Meeting # 3483, May 13, 2004 PDF Print E-mail

George Van Wagner presiding

Karl Lembke, Scribe

President George Van Wagner lobstered meeting number 3483 to order at 20:12:34.

Special Orders of Business: were once again missing in action.

The Menace were read and approved as "batty".

The Registrars: We have one guest: James Walters, currently missing in action. Rick Foss introduced Peter Bergman, of Firesign Theater. He will speak later.

Tonight's Patron Saint:

Four weeks in a row, someone the President has met!

Tom Digby

Matthew Tepper: It was Tom Digby who pointed out Larry Niven to him.

Phil Castora: Tom is the kind of person who, if he was a character in a story, he'd live around the corner from a place that sells dill pickle ice cream. And of course, at one point in history, he had. He gave parties at his very unusual home. He had three clocks. The one in the dining room, a giant mirror image pocket watch, kept perfect time. In the kitchen was a clock whose hands moved at random. The clock in the living room was a perfectly normal clock. It cuckooed normally, at the right times. Whenever it went off, though, someone had just said something especially silly. Nobody ever figured out how he programmed that effect in. He's the world's nicest guy. And his mind works at least as well as anyone else's does, but his silliness filters don't.

Eylat has known him for many years. When she first started coming to LASFS, he hosted unique parties. He's nice, but very strange.

Hare Hobbs: Tom was one of the first he met in fandom. He met Tom at the Academy of SF, fantasy and horror movies. Some of his weird piercings were visible through his clothing. Then you start listening to him, and wondering where he belonged. He was very polite. Sometimes, he'd wait a couple of beats, or after the conversation had changed subject before he could interject his comment. You'd have to think about what you'd been talking about. He thought of making money radioactive so it would circulate faster and help the economy.

Marty Cantor: Tom is one of those very brilliant people who's attracted to fandom. His outlook on life is slightly askew. There's a Larry Niven story, "What can you say about chocolate covered manhole covers?" One of the milder things he came up with was his explanation of why the Bermuda Triangle no longer exists. It lies within itself, and caused itself to disappear. He wrote fanzines for various APAs, and Marty would collect his brilliance.

Jerry Pournelle is not entirely certain Tom thought of radioactive money. He definitely was the inspiration for the Manhole Cover story. The Manhole Cover still appears at gift exchanges. For a full season, the LASFS meeting was held in Tom Digby's home. If he hadn't been generous enough to host the meetings, the club might have ceased to exist. And Jerry told his Annual Why Are You Wearing That Jewelry Story...

Joe Zeff: Two things: Many years ago, here at a meeting, he had something he was playing with. It was a lithium battery, "in doornail mode", to coin a Digbyesque phrase. Several years ago at Loscon, he would tell people that he was being considered for a job with the Mimbari, working on environment tanks for creatures that can't breathe terrestrial atmospheres.

Then he showed the letter from Monterey Bay Marine Biology Research Institute – where he'd be working on the aquaria.

Phil Castora: described Tom Digby as "tilted 25 degrees from the rest of the universe."

A consortium of fen decided strangeness must be measured in milliDigbys.

Tom Digby was given Three Cheers, and 1000 milliDigbys.

Committee to Gouge: is currently sailing through the Bermuda Trapezoid.

Old Business: None!

New business: None!

Committee Reports

CLJII: On the fourth Sunday, FWEMS has a theme of All Mysterious Island, All The Time... //June, the Masked Marvel, and Secret Agent X9. In July, two months of Roger Korman films Last week, started the Adventures of Capt Marvel.

Ed Green asked Brother Thorsen to pass a substitute collection plate. The Fugghead contest is galloping to a conclusion Real Soon Now. Positive votes cost one cent to cast, negative votes, two cents, nominations are $1.

The Crafts fair is still on for June 5. Buy tables, and buy stuff at the bake sale.

Time-Bound Announcements

CLJII mentioned that we have a new Extra Added Attractions magazine. It has an article on Batman in the Movies, and many other things. $3.95 each.

Rick Foss has news of the outside world. The X prize attempts to put a craft 60 miles into space, twice, with a two week turnaround, is within spitting distance of someone. Scaled Composites looks to be ahead of other teams. The prize deadline is the end of this year.

Jerry Pournelle: The reason the prize is going away at the end of the year is that the offerers had bought an insurance policy. Lloyds of London bet that no one would claim it by the end of the year. Second: This is not a ship that will make it to orbit. It's purely a sounding rocket type of ship. Altitude good, reusability fine. But it won't do more than win the prize -- it's not designed to handle re-entry. Another company is working on a path that might just lead to orbit. It's getting a lot of attention, and getting people interested in what private industry can do.

Doug Crepeau: As a way of cutting us off at the knees, Homeland Security is making it illegal to make rocket motors without a license.

Bill Ellern: announced the JPL Open house this weekend.

Fred Patten: C/FO is celebrating its 27th anniversary Saturday, 1-8. There will be cake.


Mike Thorsen reviewed the play being put on at the Lincoln Stegman theater at Emmanuel Lutheran Church – matters of the heart, a four part story. One has to do with how to find a date in Queens. Another has to do with the conversations of two dead people. One has to do with the time line of a family engaged in a continuous Christmas dinner from the middle of the 19th century to now. Another about a bank teller and someone who shows up on the teller's first day of work to rob the place.

Jeff: Saw Van Helsing. Don't bother. FX good, story practically nonexistent.

George VW. Saw it with digital projection. Visually spectacular while eating cotton candy.

Jerry Pournelle: Saw Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. No credit was given to Phil Dick, but maybe some should have been given. It's a dark comedy, enjoyable and interesting, and it's just like a movie made from a Phil Dick story. The picture is very well done. It's not a romance.

Fannish Committee Reports

None, due to agenda lite


None, due to agenda lite

The meeting adjourned at 20:53:04.

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