Meeting #2743, Mar 8 1990
by Matthew B. Tepper, Not-Seagate
Three dents from the President (Bruce Pelz) brought us to order at 20:22. Due to complaints about the length of the minutes, a set lasting twenty-five words got read and was immediately gavelled approved. Marty Cantor missed what he called the best part of the meeting. The Registrar (Galen Tripp) brought forth some guests, namely, Pamela Pelletier, John A. Striffler, Carol Horner, and Al & Vivian Jameson.
The Committee to Inform the LASFS of What Happened Last Week (the Scribe) made its report, in which the Scribe totally missed the point of one joke. After it was explained to him, the report was approved as read and blew. And St. Dave Fox received three cheers and a Blessed Beast.
The Guy with the Sideburns (Joe Zeff) announced A Report from the Committee for Needless and Unnecessarily Repetitive Redundancies Committee Report. First he told about a repeated paragraph on a job application. (Said Mike Glyer, "Once in English and once in American.") Then he told about a church whose outdoor sign specified "(Christian)."
Full-fledged Surrealism began as Marty Cantor reported on a taxidermist who liked to put together odd creatures. Frank Waller said that Arkansas has lowered the fine for assault on a flag-burner to $1. Craig Miller wondered if this would lead to people getting beat up for other reasons and then having burnt flags planted on them. The mind boggles.
Francis Hamit outlined some comparisons from a study of male vs. female shoplifters: Men shoplift women's and men's clothing, while women shoplift only women's clothing. He also had some more First Aid certificates to hand out. If you have one coming to you, check with the Treasurers.
Rick Foss had a Stupid Crook report on a neighborhood watch meeting where the meeting's hosts turned out to have lots of their neighbors' own stolen goods, to the tune of $8K. Mark Poliner, clad in suit and tie, threatened another Fashion Report. Perhaps the club will respond with a Necktie Party.
Charles Lee Jackson II spoke as the Serial Subcommittee, saying that the Fu Manchu serial just started was about the best Republic serial there is. As custodian of the LASFS Video Library, he reported that the club now has many more new tapes, available for borrowing if you will fill out the pumpkin form. You can borrow up to two cassettes for two weeks at a time.
Bruce said there were six or seven sign-ups so far for the LASFS Gar
bage Sale, so there is still room for more. Allan Rothstein said he'd seen a police report where a suspect was described as having a "Foo Man-Shoe" mustache. Isn't spelling wonderful?
Sam Martinez, custodian of the LASFS Space Stamp collection, thanked Fred Patten for a major contribution, and said he would appreciate more donations.
Louis Elver Warren Gray began a story about how his father introduced him to sinkholes, when President Pelz ruled to limit such meeting items to those relating to science fiction, fantasy, fandom, and humor.
Announcements: Craig Miller related the sad news that Wendayne Ackerman had passed away earlier in the week after a long illness. The Scribe was directed to write the club's letter of condolence, and the President said that we would send Forry advice of a club donation in Wendayne's name to some worthy cause. On a related note, Mike Glyer told of a letter from Roy Tackett thanking the club for its condolence note for Crystal.
On to more cheerful stuff: Greg Bilan asked if we'd found a new place yet. CL chided, "Optimist!" Sanford J. Cohen suggested we look into a lease under joint-use if we want an alternative to buying a building outright. Frank Waller said there were a couple of Farrells'es worth looking into. Bruce noted that one of them is near a theater and a weight-loss clinic, so it might be kind of a fannish location.
Sam wanted people to help him do set-up for Science Fiction Showcase. Bruce explained that this would be a day of speeches, presentations, authors, and buffet luncheon, all for $15.
Greg Barrett had some Steve Jackson mini-games, which were donated to the club. "LASFS gets even gamier," commented the Plez. Barney Miles asked for info on "Attack of the Zombies."
Cl related a notice of Carol Ann Cranston's dinosaur-watching party at the Natural History Museum on the 18th. And Rick Foss said that the title of Suzy McKee Charnas' play was "Vampire Dreams"; it's opened in San Francisco, and may come to Los Angeles.
Hare Hobbs reported that rocket engines will soon be tested again at Rockwell in Santa Susana. Tom Safer announced his debut as a producer, in an upcoming production of "Ma Rainey's Black Bottom" at the Morgan-Wixson Theatre, opening Mar 23rd.
