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RIPOSTES 2006-05 (May)

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Talyesin writes...


Morning comes WAY too early but we get ready for Karine and Patrick to pick us up at ten. At ten, we get a call - they're coming to get us at noon. Okay, so more relaxation time is always good, we watch more Trigun. Karine and Patrick show up and we load up the tshirts and auction stuff and our baggage and head off to the airport to pick up Laurean, Liz, and Taylor, and Patrick displays his uber l33t packing skillz!!! Back to Karine's to pick up more stuff, we met up with Kaylee, get everything packed and out to lunch, more packing, many many trips back and forth from the West Island to Downtown and back again, getting all the stuff and all the art display panels and everything to the Hotel. Met up with Chameleongirl and Sapphire, YAY YAY YAY!! I spent some time packing con packets, which was a lot of fun. Then still MORE time on the road, heading out to the airport to pick up Greg. We hung around the con suite, then headed out for a VERY late supper. There was a bit of a mixup, at first I thought the supper was open to everyone who wanted to attend. Turns out we had to let down a bunch of people, which was unfortunate. Had a very nice late supper, headed back to the hotel, collapsed asleep.


Why oh why is morning so FREAKING EARLY? Head off to a local diner for a very slow breakfast, which meant everything got pushed back a little. Unfortunately we wound up losing one of our dealers, who had shown up early to set up and been told by the hotel's staff there was no convention going on, so they had left. Oh well, we wound up needing that space in the dealers' room for other stuff. I manned registration for most of the day, which annoyed me a little because with Karine in panels all day long, it kind of seemed like no one was in charge and things got a little disorganized. But that's probably the control freak in me talking. Anyhow, we got the news that Keith David's plane had been delayed from 6 PM to 11 PM. I went down to the auditions at 3, intent on auditioning, Jen grabbed me and said, "You're auditioning first so you can get back to work." I read for Xanatos, and I guess my voice work and all those years in theatre paid off, because Greg told me normally he'd have me read from the back of the room to see if I can project, but that wouldn't be necessary in my case. Anyhow, I went back to work. With someone else manning the registration desk, my control freak stress level went way WAY down, and we were off to opening ceremonies, where we got more news about Keith David being delayed once again - to Saturday, 5 PM. Sigh. Okay, so we start off Opening Ceremonies, my first ever! Greg tells a bunch of stories and shows a bunch of video clips, pitches for the show mostly, that everyone seems to by heart, except me. Anyhow, Opening Ceremonies are a success, everyone seems to enjoy the Clan Olympics interruption, and around nine-ish (I think) we head off to supper with the Andersons and the Morgans. There's a Blue Mug a Guest at 11, but I'm zonked, so I head off to bed.


Grab a quick breakfast in the Hotel restaurant, get organized for the day. Set someone up to take over con suite and reg desk so I can spend the day running around making sure everything is getting done, which is what I really truly need to do and luckily I'm fairly good at it. At 12:30 they post the cast for the Radio Play, I got cast. Rehearsals start up after lunch, and I got the part of GOLIATH!! WOO!! If Keith hadn't been late, I would have gotten another part, I think... but it's the one time I'm HAPPY he's late! We rehearse the play once all the way through, Greg gives us notes, and then head on over to the show! Believe it or not, that's NOT the least rehearsal time I've ever had... anyhow! Greg introduces the cast, I get the big starring intro and a huge round of applause. The radio play - The Journey, from Goliath Chronicles, is a GREAT success, everyone loved it, AND I got to say the title of the play! Woo!! So then we're off and running to get everything organized for the Banquet. Daniel Fortin, our contact at the hotel, had printed up some GREAT souvenir menus, the Banquet is AMAZING, although I spent most of it waiting for Keith to arrive, both because he's the Guest of Honour and I'm on staff and wondering where the hell he is because he should have been here two hours ago, AND because our table won the draw for where he was to sit! We'd be sitting with Keith David! YAY! So eventually he shows up and Sandman7 sniped my seat! No biggie, he deserved it for all the hard work he did all weekend. Congrats Marc, you're welcome. After banquet, we split up to get all costumed up. The wig we had planned for my Xanatos costume didn't fit, so I wore the black suit anyway and went as President Luthor. *LOL* Anyhow, the Masquerade was AMAZING, Cindy looked awesome as Titania, Karine looked great as Pregnant Fox, in fact, ALL the staff who dressed up looked FANTASTIC. So after the Masquerade there were TONS of pictures being taken, and we had to figure out how to hook up the Karaoke, which we eventually did. Cindy kicked it off with an AMAZING rendition of All That Jazz. Cins you ROCK! Then she and I beat a hasty retreat to tally up the Art Show votes. Good thing we did too, because we were up until 1:30 AM counting all the votes. Collapsed asleep that night, lemme tellya.


