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Kevin Standlee: Fandom Is My Way of Life
 
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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in Kevin Standlee's LiveJournal:

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Wednesday, July 27th, 2016
9:42 pm
Muffler Replacement
During the trip home from the Bay Area, Lisa looked under the minivan and pointed out that there appeared to be a crack in the muffler. So this afternoon, I was able to get away from Day Jobbe (with some difficulty) at 2:30 and run into Sparks, where I'd made an appointment online at a chain muffler dealership. They were a little dismayed by this as they don't like giving out appointments that late in the day, but they did manage to fit me in. $375 later, I had a new muffler, which I think will help some things with the van. I'd rather have given the work to Cory in Fremont, but there's only so many vehicle shuffles we can do.

After getting the muffler replacement, we went to the Peppermill for dinner, and then played the slots for a while. Lisa hit a hot streak and we ended up slightly money ahead, and also put more points (4x comp point today) into my account. It wasn't far enough ahead to pay for dinner, but it did offset what I lost on the keno ticket.

Current Mood: accomplished
Tuesday, July 26th, 2016
9:05 pm
Photos From the Drive Home
We do not drive from home to the Bay Area or back via US-50 very often, but we did so on Sunday because we started in Placerville, having visited my friend Rick. As I mentioned on Sunday, Lisa did most of the driving. I had the opportunity to take pictures, but actually only took one.

Descending Into TahoeCollapse )

We're really glad we were not going the other way. The going-home-from-the-lake traffic was backed up for many miles. We had a few stretches of slow traffic, and a slog through South Lake Tahoe itself (partially due to the big golf tournament that was going on along the lake that weekend), but otherwise the drive was relatively smooth.

Side Trip for TrainsCollapse )

The direct route home would have been to take US-50 to Sliver Springs, but we had shopping we had to do, so we continued up US-395 (taking the low road, not the high road on I-580) to do our shopping and then head home.

Tomorrow I have to take the van into Sparks. Lisa thinks there is a crack in the muffler, and we certainly want that fixed before we head for Kansas City.

Current Mood: tired
Monday, July 25th, 2016
7:34 am
Last Call on Additional Finalists
I anticipate that Lisa will want me to submit the Additional Finalists proposal to MidAmeriCon II soon, once she's had a chance to make a final review of it, which (now that I'm home for this week) might be as early as today. If you have further comments or want to be listed as a co-sponsor, now is the last chance to speak up before the Business Meeting this year.

Current Mood: working
Sunday, July 24th, 2016
8:30 pm
Home Again, Hooray
We got away from Rancho Cordova in good time, made it up to Placerville without incident, and went out to breakfast with my friend Rick and his wife, where they seated us at the same table at the same restaurant where we went after his wedding. After a very enjoyable breakfast and conversation with them, Lisa and I set off for home via US-50 and South Lake Tahoe. Lisa did the driving and I got to watch the scenery, which I don't get to do that often.

Including stops at South Lake Tahoe for a rest, a brief look-in at the Nevada State Railroad Museum (we have the memberships; we might as well use them), and groceries in Reno, we got home a bit after 7 PM. We're both quite tired. Once the house cools down sufficiently (it was above 30°C inside when we got home) I expect to collapse into bed, because I do have to work tomorrow. Fortunately, my commute is short.

Current Mood: tired
Saturday, July 23rd, 2016
8:22 pm
Halfway Home
Last night I laid up in the Rolling Stone near my office in Fremont (partially because Lisa knows how to find it easily). I woke up just before 6 AM, which is actually sleeping in for me much of the time I'm in the Bay Area. As I was getting dressed after putting away the bed, Lisa rolled up in the Astro, having left Fernley shortly after Midnight.

We dropped the RV at my mechanic's shop in Fremont, had breakfast at Dino's Restaurant (where I used to eat regularly when I lived within walking distance of it), and headed out of the Bay Area. Of course, a good thing about driving out on a Saturday morning is that traffic is much lighter than on a typical Friday afternoon.

