The L-Space Web: Fandom

Discworld Convention 1996: Report

From: (C Speed)
Subject: *DC* Discworld Convention
Date: 1 Jul 1996 11:19:16 GMT
Message-ID: <4r8c7k$>

We need a tag for all the traffic that will inevitably result from the
convention and *F* doesn't seem quite right.  I was going to propose *C* but
then I realised I'd already got it killfiled in case anyone was irritating
enough to use it for cascades.  So I offer *DC* as an alternative.


Well, it's Monday morning now.  When I surfaced this morning and realised
that this was the case I felt like there was a bit of my life missing.  So
instead of getting on a train and going into the Sachas I got onto the same
train but went into work.  I am wearing my convention T-shirt and badge,
though, and there are still conventioners in the city so maybe it isn't
_quite_ over yet...

On the Friday night when I got home I intended to write up the experiences of
the evening.  But then I decided to iron my shirt for the gala dinner
instead[1].  On Saturday it was rather too late and anyway there was someone
sleeping in the computer room.  I could try now to rake back over the whole
weekend and give a "begining to end" account but I'm not going to.  No doubt
many others will so I will use a different approach, to whit convention

1) Staying at the Hotel itself is a very good idea

Because I waited for friends to make up their minds if they were attending I
held off from booking a hotel room.  This was a bad idea because by the time
they decided not to come after all I'd not got the money to pay for a hotel
room, so I had to commute to the convention daily.  This was ok and I did get
to go to most of the organised things I wanted to but the place where I
really felt like I missed out was the just hanging out and chatting that
happened outside of hours.  Next time I'm booking immediately - I'm saving up

2) You really need a "hanging out" room

Because of the space limitations in the Hotel with the con membership growing
as drastically as it did there was no place to go just to sit and chat.  The
afp/fan room was booked for large chunks of the day with organised events and
(as it happened) contained a small sleeping child for most of saturday anyway
because there was nowhere else for his mother to put him, plus it was rather
too small.  Therefore inbetween programme items and later/earlier in the day
there was nowhere to go just to "be".  This made finding people quite hard,
if there had been one place where you just hung out it would have been far
easier.  It would also have saved me sitting like a lemon in the foyer for
some chunks of time waiting for someone interesting to show up *&)

3) Shattered Illusions

I've never really liked meeting people in real life after getting acquainted
on the net - hence my general avoidance of "meets".  When I first got
involved with this kind of thing (all those years ago) I had some
disappointing experiences so I decided it was better in general not to meet
people in the flesh.

Lately I've been meeting people more often, notably the asr meet earlier this
year, a signing before that and my wedding a little later, and I've found
that my imagination must be getting tamer in my decrepitude because people
are not usually that far off the mark.  They also are tending to be really
rather nice *&) So from that perspective the Discworld Convention was a great
success.  Everyone was just as much fun to be with irl as they are on here
and there were only one or two startling discrepancies (more later).  I'll
never be a social animal, but I might just make the odd afp meet in the

However, from the various comments made to me over the course of the weekend
I suspect one or two illusions about myself were shattered for other people.
People thought I would be taller, meaner, more "scary", _fatter_, all kinds.

Now, I _like_ people to believe I'm a nasty, vindictive BOFH who strikes fear
and terror into the hearts of those I meet.  It's good for my reputation with
the lusers here if nothing else.  So all of you who have now met me are
forbidden to tell the rest of the world that I'm really boring and ordinary
and not at all scary in the flesh because you'll ruin my hard earned

You can tell them I'm not fat though.

4) Leo Breebaart is really _nice_!

This was the only thing that comes close to a "Shattered Illusion" for me and
I didn't mind one little bit.  There was some brief discussion in Pizza Hut
on Sunday as to where this illusion came from and I'm still not completely
sure.  You see I didn't think Leo was going to be nice.  I also thought he
was blond for some reason, but that's probably just name association (I know
another Leo who is).

