Friday, November 07, 2008

Steampunk Con in California

Rossana and I flew out to San Jose to check out the Steampunk scene and see if it's a viable business avenue. We brought along Brass goggles, tshirts and some props but no corsets.

This was a first year con at a small boutique hotel. The hotel was modern, which didn't help the atmosphere but it was comfy. Our room was right on the main floor and no more than a stones throw from the dealers room. You have no idea the schlepping we normally do at a show. It was a joy to get dressed, step out our room door and sit down for breakfast, then walk a few steps and open shop. Heaven.

The con itself was well run and fairly well attended. The thing i loved was how different it felt. Lots of very different and creative costumes. The dealers room was actually interesting to walk through. The people we fun to chat with.

The big event was to have been the inaugural flight on board Americas first passenger Zeppelin in 70 years. Alas, when we arrived the weather was drizzling and the flights were canceled. It was a real bummer.

While there we ate at an Afghan restaurant and it was a delight. The food was amazing and I would encourage you to try it if the opportunity presents itself.

I greatly enjoyed the event. We made enough in sales to pay for the trip and got a lot of cool ideas. They've move the date next year so I don't know if we'll be able to make it. But with luck the East coast will come up with a steampunk con by then.

Here are some pics for you to check out.

A short moment of gloating...

A gentleman would accept the victory of Barack Obama with a quiet pride and humility.

Thankfully I am an American and am thus allowed to be an ass on occasion.

Please understand that I have never been a gloater. Never. My parents raised me well, with a respect for other peoples feelings. Gloating does not come easy to me.

But when you consider the sea of bullshit that we've had to wade through this past year, it seems only fair that a little bit of gloating be allowed. I have no wish to gloat over friends of mine who may be conservative. Most of my conservative friends fall under the 'small government/ socially liberal' heading. And that's fine.

I'm talking about gloating over the smug pundits and talking heads. The Rush Limbaughs, Karl Rove's, Sean Hannity's and Michelle Malkins. The gibbering assholes and self satisfied pricks who declared Obama simply could not win. The ones who just made shit up and went on endlessly about his lack of qualifications even while puting Sarah Palin up as VP with a straight face. The dicks who found deep connections between Obama and Willian Ayers while just skipping over the part where America gave Saddam Hussein chemical weapons technology. The ones who screamed Obama was a Socialist and a secret muslim and was unfit to hold the office because he didn't wear a fucking flag pin.

They never stopped gushing about the great war hero who was in fact a shitty Naval Academy student, a drinker, a womanizer, a gambler and a piss poor pilot who after returning from Vietnam cheated on and then dumped his wife in exhange for a rodeo beauty queen heiress.

Then he went into politics and spent the past few years kissing the ass of George Bush and towing the party line. THIS was the Republican maverick (tm) who at 72 would with an idiot sidekick save our nation? The fact that he came anywhere near the number of votes he did is a testament to how stupid a lot of Americans are.

And yet the kid who grew up raised by a single working mother and his grandmother, overcame the stigma of mixed race, studied hard, advanced himself, went to Harvard on scholarships, led the Law Review and rather than going into private practice worked in the poor communities until running for the Senate. THIS guy was the goddamned anti-christ!

I've read some stories recently that indicate Palin might have been even dumber (or at least less prepared) than stated by the kool aid drinking advisers stated she was. If you read through the comments threads you will often see this:

"It's over now, why don't we just move on?"

No. We do not just fucking move on. That's the kind of stupid thinking that keeps us from learning from our mistakes. Sure we'd feel better just to not think about the past eight years of bullshit, but we wouldn't learn anything. Remember the saying "Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it." Yeah. That's why I am all to happy to continue disecting the rotting corpse of the Bush administration.

And I suppose that's why I feel okay doing a little gloating. Not a lot. There's actually work to be done. But a little.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Brisk baby...

As seven pm rolled around yesterday I started to feel that familiar knot in my stomach. I'd felt it four years ago too. It was much worse then, when I stayed up till 4 am watching the election results, feeling literally sick. Things were looking better yesterday, but that knot of anxiety was unavoidable.

Rossana and I finished another day of canvasing for our little hometown Obama office. The first day the power steering cut out on the minivan making the experience a lot like wrestling a schooner in rough seas. Yesterday was much easier. Drove out to Lagrange twice to deliver voter information. Then we went home.

By seven thirty I had to do something other than stare at the online election tickers. I went out to the shop and started cleaning up. They I started organizing paint cans. I checked the clock. 10pm. Things should be happening. But when I came inside I forgot that the shop clock wasn't yet adjusted for daylight savings yet. It was only nine.


Watched some non-election tv and had some pie. When Ohio went for Obama I called my brother in Texas.

"We didn't fuck it up this year!" I yelled to hoots on the other end, then tuned in to the Daily Show special, occasionally flipping back to CNN.

Then, in a flash, it was over. John Stewart called for Obama. Rossana looked stunned, I suppose I was too. I flipped over to CNN just to make sure it wasn't a joke.

It wasn't.

It was then that I began to take off my clothes. When I got to my socks my wife raised her eyebrows. "What are you doing?"

"I promised that if Obama won I'd run a victory lap around the pond naked" I grabed a flashlight and put my shoes on.

"You did?"


"It's pretty cold out there." she remarked.

"I am sure I will be quite aware of that very shortly."

"Don't bother the deer".

And off I went.

We did it.

Ohio did not f#ck it up this time.