Thursday morning I joined emceeaich and cynthia1960 for a leisurely breakfast at the Concourse. Delicious and tasty company. I then hung around aimlessly watching folks arrive. Nodding at folks whose faces have by now grown familiar. Snuggling with some of my annual pals.
Eventually, I rolled into my room and crashed.
Friday morning: Meal #2 at an amazing food cart -- El Grito Taqueria. Yes, pulled pork & pulled chicken make a lovely breakfast.
The Gathering is loud, bright, highly stimulating (to the point of nausea). But the remarkable Jed Hartmann staffed a Gadget Petting Zoo. "There are many marvellous gadgets and devices in the world, and none of us can own all of them." It was entrancing. I had my first hands-on with a fidget spinner1. I picked up a gray-brown fuzzy thing the size of my head which immediately began emitting Tribble sounds. There was a pocket-watch sized astrolabe but nobody knew how to make it happen. A Think Geek catalog come to life.
Meal #3 at Field Table
A $$ restaurant that takes itself seriously, and it's actually tasty food. Definitely improved by the energetic company of sasha_feather, laceblade, j00j, and truephredd. About 45 minutes into the meal, I realized that truephredd was actually someone who I've known for almost a decade.
Panel 1: Recognizing, Naming, and Responding to Abuse and Harassment
Members of WisCon's Safety and Abuse & Anti-Harassment Teams gave an excellent introduction to the natural history of abuse. How do we recognize abusive behavior? They discussed ways to respond to harassment both as victim/survivor and what to do if you recognize yourself as a perpetrator.
This was the first of several times Katherine Cross Quinnae_Moon impressed me with her insights, rhetoric, and humor. The discussion left me hungering for models of restorative justice. As humans, we make mistakes. I do believe it's possible for sincere rehabilitation. I know it isn't in our current prison system.
I chilled for a while then enjoyed tea with sparkymonster. She's one of those magic people I can slide into a conversation whether it's been 20 minutes or 12 months.
Dinner was out of my sack-o'-protein (I've updated my trail tofu to something really tasty.)
I generally get into bed by 9:30, but it was worth that extra tall cup of oolong tea to watch the Vid Party. I remember crowding into a sixth-floor party suite at the first one: around 45 people sardine-wise. This time, we were in the second-to-largest big room Wiscon has, with the vids projected on a huge screen.
I lasted until the first intermission, and there were so many amazing premieres! The last vid before bed was A Better Son/Daughter, eruthros's heartbreaking tribute to Carrie Fisher and the entire room was sniffling, sobbing, and teary-eyed.