The only thing I can reasonably pin it down to is that Leo must have shouted
at me on here in the past.  It's quite likely as he does shout at most of us
from time to time for being jerks and I have been a jerk just once or
twice[2].  So something in my subconscious had him pinned as a fairly
unpleasant chap.  It came as quite a shock then to meet him and find that
he's actually this incredibly likeable guy.  It took me all weekend to get
over that.  At least next time I'll know in advance that he's nice.
Especially as he let slip that he finds it hard to shout at people he's met
in real life so I probably won't have to start thinking he's horrible again

5) Volatile Memory and Net Personas

I'd like to apologise to everyone whose names I forgot, got wrong or didn't
recognise.  This is a result of two things, one I have a somewhat volatile
memory so sometimes I'd see a name badge and think "That name sounds kinda
familiar" but be unable to place who they were in the general afp scheme of
things.  The second problem was that some of you I've known for up to four
years in the virtual sense now.  That's a loooong time and I have created
really fully fleshed images of you by now.  So to relate this "in my head"
creature with the "in front of me" creature is quite a difficult process and
sometimes I wouldn't succeed.  I think my worst faux pas must have been
asking Frugal if he was on Frugal's team in the UU Challenge though, and I've
known him for real for many years too. *&)

6) Missed opportunities

There were some people present at the con who I didn't get to speak to all
weekend and I was quite sad about that.  There must have been lots of afpers
that I didn't meet or said less than ten words to, partly that was because I
didn't know who they were and no one introduced us.  In particular I never
met ppint[3] or CMOT Briggs and I believe that chap Pratchett was around too
but I only ever saw him surrounded by crowds *&).

7) Multiple Signings

During the weekend I managed to get nothing signed by anybody.  Does this
make me unique?  

Well, that's it.  I'm sure I can think of lots more to say if I give myself
long enough to think but I guess I'd better get on with something more
closely impersonating "real" work...

It just remains for me to say "Thanks Guys" to everyone who made the weekend
as special as it was.


[1] Thereby demonstrating that my addiction is a lot better than it used to
    be *&)

[2] Rob Collier just _had_ to bring along a file of the infamous warwick
    "spamming" of afp all those years ago.  Look we were really *really*
    bored and it was *raining* and everything...

[3] Although I suspect that sie was in the last small group I said my
    farewells to on the Sunday.

* Claire Speed	 [ENTX]  * Network & Operations Unit, Manchester Computing   *
* Dial-up, ISDN, TICTAC  *  *

From: Darrell Ottery <>
Subject: *F* Convention ramblings
Date: Tue, 2 Jul 1996 10:56:10 +0100
Message-ID: <>

Yes, he's back. And this time he isn't wearing a hat. Or wielding a huge 
handful of registration forms. Yet...

A few thoughts about this last weekend for now. I'll post more detailed 
ruminations when (a) I've slept some more, (b) I've moved house, and (c) 
my brain has stopped dribbling out of my ears. But for now:

I really hope everyone who turned up enjoyed it - I know I did. It was 
great to see the (admittedly few) faces I hadn't seen before, and to meet 
up again with those afpers that I do know by face. Even if it wasn't for 
that long :)

Thanks and congratulations to Alan and Colette for a great party - I 
really needed that drink then! As I recall, the more interesting alcohol 
came out immediately the bar shut. I think I managed to sample most of it 
at one stage or another, but the one that sticks in my tiny wee mind just 
now was the gorgeous loganberry one.

It's very hard to pick just one key moment that I enjoyed the most (well, 
apart from perhaps the odd one when I was asleep...) but I thought the 
look on Terry's face in the UUC final round when I asked the question 
about Hogfather was priceless. I don't think I've seen him quite so lost 
for words before :)

Anyway, I really ought to be off and try and grab a few more hours^Wdays 
sleep since I'm supposed to be on holiday at the moment and I've already 
been asked to try and fix some machinery here in the lab. More to follow 
when I get things back in order. Again, I hope everyone who turned up had 
a really great time, and now I (at least theoretically) have some free 
time again I'll be back in contact and posting again. I mean, I've got to 
try out this new adress I seem to have earnt myself, haven't 
I? All I need to do now of course is to work out which one I want. 
Suggestions gratefully received, since I'm in no real state to be at all 
creative just now... I know 'bitter&twisted' has been suggested - thanks 
very much, Lee. :)

Darrell  [INTJ]  Was I tempted by an angel? Only once.

