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Observations, ramblings and random comments regarding Conflikt III - long, steam-of-consciousness style, and somewhat (in)coherent. You still with me? You have been warned...

- mercury973 is made of awesome. Seriously. She didn't even attend the convention, but she spent a lot of hours with me Friday morning doing prep and then HOURS again Sunday afternoon and evening, hanging out, breaking down and cleaning up. Also, she brought DONUTS. OMG LOVE HER. Also, I am not doing hospitality next year. I need a year off. I think the concom should kidnap her and beg her to do it.

- admnaismith has some of the most whacked clothing ever. I highly approve of this and think that it added a little je n'sais quoi to the weekend. And his lovely and talented wife, jenrose1 made the interesting marshmallows that showed up on the tables in hospitality over the weekend. If you liked them, contact her about the recipe.

- runnerwolf and sar_anon deserve massive Kudos for be willing to relocate so that hospitality could expand. As I mentioned in my previous post, they originally gave us a small room - about half the size of the one in our contract. Ah, hotel-contract fail! We definitely needed the two rooms to accommodate the crowds when it got busy. All in all, it worked out very well, and many thanks to carmiel for all her hard work and headaches in dealing with hotel dumb-assedness and getting things squared away.

- Running hospitality is interesting, fun and crazy. It's quiet, quiet, quiet, OMG CRZY BZY YIKES, quiet, quiet, quiet - lather, rinse, repeat. I really like doing it. What can I say? Insanity appeals. But. In the last 16 months, I've run 5 convention hospitality rooms;

October 2008 - VCon 33
Jan/Feb 2009 - Conflikt II
July/Aug 2009 - Writercon III
October 2009 - VCon 34
Jan/Feb 2010 - Conflikt III

Plus, in RL, I'm on the Board of Directors AND the Social committee in my housing co-op. The SocCom plans & presents events - dances, Summer BBQ's, New Year's Parties, etc - we recently had a big 80's Retro Party, and I did all the cooking for our Christmas dinner.

The upshot of this is, as much as I love doing it, I need to take a year off. I *need* a sabbatical from my volunteer activities. Who knew?

Getting back to CONFLIKT...

- There were a lot of youth at Conflikt this year. Made me really wish I'd brought Girly Girl and Monkey boy. But. MB had mid-terms, so nothing doing. It would be nifty to see some programing aimed at that crowd. Or possibly, like OVFF, have some kind of dedicated child space, if things keep growing the way they have been.

- I got private concerts. The Care and Feeding of filkers can clearly have unexpected side bennies.

bluesmancd sauntered in Saturday afternoon to hang out and relax - ha! I pointed at his guitar and said "Play!" and lo, it was so. It was great, my very own intimate little acoustic set. As an added bonus, I got to jam with him for a while after, and he was willing to play my little Spanish piece. It's so cool to be able to play with someone who is so much more talented on the guitar than I am - he added all these little trills and flourishes they way only a really confident guitarist can. The last time I got to play around with someone like that was when I last played with drfilk. I miss him - I know we all do. I like to think he was watching from somewhere, playing along and laughing at all the funny bits right along with us.

While everyone else was down at the Interfilk auction spending their hard earned cash on a worthwhile cause Saturday night, I was being serenaded with another Private Concert. Yes, sometimes life *IS* good. Alexander James Adams was *totally* giving me the come-hither, smokin' hot eyes when he was singing to me. Holy SHIT. Dude, I think that hip wiggle thing and that smoldering stare are illegal in at least 27 states...*ahem* Water, please?

I must admit that I *did* get out of Hospitality a couple times. pondside literally chased me out the door at one point! Things I got to see...

- New Bunk Foss on Friday night - tuto, Mark Osier and tommy_g4 did a rockin' set, including a punk rock take on "Been There, Dun That" that had cflute laughing out loud.
- Tom Smith's concert Saturday night - was fabulous. He's really a very funny guy (like this is a surprise) and it was nice to hear some of my favorites performed live.
- Songbook sing-a-long, Sunday afternoon. There's never enough time to go through the whole song book; I wonder if we might consider making it a sign up ahead event, like the one shots and two-fors - this way, we know ahead how many people are going to be there to lead songs, and if you really want to, you have to sign up early. Just a thought.

moosaic4, trystel and I were able to hang out, but not nearly enough. Actually, I'm not sure if I would think that a week was enough. I'm kind of selfish like that.

she_who_filks brought me chocolate cake. Mmm. Cake. Just for me. Also, there where shoulder rubs to be had. Mmmm. Chocolate and shoulder rubs. I'm keeping her.

Tess, pondside, u_must_b_joking, moosaic4 and trystel all helped out at some point in hospitality, making my life easier. So many thanks to them for doing that.

ursuscelticus made me laugh. He does that. We share a history of campfire songs that make me giggle. "I Like this game!" *snort* Ask him what I mean by that, I dares ya...

cadhla gathered a crowd in Hospitality at one point, telling stories of nasty diseases, cats, and a man with a lizard IN HIS LEG. No, SERIOUSLY. You read that right. IN. His LEG. I KNOW, that's totally whack. But she swears it really happened. Don't ask me, it made my head explode. Track her down for the details. I think she should put THAT in song if you want my opinion...

I ended up closing the consuite at about 1:30 AM Friday, 1:00AM Saturday & maybe 9:00pm-ish Sunday to get down to the open filk. Suffice it to say, I didn't get a lot of filking in, but that was okay, I got a taste of it.

One night, I went down to the small room where capnblackberry and motherinlawtree were, along with our Interfilk guests, and we got a solid version of Frobisher Bay going after a few false starts. I was transported - it was FANTASTIC!!! With all the solid voices in the room, I got to play on the harmonies, which I *never* get to do, and it was just WHEEE! SQUEE! ::bounce:: OMG Wonderful! *sigh* That song with those harmonies will just never get old!

Sunday night, I went down and sat near the stage, close to hsifyppah - we barely saw each other all weekend! She ended up crashing out not too long after, sadly, so I didn't get to play with her like I wanted. I'll just have to tackle her here sometime. I did, however, get bluesmancd's attention and asked if he'd play with me again, which he ever so graciously agreed to. So when we got a turn, we played the little Spanish ditty, and dude, it sounded ten times better than it had in the consuite, because he is totally intuitive about the music and where it's going and it was like sharing a brain, he totally read what I wanted with a word or a gesture and followed me, even when I missed an intro and dropped some notes and OMG! it was AWESOME!

And then there was applause leik whoa. Holy crap man. I was not expecting *that*. And then Alec comes over and gives me shit for not playing more. Or something. DUDE! Seriously! I was totally feeding you - I think you would prefer having chili and soup and pasta and what-have-you to me playing a few mediocre licks with a kick-ass blues man to prop up my performance.


Man, that was fun. I wanna do it again. OMG, I wish I had people to jam with, sometimes life is just not fucking fair. All these amazingly talented people I know, and 97% of them live Way. The hell. Down THERE!

Clearly, capnblackberry, motherinlawtree, hsifyppah, u_must_b_joking and myself must get together more often. Especially if we're going to pull together some sort of choir thang for Conflikt next year. And it's fun to get together and play music and sing no matter what. OMG why, why WHY are there not more filkers in Vancouver with whom I may jam? Have I mentioned that this is seriously NOT FAIR?

On Running a ConSuite:

I try to make sure that the Consuite is as safe and friendly as it can be. I provide vegetarian and vegan options. I provide diabetic friendly choices. I make a note of mild and severe dislikes and allergies, and try to keep anything that will kill people away (like no shelled peanuts on the tables, though there *WAS* peanut butter and Peanut M&Ms - the M&Ms at least are covered in chocolate, reducing the amount of nut oil cross contamination) As an additional point of pride for me, I wanted to make sure I had food safe for people who have extreme food sensitivities *cough* sar_anon *cough* These folks are usually very gracious, insistent that I not worry about accommodating their needs, but seriously. It can be done, and I don't mind. Obviously, I can't cater to every whim and desire, but if I know I have a few people with ultra severe allergies who can all eat rice noodles and chicken, then I can make it special just for them. And I did - it just wasn't out there for everyone.

I'm satisfied that I had something that everyone who came through the consuite could have eaten if they so chose, no matter how sensitive their tastes or sever their allergies. If you felt your allergies/sensitivities/what-not were overlooked - make SURE it's on your membership form for next year! I'm certain whoever ends up doing the consuite in 2011 will want to know.

On a side note, not directly related to Conflikt - I listened to the podfic anthology of runpunkrun's That Particular Month and esteefee's Fair Trade while driving to and from Seattle. anatsuno and wihluta both have very soothing voices, and they made the drive fly by. Now I'm hooked on podfic in the car - I listen on my short commute to work, to the grocery store - anywhere! I'm looking for excuses to listen. I takes so much longer to listen to it than to read it, but I find that I am getting so much more out of it when I listen. I was listening to "Every Day in Every Way" the last few days - general_jinjur's voice is much more pleasant than most the crap on the radio I could listen to - and I heard things in the story I don't think I ever gleaned upon reading it. I read crazy fast, and I know I skip things, without even meaning to - sometimes, I have to go back and re-read something because I scarf it down so fast I miss crucial plot points, and listening to it being read out loud forces me to enjoy it at a steady, even pace, to wait for it, to savour it even! Who knew that listening to podfic could bring so much more joy to the fanfic experience? Wow. I don't need actors to read me the stories, though that would be fun and cool to listen to - the people who love to read and write in the fandom I adore bring it to life in ways I never expected.


( 16 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 11th, 2010 02:32 am (UTC)
Running hospitality means missing a lot if not most of the convention. Thank you for doing it and enjoy a year off! Also thanks for the ASA trick and having throat coat in stock, I really appreciated it Sunday!
Feb. 11th, 2010 02:49 am (UTC)
I have to say, your crew was amazing! I walked into the consuite during stuff on Sunday, hungry and totally broke. I scarfed a dog, some OJ and a PB&J, then these four gals walked in and inside of 10 minutes, EVERYTHING had been replenished to overflowing! It was amazing to watch such coordinated efficiency. Kudo's! Although that was the only time I got up there the whole weekend, it was impressive! Thanks for all you do!
Feb. 11th, 2010 03:20 am (UTC)
Since you aren't doing consuite next year you should have a concert slot. No, I'm not kidding.

If you like audio dramas (podfic) I recommend Second Shift Podcast. There are 13 episodes from Season 1, and 13 (out of 16) episodes from season 2 are done. Just don't listen too fast because the next episode probably won't be out for at least a couple of months.

Question; Other than Bin There, Dun That do you know what songs New Bunk Foss performed?
Feb. 11th, 2010 06:26 pm (UTC)

I didn't keep notes on New Bunk Foss, but they did play Mark's Callahan song that won him first prize in the songwriting contest last year. Wish they'd play together more, they are really good.
Feb. 11th, 2010 03:32 am (UTC)
Hope you can come over on Saturday Feb 20, we want you! Any room with you and capn b. will have Frobisher Bay in it.
Feb. 11th, 2010 06:27 pm (UTC)
I need to get together with some Canaydee-aydee-ans and have them force-feed me some of these songs that we never get to hear in the States. Things like "Frobisher Bay" and "Northwest Passage." I hear a few of them from listening to Canadian radio once in a while, but not near 'nuff.
Feb. 13th, 2010 01:29 am (UTC)
I hope you can come on Feb 20 (filkers welcome, RSVP) it will be potluck at 5 and sing from 6-9 or so. Also we are planning to have our second annual May House Filk probably in May and if you request it there can be Canadian songs. I hope Paul can come Feb 20 and play some Gordon Lightfoot and other Canadian tunes, if someone requested them...
Feb. 13th, 2010 04:06 pm (UTC)
Oooooh, it would be nice if we could but I'm afraid we can't. For one thing, my daughter has plans that day and she's the driver; for another, we promised ourselves we wouldn't go anywhere near the border until the Olympics were over.

May, huh? I'll have to think about that.
Feb. 11th, 2010 04:28 am (UTC)
Thank you!

You run a great con suite.
Feb. 11th, 2010 04:37 am (UTC)
Thank you thank you thank you for your efforts. It was very much appreciated, and I have to say I was impressed every time I wandered into the consuite. I spent relatively little time there total because OMG filk programming - but I loved it. (And I do have some food sensitivities, though not many. I was pleased to have no problem finding food to suit me...and no problems determining which items were not things that I could have. YAY!)

As one of the ones with a little one, I liked taking him to the programming. (I didn't like missing things when he was fussy, but that's life.) On the other hand, in a year or two - when he's a toddler rather than a baby - a childcare area would be lovely. A kid programming area that required a parent to stay would not be very good unless the kid programming was also parent-entertaining, tho...the adult programming is also kid-entertaining, at least thus far.
Feb. 11th, 2010 05:22 am (UTC)
Thank you for a good consuite. While I don't eat everything you put out, the fact that you had alternative options is really appreciated. I was able to get meals all weekend from the consuite or the hotel (if I wanted to spend money).

Good luck with your off year from running a consuite. (It means that you get to relax and enjoy more of the filking next time.)
Feb. 11th, 2010 05:12 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the kind words, and thanks VERY much for all your efforts running the consuite. It was a highlight for me, too, I enjoyed playing guitar with you.

And I agree with maverick_weirdo, try to secure yourself a concert for next year.
Feb. 11th, 2010 06:28 pm (UTC)
Either I need to get up to the con suite more often (like, more than zero) or you need to get out of it more often. Oh, that's right, you ARE going to get out of it.
Feb. 11th, 2010 06:32 pm (UTC)
Oh, Goddess of Hospitality! Thank thee for the kind words and sharing! I would like to 3rd-or is it the 4th? maverick, blues, Alexander J Adams, yes the 4th one to say, More beautiful sounds from you! Concert! I attended your concert at Norwescon--2 years ago was it? Yes, more please. If you don't feel ready for "the main room", have it in Fir, or in the hospitality room. We'll spread the word and you'll have a very happy audience.
Feb. 12th, 2010 02:05 am (UTC)
Thank you for everything you did! I'm sorry I didn't come visit more...

About the man with a lizard in his leg...could Seanan have been talking about the movie Aberration?
Feb. 19th, 2010 06:05 pm (UTC)
You run an awesome consuite; thank you for all you do to make it a delightful space.

Speaking of delightful, I hope you enjoy your year off. I hope you get a concert; your voice is lovely.
( 16 comments — Leave a comment )


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