Id strip (back when it was actually funny) in which the last panel has the King thinking, "I wouldn't touch a straight line like that for a free weekend at Pismo Beach." (I'll spare you the set-up, though.)

So it's been a funny place-name for quite a while.

#60 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 04:15 PM:

59
I remember that one also. It's still a good line. (Pismo Beach is actually not bad.)

#61 ::: Jacque ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 05:01 PM:

Aw... I din't get to see the troll. ::pout::

#62 ::: Xopher Halftongue ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 05:09 PM:

Oh, I assumed you meant Hoboken: "Hoboken? Oh, ohhh, I'm dying!"

#63 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 05:15 PM:

Jacque @61, trust me, you didn't want to. It was a nasty racist comment about Ferguson, Missouri.

#64 ::: Lila ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 06:30 PM:

NoBeale Prize FTW, Fragano.

#65 ::: Bubbles, formerly M Shabazz ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 07:44 PM:

I'm glad that you sent that troll who called us "rioting chimps in Ferguson" to the pit. I'm sick and tired of people with white privilege calling us black folk "chimps". I think we are not going far enough to combat white privilege. I like Desmond Tutu's idea of a special tax imposed on whites, in order to fight white privilege and end the deaths of innocent children at the hands of racist white cops.

http://www.iol.co.za/news/politics/tutu-calls-for-wealth-tax-on-whites-1.1116744#.U_PhNNm9LCQ

[Nym adjusted. This is the charmer who was spoofing people's names when we attracted the crowd of Daysies. I'm sure we can all evaluate his contributions to this conversation in that light. — Idumea Arbacoochee, who was not born yesterday]

#66 ::: Cassy B. sees a troll ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 08:02 PM:

@65.

#68 ::: Sandy B. ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 09:36 PM:

If you look at its post history it was previously spotted impersonating other posters. Apparently doesn't learn from experience.

#69 ::: B. Durbin ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 09:54 PM:

Nice! Looks like fun.

#70 ::: Cassy B. Flags Down the Gnomes ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 10:38 PM:

There should be a post by B. Durbin between Sandy B's post and this one.

#71 ::: Cassy B. Calls Off the Gnomes ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 10:39 PM:

...and now there is. How very odd. It wasn't there before, except in the list....

#72 ::: John Purcell ::: (view all by) ::: August 19, 2014, 11:16 PM:

Congratulations to you and Teresa! I am very happy for you two, and look forward to seeing you folks there.

#73 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 11:10 AM:

Lila #64: Thanks.

#74 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 11:11 AM:

I'd like to point out to Idumea Arbacochea, who labours mightily in the undergrowth, that Bonzo would be a better renaming.

#75 ::: Madeleine Robins ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 11:29 AM:

As I said when you showed off your spiffy new t-shirt at Loncon, Multiple Congratulations. I really love the circle-of-life resonance of you guys returning to the con that got you started...

#76 ::: P J Evans ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 11:58 AM:

68
Or thinks this blog has a short memory for stuff like that.

#77 ::: Jacque ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 12:01 PM:

Sandy B. & P J Evans: Of course, both could be true. If it doesn't learn from experience, why would it expect anyone else to?

#78 ::: Idumea Arbacoochee, Gardener of Threads ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 12:49 PM:

Fragano @74:

"Bonzo" doesn't have nearly such an amusing YouTube clip to add to the user's URL.

#79 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 12:55 PM:

On the other hand, 'Bubbles' is also the name of a Wild Cards superheroine.

#80 ::: Idumea Arbacoochee, Gardener of Threads ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 01:07 PM:

There's almost always going to be name overlap. I think "Bubbles" adequately summarizes how seriously I take this particular nonentity.

And now we have spent quite enough words on the matter.

#81 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 02:46 PM:

"I'm goin' to Kansas City, Kansas City here I come;
They got some crazy little women there and I'm gonna get me one."

I would like to suggest that, despite the perfectly understandable temptation and the appropriateness of the first line, perhaps the committee might consider picking something else as a theme for the con. Because the second line there is... sort of ew. Talking about women as if they were fish or ducks to be bagged on a hunting trip.

#82 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 03:01 PM:

Lee @81, "Everything's up to date in Kansas City/They gone about as fer as they can go...."

#83 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 04:01 PM:

Cassy, there are problems with later lines in that one, too -

"I could swear that she was padded from her shoulder to her heel
But then she started dancing and her dancing made me feel
That every single thing she had was absolutely real
She went about as fer as she could go
Yes, she went about as fer as she could go"

#84 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 04:03 PM:

About the worldcon that just ended, people have been putting on YouTube their symphonic orchestra's playing of pieces such as Star Wars' main theme:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-oVVsBlieVM

#85 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 04:05 PM:

Carol Kimball @83, but, but, but... the town has buildings that are *seven stories tall*!<awestruck>

Cassy (Chicago resident)

#86 ::: Lila ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 04:17 PM:

Lee @ #81: According to Wikipedia, that's Wilbert Harrison's version, but the original lyric was "they got a crazy way of lovin' there and I'm gonna get me some", which I think is at least marginally better.