From: (Leo Breebaart)
Subject: *F* Well, more Convention Reminiscing, basically
Date: 2 Jul 96 18:51:17 GMT
Message-ID: <>

Everyone's probably already getting fed up by now with all the Discworld
Convention reports and stories floating around on a.f.p. (I haven't logged
on yet as I write this; I just *know* they'll be there :-) ) -- but what
the hey. Just because it took me a bit longer than the others to get back
to my computer shouldn't mean I'm no longer allowed to get the chance to
say in public how wonderful the Convention was, how much I enjoyed it, and
what a terrific job the Committee did in organizing it. Folks, it was


I won't try to turn this into an hour-by-hour convention report. It would
take me pages and pages to describe it all, and I'd never be able to
properly capture the spirit of the event to my own satisfaction anyway.
Besides, I'm too tired: over the past five days I think I got about twelve
hours of sleep max, and I'll probably be walking around like a zombie for
the rest of the week. (This fades into insignificance when compared to the
Committee members and Terry himself, all of whom should, as far as I can
judge, not even have *survived* the weekend. I think the only reason why
Mark Lowes kept walking all the time was that had he stopped moving for
longer than two minutes he would probably have keeled over and never gotten
up again).

Anyway. For me, Discworld '96 was two conventions, really. There was the
official event, with the talks, the panels, the games, the readings, the
signings, and all the other good stuff the Committee had organised for us.
And then there was, interleaving and harmonizing with that, the unofficial
event, which I think of as "my first a.f.p. meet -- making up for being
geographically challenged".

The official part of the con was something I had definitely been looking
forward to, but I was a bit apprehensive about the a.f.p. aspect. Live
interaction with my fellow human beings is not something I am particularly
good at at the best of times, and meeting such a large group of people,
many of whom already knew each other personally from earlier meets --

Luckily I needn't have worried. Everybody was so friendly, nice, open, and
simply determined to have a good time (and this includes, by the way, all
the non-a.f.p. people I met as well) that I don't think anything short of a
second bomb going off in Manchester could have spoiled the fun. The
atmosphere of collective goodwill and camaradery was quite amazing, really.

The official part of the convention went swimmingly. Of course there was so
much happening that I probably attended not even a third of it all, but
scheduled events generally happened where and when you expected them, and I
thought the programme was very well-balanced (things you could look at vs.
things you could participate in, major events vs. minor events, 'serious'
vs. just plain silly stuff etc. etc.)

The one thing that nearly everyone I've talked to was unhappy about was the
hotel itself, although my own experiences were quite positive: when I
arrived on Friday afternoon the lobby had about five thousand people in it
(or so it seemed), yet within five minutes I was checked in. And on the
other occasions that I asked reception for help they were courteous and
indeed helpful beyond what could have reasonably been expected of them. On
the other hand: yeah, there were quite a few minor irritations, and I
didn't attend the now infamous gala dinner, which I understand was, um,
interesting. In fact it was probably that dinner experience that pushed
many people into an antagonistic frame of mind after which the hotel could
simply do nothing right anymore.

Let's put it in a positive perspective: at least we now have one area where
DiscCon '98 is definitely going to be able to improve upon its predecessor.
And that a second Convention is indeed going to happen is something I not
only fervently hope, but am already quite convinced of, judging by the
enthusiasm with which everybody said all those "see you in two years!"
goodbyes at the end of the weekend.

Well, if I don't stop soon this will become pages and pages long after all.
I'll just end with a few memories and images that I think are going to be
sticking in my mind for quite a while...:

- Colette and Alan's ice-breaking a.f.p.-party on Friday, with everybody
  squinting at each other's badges and going "But you look *nothing* like I

- Terry's reading from _Hogfather_. From the bits we heard I think it's
  going to be another humdinger of a novel. For instance, there's this
  absolutely hilarious scene where Death and Albert take over the -- but
  no, that would be a spoiler, now would it... Suffice it to say that the
  Death of Rats has what must be almost an entire page of SQUEAK! EEEK!
  EEEK, SQUEAK! dialogue, and Terry read it it all out loud. It was

- The hotel room with no windows, but a wall-sized mural of New York by night
- The 'What is a.f.p?' panel session. I believe there were exactly two
  people in the entire audience who didn't already know, and who had not
  come to heckle us.

- The Unseen University Lecture. BANG! FLASH! BANG!

- Pizza, garlic bread and Belgian chocolates. "My God, we're *all* geeks

- Taking part in the Unseen University Challenge With Colm and Mike and 
  Rob. We lost, but honourably. (Phew!)

