Corflu 22

Corflu Friday: Let the Games Begin

Today, 25 February 2005, I went to Corflu Titanium. On the way I listened to an entertaining CD by Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings called "Naturally". Seems strange since the inside cover says it is Soul and you know what, it sure sounds that way. What's this kind of music doing in 2005? Odd but sounds good nevertheless, a little Motown, a little Phil Spectre (says Patty as we drive along).

Hm, oh yeah, the convention, gee, I know a lot of these people. I've come to a conclusion that I know a lot of people but I really don't know that many people well. That is, I may have known people by sight or by name for 10 or 20 years but I really don't talk to people that much. Oh, there are a few. I talked to Wm Breiding, Rich Coad, Jay Kinney and John Bartelt for an extended period of time but, for the most part I just don't advance on people and start talking. I talked to a few other people too but not for more than five or ten minutes. My conversational abilities have just never been that great. I can't say that I feel greatly deprived. It's just the way it is. And if you're reading this and say, gee, I feel this urge to rectify this situation, uh, don't worry about. I'll just feel ill at ease. Although I must admit that I doubt that anyone will feel that urge. The energy for me to do that just isn't there.

Anyway, I enjoyed the Native panel and the opening ceremonies. I know it is a lot of work to set up and everyone has their own way of doing things.

Enjoyed a good meal with Wm Breiding, Jay Kinney and Patty. There's an Indian restaurant called Kaleva at 35 6th St. It is vegetarian. I'd never been there before but the review at San Francisco, CA Vegetarian Restaurants sounded very promising. It was very good and not expensive. They did say they preferred cash when we finally paid. I failed to ask whether that meant they definitely didn't take credit cards or not. Nevertheless, I highly recommend it! They've been open since October of last year and still need to develop a big clientele.

We left the convention after the opening ceremonies. It was probably the longest we've left Buku, the younger of our two current dogs, outside. He's about 11 months old. Sure, he was with Kelly, our other dog who is about 6, but . . . Now tomorrow I have to see what holes he may have dug or whatever else may have satisfied his boredom.

On the way home listened to "Wicked Twisted Road" by Reckless Kelly. I think I enjoyed it but need to listen to it again to really be sure. However I do really like the little die that is in the CD case.

Got home in time to watch Numbers. Hopefully have on tape, Stargate, Stargate Atlantis, Andromeda, Battlestar Galactica and Joan of Arcadia. Will hopefully also catch the Monk episode later in the week.

Too much fun.

My limited day two

Another day for Corflu. I didn't head over until the afternoon, about 2:30 PM or so. Patty had left earlier via BART. I was getting over there via automobile. It was an easy drive. Listened to Thievery Corporation's "The Cosmic Game". Enjoyable, maybe a 3.5 out of 5. Some dub, some dance, limited vocals, pleasant driving music.

Stopped at Calumet to get a new flash for my camera and a pack for the camera body and various lenses that I have. Then on to Cafe Gratitude, a raw veg restaurant. I had an appetizer, "I am Kind", "a rich sunflower seed and sundried tomato pate with a touch of chipotle chili on a bed of mixed greens accompanied by flax chips" and "I Am Charmed", "Organic Maghreb Mint green tea blend with spicy notes of ginger, cardamom and other rare spices". Excellent food and drink, interesting customers and the place was full at 3 PM. Finished there, quickly found a six-pack of diet coke at a nearby store and on to the convention. Patty, via phone, pointed out that there was a free parking space directly across from the hotel. Good parking space thanks to Patty!

Finally at the hotel I quickly went up to the room to attach the flash to the camera. I had missed the morning and early afternoon programming. I got there in time for the auction and took a number of pictures, doing battle with cameras with Wm B. It was interesting to see Allyn Cadogan and Karl. One hopes someone will provide actual information about the earlier panels and auction. I wasn't really paying much attention to the auction itself.

