Worldcon Wednesday

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So I keep putting off my Worldcon report because I'm busy and it seems so daunting. So I'll break it up by day.

So Wednesday, after landing at LAX, Laura and I rented a car and negotiated the freeways to Anaheim without too terribly much difficulty. We managed to get checked in and parked at the Marriott fairly quickly—and yes, in that order—and then we met Craig Engler and Scott Edelman for a rather late lunch by the hotel pool. Just before our food arrived, though, Craig was summoned away by a Battlestar Galactica–related phone call with the New York Times, and his Turkey "Off the Rack" Sandwich went uneaten, except by flies, at least for as long as I sat there.

Lunch was enlivened by the sight of Robert Reed flexing by the adjacent pool.

Sadly, Laura and I both had to abandon Scott at the lunch table before Craig returned, since I had a panel at 4:00 pm. Laura left first, and after wrangling with Scott over the check (I lost) I joined her. We raced over to the convention center—me decked out in the clothes Laura chose for me—picked up our badges in the Green Room, and ran into [info]tnh outside our panel. She commiserated with me about having to serve as moderator, and kindly examined the list of other panelists to tell me what she knew about each.

I moderated that panel, "The Future of Journalism," and discovered that most all the preparation I'd done with [info]steelbrassnwood (thanks!) was for naught, because no one really cared to discuss the actual future of journalism. Of course, that's probably typical for any given panel topic at any given convention, so I don't feel too bad. One of the other panelists, Paul Fischer, recorded the whole affair for a future podcast, so you may actually be able to hear it someday. The panel was pretty well attended for a Wednesday afternoon.

At 5:30 I had another panel, on fantasy and science fiction in theater. This one was not as well attended, but there were still maybe 15 or 20 people in the audience. Keith Kato moderated, and he did a nice job of it. I tried to take notes on his approach for the SF theater panel I would be moderating the next day.

After that panel, Laura and I rushed north, braving the freeways again, to visit our excellent friends Gordon and Jane in West Hollywood. The drive reminded me how much I love L.A. and hate the freeways. Gordon and Jane moved to L.A. just a few months ago from Queens, and already they have an amazing apartment not far from Grauman's Chinese Theatre. I told them that the smell of their bathroom—which I quickly reassured them smelled fine!—took me back to my own early childhood in L.A. My relatives all had bathrooms that smelled exactly the same. Maybe it's something to do with the water.

Gordon and Jane took us for a drive along Sunset Boulevard. We ended with a visit to In-N-Out Burger, where Laura was all prepared for us to order from the secret menu. I was all brave and went first, ordering my Double-Double animal style, and my fries well-done. The cashier didn't bat an eye. Laura got a Neapolitan shake. It's cool to be in the club.

We hit no parties that night. By the time we got back to the O.C. and rolled into the hotel, we were bushed. We'd been up since 3:00 am.

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William Shunn

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This page contains a single entry by William Shunn published on August 31, 2006 6:14 PM.

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