We went to Yuba City, where I had some business to transact with my mother, and we visited with her for about an hour. Then we went back south to Sacramento where I visited my sister at the nursing home where they continue to care for her. She was very happy to see me, Lisa, and travelswithkuma.

It was a hot day today (temperatures up around 38°C), and this affected us a lot. Besides it simply being uncomfortable to drive around, the Astro's hot-starting problem came to the fore. Anytime the van is too hot and has not had a chance to cool off (difficult in this heat), it becomes very difficult to start. We did manage to get around, however, and moved in to the Rancho Cordova Holiday Inn for the night. We were pleased (and surprised) to find that it had wired internet, a microwave oven, and a mini-fridge. We got some groceries (cold drinks) and ordered a pizza. Lisa took advantage of the nice Jacuzzi-style bathtub to have a nice bath where the sound of the jets overcame her tinnitus and let her relax.

I understood why Lisa was so tired, but puzzled about my own fatigue, especially after getting a longer-than-usual sleep last night. Lisa suggests (and this makes sense) that having spent most of the past two weeks on high alert, when the pressure came off as it did today, I started falling over when I relaxed.

Tomorrow we hope for a relatively easy day as we visit my friend Rick in Placerville, then drive home via South Lake Tahoe.

Current Mood: tired
Friday, July 22nd, 2016
10:31 am
Westercon 69 Attendance Update
I received from Westercon 69 chair Lea Rush the post-con attendance/membership update. Westercon 69 reports 1,577 on-site attendees (the "warm-body count" figure) and 1,673 total members of all types. (The latter includes supporting members and attending members who did not claim their badges.)

I have updated the Westercon History web page to reflect this information.

Current Mood: accomplished
Thursday, July 21st, 2016
5:05 pm
3-Stage Voting (and Other Hugo Award Proposals)
Colin Harris has been leading a group of which I am a member to work out details of several different Hugo Award-related proposals, including the "3-Stage Voting" proposal I discussed here some time ago. The proposal are now at the final stage and he has posted the proposals in a publicly-available Google Document for people to see, prior to their formal presentation to the Business Meeting in a few days.

Note that I'm listed as a co-sponsor for Three Stage Voting (3SV), or “The Only Winning Move is Not to Play.” This means that should 3SV pass this year in Kansas City, I will be recusing myself from presiding over the ratification vote next year in Helsinki.

I have also co-sponsored an amendment to the pending E Pluribus Hugo proposal that would require it to be re-ratified every year between now and 2022. This will not require me to recuse myself from any future votes, inasmuch as EPH is up for ratification this year. It only changes the requirement for it to remain a part of the constitution from a single vote five years from now to annual votes each year between now and 2022. In effect, it would allow the Business Meeting to repeal EPH on a single vote instead of two consecutive years.

There are other proposals in the package that Colin has posted on which I consulted as a parliamentary authority, but which I am not co-sponsoring. This should not be interpreted as me either favoring or opposing those proposals.

Current Mood: accomplished
Tuesday, July 19th, 2016
7:43 pm
Too Much Solution
I have decided that the pending WSFS Constitutional amendment "The Five Percent Solution" (item A.2 in the 2016 WSFS Business Meeting Agenda goes farther than it should have done. The ostensible reason for the amendment is to remove the rule that requires that the fourth and fifth-place finalists in each Hugo Award category draw at least 5% of the nominations in that category. That part is fine and is dealt with by the first clause, which strikes out section 3.8.5. However, the second clause strikes out wording about "five percent" in section 3.11.4. That section is the requirement that the Committee publish a list of every nominee in the top 15 positions or with at least 5% of the nominations in that category, as long as the nominee got at least 5 nominations.

I don't think that the second section has any actual connection to the first, and is beyond the intended scope of the original change. I therefore intend to move, at the Preliminary Business Meeting this year, to strike out the second clause, which means to retain all of the words in section 3.11.4 and to limit the scope of the amendment to only removing the minimum of 5% to make the final ballot.

This is in my opinion a lesser change (because it reduces the scope of the change), and therefore if my proposed change is adopted by the Preliminary Meeting, the Main Meeting could adopt the modified proposal this year without it having to lay over for another year.