- The Cannibal Lemmings Theory of Discworld Rotation. "Oh, I just had an
  out-of-body experience."
- ppint.'s small colored bottles with transparent liquids. It's a good
  thing I knew more or less what to expect and didn't actually drink more
  than a few molecules of each.
- Rather prosaic, but nevertheless: buying _Johnny and the Bomb_ and _Feet
  of Clay_ and reading them both in one go during the ferry trip home.
- Getting my copy of the Annotated Pratchett File signed by as many
  a.f.p.'ers as I could find, up to and including Terry, Stephen Briggs,
  and the Alien Podling (never seen such a quiet and happy baby!).

- Chinese food, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Tron passwords, one red rose, and
  absolutely no afproposals at all, nosirree, not me, never. Uh-uh.

- Terry and his team in the UU Challenge finals wearing our Burger King 
- Ice Cube Neck Massages -- 'nuff said.

- Playing Mornington Crescent and Mallet's Mallet (sp?) until four in the
  morning. On the one hand, I think I was the only person at the table (in
  the entire bar, in fact) who wasn't drunk. On the other hand, both games
  were new to me, and while the rules to Mallet's Mallet are, as everyone
  knows, very simple indeed, Mornington Crescent is a bit trickier. :-)

- Bouncy Castles. Amazing how silly people look when bobbing around on
  those things. Anybody who says they saw me on one is merely spreading
  viciously untrue rumours. I went nowhere near them. Honest.

- And finally, just one word: custard.

I'm going to post this now, and then read all the other articles and find
out how much I've duplicated :-)

Leo Breebaart  (

From: (g.l.wilson)
Subject: *DC* DWCon Report (one Merkin's viewpoint)
Message-ID: <>

It was the best of times, it was the best of times... it was utterly 

Arrived early Friday; after unsuccessfully attempting to rest, drifted 
around, gophered a bit, and generally wondered what on earth I was doing 
there.  That was the only time in the entire weekend I felt at all out 
of place - a very rare thing indeed for me, and my enduring gratitude to 
all of you who made me feel at home.

Following the Opening Ceremony (notable, among other things, for 
promises of custardings to come) - well, let's just say that I can 
confirm the rumors that Emmet was sequestered in a hotel room with two 
women, both of whom were too tired to flirt with him.  The Flirtatious 
One's costume for the Blind Date truly had to be seen to be believed.  

Observed a bit of the Murder Mystery - everyone involved seemed to be 
enjoying themselves, judging from the general noise level and lack of 
comprehensibility.  I'd been scheduled to participate, but Carol seems 
to have forgiven me for disappearing into the afpengagement party for 
The Divine One and the Bellinghman.  (What's that snail-mail address for 
the chocolate-covered espresso beans, Carol?)

Concerning which afparty, the weather that night became very drunk out 
indeed.  I've somewhat dim memories of very fragmented conversations and 
blatant flirtations among several afpersons (including, *blush*, 
myself). Said dimness might possibly have been caused by samples of my 
first "real" cider; sips from a bottle provided by ppint, and allegedly 
having something to do with plums; a bit of mead; rather greater 
quantities of 10-year-old Bushmills; something from Wales, a good-sized 
portion of loganberry liqueur; Middleton (sp?) (heavenly stuff; thanks, 
Colm!), and peach schnapps.  *boggle* indeed.  When various Monty Python 
songs were perpetrated, it seemed time to wander back to the "other" 

Saturday.  Um.  What _did_ happen Saturday?  Observed a bit of the UU 
challenge, and realized that I know very little indeed about the 
diskworld; drifted in and out of the bar; wandered around talking to 
people; contributed a rumor or two to the IT.  Enjoyed the GOH speech; 
again drifted into and out of the bar.  

The Gala Dinner - PTerry's speech had me laughing so hard it _hurt_.  
And Darrell Ottery's balloon hat truly had to be seen to be believed.

Sunday - collected my books to be signed, to discover that the queue for 
the signing had been closed.  Then drifted around until the Cunning 
Artificer's sculpting workshop, which was great fun, and almost 
convinced me that I could indeed turn a lump or two of clay into 
something recognizable as Rincewind.  Next, the UU Challenge finals, 
won by Helen and Her Suitors, who were then confronted with a post-final 
team of PTerry himself, Stephen Briggs, Josh Kidby, and Paul Rood.  
Amazingly, the audience even earned 30 points!

One of my most surreal moments of the weekend:  going out for food with 
the Unfeasibly Cute Morgan O'Brien and his older brother, and ending up 
at a Pizza Hut.  

