Meeting # 4057, May 14, 2015 PDF Print E-mail

Matthew Tepper presiding

Karl Lembke, Scribe

Patron Saint Tom Digby

(Portions read at the meeting are highlighted like this.)

President Matthew Tepper called meeting #4057 to what passes for order at 8:00.

Special orders of business:

Menace from last meeting were read.  Christian McGuire bid $5 to name them “All Hail Bob Null, Soda Fairy of the Gods” They were so accepted.

Time Bound Announcements!

Saturday at 10. TSPC shows The Last Unicorn, with Angela Lansbury.

C/FO follows at 1PM.

CLJII announced Target Solara, his 13th book went on sale. Within 24 hours, it got its ranking at 91K and change.

Committee Reports

The Treasurer’s report: We have money

You can’t spend it.

We had an auction, followed by the Registrar introducing guests.

Julius Francisco, who heard about us from Ray Bradbury and Forrest J Ackerman.

Kim and Scott Stedman, Kim being our presenter this evening.

We honored tonight’s Patron Saint:

Patron Saint Tom Digby

Scratch: Tom Digby is an interesting gentleman, who would come up with odd lyrics, like you need little teeny eyes for reading little teeny print like you need little teeny hooks for microfische.

Jerry Pournelle: Tom used to come to the club adorned in rather strange piercings. One was a nose bone made of amber you couldn’t miss. I looked at this a while and couldn’t stand it, so I asked, “what do you wear that for?”

“Why does anyone wear jewelry? to make oneself attractive.”

Forbore to ask “to what?”

Joe Zeff: Ran into Tom at a Westercon, when he was wearing a pastel green sari that left part of his chest and one of his piercings visible.  knew better than to ask why he was wearing it.

Marcia Minsky: Her mom was at that Westercon, sort of mobile. They were outside heading to a convenience store, and Digby was walking toward them.  Mom stopped in her tracks and was struck speechless. “Mom, it’s not polite to stare”.  “What is it?”  Let’s move on and explain Tom Digby to her later.

Milt: Tom liked to come up with practical applications for fantasy items like coin operated crypts for traveling vampires.  Also, why not sell advertising on postage stamps.  He also wrote articles from the perspective of someone in his home dimension.  For example: a six page essay on how to tell the wine from the cheese at a wine and cheese tasting.

David Okamura: He came up with some of the most off-the-wall songs and essays, such as the memo on elevator usage.

Matthew Tepper: At his first SF convention, Funcon in 1968, he was eager to meet Larry Niven.  He encountered Tom Digby and asked him if he knew where Larry Niven is.  He said “you might ask that person over there”, and that person turned out to be Larry Niven. History does not record whether he in fact knew where Larry Niven was. He gave Matthew a copy of “Probably Something”, soon to be his APA-L zine. It was about the power structure in a playing card company.  (You’re all just a bunch of cards! -- Alice)

Scott Beckstead was introduced to him as “bubbles”.

He was amused and intrigued by a bubble sttuffer at Westercon, a machine that would blow bubbles within bubbles.

Joe Zeff: He mentioned having received a job offer from the Mimbari designing environmental tanks for organisms that can’t survive in a Terrestrial atmosphere. And he presented the letter.

Jerry Pournelle: It might be worth publishing a list of Tom Digby Probably Something titles.

CLJII: He was the sort of person who, if he existed, would live around the corner from a place that sold dill pickle ice cream. And he did.

Karl Lembke: Tom Digby, along with others, invented Putridos, which started as a list of simple hex patches that would update a blank, formatted disk to Putrodos 1.0. Among features in Putrodos was “GuessAhead”, where the computer would complete commands for the user with what it thought the user should intend to be typing.  Of course, the computer’s idea of what the user intended to type and the user’s idea weren’t always in sync, leading to odd results.  Of course, nobody in his right mind would program such a feature into a real electronic device...

CLJII:  In APA-L at one point, Tom and he created the Mergerville Newspaper, made a point of referring to an article from it every week, and every week it had merged with another paper, and added another name to a string of increasing length..

From the Hagiography:

Whimsical and insightful fan writer and poet

one of the Fan Guests at Confrancisco (Worldcon 1993, San Francisco, California)

Lee Gold published an anthology of his writing in 1993:  Tom Digby along Fantasy Way.

Known for unique and creative personal presentation

The Larry Niven story, "What Can You Say About Chocolate Covered Manhole Covers?" featured Tom Digby as the alien robot. 

in his APA-L Zine, "Probably Something", he once wrote that it must have been fascinating to live near the airport in the last century, because you'd only be disturbed by clip clop of horses as they took off.

Patron Saint Tom Digby was given three cheers and Little Teeny Eyes.

No Old Business

No New Business

David Okamura updated us all on Science.

The Russian supply capsule having crashed, they’ve canceled the crew rotation on the Space Station. They want to study why the third stage separated too soon, since they use the same module in crew capsules.

Self-driving cars have been in four fender-benders. It was never the car’s fault.  It was human error, and mostly under 10 MPH.

Now that the EM drive seems to be kaput, the effects of cosmic rays on the brain can be a problem.

Sunday was Mother’s Day. New England Aquarium has been keeping track of the North Atlantic Right Whale. It looks like there are 17 new mothers.




Put chairs away.

Adjournment: It was moved and seconded, and we adjourned to the program at 8:45.
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