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Why is American beer served cold? So you can distinguish it from urine.
-- David Moulton

 

LOSCON, or, Travels with Rick Moen -- Reported 1998-01-11 23:07 by CrackMonkey

In the morning, we ran into Jim Dennis and Heather Stern at the breakfast buffet. Other than that, the first day was rather uneventful. I buzzed from panel to panel trying to suss out the LA SciFi crowd, and generally found that they reminded me, for the most part, of people I'd known in high school. There were a lot of folks in flimsy capes and bejeweled staffs, goths, and the usual portly convention attendees.

Rick and I noticed that there was to be a Macintosh panel at 10am the next day. The title was "freeing yourself from the shackles of WinTel", and it seemed like an opportune panel to crash, after downing the Red Bulls (my kingdom for those damn penguin mints!). Rick could argue Linux, and I could talk about NetBSD, to the dismay of the folks who seemed to think that Macintosh and MacOS are inseparable.

"The description said nothing about MacOS," Rick noted. The man was right. Macs make damn fine machines once you install an OS on the things.

"The Mac OS is an interesting proof of concept," I told a hallway straggler at the floating suite parties that evening, "but it really doesn't make use of the full potential of those machines."

But I didn't realize how bad it was until I turned the corner and stumbled into the Mac room. Suddenly I figured out where all the goths came from--the room was filled with iMacs, and they were being attended by a scrawny guy in a white polo shirt with the "Think Different [sic]" logo. Rather than try to explain adverbs to the poor bastard, I panicked. I left the room with a start.

This is too much. We're in enemy waters, here. We're already two San Franciscans on the outskirts of LA, and I'm almost completely outside the sphere of fandom. But to have these Cupertino vultures descend upon the place---that's too much. They brought those damn breath-mints-cum-computers with them, but why? To free themselves from the WinTel shackles? How does running a machine with integrated IE4 free you from the WinTel shackles? And what the fuck were all those damn goths doing there? This required thought. This required planning. This required...

"A childish, yet pointless act?"

Rick hit it square on the nose. There's a time for this sort of thing. There's a time when you just need to make a scene. It won't change anything, but it'll make a damn fine scene!

Gnawing on a carrot from the Conolulu party ("In Hawaii, carrots are used as talismans of fertility" I told one woman who was perusing the ancient onion dip of Maui), I realized that we couldn't tip our hand too soon. To cause a serious scene here would be remembered by no one. We were just two men against an army of goths. How could we stand up? No, we needed to regroup, and we need to hit them at the nerve center:

BMUG

Our story concludes

 

Over.  End of Story.  Go home now.

vwbugger@pigdog.org


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