Thursday, February 26, 2009

Gallifrey 2009 - Day Four

The clock on the bed reads 8am when I awake. This means I've had less than three hours of sleep from when I stumbled back to the room. This means I'm going on my fourth day on something around nine to ten hours of sleep. This means I of course feel like death on a triscuit.

Or maybe more appropriately in some truncated version of Withnail and I with any number of Squeeze songs about drinking for the soundtrack. I feel like a pig shat in my head even though I have not gone on holiday by mistake. I decide that I might as well ride the drunk/comfortably mellow state of affairs until Monday so I start the day by finishing off the apricot ale I had earlier in the morning. All I can do is sit in the chair and just kind of stare into the distance and try to comprehend my current state.

Since I can't go back to sleep and I've got nothing I want to see until Colin and Nicola go on stage at noon I wander back to the dealer's room. I figure I can go back and speak with Cindy Pickett. She's not there, but Greg Berger is. He notes that I'm now wearing my Houston Aeros hoodie, finally indicating where I'm from. In talking I mention I'm not a native Texan and he immediately states that he could tell from my accent and mannerisms. I probably spent about twenty minutes talking to him. Very nice conversation and a great guy.

Noon rolls around and I haul myself down to the ballroom for Colin and Nicola. My friend Bob sees me and asks if I've got a hangover on top of the hangover. I state that I'm still in the boozed up portion and that he better be ready to drive tomorrow morning because I already know I won't be able to. Colin and Nicola were a joy to watch together. It's always fun to see past Doctors with their companions. It was easy to see the great affection they have for one another. Colin explained his reasoning for biting Nicola on the ass during the first day of rehearsal. In my opinion, the same douchebag who asked Colin about his weight being a reason his Doctor was eating on screen all the time asked the same question. But this time he lacked the tact and just outright called Colin fat. This lead to Colin teeing off on him asking if anyone had ever told the dude he has no tact. Colin explained that he'd rather be healthy and enjoy life instead of some emaciated stick figure. We all applauded and then Colin would use any opportunity to just take another whack at the douchebag.

I don't know how and maybe it was something as simple as someone checking Facebook, but it was apparently getting around that it was my birthday. Which it was. Guests and friends alike were coming up to me going "I hear it's your birthday" or "Is it your birthday?" or just plain old "Happy Birthday". Dan did offer to get a group together to go to the strip club down the block as part of a birthday celebration. While I'm down with the strip club scene this one looked like the type of club that would have a pregnant one armed stripper as the main attraction. And as appealing as that sounds I realized photos would be taken and I'd hate to have to explain to work why there's a shot of me getting a lap dance from a pregnant one armed stripper while my friends pay to make it rain on us.

It had come to my attention the previous night that among the items donated to the charity auction where five Bernice Summerfield CD's donated by David Darlington. All were signed, I just didn't know by whom. If I had criticism about the auction it would be that I wished a complete and up to date list had been available to see beforehand. The only thing that I could find was one sheet posted by the door to the room that housed all the items and it was clearly not up to date. As such I had missed the first part of the auction watching Colin and Nicola which lead me to miss three out of the five cd's. Vanessa had me scared for awhile as she mentioned one of them was a copy of "The End of The World". Later I found out it was only signed by Simon and I already had his signature of the copy I owned. If David Darlington had signed it I would have had to find the person who got it and beat them down for it. The two cd's left were copies of "The Final Amendment" signed by Simon, David, and Joe Lidster and "The Diet of Worms" signed by David. I already had a copy of "The Final Amendment" signed by a whole host of people, but not David so I resolved to get that along with "The Diet of Worms".

When I show up at an auction I come to play. I know what I want and I have a set price in my head. None of this flim flam bullshit of upping the bid by a dollar. I had to wait a bit for them to get to the Benny cd and the first of the two was "The Final Amendment". They barely got the description out when I opened with five dollars for my bid. Someone bid six and I immediately went to ten. She countered with fifteen and I went straight for twenty. Twenty going once. Twenty going twice. Sold twenty dollars.

