Gwnewch y pethau bychain

Flashback: Gafilk

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, gΓΆttlich, 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. πŸ™‚
  • 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?

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33 Comments

  1. forgive my ignorance, but I simply don’t know. Are Filk Conventions reserved for Filkers only or can anyone attend? (ever need really good drummers…? he’ll freak if he knew I asked…)

    • Well, anyone can certainly attend. The main question is whether there will be enough going on to be interesting for the attendee. There’s no Filk Licensing Board you have to get certified with before you show up. πŸ™‚

      Drummers are often welcome in open circles, if they’re good at playing along with someone spontaneously. it will vary from performer to performer. (Our Toastmaster next year, Brian Richardson, is a superb drummer himself.

    • Hand percussion is not at all uncommon at filkcons, and Elderson has brought a snare and high-hat to circles.

    • Um, I asked you if you were going to come -- both this year and last, I think. I even remember you answering me, since I was turning in my time slip at the time. πŸ™‚ You’d both be very welcome, with or without drums!

      • Hmm, I don’t recall. I am also shy… sometimes…
        Do you have to sign up or something?

        • Well, you do need to get a membership for the con, though actually you might like to come to a housefilk some month? That’s basically just a gathering at someone’s house to talk, make music, and have fun. The next one is in April, and you’d both be welcome. As for the con, detailed information is here:
          http://www.gafilk.org/

          Membership prices vary by how early you get them, and if you want to get the whole weekend or just one day. Email me, or if you want mention it Friday when I bring by my sheet. πŸ™‚

          • Just in case it wasn’t clear, the monthly filk is perfectly free, and you don’t have to sign up or anything. πŸ™‚

          • I will do that. You don’t think we’d be too weird? *grin* I think it sounds like fun and it isn’t something I’ve ever done before.

            I’ll talk to you Friday or I’ll email you when we get back from vacation.

          • Too weird for this group? *G* Um, no. Give it a try at least, you may just like it and all you’re risking is an evening. πŸ™‚ I’ll come by on Friday -- if you’re at the Kroger’s again, I’ll catch you sometime. There’s also a Gafia page, if you like: http://www.gafia.org/

            Gafia is the official name of the organization that runs the Gafilk con, but basically it’s just all of us local filkers! The page lists when and where the monthly filks are, among other things, though it looks like it needs updating just now.

          • You don’t think we’d be too weird?

            It’s entirely possible you’re not weird enough. πŸ˜‰

          • hmmm- oh just you wait. When you least expect it, we can get way weird on your ass….

          • You have no idea how long I’ve been waiting for exactly that. πŸ˜‰

    • My preferred instrument is a big African drum (although I’m in the market for a Doumbek); some filkers play bodhran… basically as long as it blends in and the player improvs well, you can pile right in…

      And they also filk who simply sit and listen and maybe chime in on the choruses… a filker is anyone who cares to be there.

  2. But what about the wombats?

    Wombats get no respect, you know.

    *g*

    I do IM…but I’m available at odd times. Email me for phone #.

  3. 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.

    I did at the time, at length and for both of us. It was important to me, though it would have been even more so if I’d been able to see ahead a couple of days. I really do feel good about that, at least.

  4. No banquet pictures? πŸ™‚

    • I believe he was too busy dancing, and I rarely think to. I think I took one or two with someone else’s camera, but I don’t think we had ours at the banquet with us this year.

    • No, I didn’t have the camera with me at the time, and as Kit says, I was too busy dancing with pretty girls to really take photos anyway.

  5. So you shall have to come out this way and see and maybe we’ll have a mini-filk? I don’t know what her space is like but we have enough for a few people…. not nearly big enough for a full-out housefilk (and parking is a right bastard), alas, but we can make do…

    Of course, if you wait long enough, we may well have considerably *more* space… but that’s another tale. πŸ™‚

    • At some point, I definately hope to be doing that. Right now, we’re basking in the luxury of having three cons spaced over an 8 weeks period in which to see each other (Gafilk, D’Zenove, Consonance). I’m sure having been spoiled by that, we’ll manage to figure out a visit sometime in the future. Besides, I’ve never been to Seattle. I hear it’s nice. πŸ˜‰

      • *splorfle*

        Make sure sings “Emerald Green” for you. Without actually going there, I think that explains it best…

        That, and the love of the people here… may be new here, but she fits… it’s a certain attitude.

        • I’m very familiar with ‘s song, although I don’t recall immediately if I’ve *heard* it.

          I’m certainly fond of a great number of the people there. I have no intention of changing jobs anytime in the future, but if I was forced to, it’s on the short list of places I’d willingly relocate to if I could find a job there.

  6. GaFilk totally rocked. I’d have been seasick from the rocking had I not been so distracted by the awesome.

    Also? I’m really happy for you and Amy. πŸ™‚

    • Also, I have to add that kagaroos can be a right pain in the whatsit. Cute, friendly if you know them from when they are a joey, but eventually a pain in the whatsit. Just ask my aunt, Karen, who had a pet Big Red when she was a girl…

      Or a new friend of mine as of last weekend, who notes that roos tend to go running out into what they think is open space at full tilt when scared, and hit cars, sometimes killing people.

    • And were I writing this less than 7 weeks after the con, I’d have mentioned that one of the cool things about the con was getting to see you. Because you rock like a granite weeble. πŸ™‚ *hugs*

  7. Awww….. *squee*

    -Amy

  8. SM Stirling

    i can highly recommend his new one, The Sky People.

    Very WHAM! KAPOW! BZZZZZT! and Barsoomian, with dinos and neanderthals and soviets.

    • Re: SM Stirling

      What she said- very cool stuff. I reviewed it on my site (in January).

      His time travel story Island in the Sea of Time is fun too, though considerably more serious in tone.

  9. Ah, I get to be a GaFilk highlight twice :). *hugs* Thank you so much for inviting us and I hope it won’t be too many years before I can get to GaFilk again!

    • Of course you do. You’re just that cool. πŸ™‚

      I hope it’s not too many years before you can come back too. *hug* And one of these years (though not this one, alas), I’ll make it up to FKO.

  10. I’d love to come to Gafilk but there’s this big stretch of water in the way and my car doesn’t cope with water that well. When they build the tunnel between us then I’ll come like a shot. πŸ™‚

    • Oddly, I have that some problem with your con. But I go really high to cross it, so you can barely see it below, and it seems to work out. πŸ™‚

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