Then there's the Beatles' version: "gonna get my baby back home" and "well, it's a long long time since/my baby been gone".

#87 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 04:19 PM:

Carol, #83: Honestly, that would bother me less because it's not directly and unbreakably coupled to the desired lyric. (Also, according to Wikipedia, that's the bowdlerized version from the movie; the original stage line was, "But later in the second act, when she began to peel".)

More generally, pop music is a perfect illustration of fish not being aware of the water. It's only in the last 5 years or so that you start seeing a significant number of songs that aren't problematic in one way or another.

#88 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 05:10 PM:

Gasp! You mean the LP-released versions were changed from the stage plays?!?

One I know of in South Pacific was from "DiMaggio's glove" to "a baseball~", presumably because non-Broadway troglodytes wouldn't get it. Or because the guys who pressed the records needed to throw their weight around. That makes more sense than that Joltin' Joe would have complained.

#89 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 05:46 PM:

Lee - Oops. The LPs were the movie soundtracks.

#90 ::: Fragano Ledgister ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 05:52 PM:

Idumea Arbacoochee #78: You have a point.

#91 ::: Cassy B. ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 05:56 PM:

Carol Kimball @ 88, all I know is, I learned the song from my mother singing it around the house when I was a kid. I didn't really understand what she meant when she said, "until about the second act, when she began to peel..."

I thought whoever "she" was, she had really bad sunburn....

#92 ::: Carol Kimball ::: (view all by) ::: August 20, 2014, 06:17 PM:

We had all the Rogers & Hammerstein movie (plus a few stage) soundtracks when I was a little kid, and my mother had to keep not-quite-explaining lines, like when Ado Annie's swain lays down the law about their house:

"Big enough for two but not for three"
"And supposing that we should have a third one?"
"It better look a lot like me"

And when we'd been to the movies to see South Pacific, what "saxy" meant - Bloody Mary's "You very saxy lootellan" to Cable prior to her pimping her daughter to him (which didn't make sense either). That's the first time I remember noticing my mother blush.

We also discussed whether the line "now ain't that too damn bad!" was appropriate for me to sing. I virtuously protested changing it to "darn" was foul play to the lyricist.

#93 ::: Paul A. ::: (view all by) ::: August 21, 2014, 11:11 AM:

Lila @ #86: the original lyric was "they got a crazy way of lovin' there and I'm gonna get me some", which I think is at least marginally better.

If only because it actually rhymes.

#94 ::: Paula Lieberman ::: (view all by) ::: August 22, 2014, 12:20 AM:

Congratulations, PNH & TNH, on the Worldcon GoHship!

I'm glad that someone indicated what the removed troll post was. (Yuck!!) After reading the comment that someone gave about what the troll post was, I'm happy that I did not see the troll's post.

I take it there will be a Gathering of Light at Big Mac II ?? (And -no- plastic armbands except by people making a joke of it....)

#95 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: August 22, 2014, 10:19 AM:

Lee @ 48: the issue with 5-year leads isn't the attendees' costs; travel expenses don't get paid until a few months before the convention, and memberships can be sold (or the price could have been held low for 3 of the 5 lead years). The big issue was the energy and cohesion of the volunteers who run the conventions; e.g., N3 had a huge amount of dead time between getting the first crush of memberships into the computer and doing anything else.

Bill Stewart @ 51: is that 3-year lead for signing, or for announcement? DC-in-92 was cut out by just a few months, but Boston-in-98 lost when someone offered to sign ~18 months before the vote (i.e., 4.5 years out).
      Also, most of the large conventions spend a lot more money than Worldcon; they may get some slack while deciding, instead of being told to sign or lose. I don't know how much difference comes from having a single organization decide, such that sites would not see themselves in direct competition.

#96 ::: Lin Daniel ::: (view all by) ::: August 22, 2014, 11:30 AM:

Iggy was YOUR fault?

Iguanacon was my first worldcon, the first (and only) time I got stiffed by roommates, where Jim and I helped a couple celebrate their first wedding anniversary by drinking more tequila in two nights than I would in the next ten years, and where I got engaged thanks to the lightening of embarrassment factor caused by aforementioned tequila consumption (I proposed).

Said engagement got a (mild in retrospect) trial by fire when I was Alice to Kathy and Drew Sanders' Mock Turtle and Griffin in the masquerade. Jim managed to find me at the end of it all and dealt with the ensuing two-hour rant (hot, tired, hot, grumpy, hot, hungry, hot, sore feet, and did I mention hot) by the appropriate application of ice cream and food.

I will be buying an attending membership to MidAmeriCon 2 because the GoHs are AWESOME. Congrats to Teresa and Patrick. Whether I will go depends on the usual suspects (money, time, health, personal or global catastrophes)..

#97 ::: Lee ::: (view all by) ::: August 22, 2014, 12:09 PM:

CHip, #95: I was speaking of the expenses incurred by the committee people who have to go to cons and run bid parties, which may include doing so at overseas Worldcons. Those expenses are not reimbursed at all IIRC, and if the lead cycle is 5 years, that's how long they have to be doing it.