I'm willing to put my name to this because it would not oblige me to recuse myself from business next year in Helsinki. Any proposal on this year's agenda as new business that has my name on it that gets first passage this year and thus is passed on to Worldcon 75 necessarily requires me to recuse myself from presiding over its ratification.

ETA: timill catches me napping on the Standing Rules; thus the strikeouts above. Sigh.

Current Mood: thoughtful
Monday, July 18th, 2016
5:32 pm
Additional Finalists
One of the three proposals related to the Hugo Awards I floated a while back would allow the current Worldcon Committee to add up to two additional finalist to the ballot. Lisa Hayes (my wife, who does not do e-mail or social media) would like to propose this. I drafted it for her and post it here. If you are a member of MidAmeriCon II, the 2016 Worldcon in Kansas City (either attending or supporting) and would like to co-sponsor this proposal, please let me know and I will pass it on to Lisa. She does need at least one other sponsor in order to introduce it to this year's Meeting.

(I personally am taking no position on this proposal. Any proposal that I co-sponsor this year and that passes necessarily requires me to recuse myself from presiding over its consideration next year in Helsinki. I offered my drafting skills to Lisa just as I did to other people this year on other proposals, not necessarily ones for which I will vote.)

She can't use the title I originally gave the proposal because one of the EPH-related proposals appears to be using approximately the same title, so we gave it the more prosaic name below.

Short Title: Additional FinalistsCollapse )

Current Mood: thoughtful
Sunday, July 17th, 2016
3:36 pm
In Search of Souvenirs
Doing some research for someone who reads my journal, this morning I went to the Winchester Mystery House, where I thought I had seen in the past an old style medallion maker.

A Blast From the PastCollapse )

While I was there, I took a couple of pictures of the House itself.

One of San Jose"s Most Famous SitesCollapse )

If you're still undecided about which site to vote for for the 2018 Worldcon and are wondering what there is to do and see in San Jose other than the Worldcon itself, this is one of the places I think everyone should go see. It's not walking distance from the convention site, but it's a relatively easy public bus ride, and I suspect that if there was enough interest, we might be able to arrange for transportation for a group to go see it. (I'm not in a position to commit to that! I can't guarantee it! I'm not volunteering to organize it!) But if you can go and visit the house and gardens, try to do so.

Current Mood: cheerful
Saturday, July 16th, 2016
4:37 pm
Board Meeting in the Books
Today was the SFSFC Board of Directors meeting, around which I'd deliberately scheduled this two week stint in the Bay Area. Aside from writing up the minutes of today's meeting, I'm hoping to do as little as possible. Although I got two extra hours of sleep last night, it hardly makes up for the 12-plus-hour days I've been working this past week and expect to work next week.

Current Mood: tired
Friday, July 15th, 2016
7:53 am
On Convention Events and Running on Time
In a venue that I cannot name or quote, I saw a sarcastic retort from someone working in a technical position on a certain convention's events that I interpreted as, "But of course big events will always run late, by their nature, and we techies will be held responsible for it, so we simply have to work until we drop dead." I started to reply, but thought better of it. However, I'm going to get it out of my system here.

It is in fact possible to make events run on time. That doesn"t mean that it"s easyCollapse )

Events is not my responsibility at this Worldcon. I'm merely a staff member over in the Business Meeting. But I'm saying here that it is possible to make things run to time, as long as everyone involved, including the event participants, commit to doing so. If you assume that things are going to run overtime, they will run overtime.

Current Mood: thoughtful
Monday, July 11th, 2016
3:53 pm
BASFA Tonight
I had hoped to be able to coax autopope and feorag, who are in the Bay Area this week, down to Fremont BART where I would collect them and take them to/from tonight's BASFA meeting. However, they have a lot on their plate while they are here and have had to demur, which is not a problem and perfectly understood. Besides, a pretty significant number of the people they would have seen at BASFA they'd already seen at Westercon, considering that only two members turned up at the July 4 meeting.