Reviews: Konrad Wilk enjoyed all four of Frederik Pohl's "Heechee" books, saying that each book ended with something unexpected, and had ideas better explained than in other books. Mark Poliner enjoyed an anthology called Carmen Miranda's Ghost is Haunting Space Station Three, but then he would.
Hare Hobbs had fun watching "The Hunt for Red October," saying that its 2.5 hour running time seemed like 90 minutes. Ray Capella recognized the hand of Industrial Light and Magic. Positive notes were sounded also by Greg Barrett and Barney.
Allan Rothstein, on the other hand, had no fun watching "The Handmaid's Tale," saying that its 90 minute running time seemed like 2.5 hours. Its press release starts out with, "Even though this story takes place in the future, it is not science fiction," and Pelz cogently observed that we've heard that before!
Ray Capella enjoyed the thriller "Dead Calm," now on videotape. Tom Safer started to review Kenneth Branagh's "Henry V," but was cut short by Bruce Pelz since it's not related to science fiction, fantasy, fandom or humor. Greg Barrett asked if there was anyone in the room who didn't like Shakespeare, and Marty Cantor's hand rose alone into the air. Remember, he's the one who thinks the minutes are the best part of the meeting!
For a program, Bruce said we had a choice of films: "Kronos," "The Man from Planet X," and "Just Imagine," and a hand-vote picked the last one.
As he prepared to adjourn the meeting, Bruce remarked, "Tell all your friends to come next week, because I won't be here." And so saying, we adjourned at 21:14, with Tom Safer recommending "Henry V" to whoever was left.
Meeting #2742, Mar 1 1990
by Matthew B. Tepper, Not-Seagate
We got called to order at 20:16, a bunch of people said various things, some stuff happened, and we adjourned one hour later. That's it.
Following is the Report of the Committee to Inform LASFS of What Happened Last Week:
After the call to order, Minutes were read and approved as L-O-N-G. That done, we heard right away from Craig Miller, Chairman of the Very Board.
Said Craig, we'd listed the Clubhouse, per the club's vote of a couple weeks previous, and received an offer for the full asking price of $349K. This is contingent on a whole lot of conditions, such as our finding, buying, and moving into a new clubhouse, and taking the bookcases with us. Our time limit on getting this done is a year, after which the offer may be withdrawn. So the next phase is finding another clubhouse. We're looking in this general part of town for something zoned for commercial or industrial use. If you see something around 4,000-5,000 square feet for around $300K, and lots of parking (to comply with zoning laws), make a note. Tell someone, even.
Galen brought forth some guests, namely, Dawn Bovberg of Glendale, Sherri Conyers of Penngrove, and Barney Miles of Los Angeles. He also said that De Profundis was at the back table.
Treasury report read by President Pelz showed us still solvent. Patron Saint Marjii Ellers won three cheers and a costume award.
The Committee to Hold Loscon (still Craig) said that two worthy prospective chairbeings had been passed by the Board, and we chose between Rick Young and Charlie Jackson. Rick got the nod by a hand vote, so he will be breaking up the numerical sequence and holding Loscon 19 in 1991, with the theme "Robotics and Computers." No hotel has been selected yet.
Committee for Surrealism in Everyday Life: Francis Hamit said a Stupid Crook who robbed a Kentucky-Fried Colonel outlet had made off with the adding machine instead of the cash register. Joanne Dow observed, "It all adds up." Francis also mentioned an article on Mother Jones about feminist pornography, wondering if this was an oxymoron. Leigh Strother-Vien said it wasn't. Mike Glyer said that not only wasn't it an oxymoron, it was a tautology.
Leigh S-V admitted that the Library inventory wasn't quite soup yet. She also said they'd found an 1968 junior high school pin.
Richard Costas, the Committee for Low Treason in Everyday Life, reported his great shame: While driving on the Harbor Freeway, he had to stop for a motorcade with lots of cops and a couple of sleek black limos. As he admitted, "I was within spitting distance of Dan Quayle -- and I didn't!"
Jack Harness was amused at Harper's latest issue, with a forum on computer hacking. One of the participants was so fumed at being compared to a skateboarder that he cracked into his opponent's credit history and shared it widely in a number of places.