ugh... mornings suck. Quick breakfast, the last of the panels. Took down the art panels during Keith's Mug-a-Guest. He's a great storyteller. I got some bad news about my uncle dying then, left me a little dazed for the afternoon. Closing ceremonies went VERY well, thanks. I got to sit next to Keith, he's a VERY cool guy. Chit-chatted with him a little during the ceremonies. Most of Sunday is a bit of a blur I was so freaking tired. Closing ceremonies, then the signing with Keith, where I got him to sign my Radio Play script, telling him I had been his understudy. He laughed. After the signing, we closed up everything and went up to the con suite where Scott Rogoff had set up a WONDERFUL thank-you gift for the Staff - some bottles of wine and some great chocolate. What with the booze we had bought for ourselves, we had QUITE a fine time at the Dead Dog Party, lemme tellya. Ordered the best pizza EVER ( flavoured with exhaustion and hunger, so may be my memory is a little biased) had a great time at the DDP.

All in all, this was the absolutely best way for me to lose my con virginity - that's right, it was my first convention EVER. And it ABSOLUTELY ROCKED. I loved the family atmosphere, the sense of community. It was AMAZING, and I really have the fans to thank.

Greg, you created a fantastic show. But what's more important, you created a Clan out of the fans. Thanks.

Greg responds...

Thank you. Thank you all. Give yourselves a hand.

Response recorded on May 04, 2006

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Liz Chesterman writes...

Gathering 2004 Report
Or: Nips and Lipples! Keith David owes me money!

Wed, Aug 4th

I start with Wednesday because it was such an important day, being the last day before we left. I was up at slightly after 8am and wouldn't quit until 1:30 am Friday morning. Wednesday was mostly spend making prints, buying ink, doing last minute errands. Packing was easy, for the most part; I just wanted to make sure I took the right supplies, didn't forget the most important originals, and get my damn mask done. The wig had to be sewn on, then I had to figure out how to pack the costume in a way it would receive minimal damage on the journey.

I ended up forgetting Binoicle: Mask of Light. Bummer. But I didn't forget anything really important.

Taylor and I left at 4am Thursday and had no problems getting on the various planes and etc, despite being total zombies. I would faze from being a zombie to being awake all Thursday. But that's almost typical pre-con Liz anyhow.


Was very long. Of course, that I'd been up since 8am the previous day didn't help. But we made it into Canada with no mishaps, and met up with Trishana right after we got our baggage. Somehow we managed to be on the same plane in and not realize it. It was great to hook up with her at the airport tho'. We also managed to snag Laurean a bit later.

Patrick, Karine, Cindy and Rob picked us up in a van (after waiting for a while, wondering if we were waiting in the wrong place). Everyone kept asking me what kind of van, what color van Patrick was driving. I kept responding: "How am I supposed to know, it's a rental?" Ah well, we were all worried and nervous.

Headed to Karine's to pick up Brenda, then had Poutine at the same restaurant from February. Back to Karine's to pick up equipment and supplies, then onto the hotel!

I realize now my Live Meet 2004 Report is rather incomplete. I'll have to piece it together later.

Snagged Trishana at the hotel and shoved Taylor on her. (Wanted to give Taylor a chance to not have to deal with staff things and start enjoying himself pre-con. Plus I figured he'd enjoy Trishana's company.)

Helped haul a crap load of things from the van to the cons uite and such. Packet stuffing time! Half of the staff got together to stuff pins, PGAs, shirts and programs into the pre-registered packets. I have to say again that the pins were awesome (Thanks, Two Wacky Pin Guys!) and the programs were gorgeous, thanks to Laurean. Yes dear, you rock. Don't let anyone tell you differently.

