I slept in, but not too in because at 11:15 I wanted to be at mettemu's and Bryan's mold making demo. As usual it was informative, fun and a study in improv. I took many pictures with my real camera which I'll upload when I get home.
I had a late lunch at the hotel eatery, the menu was on Xerox paper with a Westercon logo, and was very limited. I had a Cobb Salad which probably would have arrived sooner if they had not taken the time to make the chicken disgustingly lukewarm.
I wasted time in the lobby and in my room and the green room and then went to the Folsom room, which is the largest of the panel rooms, to catch the end of the Dr. who podcast. Two of the three podcasters were on the Comedy in SF panel with me yesterday. It was entertaining.
In the same room next was a panel I was on, johnnyeponymous moderated, and also included Ctien, David Gerrolds and the lovely Rebecca Inch-Partridge, called A Single If...
Chris took suggestions from the audience, and we discussed them, I mostly provided comic relief and bad puns. It was fun.
I killed time for an hour, then moderated the panel on Exomusicology. I was afraid we would run out of things to talk about but with a great set of panelists and very participatory audience we ran out of time. Cliff Winnig, Frederick J. Mayer, J.E. Ellis and Lynn Gold were the panel. It was a full room and only one person left early.
6 pm, time for dinner. I figured if I was lucky I would be back by 8 or so and catch the two featured bands. But this happened:
I went to a place named Bandera, which Google and Yelp both recommended for steak. It is about a 10 minute drive from the hotel.
It was a 35-minute wait to be seated. The place is pitch dark and extremely loud. People shouting over people shouting over people shouting over... I almost turned around and walked out. After my drink order was taken I was forgotten for about 15 minutes.
I had the prime rib, which was huge and delicious, and came with a nondescript lump of mashed potatoes, a generous cup of au jus and a tiny cup of excellent horseradish sauce. For the diet Coke, they brought the can, $3 for a 25-cent item. They charged for each can. I also ordered the roasted peanut cole slaw as an appetizer but they brought it with the main course. It was peanuts mixed into shredded purple and green cabbage topped with Italian vinaigrette, with too much pepper. Not my idea of cole slaw.
Nobody checked on me for about an hour.
The much-touted banana cream pie was all display (whipped cream, banana chunks) and not much pie.
The bill came with dessert. I put my Discover card down, face-up, easy to see what it was. A server took it, then brought it back saying they don't take Discover, and walked away. I put down an American Express card and waited another 5+ minutes for someone to collect it. The check came back pretty quickly.
The prime rib was great, but not good enough to ever go back there. The service was so slow I barely managed to justify a 10% tip.
Back to the hotel. By now it is 9:45. I listened to the Phenomenauts for 3 minutes, but ran screaming from the over-modulated distorted) audio and mush-mouthed singers. It hurt.
But that meant I was able to write this at a reasonable hour, and will get to bed likewise. No parties for me tonight, the rooms are too small and they are mostly aimed at drinkers.
Which reminds me of something incredibly rude which happened last night. Shortly after the lights went out I poked my head into each party room to see if it had a view of the fireworks. At the Casino Royale room, a woman in a purple dress blocked my way, and said they were no longer serving drinks. As if the only reason anyone would want to be in the gambling room would be to drink. On my next pass about 15 minutes later, she had blocked the doorway with two chairs. Horribly rude. I won't be going back there.
Plans for tomorrow:
If I am lucky and wake up early enough, the 10 am panel "Where is my Tricorder?" is on. I know where it is. My cousin Harvey has a patent on it.
11:15 I'm on a panel about storytelling, which I probably shouldn't be on because that's not something I do. I can be comic relief.
12:30 I'm on a panel I should be on - how to choose a book - read page 119?
4:15, I'm moderating a panel I shouldn't be on, Finding Your Muse. The good news is everyone else on the panel will probably have a lot to say on the subject
Masquerade is at 8 pm, followed by Match game R-Rated which I am not on the panel but will volunteer to be a contestant because Lisa said I should.