On to the closing ceremony, and yes, there was indeed Custard, which 
Paul endured with grace and good humor.  Will have my photos back by 
Friday - just where are we to send them for inclusion in L-Space?

Afterwards, got my books signed by Terry and Stephen (again, thank you!) 
- headed once more for the bar (where else?) for more fragments of 
conversations, out to an excellent Chinese dinner, during which I was 
told more than I can possibly remember of the Lemming Theory, Pinball 
Theory, and something that made me think Great A'Tuin may possibly be a 
Schrodinger's Turtle, though I'm not sure of that last bit.  Then back 
to the hotel for yet more alcohol and conversation, during which I 
phased in and out...and further out...  A spirited game of Mornington 
Crescent (which still makes absolutely no sense to me) was going on when 
I left at 2:30 am.  

Monday morning, ppint most kindly drove Jay, Pete, and my very tired 
self to the airport, during which ride mild but somewhat pane-ful 
attempts at paronomasia were committed.  And contrary to previous 
belief, I _am_ capable of sleeping while on an airplane.

I didn't see all of the promised 1,000 elephants, but a herd of them, 
very small and very pink, appeared in one of my bags when I was 
unpacking.  One of them has been drafted into service as a monitor pet.  

My only regret is that there wasn't nearly enough time to even meet 
everyone I wanted to, much less sit down somewhere relatively quiet and 

Thank you to all of you who helped make this such a wonderful time.  The 
box of Belgian chocolates Big Al gave me is rapidly emptying (coffee and 
chocolate for breakfast - yum!).  Thanks especially to those who endured 
my falling apart on those occasions when things seemed heading for 
disaster (hi Carol, Karen, Joanne, Emmet).  And most of all, thanks to 
you who saw to it that I was able to be there, after events seemed to 
have made it impossible.  I'll not say anything to ruin anyone's 
putative reputation, but You Know Who You Are.  Words fail me.

See you all in two years - provided that we're not at Sacha's!


Very erratic newsfeed; please cc replies to 
Believe in miracles.

From: Mark Lowes <>
Subject: *F* DWCon: Sunday Times Report
Date: Thu, 11 Jul 1996 12:25:37 GMT
Message-ID: <>

>From the Sunday Times

Weird but Wonderful

Obsessed with every detail of his fantasy worlds, they can still tell
reality when they see it.  MARK EDWARDS sizes up the fans of the
best-selling sci-fi writer Terry Pratchett.

   The Conference and Banqueting brochure of the four star Britannia
Sachas Hotel in Manchester tells us that its recent clients include the
likes of British Telecom, Boots, Lloyds Bank, Cadbury and ICI. When the
hotel next updates this brochure, it can add another name, because last
week its conference facilities were taken over by the First
International Discworld Convention - a gathering of 800 fans of author
Terry Pratchett. The hotel's Lincoln Suite was renamed "Weatherwax": the
Madison Suite became "Magrat" and the Washington was rechristened "Ogg"
all names of characters in Pratchett's Discworld series of novels. The
Kennedy Suite hosted question-and-answer sessions where a lucky handful
of fans could chat with the great man himself.

   Pratchett is one of the most successful authors in the world, with
close to 10m copies sold.  Waterstone's bills him as its best-selling
living author and a first edition of the first Discworld novel, The
Colour of Magic, sells for f750.  He writes fantasy novels, which also
happen to be very, very funny; and his most successful books have been
set on the Discworld - a pizza-shaped planet that roams through space
supported on the back of four giant elephants, who stand, in turn, on a
vast turtle called The Great A'Tuin.

   Before Pratchett, the funny fantasy novel barely existed.  At one of
the question-and-answer sessions, he explained to some fans where his
inspiration came from. "The thing about fantasy novels", he said, "was
that the hero always had to go on some quest that involved travelling
3,000 miles, with every man's hand against him, and at the end he had to
throw a ring into a volcano.  You never got a quest that involved just
nipping next door.  They seemed to forget the reality of the times they
were writing about, which was summed up in that Monty Python film, where
the peasant says, 'He must be the king: he hasn't got s*** all over

