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Back from Chattacon

So. Been a while. Some things have been happening. A have a job interview with a Large Sprawling Law Firm on Tuesday. Wish me luck.

So this weekend was Chattacon, a tiny little science fiction convention in Chattanooga that's been going on for a few decades. My brother Sean was throwing one of his infamous room parties, so I went.

Sean's room parties have become the stuff of fandom legend. Unlike most room parties at conventions, they are not to promote other conventions, clubs or societies. They are Just For Fun. He usually throws them on Friday night, on the basis that there's not a hell of a lot going on at your average convention on Friday night.

The theme for this year was Elvis. Sean has been throwing Elvis parties every few years since 1990, when I planted the idea in his head by telling him about a T-shirt I'd seen with "Elvis Tour 1990" on the front and a series of "tour dates" on the back that were places where Elvis has supposedly been sighted (this was back when there were bizarre rumors of Elvis Presley having been seen alive and well in odd places.) Sean not only did his own T-shirt with "tour dates", he also printed up and laminated "backstage passes" as invites and even borrowed a prop of a charred corpse, dressed it in a black jumpsuit, pasted sideburns on it and put an "Access All Areas" pass on it. The Elvis party was a hit, so Sean revived the idea a few more times, each time with a slightly different theme. This year it was Viva Las Vegas. Sean not only obtained preprinted felt for casino games (Blackjack, Texas Hold 'Em and Roulette with a little miniature wheel to go with it) he fucking built slot machines. Okay, cardboard and Plexiglas mock-ups of slot machines, but, still, slot machines. With lights. That looked genuine at first glance, since he'd done these brilliant full-size color copies of actual artwork from real slot machines. This is the kind of stuff my brother does for fun.

I packed my Pink Sequin Dress Of Much Fabulousity and drove up after work. I arrived to find the hotel suite my brother had booked transformed into The King Casino. The suite came with a wet bar, which Sean stocked with his extensive collection of liquor bottles, and a curio cabinet, which my sister-in-law Rozana had cleared of its small collection of porcelain objects and stuffed to the gills with Elvis memorabilia. Sean naturally had his iPod plugged into some speakers with his Elvis playlist (all Elvis, all the time, with one exception--the Mojo Nixon and Skid Roper song "Elvis Is Everywhere", which is practically the theme song to Sean's Elvis parties) but he also cross-tracked it with an audio track he'd pulled from a DVD video game that was the background sounds of a casino--a low murmur of chatter and the clinks and beeps of slot machines.

We set up food and got everything tidied and Rozana and I got a crash course in how to run the Roulette table. Angelo held down the Texas Hold 'Em table and Jeff put on intimidating sunglasses and held down the door. See, the thing about Sean's parties is that they're invite only. This cuts way down on the asshole factor, plus Sean gets to be creative about designing invitations. This year, he designed and ordered metal pins in the shape and approximate size of a casino chip. He scribbled the room number and starting time on the back of each pin with a Sharpie and passed them out to friends and acquaintances. We also set up a little box to roll dice in at the door so those who didn't have invites could try to roll to get in. (Jeff had some loaded dice handy in case he really didn't want somebody there.)

So, after a few people tried to wander in early (and got kicked out) we opened the doors at 10:00 and the crowds stampeded in.

(to be continued . . . )


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 23rd, 2006 02:25 am (UTC)
Ah, Sean's Elvis Parties... *has many fond memories* And Jeff&Angelo, good Lord. Good times...
Jan. 23rd, 2006 03:17 am (UTC)
This sounds sooo fun.
Jan. 23rd, 2006 02:00 pm (UTC)
You had BETTER finish this. I am living the party vicariously through you since I couldn't make it down this year.
Jan. 25th, 2006 02:39 pm (UTC)
good luck with the job! :)
Jan. 29th, 2006 03:51 am (UTC)
Aaand the second part?
Jan. 29th, 2006 04:32 pm (UTC)
Hi, I just added you!
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )