Meeting #2734, Jan 4 1990 PDF Print E-mail

 by Matthew B. Tepper, Not-Seagate

"Happy New Year," said President Pelz as he pounded the LASFS to order, "or Happy New Decade, depending on who you're listening to." We now begin with a tabula rasa, program-wise, anyway. Suggestions and volunteers are desired. Films and filksings are already in the planning, but there's presently a dearth of presentations and panels.

Galen Tripped in to announce a guest, one Lisa Blanc, visiting us from Costa Mesa. And you think that's some commute? Just wait.

The previous week's minutes were given the traditional cold reading, with numerous pauses for ad libs. The difference this time was that it was the last set of minutes by the outgoing Scribe, Mike Glyer, who received a round of applause from the membership as he heads into another sabbatical. As further evidence of the club's gratitude, the minutes were actually approved as read, with no corrections! The reading may have been cold, but Rick Foss observed that it was sympathetic. How could the material deserve anything less? Thanks, Mike.

The Prez read the Trez stuff, noting among the accounting figures that the guests outnumbered the deadbeats by 4:1. Mention of the Building Fund got a point of order from Tom Safer: What had ever happened to our plans to look for a new building? Bruce replied that none of the leads from the agent had proven worth following up. This place may be cruddy, especially when the members are in it, but other places are even worse, if you can believe that. "What brought this up, Tom?" queried a quizzical Pelz. Charlie Jackson replied, "A bit of undigested beef."

Further discussion revealed that last year's dues increase has helped to depopulate the clubhouse, and reminded us that the crowding was one of the reasons for the suggested move. Besides, the idea of selling off this parcel for $300K or more, and buying a larger and better one for $50K less, is almost good enough for the Surrealism Committee! Perhaps we've put so much effort into this place that it might be worth it just to stay here.

Somehow or other the topic of conversation changed to the catch of the day, Manuel Noriega. Scratch wondered what would happen to the $1 million bounty we'd put up for the deposed nogoodnik. Charlie Jackson said there was a 75¢ bounty on Frank Gasperik. Bruce suggested that Noriega would claim the megabuck, or maybe the pope. Just then, Gasperik walked into the meeting room, and the crowd went wild while Frank tried to figure out the reason for this warm reception. Said Bruce, the pope gets the 75¢ too.

At this point the membership had gotten rowdy enough that Bruce wondered if we should try assigned seating. Matthew wanted Bill Curry put in the back of the building.

In Tripped Galen with another new guest, Jai Wall, who came out all the way from Durham, North Carolina. Robbie Cantor, the Northern half of our Treasurer, said people should pay tonight if they were paying by the year. Bruce pointed out that one actually has until the end of March to finish by-the-year payments, but you should still pay up as soon as possible.

Time for Committee Reports, or as Bruce said, "Let's get to the fun stuff." Francis Hamit led off the Surrealism reports by quoting GQ's statement that "Beauty and the Beast" proves that New York women will overlook anything if a guy's single and straight. G'next, he said, a new board game called "Civil War" was proving just the thing to while away the hours in Beirut. The players assume the identities of militias, and do all the nasty sorts of things that are done in real life. The winner is the first person to outgun the "official" military by five units.

Fred Patten told of a Wall Street Journal article on a video game called "Find Noriega," in which the fun guy does things like hide at Graceland disguised as Elvis Presley. Ed Green said that an MP, Capt. Linda Bray, became the first American woman to lead troops into combat. Ed also said that before the poster boy for Clearasil finally gave himself up, Vatican and American authorities had considered moving the papal nuncio to a hotel and declaring it to be his temporary embassy. He also speculated that if Noriega had taken refuge in Cuba, Havana University would welcome him with a seat in witchcraft and skin care.

Stupid crooks of 1989 closed with a man who claimed to be from a rent-a-stripper service but was just an exhibitionist. Best-kept secret of 1989 was that of jazz musician Billy Tipton, who turned out to have been a woman. Best political line came from Washington DC mayor Marion Barry. Seems hizzoner was observed flipping someone the bird. When a reporter asked, "Is that a political comment?", the mayor replied, "No, it's a political promise!"

Announcements: Dori Sahagian had a letter from Lloyd Smith about saving the old Renaissance Faire grounds, the Paramount Ranch in Agoura, by making it a Federal park. There is currently much litigation over the land, so the only people benefiting so far are the lawyers. Money and support are needed for this cause, so they're having a potluck dinner on 6 January to raise both.

Francis Hamit has scheduled the First Aid and CPR classes for 27 January and 3 February. He will be calling people to confirm that they're signed up. Hare Hobbs said he'd printed some business cards for his five-year-old cousin, who can now claim to be a professional kid. The card could also help the little fellow if he turns up lost. Mike Glyer was heard to suggest, "Just drop him in any mailbox."

Charles Lee Jackson II, resplendent in a necktie of the Royal Stewart tartan, said he saw a Mexican restaurant called Pollo Bionico. Sounds like a place where you can get radioactive radishes on the side! Len Moffatt was reminded of another restaurant called La Cucaracha. Oh boy, crunchy food! It was also mentioned that "Mathnet" would receive a one-hour airing the following Thursday. Matthew explained this was a segment of a TV series for teaching math skills to kids, and is a parody of "Dragnet." He also said that Beverly Leech does the best Joe Friday impression around. Take that, Dan Aykroyd!

Gavin Claypool announced that Cal Tech was running a double feature of the first and third Indiana Jones films on Friday and Saturday. Actually, it was supposed to be all three, but they're substituting a "Mr. Bill" short for the middle one. Take that, Prime Minister Sluggo! Oh, no....... Harry Mudd said he was out of a job again, and therefore available for interviews. His experience is in truckdriving and doing gardens. Ken Estes helpfully translated: "Transportation and horticultural."

Reviews: Jack Harness enjoyed Umberto Eco's Foucault's Pendulum, with its references to the occult and to the Illuminati. CL wondered if "the occult" referred to "the thirteen nastiest bastards in o'fandom." Tom Safer enjoyed "The Little Mermaid" for good animation and good singing, though he warned that the ending has been changed. A tape called "The Wit and Wisdom of Dan Quayle" is not blank, as one might expect, but rather a compendium of gaffes assembled into a mock-interview format.

Bruce Pelz read a letter over the signature of Soviet President Gorbachev, which soon had much of the membership in collective stitches. Brian Gitt wanted it published in De Profundis.

Dori saw "Glory," and was impressed, though she finds Matthew Broderick's voice a little too high. What next? Barry White as Teddy Roosevelt? George Mulligan liked "Tango and Cash," at least for the "RV from Hell," which has everything you need for driving on the freeway. Glenn Glazer gushed greatly over "The Music of Andrew Lloyd Webber," a revue starring by Sarah Brightman. He found Brightman's voice enjoyable in all of the different styles she was called upon to sing; highly recommended.

Rick Foss also had a recommendation: The Honest Rainmaker, by A. J. Liebling, about one of the old New York Enquirer reporters, a man given to rainmaking, swindling, and all sorts of other keen rackets. Is it any surprise that the Enquirer went National? And finally, Ed Green touted "Roger and Me," Michael Moore's bizarre documentary on how GM trashed Flint, Michigan by closing down their plant. The movie is actually about Moore's quest for an interview with GM Chairman Roger Smith. The best recommendation, said Glenn, is that Smith is upset with the film. Francis Hamit said the new storyline on "Beauty and the Beast" is holding up. With that beastly observation, we adjourned to an auction.  

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