   So Pratchett developed a new genre: fantasy that is constantly being
undercut by reality.  In Discworld, Death is - as you might imagine - a
black-caped, skeletal figure with a scythe.  But he rides a white horse
called Binky.  At the convention, Pratchett wore a T-shirt bearing the
legend "Authentic Vulgarity" - a reference to the review of his latest
novel, Feet of Clay, in this paper's books section (June 23).  It
referred to an anecdote concerning an author whose publisher asked him
to write something a bit more commercial, a bit more like Terry
Pratchett.  The author tried, but gave up, claiming that you couldn't
fake Pratchett - he had an authentic vulgarity. It was a grudging
compliment, but Pratchett is used to those by now. For ages, his books
went un-reviewed.  Finally, over the past couple of years, he has been
re-viewed, but most adopt a tone of "he's very good, but..."  The "but"
is there because he writes genre novels, and genre novels real aren't
real novels. The true distinction was pointed out by a fan at the
convention, who said that he hoped Pratchett wouldn't start writing 11
character novels", because he hated character novels. Under this fan's
literary segmentation, what Pratchett writes are "plot novels".

   This is unfair to Pratchett.  Perhaps he is mainly concerned with
plot and with the jokes, but his characters are, at the very least,
two-and-a-half dimensional.  Those critics prepared to write about him
have compared his work to Dickens, Wodehouse and Waugh; and, yes, he
stands the comparison well.  He has the memorable characters and the
storytelling skill of Dickens; the witty dialogue of Wodehouse; and,
most notably. the satirical edge of Waugh. The books are translated into
18 languages and Pratchett has frequently been the guest of honour at
science-fiction fan conventions.  The time was clearly ripe for the
first all-Pratchett convention.  In Manchester his fans took over the
whole hotel.  There were dealers' rooms selling all kinds of Pratchett
memorabilia, including a range of pottery figurines. The basic Death
figure cost 19.99, Death swinging his scythe cost 29.99, as did Death
in the kitchen (frying eggs).  Death riding Binky cost f99.99 while the
well-heeled Discworld fan could splash out 199.99 on Death riding a

   What set this convention apart from other fan conventions was that
the majority of attendees had never been to any other convention (there
is an established circuit of fan conventions, attended by a recognisable
tribe of conventioneers).  There was also, unusually, a large female
contingent among the fans.

   The weird kind of obsessiveness that the rest of us might associate
with the world of science fiction were consipicuous by their absence.
Instead of I-know-more-than-you gathering, the Discworld convention
offered, as one female present described it: "A nice family occasion.
You don't mind letting the kids run around. Women can walk about without
too many clothes on without feeling threatened.

   She was referring to those who were throwing themselves into the
entertainment, dressing up in fantastic costumes for the Maskerade fancy
dress contest and the amateur dramatics. The whole atmosphere was more
enthusiastic and better-tempered than many conventions, where an ugly
caste system often develops between those in the inner circle who have
attained contact with the celebrities, and those on the outside of
things who haven't. But then, it's hard to believe that there was
anybody at the convention who didn't meet the author, so generous was he
with his time.

   "The chances of shaking hands with Captain Kirk are quite remote,"
Pratchett says. "I tend to be around the place. If you are at all
interested in seeing me, sooner or later I'll probably turn up in your

  Until recently, Pratchett devoted three months of every year to
promotional tours (he has now cut that down to two months), as well as
attending four or five conventions a year in America, Canada or
Australia.  On top of that, he calculates that the time he devotes to
answering fan letters is equivalent to writing two more books a year.

   Pratchett likes his fans. "They are obsessive. yes. but not in a
worrying way.  They're the kind of people who can memorise detail," he
says, "but, to use the phrase. they understand the nature of the
suspension of disbelief. I've nothing against Star Trek, but some of its
fans do come close to thinking it is reality."

  Pratchett's devotion to his fans is mirrored by their devotion to his
work.  He joined in a trivia quiz staged as part of the convention. At
one point, his team was asked "Where do lost socks go?" He paused,
concentrating hard, then a look of surprise came to his face. "Hang on,'
he said, "I've just written that. The answer is that they're eaten by
the sock monster. but it hasn't been published yet. How could you know
that one?"

   A voice came from the audience: "We know everything."

Mark <>
The Flying Hamster Listserver :
Nothing is so smiple that it can't get screwed up.

