I really had intended to write about Gafilk when it was still fresh in my mind, but a variety of things kept me from getting around to it. But enough cool things are still in my mind that I want to highlight them

  • Attendance wise, we had our second largest crowd ever, topping out somewhere in the 170-180 range. A lot of people were there for the first time, but hopefully not the last.
  • The Debbie conspiracy. I adore ohiblather, so when her friend lord_korak approached me about a conspiracy to smuggle Debbie’s husband Jeff to the convention without her knowing about it, I gladly pitched in. We had the two of them listed under fake names (John Carter and Jack Clayton), arranged that their proper name badges were not in the batch delivered to the registration setup party, to make sure they wouldn’t be seen, and blocked their rooms so they could get into the hotel without being noticed. My only regret is that they chickened out and didn’t take our suggestion to have Jeff announce his presence by offering a toast at opening ceremonies, so we all got to see her face.
  • Hijacking the opening ceremonies to get the entire convention to sing Happy Birthday to cadhla. (“I love my Seanan. I wish I could do something for her on her birthday. Let’s see, I have a mobile phone, a microphone, and a hundred people in the room……”)
  • Finally getting to have allisona at Gafilk. I’ve been pestering her for years to come, because she’s just one of my favourite people. Sadly, she’s one of those folks whose real life commitments and our annual dates don’t mesh well. We actually asked UT to be our guests two years in advance, so that Allison would have plenty of time to arrange her schedule. I hope it’s not another 9 years before she comes again.
  • Speaking of our guests of honour, I don’t think I can express how utterly cool Urban Tapestry is as a convention guest without severely abusing a thesaurus. (m-w.com suggests: bang-up, banner, boss [slang], capital, classic, crackerjack, dandy, divine, fabulous, fine, first-class, first-rate, grand, great, groovy, heavenly, jim-dandy, keen, marvelous (or marvellous), mean, neat, nifty, noble, par excellence, prime, sensational, splendid, stellar, sterling, superb, superior, superlative, supernal, swell, terrific, tip-top, top, top-notch, unsurpassed, wonderful…..). They were absolutely delightful, both in their concert and just around the convention, much to the surprise of no one.
  • Summer and Fall. (Kapital, Klassiker, Allerweltskerl, Geck, göttlich, fabelhaft, fein, erstklassig….oh, skip it. *grin*) Seriously, these two girls from Germany knocked my socks off. I still can’t find them, I’ve been barefoot for two months. I lost count of the number of instruments they played, and played well, in their concert. Ultimately, my only regret is that I didn’t get to spend more time hanging out with them than I did. I hope their experience was as magical for them as they were for us.
  • SM Stirling was a great guest, and he had a fabulous time at the con. I’m sorry to say I still haven’t had a chance to read any of his novels, but I think I will be making time soon.
  • Linda Melnick was absolutely delightful. We’ve been trying to lure her back into the fold for years, and finally found the perfect way to make her show up — invite her to be our toastmaster. She was a wonder in helping set up one of the best rounds of “My Filk” in years, and the quasi-Technical Difficulties reunion featuring T.J. Burnside-Clapp and her daughter Jessie during Linda’s Toast concert was utterly fantastic.
  • Speaking of “My Filk”, I was really really pleased with it this year. I though the question rounds had the right mix of difficulty, everyone on the panel seemed to be having a good time (sometimes, to their surprise), and the sign-language round was unspeakably cool. I’ve been hosting this event for eight years, and I think this was the best one ever.
  • Speaking of sign language, Judi Miller was there. I went squee. I’m not proud. 🙂
  • Got to meet kilted_singer, though I didn’t get to spend as much time with him as I’d hoped. Since he’s one of the few people who’s actually learned and played some of my songs, he gets a special mention in my con report, because I actually do like having my ego bolstered once in a while.
  • Because of his untimely death right after the convention, my memories of tnatj are in sharp relief. Most of my memories really are just Dave being Dave….holding court in the registration area, setting up his button trade again, reciting bits of verse in his booming cheerful voice. One moment stands out, though…there was an incident that occurred on Saturday that required a great deal of diplomatic intervention to smooth over, and it all happened right in front of the table Dave was hawking buttons from. Once it was all settled out, he pulled me aside to tell me that he was always very impressed by the way that kitanzi and I handled stuff like that, and wanted to compliment us on it. That really meant a lot to me, and I wish I’d had a chance to tell him how much.
  • We sold out the banquet. We released two more tables. We sold it out again. Folks, if you’ve never been to a Gafilk banquet, you just don’t know what you’re missing. If the band ever smokes any harder, we’ll get in trouble with the fire marshal. People all dressed up in their finery, dancing the night way. There’s few things that earn the designation “not to be missed”, and this is one of them.
  • chirosinger and musicmutt. Graham and Becca were our Friday Night Concom’s Choice Concert, and they were fabulous. It was interesting to see how they’re melding their very different music styles on stage together. G&B were also our roommates, and better roomies I don’t think I could have asked for.
  • Best Interfilk Auction Ever. Why? Because I had at least one and sometimes two pretty girls on my lap the entire time, and I wasn’t even bidding on anything. ‘Nuff said. *grin*
  • Of course, the biggest highlight of the weekend for me? sweetmusic_27 was there. See, I like her a lot, and really enjoy being around her. And, it would seem, she really likes being around me. And so we spent a lot of time around one another, and we figured that we should do a lot more of that in the future. I could go abuse the thesaurus again to explain how I feel about this new relationship, but there’s a LOT of entries under “happy”, and this post is long enough. Suffice to say, my heart is a bit lighter than it was before, and that’s a good thing.

Of course, no con report would be complete without photos! I got a lot of good ones, I think. Also, i’ve collected everyone else's con reports in my LJ memories. If i’ve missed yours, please let me know so I can add it.

Next year, we have Jeff and Maya Bohnhoff, Brian Richardson, the Brobdingnagian Bards, another super secret guest, another banquet that couldn’t be beat, plus kangaroos. It isn’t really a filkcon until there’s kangaroos. Y’all come?