(If there was a BASFA meeting in Portland Willamette Bay that night, I missed it.)

Current Mood: cheerful
Sunday, July 10th, 2016
8:19 pm
Witness to a Head-On
I was so distracted by the story of the Hugo Huey and getting ready for my drive to the Bay Area that I forgot to write up yesterday witnessing a head-on traffic accident right in front of us while we were on our way to breakfast.

No PicturesCollapse )

After doing what I considered my civic duty to call in the accident (and give my contact details to the dispatcher if we're needed later), we got out of the way and went on to breakfast. That was a scary-looking accident, but it was probably only about 35 mph, and not as scary as the time some years ago that Lisa was driving us on OR-22 east of Salem and we came within a split second of being clobbered by an out-of-control driving coming the other way at full speed crossing over and missing us by less than a car length. (The other vehicle was past us before it had really registered that it was careening out of control on the icy highway; besides any evasive action by us would have resulted in us crashing, too. As it happens, just going straight was what saved us.) We were reminded of this incident last week on the way home from Westercon, as ODOT has now installed K-Rail on the median of that stretch of OR-22 to prevent such cross-over accidents.

Current Mood: relieved
Saturday, July 9th, 2016
9:45 pm
Helicopter at the Hugo Site
Today, Lisa and I went to Reno to do errands at the bank, have brunch at the Peppermill, and get grocery shopping done to restock things for her while I'm away in the Bay Area for the next two weeks. To our surprise, we were attacked by a helicopter while at the Peppermill.

A Helicopter, You Say?Collapse )

Lisa was very happy to have had a chance to view the exhibits and talk with people at this event. It was a bit of letdown for her to have to leave and have us finish our shopping and go home, but it was still nice to have stumbled onto it in the first place.

Current Mood: pleased
Friday, July 8th, 2016
5:24 pm
Recovering
I enjoy our travels, but they are wearing at times. Complicating things today was having to be up well before 5 AM in order to deal with a conference call with the UK. The call was useful, but left me behind the eight ball all day long, it seems. With luck I'll get some recovery time tonight. But I have to be back on the road again Sunday for a two-week stint in the Bay Area.

Current Mood: tired
Thursday, July 7th, 2016
12:04 pm
Sleeping Easier
When I got up to start work this morning at 6 AM, I found that there was someone covering our East Coast desk this morning, and I could go back to sleep for two more hours. However, it was already daylight of course, so for the first time I tried what some have suggested to me. A relatively light sleep mask (this one was from an airline business-class amenity pack from a long-ago trip) doesn't interfere with my CPAP mask, and I got two more hours of much-needed sleep (inasmuch as I'd had only about four last night due to getting home late and having to be up early.

Thank you to those of you who suggested this. I'll put one of these sleep masks into the Rolling Stone for future use during these long summer days and short summer nights.

Still tired, though. Six hours sleep isn't enough to sleep off a road trip.

Current Mood: tired
Wednesday, July 6th, 2016
11:40 pm
And We're Home
It's rarely a good idea to schedule the final leg of a long road trip to be the longest one, but thanks to us shortening yesterday's trip, that's exactly what happened to us today. We had 450 miles to go to get home. Now I know people for whom that is nothing, but we don't travel that well, and we don't drive above the speed limit that much.

Last Day on the RoadCollapse )

At Klamath Falls, we made the last stop of the Tax Free Tour of Oregon, buying all of the boxes of Breathe-Right strips they had at the Bi-Mart there. We considered stopping for lunch at the Sizzler across the parking lot from the Holiday Inn Express where we often stay, but Lisa was rightly concerned about how late we were running, so we instead grabbed some stuff from the nearby Fred Meyer grocery, and then pressed on.

Oregon-California-NevadaCollapse )

I considered trying to take another day off from work tomorrow and bailing at Alturas; however, I'm committed to covering for a co-worker who is himself taking Thursday off, so I couldn't do it. We even considered spending two nights at Alturas so I could work all day Thursday and part of Friday before going home, but that didn't seem like a great idea. Another plan was to stop at Alturas and fall into bed as early as we could (perhaps 6 PM), then get up again at 2 AM, leave the hotel, and hopefully get home in time for me to be at work for 6 AM Thursday. Fortunately, Lisa felt well enough to do most of the driving aside from a short spell I did from Canby to Alturas.

