September 10th, 2013

Hugo Logo

By George, He's Got It!

Former self-described WSFS/Hugo-hater apologizes

He calls for the creation of a new set of awards that he thinks would be more relevant, to be presented at a real convention (i.e. one that draws >50K people, I think) by real fans.

This sort of thing — if you think WSFS is wrong, go try it yourself — is exactly what people like me have been saying for years. As long as you don't use the name "Hugo Award" or any of WSFS's service marks (including the design of the trophy itself), nobody's stopping you from setting up awards that work the way you think they should work.

Mind you, I suspect that when he and his friends try to actually do the work, they'll discover it's a wee bit more difficult than they thought it was. After all, the Hugo Awards as they exist today did not spring fully-formed from the head of Milton Rothman at the 1953 Worldcon. They started haphazardly and in fits and spurts, and have evolved slowly — too slowly for some — over the years. As one of the directors of the non-profit corporation behind the SF & Fantasy Translation Awards as well as having been a past Worldcon chair and Hugo Awards administrator, I know better than most what a lot of the challenges are.

I'll be very surprised if they manage to make anything constructive happen, and if they do, I suspect that they'll end up re-inventing many of the forms that WSFS uses for the Hugo Awards, although they're likely to end up thinking that it's a New Idea and that nobody has ever had to deal with the issues before. But that certainly doesn't mean I'm opposed to them trying. As Bernard Peek said in one of the comments there, "If you are expecting any opposition from SMOFs then I’m afraid you are going to be disappointed."
SMOF License

Stage 13: Hawthorne to Fernley -- Home at Last!

Having slept for at least ten hours at Hawthorne, Lisa and I were feeling almost alive when we left this morning for the final leg home to Fernley, one day later than originally scheduled. We've learned that it's probably unwise to try and drive the 425 miles between Fernley and Las Vegas in one day, and that stopping in Tonopah both directions would be more prudent. Maybe when I was in my early twenties, when I made monster road trips like that, but not anymore.

After having breakfast at the El Capitan Casino in Hawthorne, we set off on the final lap. North of Hawthorne, we decided to take the alternative route home, literally: we turned off US-95 onto Alt-95 to take us via Yerrington, the county seat of Lyon Country. Lisa had been there once, but I've never had cause to go there. We stopped briefly at a grocery store there for a bathroom break and to get something to drink, then pushed home.

Shortly after Noon, we pulled up to our front doorstep. When I ran the numbers on the trip, I was surprised to see that, despite taking very different routes back than out, the distances traveled were almost identical:

Out: 1,852 miles
Back: 1,859 miles
Total: 3,711 miles

The van ran pretty well the whole trip. There was one day where I was concerned that the air conditioning was failing, but that proved to be because it was already a hot day and because in city driving it's not really possible to keep the compressor running full-tilt all the time, so it can't cool things down sufficiently.

We unpacked the car. Many things are likely to stay piled up for a few days until we can find the energy to finish putting them away. I checked in the with Day Jobbe and getting back to work on things, and will spend the rest of the week getting back up to speed, I hope, before heading back to the Bay Area for two weeks in the office there.

I'm tired. Lisa is more tired. She says that travelswithkuma is tired, too. Nothing like a long trip to make you appreciate your home.