I had to wait longer for the other cd to go up and then I felt like I was in Groundhog Day. The bidding literally went the same way, note for note. I opened with five, the same person countered with six. I went straight for ten, she went fifteen and I bid twenty. Twenty going once. Twenty going twice. Sold twenty dollars. The only difference is that you could hear in her voice that she was pissed. If you read this blog and you're the person I beat down for those two cd's, what can I say? Mama was going home with those, that's what I'm saying. And I'd have gone after the other three if they had still been around. But really, you know I paid twenty on the first one. You might as well have cut to the chase and bid twenty.

With my new cd's in hand I went back to the dealer's room where I ran into the Big Finish crew. Simon reminded me that Gary had directed "The Final Amendment" and Gary was nice enough to sign the cd for me.

Speaking of Big Finish it was back into the ballroom at 4pm to see their final panel. Again, nothing new for the most part. The only two new items would be that the Bernice Summerfield Inside Story book is closer to getting released. There's only one person to get permission from and then Simon can go ahead and write a chapter about season number nine. It was explained that since Big Finish has the rights to Doctor Who and a chunk of the Benny book is what's happening to the show in the years that it's off the air they couldn't have their cake and eat it too by releasing something that hadn't gone through the proper clearance channels. The other news was that Sapphire and Steel is in a bit of trouble. Jason has to put pen to paper in regards to renegotiating the license and whether they can make it work financially. Sapphire and Steel may be the first audio line to become a casualty of illegal downloading. They want to make more though so it might be revamped into a Companion Chronicles style line of audios for future seasons. So you kids out there who want Sapphire and Steel and want it in full audio cast style might want to either buy copies of the existing catalog or buy more if you've already done so.

After the Big Finish panel the convention proper portion was pretty much done for me. Just as Opening Ceremonies do nothing for me neither do Closing Ceremonies. Instead I went back to Carl's Jr with John for dinner. This turned into unintended comedy as John was so out of it he didn't realize he ordered two combo meals and I got the shock of my life when I realized their idea of a western bacon cheeseburger is a cheeseburger with bacon, bbq sauce and two nasty onion rings. Seriously, onion rings. I had to go back and look at the picture on the menu to make sure it was my fuck up for ordering and not theirs in making it. It was also by this time that I learned that when I'm going on four days of drinking nothing but booze I start to stutter. Badly. As in from time to time I was sounding like a definitely tipsy Porky Pig.

The last night in the lobby started after dinner. People joined us as the Closing Ceremonies finished and I asked Bob to get my lasat tasty treat to share with all my British friends. Beaver Nuggets. Beaver nuggets are a tasty confectionary treat made by the good people at Buc-ee's, a gas station chain in Texas with a beaver for its mascot. I wish I had a camera to get the reactions of every time I said "would you like to try some beaver nuggets?" My beaver nuggets were a hit overall and I need to fulfill a promise to send a care package of those and some Booze Leprechaun t-shirts overseas.

Since it was my birthday people bought me beer instead of it being the other way around. Which was nice because it was my birthday and to be honest I was all out of beer and really didn't want to try and buy more so one way or the other the Booze Leprechaun was taking a night off. As it was many birthday rounds were procured and I ended up having a very nice and lengthy conversation with ElyssaDC who knew of me from the Audio Time Team's Liverjournal mirror blog.

Elyssa is another major lover of all things Benny having come by Benny in a roundabout fashion via the New Series. Luckily she was able to explain it to me without the use of graphs and charts because let's face it, I was too damn drunk to have comprehended anything that complicated. It was fun to talk to her and it's clear that her passion for Benny puts mine to shame. I also learned from her that apparently I'm not the only person who likes the character of Jason Kane so this made me feel like I had emerged from the wilderness to find Xanadu. The one that Kublai Khan did decree, not the one inhabited my Olivia Newton-John on roller skates. We talked for awhile and tried to call Lizbee, another LJ'er, because in my drunken state my ego increased to think that while the lobby lacked any guests I'd be good enough for her to talk overseas with.

While talking to Elyssa some of my friends asked if I'd like a piece of chocolate cake from the restaurant. I am not one to turn down free chocolate cake. Eventually I looked up to see Keefe with the cake in hand but not coming anywhere near me. This lead me to suspect that something was afoot and to move my beer glass. Next thing I know my friends are coming en masse, singing Happy Birthday and managed to rope Kai Owen into the festivities. Later on Elyssa saw Frazier and got him to come over and wish me happy birthday as well. Vanessa has us on tape posing as if she was going to take a photo.