Librarian Leigh said that the library's construction was solid, as not one book had fallen down during the previous day's quake. This set off a few unrelated earthquake stories, such a Louis Elver Warren Grey telling how the temblor prevented him from buying a lotto ticket, and Frank Waller saying that the quake hit just as he was reaching into the freezer for the ice cream. Quoth Pelz, "It's trying to tell you to get a milkshake instead!"
Cookie Man added one last bit of Surrealism in the form of Pet City's offer of Tropical Fish Grooming. Just a little off the gills, would you please, Maurice? (It turns out that tropical fish grooming really is kind of surreal; it involves putting the tropical fish into a tank of smaller fish which "eat" the little parasites away. Gross.)
Announcements: Barksdale Hales said that the Fantasy Games Society was setting up a game for this coming Saturday. Bruce Pelz announced that Gamblers Unanimous was doing a pool on this year's Oscar vote; see him after the meeting for details. Francis said that the final draft of his book, The Mannheim Mission, was still available in the library for a limited time.
Hare said that the transfer quality of "The Wizard of Speed and Time" was poor. Doug Crepeau said that this was the fault of the issuing company, and that he and Jittlov are not pleased at all. Galen announced that De Prof was still available in the back.
Reviews: Rick Foss had read Destiny Express, an historical novel about the flight from Nazi Germany of director Fritz Lang and his wife, screenwriter Thea von Harbou. Rick was put off by the punchy style of the short sentences, and unsympathetic characterization. Don't bother reading it. Fred Patten was under the impression that von Harbou stayed behind and Lang left alone.
Okay, then we adjourned at 21:16, for Charlie Jackson's presentation of the old LASFS favorite, "The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T."
Meeting #2741, Feb 22 1990
by Matthew B. Tepper, Not-Seagate
Two taps of the magic gavel sufficed to call us to order at 20:21. The Menace of the previous week got read and corrected, and corrected, and corrected, causing the Scribe to cry out, "Did I get anything right?" The Menace were then acclaimed Approved as Wrong. We were off to a fine start.
Registrar Galen Tripp introduced us to four guests, some from way out-of-town: Vince Callaghan from Grand Rapids, Michigan; Janice M. Eisen from Schenectady and co-habitant Ken Meltsner, who said on his green card that SF is his life; and Harry Lineda from nearby Sun Valley.
Bruce read the Treasurer's report, with the welcome news that we'd had no expenses the week before; let's do that again, shall we? At this point the Dais Duo were pelted by chocolate chip cookies, which left little chocolate chip welts. Ouch.
A masked Leigh Strother-Vien explained that the dust and pollen in the Library had caused her allergies to act up, slowing down the inventory a bit. (Jack Harness added, "Malathion spraying will continue with the letter `M.'" And Galen Tripp said that the dust and pollen were due to the Librarians working like busy little bees.) The inventory was still turning up some nice items, including autographed volumes by Heinlein, Murray Leinster, and E. E. Smith. And given that the computer room computers are named Frankenstein, Dracula, and the Wolfman, Leigh has decided on a name for the library computer: The Bookie Monster! Bruce said we'd be taking applications to replace the Librarian -- in about two years.
Charles Lee Jackson II committee'd that next week's program would be "The 5,000 Fingers of Dr. T," a LASFS favorite. The Serial Subcommittee would be closing out the Zorro serial and starting up a Fu Manchu serial. Other near-future items include a triple-bill of the "Toxic Avenger" films. And as Engineering committee, he thanked club members for answering the telephones.
Sandy Cohen reminded us of CBS' late-night showing of "The Prisoner." Galen, as Committee to Keep the Clubhouse Clean, was annoyed that staples are getting into the carpet in various places.
Under Surrealism in Everyday Life, Francis Hamit showed us an ad in Space News (a new periodical) about a Soviet organization with reps in Houston advertising their boosters with, "Need a ride?" And a Stupid Crook held up one of his neighbors, blithely unaware of the videocamera that recorded everything, including his car's license plate.
Romania Report: Fred Patten read in New Scientist that the British Parliament had stripped Nicolae Ceausescu of his honorary Knighthood while the deposed Romanian dictator was trying to flee the country. Talk about hitting a man when he's down.