Managed to get praise from Costume Goddess Cindy on my Yama costume. Got some tips and hints and help for future projects as well.

Hauled my own suit cases to Kelly's room, met up with Trishana, met Julie, Australian Coolie. I remember futzing around, then getting snacks with Kelly, Trishana (coffee!), Julie, Taylor, Tony and I know here name but it escapes and shames me. "Elisa Maza." It'll come to me. No, not Salli Richardson. Gah. Andrea! Anyhow, I got some fruit and we all talked for a while. Headed back to the hotel and chilled with people, keeping in mind about the Staff/not staff dinner.

Anyhow, futzed around, and got more surly, grumpy, tired and hungry by the minute (sorry guys), but dealt with it. Time rolls around for the staff/not staff dinner and Greg has not arrived. We've gotta wait another hour. Or so. Taylor and I explored the hotel a little, found the underground/covered alley-way, then talked with some arriving fans at the hotel, then back to the hotel room for a while.

Looking forward to the staff/not staff dinner was the only thing keeping me awake at this point. At the last minute, find out it's now a staff only dinner. ;.; Well. That's all I'll say there. There were good reasons, I'll leave it at that.

The walk was long (both ways) but entertaining (both ways). The dinner was great, but a bit overpriced IMHO. I was so happy to get to the hotel and just crash. Everyone else in the room was asleep already, gah! But I managed to not only go to bed without bothering people, but get up at a decent hour for pre-con staff breakfast.


Breakfast was at some local restaurant. We got the day planned over coffee and assorted things, then headed back to the hotel to get the con started and the art show put up. I took a shower, then tried to help answer questions, set things up and whatnot. Discussed events with the Clan Olympics hosts, set up my own art show (badly, yet again. I'll learn some day), and attend a voice acting panel hosted by the incomparable Greg Weisman.

Gawked over artwork in the show, set up my own Artist Alley table with Taylor. People like my work, and that makes me happy.

The DVD crew was out and about, starting with the first panels. I'm sure they got many, many many, many interesting things over the weekend.

Opening Ceremonies was fun; I got to start talking about the various contests happening at the con when the Clan Olympics literally stole the stage (and me right off it!) and had their first event, Stuff It!, right there in the middle of the ceremony. Rawk! Yes, it was staged, but apparently I was convincing enough that the audience didn't realize it. Makes me happy. I think it really opened up the con in an upbeat way. Not only did the teams have fun, but the audience loved the antics. Afterward I finished my contests points and handed the podium on to the next staff member.

Greg did his usual schpeils and showed the various pitches for The Dark Ages, The New Olympians, Bad Guys and played the audio for The Last. He also played a tape made by Carol Wagner of a bunch of staff, cast and crew for the show, a new bonus for the convention!

"Vampires... it's what we're not."
-Ed Asner

Afterward was dinner at Le Marche (The Move and Pick) with Ethan, Kyffin, Julie, Trishana, Kelly and Taylor. I had garlic bread with cheese, stir fry shrimp, cappucino and cheesecake with berries and chocolate sauce. Yum!!

Taylor and I went to the Blue Mug-A-Guest after dinner. The con suite was just packed with people, but the mug wasn't very blue (adult). Poor Taylor; Puck is Owen he didn't know yet, but found out and ducked out afterward so as to not be spoiled on any other points. (He's only seen the first few episodes of season 2). I started drifting off during the thing; it's hard for me to stay awake late at night if my hands aren't busy, and I was teased for it. Ah well, it's true, it's true. Ian arrived a bit later, and stayed for about a half hour. I was awake again by then, but when we got back to the rooms everyone else was asleep. :P So to bed, again!

Julie and I tried chatting for a while tho', since she wasn't very tired either. But poor Trishana couldn't take it. "Man... guuuys... geeeeez." Boy, that was funny. We got quiet and went to sleep.

Artist Alley again! I loved talking to people about my different works and doing artsy things. I worked on my Then and Now image (to be posted later), then auditioned for the Radio Play. I read for Angela, since apparently no one else had. I got into the play with just 2 lines, the same word three times, but still had a blast.