Last LegCollapse )

At Hallelujah Junction, we made our final stop in California, that being the last chance to buy Mega Millions lottery tickets for the half-billion-dollar draw coming up. (The big multi-state lotteries are one of the few forms of gambling not available in Nevada.) A few minutes later, we were in Reno.

An earlier version of our travel plans had us stopping in Reno to pick up groceries before heading home; however, that was when we planned to start in K-Falls rather than Bend. Also, we'd bought so much along the way on top of all of our tech gear and personal luggage that there really wasn't much room for groceries, so we simply pressed home, stopping at the Pilot Travel Center for a container of milk before arriving home just before 10 PM. That's 450 miles in twelve hours, which isn't a very good average speed, but is not too bad when you consider the obstacles in our way. Our Westercon Road Trip is now over.

We can go this far in a day. We just do not want to do so.

Current Mood: exhausted
Tuesday, July 5th, 2016
11:59 pm
Tax-Free Tour of Oregon
Today's plan was to get away early and hit many places where we wanted to buy things tax free on our way home, then push on to Klamath Falls, Oregon where we had a hotel reservation at the Holiday Inn Express there.

It Didn"t Work Out That WayCollapse )

Although we ended up in Bend instead of Klamath Falls, this turned out to actually be a stroke of luck.

Unexpected InvitationCollapse )

We've vowed to sleep in a little bit tomorrow morning even if we miss the included HIX breakfast, because we still have more than 400 miles to go to get home, and I have to work on Thursday, so we both have to get some rest. Ideally, we would have taken two nights to go home just like we did to go out, but I couldn't take any more days off at this point and thus we have to make the best of it. Still, we only have one more stop on the Tax Free Tour of Oregon left, and we'll do that in Klamath Falls tomorrow.

Current Mood: happy
Monday, July 4th, 2016
11:59 pm
Westercon 69 Day 4: That's a Wrap
We didn't have a whole lot to do today, but I did have my only panel that wasn't a Business Meeting or a Game Show: "How the Hugo Awards Work" with Ben Yalow and David Levine at 1 PM. 50 minutes wasn't nearly enough time to cover the ground we wanted to cover, but we did what we could. At 2 PM I attended the feedback session, which was mostly positive. I thanked Westercon 69 for dedicating an immense amount of programming "resources" to Match Game SF. They gave us 12 program room-hours, only about half of which were actually with other members in them; the rest was set-up. But we got a good show out of it that people were coming up to me today saying how much they enjoyed it. It looks like, subject to us be able to swing the logistics, that the next two Westercons (Tempe and Denver) want us to bring the show on the road to them as well.

Then it was time to bring the convention to an official end.

Gaveling The Convention Over to TempeCollapse )

While the convention was over, the work was not. However, we'd had no lunch, so we took scott_sanford out, intending to have dinner at the Hawthorne Fish House, our favorite Portland-area fish restaurant. Unfortunately, when we got there we found they were closed for the Independence Day holiday. Lisa suggested I find a Black Bear Diner that we hadn't yet visited, so we ended up driving up to Vancouver WA. This also gave us an opportunity to top off the gas tank without having to deal with Oregon's "fuel transfer specialists." (Self service fueling is prohibited in Oregon, outside of certain rural counties.)

Moving Out and Hanging the DogCollapse )

Lisa and I hung around the Dead Dog Party until 11:30 PM, when we headed back to the hotel room. Lisa got the idea that we should move one cart-load of gear down to the van tonight, so I fetched a cart and we moved a load. There's still another load to go that we can't move out until the morning when we're ready to go.

We won't get much sleep tonight. We have a lot of things we want to do between Portland and Klamath Falls, and not many hours to get them done. Unfortunately, I can't take another day off from work; otherwise, we'd take three days driving home instead of two.

Current Mood: tired
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