Ed Green quasi-quoted everyman's dream date, Nadia Comaneci, as taking the whole credit for the Romanian Revolution, because she's the most important thing the Romanians have. So what? An Islamic court ruling in Egypt deals with the delicate issue of marriage between humans and genii; Larry Hagman had better stay out of Egypt. The Anaheim police are taking some flak for the initials of their new SWAT team: Tactical Apprehension Control Officers. And a company in Czechoslovakia will be manufacturing vibrators for a firm in Teaneck, New Jersey. "If they were producing inflatable women," Mike Glyer observed, "they'd be making rubber Czechs."
Misty Johnstone said she'd be doing her UFO show at Leprecon in Phoenix over Easter weekend.
Sam Martinez, the Committee for Collecting Stamps, showed off some newly-acquired space stamps and dinosaur first-day-covers. The Scribe displayed a new US Postal Service stamped envelope with a hologram of a space station. Joe Zeff told of a horse-race held in thick fog, where the winner was suspected of not having run both laps.
Judy Lazar stepped up and read several item descriptions from some weird mail-order catalogues: A dowsing rod, a fuel magnetizer, and a TV antenna that actually pulls signals out of the air! Wow! The killer line is that it's legal in all 50 states.
Allan Rothstein took a report from a witness whose name was spelled, Rabih Kantar. I don't think this witness is Canadian. Francis said he had read a hotel's incident report in which a trespasser claimed to be "The Rainbow Warrior." Sounds like someone who doesn't have an even keel.
Larry Niven, impeccably attired, recounted an incident from the Boxboro party at last year's worldcon in Boston. Seems that a hotel officer assigned as liaison didn't read all the fine print in the contract, and was amazed to find a certain clause therein. The party's oversized props needed to be cut up when the party was taken down, and she was quoted as saying, "I can't believe I let you use a chainsaw at 4:00 in the morning!" Take that, Anaheim Hilton!
Karl Lembke read an article from the Los Angeles Times in which readers gave their opinions on alternatives to the gas chamber for executing murderers. Some embraced the Chirpsithra doctrine, "Cruel and unusual crimes call for cruel and unusual punishment," while a Mr. Thomas G. Digby of Los Angeles suggested that killers be stomped on as though with 50-ton cement weights. President Pelz read the Digby quote verbatim, while Digby hid in the Apa L room.
Ed Green reported on the amusing intelligence that the drug war may be enlisting the help of caterpillars to eat the coca leaves. Jack Harness said the coca-growers are already stocking up on insecticide. CL added that the coca-growers intend to see the caterpillars in the US. Said Bruce Pelz, "Always a few bugs in the system."
From Mike Glyer came the sad news that Arthur Thompson, also known as ATom, had died Feb 8, at the age of 63. The Scribe was directed to write his next of kin.
On to happier news: Bruce Pelz led the congregation in cheers for St. Maureen Garrett. Three cheers and a vroom vroom, the last courtesy of Charlie Jackson.
Reviews: Kyla saw "Nightbreed," and though she found it only "middlin'," still felt a bit spooked. She went to a frozen yogurt shop and took a number, and the slip said, "B00." "When I get home," she recalled thinking, "the dog goes in first." Said Bruce, "I thought you stopped dating dogs." "You animal," growled Kyla.
Doug Crepeau read out a favorable review from Starlog of "Wizard of Speed and Time." Rick Foss said a band named Dread Zeppelin does reggae covers of Led Zep numbers with a 300-pound Elvis impersonator on vocals. He also said that Asimov had edited a book of Feghoots entitled Bred Any Good Rooks Lately?, and called it a good bathroom book, suitable for throwing against the wall.
Allan Rothstein enjoyed CostumeCon 8 in Ontario, California. Attendance was just under 900, including a woman named Animal X whom the hotel staff was apparently reluctant to page. A lifetime service award was given to our own Marjii Ellers.
Francis reiterated his praise of The Playmaker, saying that it was still selling for only 98¢ at Waldenbooks. He enjoyed fantasy and Australian elements, and says it's highly recommended. Galen Tripp found a real page-turner in Grass by Sheri S. Tepper, with a different treatment of human-alien relationships.
