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Contemplation Report 2 - Saturday

I've just bought "1 hour over a 24 hour period" worth of Internet access for £6.50, so if I'm quick I should be able to check my email more than once today.

Got up at 7:30, had a shower, then breakfast, which was passable but nothing special - nasty reconstituted egg mush and no bacon, but the sausages were nice. Went back to my room, wrote yesterday's con report and posted it, then went down to the "Climate Change - planning our environment" panel, explored the dealers' room (valiantly avoiding buying anything), chatted to some people, grabbed a quick lunch (a rather expensive burger), then dropped into the "Eastercon Identity" panel. This was really interesting, particularly the stuff about how Eastercon has changed so much over the years, but due to my misreading the programme I'd not realised that it was 90 minutes long and had to leave 2/3 of the way through to do a couple of hours on the Orbital/Redemption con desks.

While on the con desks I learned that the Orbital membership is doing very well and Redemption 09 may soon have a new hotel, but I'd better not go into any more detail than that. Apparently the thorny issue of ensuring mushrooms at breakfast are spelled out in the written hotel contract has become the bane of johnrw's life.

At some point SMS and Eira, wearing sheets and trailed by kids, marched through the dealers' room doing the Foundation Foundation's chant (Hari Seldon, Hari Seldon, Seldon Seldon, Hari Hari, Hari Rama, Hari Rama, Rama Rama, Hari Hari) and waving copies of Asimov's Foundation books. I handed over the books I brought with me to SMS and told him I don't want them back. Apparently he hasn't read Prelude (IIRC that's the prequel about how Hari Seldon came to Trantor and invented Psychohistory, and what robots had to do with it), so I think he's going to keep that one for himself.

After my time on the con desks I spent some time in the Con Bar again, then wandered out of the hotel's back door to see what was out there, and found myself in a city centre shopping arcade. It felt really bizarre; one minute I was in a con surrounded by fans, and the next I was out shopping and surrounded by the general public. Talk about cognitive dissonance. I spotted bugshaw and cobrabay out shopping too, located a McDonalds (I may wind up grabbing something to eat there tomorrow if it's open), bought some bags of traditional sweets, then headed back to the hotel for Jill and Phil Bradley's excellent talk about Urban Exploration (finding abandoned buildings, getting inside without breaking anything that wasn't either left open or already broken by vandals, and looking around).

Next was Dr Who. We did this at last year's Eastercon too, and it really is excellent fun to watch it on a big screen in a room filled with several hundred fans. I saw exalted_mugwump for the first time this con (apparently he's spent it all in the games room). I won't give away any spoilers, but I Will say that I enjoyed it more than last week's episode.

After that we went up to my room for the Beyond Cyberdrome Intermission Games rehearsal/brainstorming session, and it went far better than feared. asphodeline has volunteered to be the Host so that SMS can be a contestant with the_magician on one side, and Ian Watson and Ken Shinn on the other side. The lovely Clare Goodall is to play Futura, our version of Samantha on ISIHAC. Some ideas have been discarded (eg. players no longer have to imitate a specific robot, and the What's My Robot round is gone), and a couple of new rounds have been added. I suspect that may cause some time problems, but we'll see... I'm beginning to think these games might actually not be a complete disaster.

I wrote up most of this report in my room, then went down to find steverogerson and volunteer for a part in Blake's 7 Wobblevision. I decided I wanted to do this because I tried to be in the one at Redemption but accidentally lost my part because the director couldn't find me when I'd gone off to try to find a prop. Tonight's nearly got cancelled due to insufficient cast members, but in the end persistence paid off and a cast was press-ganged into action, including quasi_hayley's mum. In case you haven't got a clue what I'm talking about, Wobblevision involves taking photos of people acting out key scenes in an episode of Blake's seven and piecing them together into a storyboard afterwards. The casting is done by pulling names out of a hat, props and costumes are pretty much anything we find lying around, and the hotel forms the set. Extras are roped in as necessary. I'll post about this again when the episode goes up on the web, but suffice it to say it was a lot more fun than it sounds.

After the Wobblevision we simply sat around in the con bar for a couple of hours, occasionally wincing at the hideous noises emanating from the karaoke disco next door. I had a bacon butty at about 11PM, not because I was hungry as such but just because everyone else was (it wasn't even a particularly nice bacon butty - I must try to avoid doing the same thing again on Sunday). While we were still grumbling about the karaoke disco, a newsletter arrived literally still hot off the presses, containing the following review of the disco: "Aaaargh! My ears, my ears!" At about 1AM the_magician pointed out that he'd just turned 44, and steverogerson led the whole bar in a spontaneous rendition of "Happy Birthday." It was nearly 2AM by the time I finally made it to bed.

Comments

I won't give away any spoilers, but I Will say that I enjoyed it more than last week's episode.

Your humour is more subtle than mine, and that's very good!

Thanks for everything you did at the con, and you were an excellent room mate.

I must apologise for leaving my stuff *everywhere* (it looked like I'd brought eight bags of stuff and then set off the jack-in-the-box spring at the bottom of each bag and stuff ended up everywhere!)
That was a typo that was too good to fix.

Thank you for organising the con, halving the cost of my room, and being very funny on I'm Sorry I Haven't a Robot.