#98 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: August 24, 2014, 10:19 PM:

Lin Daniels @ 96: I'm sorry you had such a time at the masquerade; we (hired-Boston) \tried/ to make it easier on people, but I suspect the art of keeping contestants comfortable was in its infancy. And the record heat (even for Phoenix in August) made the trip from hotels over the Anvil of God to the auditorium even worse.

Lee @ 97: it's unclear how high those costs are; a good committee these days will have a lot of scattered friends (even overseas) who can represent. It's true that N{2,3,4} didn't help with travel expenses (I don't know what other groups have done), but it's not clear how many committee trips wouldn't be made anyway -- our tendency was to appear at local regionals, other majors (when some committee were going) and Worldcons (where a lot of an upcoming committee should be going).
      There was a Worldcon bid that was reportedly one person's way of getting overseas travel money out of their government; I have no idea how true this was....

And a belated acknowledgment to the KC committee, who in a previous bid provided NESFA with buttons showing its new motto: Forsan illo egebimus

#99 ::: Dave* Twiddy ::: (view all by) ::: August 25, 2014, 06:34 AM:

Congratulations!

#100 ::: Charlie Stross ::: (view all by) ::: August 25, 2014, 12:35 PM:

Congratulations! (from the dead dog at the tail end of Shamrokon, the 2014 Eurocon in Dublin, where -- the fools! -- they're pushing a bid for Dublin to host the worldcon in 2019; a joint thingy between Irish fandom and the team who ran Loncon 3.)

I am exhausted: a worldcon and a eurocon on consecutive weekends blows right past my ability to emulate an extrovert in public, and I am going to hide under the bed (metaphorically) for a week once I get home (tomorrow evening).

All I can say is, may MidAmericon 2 be as good as (or better than) Loncon 3, and may you get the best of it.

#101 ::: Lin Daniel ::: (view all by) ::: August 26, 2014, 12:12 AM:

CHip @98

That was my first masquerade of any kind. It was memorable. I actually had a great time...until it was over and I realized how tired, hot, and wound up like a very tired five year old I was. The story was more for bring a part of the story of getting drunk, getting engaged, and subjecting my brand new fiance to my temper. Which would have come across much better had I been telling it in person.

The event was so memorable, I volunteered backstage at masquerades for years. Now that my life is settling down from chaos, I'm finding myself backstage again.

#102 ::: iamnothing ::: (view all by) ::: August 26, 2014, 12:28 AM:

Charlie Stross @100: The members of the orchestra that I spoke to were excited about the Dublin bid.

Just Worldcon (plus a museum day) was exhausting enough for me; I've slept for a week.

#103 ::: CHip ::: (view all by) ::: August 26, 2014, 09:41 AM:

Lin Daniel @ 101: I understand that aftershock feeling -- and I'm glad to hear you paid the good parts forward.

#104 ::: Charlie Stross ::: (view all by) ::: August 26, 2014, 05:59 PM:

I am now home.

1306 miles by road, a couple of international car ferry sailings, two major conventions, and a Hugo award.

The car DID NOT EXPLODE this time. (That makes a pleasant change.)

Seriously, forget flying cars and food pills, I want my Larry Niven style teleport booths. Except I can just imagine what the TSA would do with them ...

#105 ::: Jacque ::: (view all by) ::: August 27, 2014, 12:22 PM:

Charlie: When you rematerialize at the far end, fall down, and realize you're in a detention cell. Which is how you discover that what the TSA took for a weapon turned out to be your titanium replacement hip....

Or: "What? Whaddya mean 'artificial heart'? That was obviously an IED!"

#106 ::: Ericka ::: (view all by) ::: August 27, 2014, 06:56 PM:

I love Kansas City (from the Kansas side). Don't know what I'll have to sell, but I'll be there.

#107 ::: Jo Walton ::: (view all by) ::: August 29, 2014, 03:52 AM:

The Kansas City Star put _Farthing_ on their best five books list -- indicating a much more liberal city than one might expect.

Also, I said this in London, but it's so wonderful and fitting that you'tre going to be GoHs there, and I'm really excited about that. We should all go, and we should do a huge awesome Making Light thing.

#108 ::: John A Arkansawyer ::: (view all by) ::: August 29, 2014, 10:06 AM:

I've never been to a WorldCon. I don't think I should miss this one. In fact, I just set a departmental record for leave requested furthest in advance. Aaaaannnd--it's approved!

#109 ::: John A Arkansawyer ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2014, 10:44 AM:

My wonderful daughter bought my equally-wonderful ex a supporting membership for her birthday. Possibly she wasn't hinting that a young person's membership would be an excellent Christmas gift.

#110 ::: abi ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2014, 02:11 PM:

It is not impossible that we will be there. Which would be fun.

#111 ::: Serge Broom ::: (view all by) ::: September 02, 2014, 02:51 PM:

abi @ 110... That would be nice.

#112 ::: Nicole J. LeBoeuf-Little ::: (view all by) ::: September 11, 2014, 05:06 PM:

Chiming in very late to say:

Everything is perfect about this, and I will do my best to be there. Congratulations!

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