After the auction, we went to dinner, first thought Indian but then it changed to the hotel restaurant. Their vegetarian lasagna was okay but not great. We had quite a large group, about 10 or so. Bill Kostura decided he should leave early due to the laryngitis which he has had for a month. Too bad Rich Coad, Stacy Scott, Lynn Kuehl and Cheryl Cline couldn't have been at our table too. Entertaining stories from Pat Virzi about her interesting relatives living in a plastics factory and much more. Bob Webber added bits and pieces. Conversations continued on one side with Allyn, Karl & Patty. From the other side came conversations with Freddie Baer, Jeanne Bowman (something about her children still living at home), Colin Hinz, Janice Morningstar, Wm B and DS Black.

Finally we got to deal with the hotel's strange way of handling the 20% off the entrees, which was just a bit confusing.

At that point I decided I had better go to the room, get my camera and head home to let in the dogs. The drive home was pleasant with a lovely white and yellow waning moon low on the eastern horizon. It had only turned full on Wednesday. It sprinkled a bit on the way through Oakland, while listening to Paul Motian, Bill Frisell and Joe Lovano on "I Have The Room Above Her". It was enjoyable but relatively quiet. At 9:30 PM or so I was back at home with the dogs rushing in as if they have been left for an eternity instead of only about 7 hours.

I also returned to the bizarre headgear of DeMarcus Corley (and the HBO announcer says maybe he is a fan of science fiction) as he prepares to fight Miguel Cotto in Puerto Rico and hey, what about that ring announcer, Michael Buffer? I've seen him innumerable times. "Let's get ready to rumble!!!!" And yes, I did think it was a premature stoppage.

Day Three: 10 AM Banquet?

Okay. We get up, dressed and out of the house earlier than almost any other Sunday in the year. The dogs are not particularly pleased. We won't be that long, really. At least traffic into the city was light. We even get a parking space directly in front of the hotel. We check our rented room. Patty heads downstairs. I put the new flash back onto the camera and I head down also.

Talking (well, okay, really just mainly listening) and visiting with people at the banquet was enjoyable. The speeches were enjoyable, including Murray Moore's 13 minute speech (Let's see, is that 10 minutes US, 13 minutes Canadian or do I have that backwards?). They also gave out the faan awards Info can be found someplace on . I took some pictures. We shall see a) how badly they're framed b) how fuzzy they are. Included in that is the fact that my batteries were low so I had to stop taking pictures earlier than I might have desired but surely to the pleasure of some people there. I have known people who become most perturbed whenever a camera was even pointed in their direction. My goodness. I must admit to not being overly fond of having my picture taken for I am, at this juncture in my life (and possibly at earlier junctures also) neither up to the handsomeness nor the quirkiness required in movies and I am a bit shy (Oh Charlotte please) and embarrassed about having my picture taken. I do believe this is a trait learned from my father (may he rest comfortably wherever he may be now but I am quite certain he would not do well in a quiet, peaceful, fluffy place ). However I believe I have finally decided that people enjoy taking pictures, people like keeping memories, people like seeing faces of people they know and possibly even like, another my goodness please. And if they desire to take my picture then they must either not be so revolted by my physical appearance that they will lose said buffet brunch or they enjoy seeing an occasional odd picture now and then. So, in the long run, acting badly about the whole thing wins no points for anyone. Sure, taking too many pictures and being too in people's face can be a real jerky thing to do but hey, in 100 years (assuming people are still around) someone is going to find some entertainment or interest in looking at us just one more time. And a fatal breach in the fabric of the universe will not have been caused by simply taking life in stride and being friendly about the whole thing. And maybe some friends will feel good looking back at this thing and remembering this person or that person and what a nice day it was.

Okay, after that sickeningly sweet monologue in which I decry other people's issues and totally ignore my own, let us proceed. And no, I'm not in a bad mood.

We left shortly after the banquet and returned to let our dogs into the house, run madly to and fro in an excited greeting frenzy (the dogs, not us, and though that does conjure up an interesting picture) and then, shortly afterwards, go to sleep. Of course, they could have slept equally well outside but for reasons I don't totally fathom they sleep better inside and with us around.

I also very briefly talked to someone new at the convention, suggesting a couple of vegetarian restaurants I thought were good and even got a new fanzine out of this conversation. Why, this type of intermittent reinforcement might force me to talk to another new person sometime in the next year.

Gary S. Mattingly