There were some new things, though. I MC-ed the Chuck Roast (Where we roasted Fan Guest of Honor Chick Firment) and I participated in the Writer's Workshop. Both those things went really well, but I was also prepping for them right up until they started and I was pretty stressed about that.
After the Roast Saturday afternoon I expected to relax a lot, and I did some, but I had a headache I'd had more or less since Thursday night. Sadly it didn't occur to me to medicate myself for this headache until lunchtime Sunday. I didn't sleep well Thursday night or Friday, and that impacted me for the rest of the weekend. Saturday night I slept better but not very much. Sunday night I finally got a full night's sleep and felt a lot better.
Most of the highlights of the weekend (other than the workshop and the roast) had to do with small visits directly with particular people.
Thursday night was the concom dinner, where concom, GoHs, and other folk brought as guests gather for dinner. We were back at Priya, an Indian restaurant where we'd been a couple years ago. I received a Roast-related phone call before heading out and so got there a little late, but enjoyed sitting with cannibal, skzbrust, and jeffreyab at the end of the second table. I wasn't terribly hungry though. I picked at a salad and ate a small portion of a lemon chicken appetizer which was actually really good (it has ginger and gin and who knows what in it) and therefore easy to sell to others around me when I'd eaten less than half. All weekend I couldn't eat much at any one sitting - too stressed, I think. I know I hung out in the consuite later... Let's see, oh yes, I met with cosette_valjean to give her an audio CD and go over her part in the Buffy Musical Filk that she, rikhei, talyen, brendand and renniekins and I were putting together to sing at the Chuck Roast. I should have convened a general rehearsal, but Rikhei and Brendan weren't there at the time. Brendan actually didn't make the performance due to not feeling well Saturday, but I took his verse and everyone else sang twice as loud and that was fine. And Chuck was there at dinner and in the consuite Thursday night and we aimed to miss no opportunity to make him more nervous about the upcoming event. He knew by then I think that we were working on a song. As I recall Rennie let him know that, while composing it, she'd learned that "BDSM" rhymed with "Kiss him"... Hee hee. We had a lot of fun lyrics that didn't make it in the final draft...
Friday morning started well, with breakfast with rikhei, Chuck, and skzbrust. Actually, Rikhei called me and then joined us after we'd already settled and ordered, so we ordered for her. At one point while we were waiting for her to show up, someone asked "Was Rikhei close by when she called?" and I said "I don't know.... But she's right there" and pointed to her in the parking lot. There was a parallel moment like that Sunday night at the Dead Dog when Steve Asked me where Fred was and I was able to answer "He's right behind you" as he came in the door with perfect timing. I can conjure people! Just ask!
After breakfast I tried to nap, pretty unsuccessfully. I did some last-minute workshop story reading and Roast monologue touch-ups and then headed down to the bar for lunch and some visiting with fredcritter. scalzi showed up at some point and later he made good on his offer to take me out to dinner as part of my payment for copyediting Subterranean Magazine #4 for him. skzbrust joined us and we went to a nice little Thai place, Orchid Cafe, that murphyw and the_leewit and I had discovered the previous year. The food was again delicious.
Sadly, Laura didn't make it to the con this year - illness kept her from us. Bill also didn't attend most of the con. He came just for the Chuck Roast and a little bit before it, to be support for me. I think that was also a large part of why I didn't sleep well. Stitch just can't compare to Bill as a bedwarmer... I so rarely have fewer than three roommates at cons. Rikhei and I agreed it was a little lonely.
After dinner Friday I ran around meeting with Chuck Roast participants, some of whom I hadn't met before. I was really nice meeting Chuck's friend Erica. I hooked up with Rikhei for some of that and the two of us went together to see Fred and Steve playing music in the "smoking filk" room. This was really the only optimal time to hear them play all con, because Saturday Fred was taken down with some sort of one-day stomach flu or something, and Sunday night though they did play music at the dead dog, Steve no longer had the guitar that zencuppa kindly loaned him the rest of the weekend. Steve makes good on the dumbek and he sometimes borrowed Fred's guitar but the interchange of musical lead just wasn't the same Sunday night. Still, I enjoyed the heck out of watching them play and joke together, as always.
On my way back to the room Friday night I got waylaid by brendand, looking for Scalzi because the DDR projector was working now and they were overdue for a showdown. I helped set that up and stayed up to watch my housemate show Scalzi what-for (which served him right for talking smack about how he was going to take Brendan DOWN), then I went to bed.
Saturday I had breakfast in front of my computer, going over my notes, and then had the Writer's workshop until 1. Bill met me for lunch with Rikhei and after that I got dolled up (black tights, fishnets, black shorts, black bustier, black velvet jacket, a black necklace of Rikhei's, high heels, lipstick. All that). Went downstairs where I finally met atdt1991, with whom I'd been exchanging phone calls and IMs all week. Scott was my opener for the second half of the Roast. My monologue and the song was the opener for the first half. Tracy (treebones) was the closer (and she was a *great* closer). In between there was a whole gang testifying to the wicked ways of our adorable, angelic-looking Chuck... including his brother Dennis, his girlfriend Rennie, and a whole slew of old friends. It went over well and was very funny.
After the Roast, Bill and I hit the dealer's room and then he left. I had a nice visit with delosd in the room where authors were sitting autographing, then got myself included in a dinner expedition with Scalzi, Karl Schroeder and his family, Tobias Buckell and his wife, and Vernor Vinge (after I put on a shirt so I was fully dressed). That was really nice. Vernor is just charming the way he's so enthusiastic about things he thinks about. Scalzi talked the most, of course. (/me sticks her tongue out at him, fondly) But everyone was good company.
After that I actually did take a nap, and then there was dancing, and then there was back rubbing (thank you, atdt1991), and then sleep at about 2. Until, you know, I woke up at 6 am... silly morning person tendencies.
Happily I got to the restaurant for breakfast just in time to run into fredcritter. We had a nice breakfast and visit and then I had my writing workshop until 1 and then everything caught up with me and I had a crying jag and Rikhei brought me lunch and some Nuprin and I napped and the world looked some better again. I hung out in the bar with Fred and a couple Matts came and sat with us (Matt Fanny and matt_arnold) and eventually Rennie and then Chuck and then the subject of dinner was broached and by the time we figured out we were on the road and didn't have good directions to the restaurant, the group had grown to 12 people in 5 cars. But we all had cell phones so re-routing was possible and done with no stint on silliness on the part of Skippy. Er, I mean me. I like living in the future. :)
After that there was Hot Tubbing. I have declared it is now Tradition to have someone give the Fan Guest of honor a backrub in the hot tub on Sunday night, since I did that for gerisullivan last year and Chuck this year. Mixed in with hot tubbing was rough-housing in the pool the likes of which I have not done for ages. Well, at least since Penguicon 2.0. This pool is more shallow, so it was a little more dangerous and I did hit my knee on the bottom once but it was worth it. The pool party was followed by the afforementioned music in the consuite, and then bed. I went to work Monday and then rounded out the weekend by meeting skzbrust for a final lunch before he headed back to Vegas. At the end of the work day I happily returned to my Bill, who surprised me by having done three out of 5 of the major house projects we wanted him to do before leaving to hike the AT. I love that man.
It was nice to see those of you who were there. Those of you who were not, you were sorely missed.