Later on it was time for the annual Scrabble game. This year it was myself, Jarrod, Rob Shearman, and Vanessa. I was convinced Rob would totally destroy us since Jarrod and I were admittedly drunk. We managed to hold our own though and not get completely trounced by Rob even though he did win. It became a spectator event again, which I'm down with. I did find though in my state of inebriation I wasn't down with the spectators putting their two cents on what word should be played. But I did learn a new word for drunk from Rob and got a very nice compliment later on in regards to my overall play so I can't complain too much.

The evening then further descended into more drinking and talking. I had had every intention of going to bed after Scrabble but the siren's cry of gin and tonics called to me. That and I just didn't want the night to end. I knew that the next day would mean the end of summer camp and we'd all be going home.

Besides, it had turned into the BEST...BIRTHDAY...EVER! How could I got to sleep? This had topped the one where my dad sent me a stripper who ended up being from Australia and did his routine to Will Smith's "Men in Black" among other tunes. And may I mention that all my other friends chickened out and I got to enjoy the stripper all by myself? I believe I shall.

All good things must come to an end though and I finally dragged my ass to bed sometime after four.

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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Gallifrey 2009 - Day Three

I awake to find myself drowning in a pool of my own drool, still laying sideways on the bed fully clothed and the clock reads 7:30am. This of course means I've only had about three hours of sleep and I'm definitely displeased by that state of affairs. What displeases me further is that I can't manage to fall back to asleep so I'm stuck still slightly drunk on three hours of sleep. Joy.

I can't remember what I had for breakfast. I want to say maybe some leftover beer and some chips from the con suite. I could be wrong about the chips.

The convention day proper for me starts with the Big Finish panel. Still much talk about the Key 2 Time series and very limited discussion of the "Lost Season" of Colin Baker's they're doing. As usual with a Big Finish panel the highlight is just watching them all interact with each other. You never know what's going to be said. Fun bit at the end as they played previews of some of the audios coming out this year including McGann's "Company of Friends" and his reunion with Susan.

Then it was time to start using our Golden Tickets as the first autograph session of the day was forming. I wanted to get a couple of other items signed by Paul Cornell, including a couple issues of Captain Britain and the Short Trip Christmas anthology he edited. The Golden Tickets let us roll up on the line after it was starting the form only to get to head of it. John, Cathy, Keefe, and I had fun posing for photos with our Golden Tickets. The chick who's place at the head of the line we usurped didn't look as thrilled as us oddly enough. But we didn't care as we sang the Golden Ticket song from Willy Wonka and queued up according to the number on the ticket. When we got to go in the fun increased as it took a few minutes for the non Golden Ticket holders to be allowed into the room. Much jokes about peasants were made. Yes, we are evil like that. We have the Golden Tickets to prove it.

I think I got lunch. I don't remember.

Next up for me was the Wendy Padbury interview. Wendy was awesome and pure delight to watch. The best part of this was her explaining how she discovered Matt Smith when she was a talent agent a few years ago. She sang his praises and did her best to dispel any fears we have of him being the next Doctor. In the middle I slipped out in hopes of using my second Golden Ticket to get Pia Guerra to sign my copies of "The Forgotten". It took a little longer than I thought it should've, but I finally got confirmation that in fact Pia wasn't going to be able to make it out to the convention. I grumbled a bit and then went back to see the end of Wendy's session.

I was so still drunk that I had trouble telling time. I thought it was 4pm and next up was Colin Baker talking about Big Finish. I was so pleased to see so many people coming in to hear him speak as Big Finish has done a wonderful job rehabbing his Doctor. Imagine my shock/surprise when instead it was Gareth David Lloyd coming on stage. I rechecked my watch, cursed, and then probably pissed a bunch of people off as I stood up to leave.