Back to Artist Alley, which started booming around lunch. And the DVD crew came at some point to film the art show. I attended part of the auction and bid on some things. I really wanted some Rita M. art (damn, I even made the prints for her!), but missed my chance on two pieces. However, they went for fabulous prices, and that pleases me greatly. Taylor bid on a cel from Awakening Pt 3, but let it go at $450. I think it ended up reaching $455 CAD. Congrats to the auctioneers Taras and Sandman7, who were fabulous. We then I practiced for the Radio Play, then I scrambled around getting the music videos running. Phew!

The Radio Play, The Journey, went wonderfully. Mike, who played Vinnie, won my heart over with his performance. Then people scrambled to watch the music videos and I got to chill for a little bit before the Banquet.

Our table got Greg Weisman as our guest of honor. Okay. I'll be honest. It hurts, but I will. Karine made a mistake in announcing the draw and said we'd get Keith David. Now, I love Greg to death. And I love hearing his stories, accomplishments, failures, funny moments and etc, but I was super psyched to get Keith. So I was a little disappointed for a moment (and felt horrible), but you know what? Having Greg at the table for dinner was awesome and I do not regret that in any way. So, you go Greg.

Dinner was fabulous. Even after tasting and picking everything out in February I was yet again amazed at how good the food was. And except in a few strange cases, everyone loved the meal. Quail stuffed with grapes? Shrimp cocktail with avocado? Delicate chocolate and fruit desserts? Oishisouuuuuuuuuuuuu.

Keith finally arrived at the end of dinner, and folks were all geared up to ask him questions. Poor guy. After being delayed three times and being awake for ever and I'm sure starving as well, he still delighted in answering questions. I had to cut out, tho', to get the Masquerade forms counted and organized, then get into costume myself.

Trishana and Ian helped with the Masquerade organization, then I popped down to the room where Trishana, Julie and Kelly helped me dress. And boy did I need the help. I will say again, I would not have been able to get dressed without your help, ladies. Especially the body paint part. And the man boobies on the bodyplate.

Down to level C where Ian and I corralled Masquerade contestants into Recency A and got them set up to show off their stuff. I was amazed with all the costume submissions this year, and so very happy to see a plethora of cannon characters. I was also extremely pleased to see so many non-contestants dressed up for the ball. I was especially impressed with just about every staff member dressing up and Lynati's Ophelia.

Oh yeah, folks were impressed with my Yama costume too. I'm just glad it survived the trip up with little damage. After showing off, having a billion pictures taken in different areas and poses, I was more than eager to change to something more normal. Because it might have looked good, but DIZAMN was it hot! I can't wait to see photos.

I changed and showered after, then headed back down to the ball for dancing and karaoke. Mostly karaoke. Strange! People liked it tho', even if my CDs didn't display the lyrics in Jen's computer. Taylor blew people away with his rendition of the 'Love Boat' theme, and a group of 20 or so amused the crowd with their rendition of YMCA with no lyrics. "Something, something somethingsomething. Somethingsomething.." I sang too, but am shamefully out of practice and shamed myself with Heart Breaker. Maybe next year I'll be smart and do Black Velvet or Holding out for a Hero.

I eventually split with Kelly and Taylor, and we went back to the room to draw and talk with Julie and Trishana. We stayed up lat and loved it!


Ah no, it's nearing the end of the con. Got up late but down to Artist Alley only 45min late. Stayed there for a while, then hosted my panel on marker and computer coloring. Granted, nearly everyone was in the Keith David Mug-A-Guest, but to the few that were there: Thank you. I enjoyed helping you guys out.

Back to Artist Alley for a bit, where I met Felix in person! Foofy hair! I met Gen earlier in the hotel room. Then on to Closing Ceremonies. Karine got to thank everyone again, and 2005 Staff talked, Clan Olypics announced the winners, promised to return next year, Cindy handed out all the art show awards, and I announced the Music Video Contest winner.

Keith David had his autograph signing while the staff fled up to the con suite for the thank you present from Scott "Abe" Rogoff. For those who didn't know it was coming, they were A) surprised B) elated C) unbelievably grateful. For those that did, just B and C, but still. Scott? You rock. Thanks for my Ginger sauce!

Word got around that Keith David was blown away by my print of Spawn and Goliath together. He wanted a print! I was going to give him one anyway, but that he liked it so much.. he loved it! I couldn't wait to give him one, and get my own copy signed.

But first I helped with taking the Art Show panels and such down, then to the van. Good work. And I got pre-registered for Gathering 2005, Vegas, then waited in line for Keith David. (And Gen, Felix, Ian, Trishana, Julie, Kelly and Taylor were hungry. We all wanted dinner. But I couldn't take the chance of not getting Keith's autograph.) I had him sign some things and was random fan #23598716098 until I pulled out my 11x14 print of Rumbling Thunder. Please sign this too? The other stuff was just icing; I made that print specifically for him to sign for me.

And he asked for a print for himself. I pull out 1/10, "It's always been my tradition to hand guests a piece of artwork as thanks for coming." And he goes, "Could you sign it for me?" So I did, and he asks, "Do you have any more?"

Pause. "Ah, yeah, I've got three or four."

"Can I have them?"

Pause. "Sure! I've got some here. Lesse.. oh, I've six."

"Great. I'll take them all."


"How much."

"Ten dollars. But for you, five!"

"No no, you decide how much. Just let me have the rest and I'll pay you. Do you have a card?"

"Yes, but not on me. I'll go get you one."

And then Shaun took pictures of me with Keith David,... eeeee! Had then to grab my Artist Alley supplies and take them to the room, then get some business cards. Waited in line again to be polite, and handed Keith the original 11x14 ink of the image. I was going to keep it, but, what the hell. It just made the experience even more special.

"I've got some cards. Do you want just one, or a couple?"

"Give me a couple."

I hand them to him. "Someone might contact you."

Liz. About to pass out, figuratively.

So then he had to go get cash. I didn't actually get paid until late Monday, but that's okay. It was Keith David, I knew he was good for it. Any still, even if hadn't, to be able to say, "Keith David owes me money!" is one of those strange, weird, awesome things. I'm sure he had to go to dinner with his family and other fun things, plus he was planning on possibly going to laser tag with the fans.

We finally headed to dinner, sans Kelly and Julie, who were in the business meeting for 2005. That's cool; important stuff planning for a con is. Gen, Felix, Trishana, Taylor, Ian and I were headed off through the streets of Montreal to a place that had food in crepe form! What. A. Spectacular. Dinner. Holy cow, Montreal has good food! And the dinner conversation/company was great. Never a dull moment. Never an awkward one. You guys rule.

Back to the hotel and to Tacky Town, thanks to Ian. I bought an Inu Yasha and Sesshomaru pillow and some zipper pulls. One over-priced item a trip! We then had to part ways with Gen and Felix, boo, but hopefully I will meet up with them again.

Back at the hotel there's the Dead Dog Party for a while, then video game competition fun! I had fun kicking ass in Mario Kart, and even ended up owning the Double Dash Master, Taylor, once. And it felt so good.

By the way, Mike "Riverdale," you also rule. You were one of the most amusing people I met at the con this year. "Sucking hind teat" indeed.

Well, after Bloody Roar: Primal Fury, we had to call it a night. Afterall, tomorrow was LaRonde day!


Monday we all got going pretty much on time and got to the park in good order. Group shot in front of the fountain, then we rode some crappy stand-up coaster. Then lunch, and DDR! w00T! I'm so out of practice, but I had a great time anyway. Probably because despite being out practice Kelly and I still showed up the 'tweens trying to hound the pads. Feh! We then rode The Dragon, 'oooh, aaaah,' the crappiest ride the in the park, but amusing, and the ferris wheel. Oh yeah, I forced Dippin' Dots upon Julie, and she loved them.

The Monster had been closed earlier, but was open by then, so we rode the second tallest wooden coaster in the world. What a fantastic ride! As far as wooden coasters go, it was the second best I've ever been on. Second only to the Cyclone at Coney Island.

After that we were going to enter in the Double Dash tourney in the Nintendo building. But it wasn't worth it; 50+ horny 10-16yr olds (mostly 10yr olds) acting like it was a life or death thing? Feh, Taylor would have wiped the floor with them all; castrated them before they knew what as coming. So we didn't bother; Taylor's the Double Dash Master; he doesn't need to prove it... but so many times. Instead we waited in line for The Vampire for an hour and a half. Awesome ride that one.

Afterward, Dippin' Dots for Liz and Kelly. Ian and Taylor went off to ride a back-and-forth, swinging-spinning ride. Julie, Kelly and I instead played DDR. