I had a great time at Minicon, despite my ongoing cold. I feel I have to thank the scuba diver who sat next to me on the flight over for teaching me how to release the pressure in my ears while descending so I could still hear. That was a good thing.
I also owe a huge thanks to minnehaha B and K for the Bananas and Honey and Lemon they got me which sustained me throughout the weekend, especially helping me to sleep without coughing and to go back to sleep in the morning after hunger (and Dawn) woke me up as usual. I find there's nothing like bananas for that... I hope I'll get a chance to repay them with a similarly useful favor sometime.
K ran a well-stocked Green Room - though there were moments when I missed ConFusion's traditional morningtime hard boiled eggs, I was quite impressed by the array of remedies and other helpful items she had stocked in the bathroom. I had an awful sinus headache Friday night and the painkillers helped considerably.
The consuite space was nicer than I had remembered it being last time Minicon was in the Radisson, which is now the Sheraton. The cabana design provides nice lounging spaces with the walk-by of the balcony. I enjoyed wandering around in it Friday evening and Sunday afternoon, and also Saturday morning when I put in some time on one of the many jigsaw puzzles that were in progress (I helped finish it and one other over the weekend).
Though I missed fredcritter it was nice to see Susan and Gavi, and I generally enjoyed running into lots of people I hadn't seen in 6 years, such as dd_b, mplscorwin, pgdudda, joel_rosenberg, and galacticvoyeur. Not to mention meeting others I'd never met before, such as Jim Young, Mike Ford, and the rest of the Brust clan (Hi, alierajean !).
It was also great to see Steve Brust, gerisullivan, chasophonic, chirosinger, decadentdave, minnehaha B and K, Lorraine Garland and her friend Jody, so soon after seeing them all at ConFusion. Lorraine joined Malena, Adam Stemple, Steve Brust, Folk Underground members Trevor and Paul, and Adam's bandmate Johnny in various configurations on stage to produce the music for Saturday night's Masked Ball. It was great meeting the music gang and also the rest of Lorraine's retinue for the evening, which included the lovely young Maddy Gaiman. Maddy, Malena, Lorraine, Jody, and the bird lady were all dressed in coordinating black and red with ribbons and corsets mixed in. Very pretty.
In terms of the dancing, I was a little disappointed there wasn't a more varied population getting out on the dance floor, but I had a lot of fun dancing myself silly. I also enjoyed the opportunity to hang out a little with Jane Yolen (!) on the sidelines.
-It left me limping a little the following day, but it was worth it!
The bar set up outside the bloomington room combined with the costume contest during the ball caused the only substantial gathering in that hallway of the con. I did find myself missing the busy-ness of the old larger Minicons. There were no fan tables or anything on the second floor. Sometimes you could walk between the north and south towers without really seeing anyone. But the south tower plaza area had a nice atmosphere to it, with the autographings on the mall there.
The whole con felt a little small (I think Sharon said numbers were between 400 and 500?). I remember years when the Tor party was jammed wall to wall and it was pretty quiet by the time I got up there Saturday night, but then it was also pretty late. The LiveJournal party was pleasantly packed when I swung in and out of it earlier that evening.
I did attend some programming and even recorded some items for SFOHA. Sadly I didn't take enough copies of the Release form to have everyone sign them and didn't get to making more. Hopefully I can get contact info from Sharon or something to track down the rest of the people on the minicon 1 panel. Jim Young seemed convinced I was taping everything he said and I would deny it except I was in fact going out of my way to get things with him on them. He didn't seem to mind too awfully much. The one thing I regretted was that I didn't make it to the MNNSTF music room Friday night. That would have been fun. The one panel I was on, Erotic Comic Art, went well. I moderated with Fastner and Larson, a couple fangirls who were nostly into Japanese stuff, and Greg Ketter.
I went off-campus only once Saturday morning to visit with Dave Leppik, Jordan Wood, and their 16-month-old daughter Sylvia for breakfast. That was a nice visit, even though I was very sleepy. The sun was shining and it was amazingly warm.
I'm hoping Geri's prediction was right and it will henceforth be spring. I could really go for a long nap in the sun...