I think this is when I decided to kill time in the dealer's room. Hidden in the back were Greg Berger and Cindy Pickett. They were having a conversation with someone so I didn't want to interrupt but the guy noticed me and asked who I was. I just mentioned I was an attendee to both which Greg and Cindy said I wasn't "just" an attendee. I took that as a chance to mention to Cindy that I was from Houston, had gone to the University of Houston, and one of my best friend's had gone to Bellaire High in the nineties. A quick lesson: Cindy is a native of Houston whose dad for a long time taught acting at both Bellaire and U of H. Among his students besides Cindy are Brent Spiner, the Quaid brothers, Robert Wuhl and the late Trey Wilson to name a few. Once I assured her I wasn't full of shit she smiled and shook my hand. I backed off and let them continue their conversation with the guy. A few minutes later I hear Cindy yell "Houston". I turn back around and pointed at myself in confusion. She said she wanted to talk and I explained that I didn't want to interrupt the current conversation. She and Greg appreciated that and she implored me to come back later to talk. While I appreciated the gesture I also think it might have partly been because she and Greg were lonely.

With the little hand on the four I made my way back to the main ballroom to see Jason Haigh-Ellery interview Colin about his Big Finish stuff. Awesome interview that was only marred by two things. One, some douchebag who has a weight fetish not so tactfully inquired if jokes about the Doctor eating were put in the scripts because of Colin's weight. Before anyone cries 'hypocrite', I may make the odd Colin Baker fat joke when we do one of his audios but I would never dare to bring it up to his face. Cute little jokes that I live in fear of him mentioning one autograph session is one thing. Making a weight comment right to his face in such a manner that can be construed in no other manner than nasty is another. The second was that I forget how the conversation led to it but Colin had to drop his two cents on waterboarding. If you know me it shouldn't take you long to figure out which way I lean on the subject. The lack of applause tells me that either the majority of the audience feels the same way I do or they just thought it wasn't the appropriate place to make such a comment. Either way I know I could've gone without politics creeping into my Who.

After Colin there really wasn't much going on until the Masquerade later in the evening. My friend Vanessa entered as the Haute Couture Dalek. I wanted to see her, but I also knew I needed to eat and not another meal at Carl's Jr. The Magical Bucket of Booze also needed to be replenished. So I headed back to Ralph's to buy Reese's Peanut Butter cups, another 12 pack of Sam's and a 12 pack of Coors Light per request by Keefe while he, John, and Dan trekked to Carl's Jr. Apparently there was something involving a homeless guy in a diaper possibly obsconding with a cheeseburger they bought for some random guy at the convention who asked them when he heard they were going to forage for food. I managed to run into the same cashier who once again noted I had to be planning for another party.

There was nothing that tickled my fancy in the way of dinner so once I got the latest additions to the bucket chilling I made my way to Denny's. Nothing finer than placing a layer of grease thanks to a Moons Over My Hammy on top of still full belly of beer. Note for future reference: the Denny's by the Marriott has a bar.

By the time I felt slightly human I decided just not to go to the Masquerade. I knew I'd get to see Vanessa's costume later and overall cosplay just ain't my bottle of beer. Instead I settled down on one of the couches in the lobby to start reading "Tiny Deaths". Part of me wanted to try and get a nap but the other knew once I slept I probably wouldn't wake for days. As it was I ended up not getting much reading done as hotel staff was dealing an unruly guest/visitor. I don't know what started it but next thing I know I see a guy sitting among the other set of couches talking to one member of hotel security. I can't hear what the hotel security guy is saying but I can clearly hear the guest/visitor and it's not good. Soon one hotel security member multiplies to about four which then escalates to one cop and then to three with sirens in the distance. They got the guy to leave the hotel without incident but I cannot report what happened once they got him outside.

While I didn't sleep, I did retire to my room for a bit to fiddle about on the computer. I had also decided against going to see the American premiere of Moths. It's not that I don't want to see it, but I knew the place would be jam packed and that I would have had to line up long before the masquerade even started to get a decent seat. Knowing that he'll be back in October at Hurricane Who to perform didn't hurt in the decision making process.

Apparently Moths got started late due to the masquerade running over so I was a bit surprised when I wandered out into the lobby around when I thought Moths was ending to see the place relatively empty. I did spot Tim and Llamastrangler so I hung out with them until the play let out and people started making their way up to the lobby. Then it was time to bring out the Magical Bucket of Booze and its cousin along with my pub sign with 'Park Your TARDIS Here' written on it. I started the evening with 24+ bottles of Sam Adams, 3 Shiner Blacks, 8 Shiner Blondes, and a few Sam Adams Light. By 2am I was completely out of beer. The party was still rocking though and thankfully Handsome Timmy D produced another 12 pack of Apricot Ale. We descended on it like starving dogs to meat and that bad boy was gone in about an hour.

5am rolled around and the party was still in full swing, much to the consternation of the hotel staff who had to keep cleaning up our debris. The Starbucks opened along with Lattitude getting the overpriced breakfast buffett ready. Though things were still going on I made the decision to stumble to bed. At that point in the evening/morning the rest of the hotel occupants would slowly make their way downstairs along with airline pilots checking in. It was kind of hitting that point where things were gonna have to end soon or something ugly would happen and I wanted to hear the story being told, not be part of it. After creating a little bed on the floor using the huge non-fluffy pillows I finally went to sleep/passed out.

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Sunday, February 22, 2009

Gallifrey 2009 - Day Two

My apologies in taking so long to get these out. To be honest I stopped drinking early Monday morning but my hangover didn't hit until Wednesday. You can imagine how much fun that made work.

Also, as you'll note in these convention travelogues one of the guys I stay with, John, is a bit of an autograph whore. (His words, not mine) Anyway, it has come to his attention that in the course of things he lost a Tomorrow People cover signed by Jason Haigh-Ellery. We think it happened during Saturday's autograph session. You might remember him as the guy with tons of covers in ziplock bags trying to figure out which ones to get signed. Obviously, if you go through your stuff and find you're now the owner of a Tomorrow People cover signed by Jason made out to John and you're not named John it's a safe bet it's not yours. If you happen to be in possession of this please drop me a line privately and arrangements can be made to get it back to him.

We now return you to your regular convention travelogue.

Breakfast is again the culinary mecca that is Carl's Jr. There was discussion of partaking of the hotel's breakfasat buffett but at $19.50 a pop that thought was quickly nixed. The general consensus was that at those prices the food should be cut up and pre chewed for you. I also thought everything should be made from scratch at the table per your specifications.

After food the task of organizing items for signature began. Friday was deemed autograph day as in theory I could spend all day getting the majority of what I needed signed taken care of. The announcement that Alien Entertainment was going to charge $20 for Colin Baker's autograph helped lighten my autograph load. The initial announcement that Pia hadn't made it for Friday's activities did screw the plan of attack I had worked out the week before for the entire convention.

The first session included Phil Collinson and as such the line started forming well over an hour before it was supposed to start. John and I ended up taking turns holding our spot in line while the other went to check out the dealer's room. By the time we made it though it was clear that the line was not getting much longer. After another quick run through the dealer's room we went back to the autograph session to find the line was still holding steady in size. We asked and were allowed to go back in, greedy bastards that we are. Along with Phil this session included Frazier Hines, Wendy Padbury, and Nicola Bryant and if we had made it through a second time at least I would've gotten everything I wanted signed without messing with Saturday's session. As it was the line had started out rather long and try as they could there was no way they'd get everyone through without running terribly late. As such the line had to be cut but as a special parting gift everyone on the wrong side of the cut got fast track passes for all three sessions on Saturday. Some days it pays to be a greedy bastard.

Once we got our golden tickets we basically queued back up for the second session involving Paul Cornell and Tony Lee among others. I got Paul to sign my copy of "A Life Worth Living" as to date it's the last Benny thing he's written. I gave Tony the first two issues of "The Forgotten" to sign and gushed about it and Pia's artwork to him.

Session number three had the boys from Torchwood and the Big Finish gang. John, Dan, and I had a lovely surprise for Laura Doddington from our time in Chicago but I got separated from Dan and John. This didn't prove to be such a problem since I had no plan to pay for Kai Owen's autograph and I only got Gareth David-Lloyd to sign items for other people. As I was the complete opposite of most people in that line this allowed me plenty of time to talk to Laura and Ciara Jansen as most people completely ignored the Big Finish bunch once they got their Torchwood autographs. Once Dan and John joined up with me we gave Laura the lovely photo we had made for her as a memento of the final night of Chicago TARDIS. Much laughter ensued with Jason and Simon Guerrier leaving their table to see what all the fuss was about. The photo proved to be a big hit with each of us having a copy for Laura to sign and one for her to keep.

I dropped my bag off in the hotel room and then went back down to watch Paul host Just A Minute. This way if nothing else I could say I went to at least one panel a day. Just A Minute is a long running program on BBC radio, the gist of which is that each contestant has a minute to speak non-stop on a given topic. The kicker is that you can't repeat words except for what are considered little word such as "the" and "as" and there can be no pause or hesitation. If any those things happen another contestant can challenge and then give the topic a go in whatever time is left. This year's contentants were Phil Collinson, Toby Hadoke, Wendy Padbury, and Frazier Hines. It was a tough battle between Frazier and Toby with Toby barely pulling out the win. The highlight may have been Phil begininng to regale the crowd with a story involving a bloke named Sven but was cut short through a foul. This made myself and most of the others in the audience sad as we all wanted to hear the full story.

I'm not one for Opening Ceremonies so instead I took my part in the great dinner debate. Since I had no clue on what I wanted to eat, only that I was hungry, Bob #3 and I ended up going to Ralph's. The Magical Bucket of Booze needed to replenished anyway so I figured I'd kill two birds with one stone. Beer prices were still a bit much, but not as bad as the liquor store around the corner from the hotel. It didn't take the cashier long to figure out there I was planning for a party as I went through the line with two 12 packs of Sam Adams, a six pack of Shiner Bock, and ginormous sandwich for dinner, and a bag of guacamole chips. The cashier was right when she said the chips I picked were probably the best in the guacamole chip genre. We also learned the hard way that Ralph's is part of the Kroger family of grocery stores so I could've used my Kroger card if I hadn't left it at the hotel.

Friday night was also the night for the numerous Toga/Volcano parties going on so I was treated to way too many people running around in hotel bed sheets and not much else as I worked my way through my ginormous sandwich. My friend Vanessa was part of the winning team for a scavenger hunt. I didn't hit any of the parties but apparently Phil Collinson tended bar at the Volcano party. There was also karaoke and among the highlights was a singing Dalek and Kai Owen belting out some Welsh hits.

Eventually I made my way downstairs to see what was going on and ran into Kathi, Justin, and Etta. Topic of conversation turned from one thing to another and soon we were trying to figure out how one would collect bull semen. A few trips to google later and we learned that it involved a teaser cow and artificial vagina. We also learned that said semen can be frozen, mayonnaise jar not required, though you may want to properly label the jar to ensure no confusion between your frozen bull semen and your frozen alfredo sauce. As always I learn something new and useful at Gallifrey.

The Booze Leprechaun made her second appearance in the lobby later on in the evening. I was initially set up close to the doors by the front desk, but had to move when the kids waiting on the wrestlers to come in started crowding around my area. The last thing I need is for some kid to reach into the bucket thinking they're getting soda and pulling out a Shiner Black. The plethora of kids was a bit annoying but fun to watch their excitement as several wrestlers checked in for the night. A number of us are wrestling fans as well and the kids in wheelchairs were an excellent early warning system as they'd start zooming around when they spotted a wrestlet coming in. The Big Show may have to win the award for most gracious one of the night as he spent probably at least ten minutes talking to the kids and posing for photos when it was clear he'd rather settle in for the night.

The bucket got relocated to the set of tables in front of the Starbucks and currently occupied by Simon Guerrier, James Moran, and Phil Ford. I hadn't wanted to horn in on their conversations with others, but it was the safest place to set up operations and kept Simon from having to walk too far when he needed a refill. It did eventually give me the pleasure of handing a beer to Frazier Hines and hooking up his American website designer, Van, with one after I carded him. Yes, I card if you look young. Again, I dont' want to have to answer the question of "How did the convention go" with "Great! I spent it in jail after being busted for contributing to the deliquency of a minor. They needed to take up a collection to pay my bail".

Moving the bucket also let me meet and make new friends with attendees like Tim and Llamastrangler, which is an awesome name. It quickly came to my attention that Shiner brewery does something right because whether I handed out a Shiner Black, Shiner Blonde, or Shiner Bock the receipient was very pleased, particularly those of the British persuasion. The Shiner Black was especially a hit and the one I was more worried about going over. Yes, next year I will endeavour to bring more than just one 12 pack of each.