From: (Jay Finch)
Subject: *DC* A (belated) Thank You...
Date: 18 Jul 1996 12:30:31 GMT
Message-ID: <4slap7$>

	Okay okay okay ... I know I should have posted this the instant 
(or even a few later instants) after I returned to Merkia from the Con, 
but ... Well, as much as I hate to say it, Real Life (not BTL) got in the 
way.  <sigh>
HOWEVER!  Now that I have a few spare moments (and nobody can catch me at 
it) here in the early dawn hours before the 1996 Olympic Games start here 
in the Atlanta ... I want to tender some well-deserved (if a bit belated) 

Thanks go out to AlexR (TEH) for being a wonderful host (and friend) at 
the London Meet, as well as Rory, "the" Damme..Dammerr..err.. Dammeral 
(sp?), The (original & one-true) Kat, Alan&Collette, plus everyone else 
who showed up in my alcoholic and I forgot your 
names. <grin>

Further Thanks need to be tendered to the wonderful folks who ran the Con 
in Manchester: Karen (last-minute reservation-goddess), Carol 
(who-provided-a-badge-for-my-badgeless-friend), Sparks (for being a 
really gracious host to a (mostly) clueless Merkin), and Paul (for also 
being a more gracious & understanding host to someone who was definately 
a "Fish out of water")...  This is not to say that the rest of the staff 
shouldn't be thanked, but I regret I didn't have much of an opportunity 
to meet you in person, so I apologise for this oversight .. (Or if I did, 
I must have been in a stuporific haze...<grin>)
	All of y'all were fabulously wonderful to meet, talk to, and 
definately put on a show that I will be recounting to my (jealous) 
friends for years to come.

More thanks need to be tendered to the whole host of folks who really 
went out of their way to make me feel comfortable at the Con.  I was 
kinda uncertain when I arrived what to expect ... I've been a regular 
Convention attendee for years now here in the States, but I will say 
that there is no comparison beween US Conventions & UK Conventions.  They 
both are distinctly different, and it was unusual to be at a Con where I 
didn't know at least HALF of the people there.  ...ANYWAYS...
	Thanks go out to Alan Connell (Really nice gent), Ursus 
(I-word..ha ha..erm.. ha?), Stuart (Now you're Australian, right? (removing 
foot from mouth)), Bast! (Not too much chatter, but it was interesting), 
CyberCat (Sunday pTerry Signing Queue), Glinda (another Merkin!  I 
thought I was the only one with this accent!), Alien (& the Mrs & little 
ali-tot), ppint (for the Wonderfully entertaining ride to the Airport!), 
CMOT Briggs (I have friends who want Mousepads..Consignment?), Ginny Briggs 
(For putting me at my ease in the Dealers Room...), the wonderful folks at 
Clarecraft (They are too nice to be believed... <smile>), AlexR (Yes, you 
again... Want some more Strongbow?  I'm buying...), Alan&Colette (Two 
gracious & entertaining hosts...), the other members of the "Foreign 
Legion" (Too many to mention, or remember, or was that just me?), Dave 
HodgesArrrrgh! (For an indepth & Detailed description of the "Real" HHG), 
Paul Kidby (You never know what you'll learn from listening to him...), 
Rory (a familiar face when I was feeling out-of-sorts), the folks who 
kept hitting me in the face in the bouncy-castle-with-calls-in (I had 
bruises for DAYS!), and .... Everyone else who I didn't mention, but took 
a few minutes to clue in a clueless Merkin...

And finally, thanks to Terry Pratchett... Although I really didn't get 
much of a chance to talk to you, I did enjoy the witticisms & various 
dangling funny bits when you were in Panels, UU Challenge, or just 
wandering around the Con ...

Thanks, y'all ... I had an absolute blast, and look forward to returning 
soon!  (98!)


PS - When are y'all going to come visit us Merkins?  I do have plenty of 
room in my new house... (Plus Condo's in Florida)

PPS - Sorry this was so long-winded, I wanted to make sure I didn't leave 
anyone out... (or if I did, it would be by TOTAL accident, and I know 
I'll feel like a heel when I get the E-mail saying "Umm..Jay...What about 
<insert selected incide..err..instance here>?)

Jay Finch			: Nuclear weapons for this .sig provided by
President/GKE of NERO-Atlanta	: Rick's Theatrical Props, Hollywood.
(770) 393-8485  (voice)		:		: "Sometimes your grasp of the obvious		:  astounds even me, Pinky."
MTBI Survey says:  ENFJ         :                       -- The Brain
        Check out my home page at:

This section of L-Space is no longer actively being maintained. It is only kept online for historical purposes.

The L-Space Web is a creation of The L-Space Librarians
This mirror site is maintained by The L-Space Librarians