July 18th, 2014

Kevin and Lisa

Detcon 1 Day 1

With few specific commitments to Detcon 1, we didn't have to get up super early, other than we had an included breakfast that ended at 11 AM. After breakfast, we set out for an easy walk around downtown Detroit to see where things were at rather than heading straight down to the Marriott where the NASFIC is at.

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After our mini-sightseeing walk, where we also scoped out restaurants at which we might want to eat (and tried to confirm that they would be open nights and weekends), we went into the Ren Center and eventually found our way to Registration. The Ren Center is a maze of circular passages and ramps, and it's a bit disorienting to find your way there.

I picked up my materials quickly, but photo ID was required and Lisa had left hers in the hotel and none of the people at Registration personally knew her. There was nothing we immediately needed, so we stuck around in the free areas until I connected with Detcon 1 chair Tammy Coxen, who went by Reg and told them that Lisa was who she said she was and that this should be enough to give Lisa her badge. We're grateful to Tammy for her help.

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After a little while longer, it was time for lunch, and we headed back to a place we spotted earlier near our hotel.

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After lunch it was back over to Detcon for the first tranche of panels, which included an Old Time Radio demonstration, with old episodes of X Minus One and other SF/F related shows played over restored old tube-type radios. I enjoyed sitting for a short time in the dark with my eyes closed and listening to the shows. After that, we were on call to help decorate the Montreal in 2017 Worldcon bid party for tonight. Lisa and I had the one characteristic needed: we're both tall, which makes it much easier for us to hang the Canadian flag and the flags of the ten provinces and three territories around the room.

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After helping decorate the room, we left the rest of the set-up to the remainder of the Montreal bid committee present and instead went down to the Opening Ceremony.

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After Opening Ceremonies, we needed to eat. A couple of restaurants in the Ren Center food court (which mostly cater to the lunch trade) agreed to keep longer hours for NASFIC, so we did our part to show that we appreciated this by getting sandwiches from Subway. Then it was back up to the Ambassador Ballroom for SF Jeopardy!. This had one of the J! game systems with remote controls, clickers, and score boards, but Lisa and I thought it could have used better production values like those we bring to Match Game SF. Also, the host of the show allowed himself to be taken out to dinner and kept out so long that the 10 PM start was substantially delayed, which didn't help attendance. Lisa and I left around 11 after the first round and went upstairs to check out the parties. I stopped by the Boston in Christmas 2020 Worldcon bid party, the New Orleans in 2018 Worldcon bid party, and the DC in 2017 Worldcon bid party before returning to the Montreal in 2017 Worldcon bid party I'd helped decorate four hours earlier. I never did get up to the 69th floor, even through the inter-floor stairs do work.

The next thing I knew, it was 1 AM and I'd been merrily discussing Worldcon, WSFS, the Hugo Awards, and sundry other matters for two hours. We called it a night and walked back to the Crowne Plaza. While not an actively dangerous walk, there was one homeless encampment, and I would recommend not traveling alone; however, Lisa and I walking together did not feel threatened on the well-lit streets of downtown Detroit.

Tomorrow we have few commitments again, although I probably need to spend time behind the San Jose in 2018 Worldcon bid table. (We're only doing a bid table, not a bid party.) Lisa may spend time helping with the Luna Society table as well. But we need to allow time to see the Art Show and Dealers Room, which from our initial glances at them look very attractive.