Ed Green had a tale about the wrap party for "Dick Tracy," in which a blooper film showed that director-star Warren Beatty had a Bad Attitude about the great work of art he was creating. If industry insiders are right, this flick may be Madonna's fourth consecutive bomb -- "fifth if you count Sean," added Charlie.
Peter Greenwood had seen a silly Japanese movie about turning down the heat of the sun. He also reported that Dan Curtis has commenced work on "Return of Dark Shadows," and Bill Bixby was at work on "She-Hulk." Quipped Sylvia, "If she turns green, she's okay, but if she turns pink, she's pregnant." Finally, Peter advised us of a live-action "Thunderbirds" which may be brought to us by the makers of "Max Headroom." Jack Harness reminded us of the upcoming release of "The Hunt for Red October," and gave us the watchword: "Up Perestroika!"
Announcements: Bruce Pelz noted receipt of a thank-you card from Susan Haseltine and Mike Frank, for the club's sympathy flowers. He also reprised his announcement of the LASFS Garbage Sale, 24-25 March, you bring it, you sell it, you keep the dough, but pay a buck for four linear feet of space with an eight-foot limit. That limit may go up if there are few participants.
Konrad Wilk had read the original book, Les liaisons dangereuses, on which various films had been based, and found it more involved than the best-known one. A newly-returned Contessa announced that she was back, and gave a comparative review of last year's Bay Area Earthquake, saying she found it rather bouncy. "I'm collecting them," explained Sylvia. Well, she can stop collecting them as far as I'm concerned!
Peter said that Universal had been destroying a lot of prop molds, but he managed to save some of them, including those for the feet of the Creature from the Black Lagoon. And with that rubber-tipped remark, we auctioned off the remaining parking spaces, and stood adjourned at 21:30.
Last Updated ( Friday, 19 June 2015 )
Meeting #2740, Feb 15 1990
by Matthew B. Tepper, Not-Seagate
President Pelz used the whiteboard eraser to call the meeting to order at 20:13, showing himself to be a soft touch for a change. It was going to be a short meeting, he cautioned, since he was leaving at 21:00 to catch a plane to Boston, come hell or high water. Previous week's Menace got read and approved as minorly corrected. The Treasurer's Report enumerated our dough and indicated the previous week had had two deadbeats and three guests, two of which guests apparently didn't turn in green cards. Speaking of which, Galen had a few for us this time: Tami Carson (who was shy and not in the room), Richard Wright from Washington, where "Everybody knows about LASFS," and Jason Voss.
Leigh Strother-Vien, LASFS Librarian, said that the Library inventory was going well but was running a little longer than originally expected. She showed one book with a slightly faded title of Sojarr of Tit
an, to the titillation of the house. Some books, said Leigh, were being discovered and catalogued for the first time. There is even one rarity, a copy of Tarzan and the City of Gold signed by the author.
The Committee for Safe Space on Fridays and Second Sundays -- i.e., the Vice Presidents -- submitted a written statement about member Mark Kramer, who brandished a knife on club property and was at length persuaded to put it away (see Appendix for text of statement). Bruce commented, "That's once."
Dennis Miller related the sad news that Sue Haseltine's baby had died. News as of the meeting was that the child had come to full term, but its heart had stopped, with the reason not yet known. Bruce said that the club would send flowers.
Shaun Lyon saw in Variety that the TV series "Friday the 13th" and "War of the Worlds" have been cancelled. This leaves only three first-run SF-oriented programs on American television: "Alien Nation," "Star Trek: The Next Generation," and "Quantum Leap." Shaun urged people to write to the makers of these shows in support of their continued existence.
Marty Cantor had a remarkable business card from a hotel in Santa Monica that's looking for convention and other business. Guest Quarters (that's its name) has a card the size of a small license plate made of chocolate, with lettering and design in white chocolate icing. Seems their establishment consists entirely of suites.
Rick Foss said that CostumeCon was planning a numeric cut-off of memberships, so if you're planning on going and didn't join in advance, you should try to get there ASAP -- like tomorrow. Doug Crepeau reported on a favorable feature on Mike Jittlov on "Entertainment Tonight." R Laurraine Tutihasi reminded us that May 5 is the date of the Science Fiction Showcase here at the Clubhouse. Elayne will collect money for it if you can find her.