The eventual highlight may have been watching a guy completely piss drunk trying to figure out the escalators. For a moment we thought he might just take a header down which may have then ranked as the best part of the convention up to that point. Think of it as weebles wobble and that one was dangerously close to falling down.

In keeping in with my apparently "straight up G" ways I eventually fell onto bed sideways sometime after 4am.

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Gallifrey 2009 - Day One

There was no free wi-fi to be had in the hotel so sadly I couldn't do a running commentary of my adventures at Gallifrey 20. As such I missed a couple of messages pointing out to me at least two fellow Shooty Dog contributors that I could've met.

Thursday found us rolling in to the hotel right around noon. I had once again decided to drive, this time adding a second person so things wouldn't be too crazy. Or at least I had hoped so. We left Wednesday afternoon and here's a couple hightlights from that:

I lost my shit in Tuscon. It was about 3 or 4 in the morning and I had been driving most of the time since around 2 in the afternoon when we switched drivers at the Buc-ee's in Luling. Between the time of night, Monster Energy drink on a relatively empty stomach and construction I was done. It took me another 30 minutes to find a place to pull off. When I did I looked at my companion and told him he'd either have to drive or we'd be hanging out for awhile because I was done. As it was I spent about 5 minutes standing outside the car as I couldn't even stand to be in it. It's probably as close to crying as I've been in a long time.

Memo to a gas station in New Mexice: While I applaud having condoms readily available via vending machine in the women's bathroom you might not be targeting the correct audience with also having a vending option for a rubber studded cock ring. For the record this was not available in the men's room.

Memo to California: I know you guys are pretty much broke but would it kill you to stick a door on the main entrance to the restrooms at the rest stops? There's nothing I like more than at 9 in the morning sitting on a frozen toilet seat. And a sidenote, if I have to sit on a frozen toilet seat can the air blower send out hot air for my hands?

As I said, we got to the Marriott around noon and the reunions began. It's like the first day of school, seeing the friends you haven't seen since the end of the previous school year. Dan and I all but tackled John as he got off the shuttle.  Eventually all my junk was loaded out of the car and I got cleaned up.

We had talked about maybe doing the Kings game later that evening but that idea was nixed. I had no desire to sit in a moving vehicle again and we were having too much fun just hanging out. A bunch of us went on what was to become the first of many runs to Carl's Jr for cheap food.
The Magical Bucket of Booze was eventually unpacked and some of the beers that I brought from Texas was put on ice. But Sam Adams had to be procured so I walked to the nearby liquor store where I was anally raped for 3 six packs. Seriously, nearly 10 bucks for a six pack. I know I'm in California but for god sake that's ridiculous. I definitely did not go back there again.

The reunions continued as a group got back from Disneyland. I nearly tackled Cathy and Keefe to the ground when they walked in. I ended up not only bringing out the original Magical Bucket of Booze but I brought it's little friend to help chill all the beer I had. Apparently I had a reputation to maintain as The Booze Leprechaun as some of the guests that had been at Chicago found me, bringing other friends along and going "This is Nicole. She's the one I told you about at Chicago with all the beer." Much like Cosby's kids who sang his praise for giving them chocolate cake my praise was being sung for bringing the beer. I lost count of all the people Simon Guerrier alone brought to me to partake of the bucket.

Thursday might have been the earliest night for me as I think I was in bed by 3 in the morning.

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Saturday, February 7, 2009

Going Back to Gally

Plans have been made. Plans have been changed. Plans are being revised.

But at the end of the day I'll still be out in LA for Gallifrey 20 this upcoming week.

I have realized I've reached a new level of geekdom as I've already created a working plan of attack for the con based on the schedule as it currently is. Not as many conflicts as with Chicago TARDIS last November, but at least these conflicts are due to the excess of nougatty goodness and not just crap scheduling.

The Magical Bucket of Booze will also be making its first appearance in LA along with some fun surprises.

As always I would love to meet some of the 10 or 15 of you that I know read this blog. I'll be the one sporting the jaunty Pilgrim hat late at night in the lobby.

And for those of you that can't make it check back next week as I'll once again be posting my travelogue.

See y'all in LA.

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