I went to Arisia and it was ok.
I was pretty low-energy going in this year, what with work being stressful and all. I actually spent much of Saturday afternoon napping.
I was four panels this year, and none of them were disasters. Some were definitely better than others, though. I have started (belatedly) to take notes on who I would (and would *not*) like to be on panels with next year.
Notices of who was moderating most of the panels were not given out until the actual con, and even then were in fairly obscure places. The one panel I moderated, I had essentially no advance notice for. I used to think moderating was a scary job, but I've now done it enough to get past that. In fact, I think I need to moderate more in the future. I first volunteered to be on panels on the basic theory that I had more intelligent things to say than lots of the existing panelists did. Nowadays, it's not the panelists I'm competing with (much), but the audience members who won't shut up -- even when they don't actually have anything to say. I'm in favor of a certain amount of audience participation, but lots of Arisia moderators allow far too much of it, IMAO. If I'm the moderator, I don't have to do that.
Another idea for next year's panels: if they do the thing of putting the panelists in touch via email beforehand again, try and settle definitional issues before the con. More than one panel this weekend spent their whole hour trying to reach a concensus definition of something, rather than talking about the alleged topic of the panel. Granted, this often produced entertaining results, but I think there would be better results with a bit more focus.
Spent lots of time chatting with interesting people or exchanging backrubs with pretty people. In the best instances, of course, these were one and the same :)
Never made it to the art show. Made one pass through the dealer's room/row, but only bought a t-shirt that kestrell
had asked me for ("Evil keeps me young"). Only saw a few books that even tempted me, and made my saving throw on all of them -- vaguely disappointing, actually. Never went into Nancy's Button shop, as that's one addiction I'm pretty well over. Kes bought me a custom button, though: "Kestrell's Hiro", which I wore on Sunday.
Due to my forgetting to take off the privacy thingy on the door, we never got the regular Housekeeping visit on Saturday. Late in the afternoon, we called down to ask them to send up fresh towels and cofee-maker supplies for the next morning. Before long, they sent up someone -- with just towels. We called again for the coffee fixings. No response. I was heading down to the first floor at that point, so I made a third try by bugging the front desk directly. When I got back to the room, Kes told me that someone had been by to drop the coffee stuff off. I figured it would be best for a sighted person to double-check at this point. Just as well, as we discovered that what he had left was entirely decaffeinated coffee -- and no cups. Kes made a *fourth* call, which shortly produced an apologetic staffer bearing caffeinated coffee packets, cups -- and a carafe full of premade coffee, in case she wanted some right now. Which she didn't, but at least that was a better category of error to be making.
I met cabell
, a friend of Kes' who is spending a semester at MIT with the CMS program. She was pretty cool, and had *very* pink hair. At one panel, she was sitting directly in front of me in the audience, and I kept seeing weird purple halo effects around her hair for the first fifteen minutes or so. I think my visual cortex is just completely unused to that color.
I took a few pictures with my cell phone. Not many, as I'm still fundamentally not used to having a camera with me all the time. But I've just worked out how to use Flickr, and uploaded them there