Committee Reports were threatened with surrealism indeed as Francis Hamit deferred to Ed Green. Ed said that the General Accounting Office audited the National Guard membership, and found such a gap between claims and reality that the New York branch is being deactivated. A San Diego judge was awarded disability on grounds of stage fright. A crime suspect saw a police dog, and countered it with a tiger. Finally, the Dutch Army (the only unionized army in the world) won a contract for its soldiers to be issued a box of condoms each month. Sounds like some of their weapons will have the safety on!
Hare Hobbs had "No LP" and "No CD" signs, for partisans of this particular debate. Alas, he didn't have any for "No Cassettes."
Mark Poliner liked Moondance by S. P. Somtow, a novel of dueling groups of werewolves in the 19th century U.S. He also liked "Driving Miss Daisy." Jack Harness enjoyed "New Year's Day," a strange movie which includes a woman becoming a saint. And that reminded President Pelz to lead us in three cheers for our own Patron Saint of the week, St. Craig Miller.
Francis Hamit said that Thomas Kenealy's The Playmaker was now remaindered at Waldenbooks, and urged people to pick up multiple copies for giving as gifts. The Plez also had a recommendation: Wyvern, by A. A. Antonasio, a novel of 17th century pirates in Borneo, India, Africa, and the New World, arrrrr. This was a giveaway at some ABA in a past year, and sat around unread until recently. "It turned out to be a wonderful book," spake Brucifer.
John La Valley liked "Always," calling it "the best Spielberg in years." Charles Lee Jackson II recommended Nightmare Logic by Matthew Hall, a murder mystery which suggests fantasy elements, not inappropriate given the author's family connections to "Dark Shadows." Konrad Wilk is finishing reading a six-novel history of the Polish people by Henryk Sienkiewicz, the Nobel-winning author of Quo Vadis. Get it in translation, if you can find it.
Rick Foss reviewed some food, namely the curried pork with duck and other goodies, available at the Moroni Sausage House in Venice, yes, Venice (where the debris meets the sea). He found it rather like the "Kurrywurst" available in Austria. Our own Bill Curry had no comment.
Frank Waller said the "Rocky Horror Picture Show" crowd is still a fun scene, after all these years. He also spoke of attending a meeting of Adult Children of Alcoholics, finding it "Very liberating. It pulled a lot of the bad feelings out of my system." And a message from Misty Johnstone, relayed through Richard Costas: "The Hunt for Red October" opens on March 2nd, 1990, so ignore her previous misstatement of the date.
Ed Green mentioned a novel called The Big Lie (by some guy with a lot of consonants in his name), which was ridiculed at the time of its publication (1982) for such ludicrous ideas as the fall of the Berlin Wall, the rise of Solidarity, and my own personal favorite, the return in triumph of Alexander Dubcek. Nothing like a little speculative fiction, huh?
One final item, a bit of Old Business: Craig Miller said that some new realtors were interested in representing the club, vis-a-vis our old idea of selling the present clubhouse and buying a bigger one for less, if that were possible. This might in fact be possible, since there is an investor who seems to be in the process of buying up the whole block. Craig asked for a question on whether we want to let the new realtor list us with an asking price of $330K, so we can get a feel of this new market.
A move to table was withdrawn. Discussion included some questions: Francis wanted to know if there is a viable substitute, and has doubts that we'd be able to bring this off effectively. CL thought our chances are not so bad, so let's list and see what happens. Rick Foss said that if we're the one holdout on the block, we can use that to bargain, and find a better area where we won't be as likely to have our car windows broken. Bill Curry wanted to know if our putative new place would have a parking lot. Craig said it would, and with more space, too. Robbie Cantor summed it up by saying the question is whether we are willing to look. The motion to list passed by a hand vote.
Parking spaces were auctioned off, and a program was announced of three episodes of "Gigantor," in English, no less. And how about that? We adjourned right at 21:00, as planned.
For the record, the full text of the statement from Ken Rowand:
"The Committee for Safe Space on Friday Nights and Second Sundays. Member Mark Kramer had the lack of good sense to bring a spring-loaded knife to last 2nd Sunday and brandish it in an attempt to sell it. He was asked to remove it from the property by Ken Rowand & eventually did. We strongly hope he will not return with it."
Last Updated ( Friday, 19 June 2015 )