Fandemonium Report — Thursday Night

For me Fandemonium began on Thursday night (August12) with Schlockfest. I was really nervous about attending this event. So nervous in fact that I confused my target hotel arrival time with my target departure time and ended up half an hour later than I intended. Fortunately it didn’t matter because I still had time to set up Patches bed, change clothes, and fix my hair before Schlockers began to arrive.

I decided to bring Patches to the event because I was nervous about leaving him overnight. I’m still not sure that was the right decision, he’d have survived being left. Fortunately everybody at Schlockfest was really nice about him being there. In hindsight, I think I brought him as a security of sorts for me. I’ve never been very good at meeting new people and making small talk. At parties I tend to observe more than participate. Having Patches meant that if I felt awkward I could hide behind motherhood. “Oh look Patches needs attention. I’ll just go over there now. . . ” On this occasion that never proved useful. Instead of rescuing me from awkward conversations, Patches kept distracting me from interesting ones.

Meeting the IRC crowd was lots of fun. I’ve never felt so comfortable with a group of people that I’d never met before. I didn’t always know what to say, but there were enough people that conversations stayed lively and I was able to participate when I DID have something to say. Unfortunately a significant portion of the IRC crowd were also con staff and they were all incredibly stressed over things undone, things needing re-done, and things not do-able. Apparently on Sunday everyone had a big dinner and was more relaxed. I wish I could have been there.

Chani, Kreely, and I had a quick meeting about the panel we were to share. It wasn’t a long meeting and we didn’t really go over details of what we wanted to cover, mostly we determined that we got along and that the panel was going to be fun. I was delighted to discover that both Chani and Kreely were articulate and good tellers of stories. It boded well.

The worst part of the evening for me was putting exhausted Patches into his crib and then sitting in a room full of people who had to listen to him wail for 20 minutes. Once again, everybody was nice, but I felt horrible and definitely not showing off my best parenting skills.

Once Patches was asleep I was able to devote full attention to helping solve the problem of the No Schedule. Everyone needed to know when things were so they could make plans, but the Con-Chair had suffered a hard-drive disaster and so no schedule existed. We sent Discarnate to collect info on panels, events, rooms and such. He returned partially triumphant and we started making little slips of paper and sliding them around on the table. I was the one with the pencil, so I did all the recording. Chani’s former convention experience was invaluable. Discarnate and Vermillion participated as well as some other people who have disolved into the haze of late-night-memory loss. Howard might have been there for some of it. We emerged from our huddle with a schedule. I copied it from I’m-in-a-hurry-scrawl into legible handwriting, handed off the legible copy to Discarnate to be delivered to con staff and kept the scrawl for myself. Everyone went to bed exhausted.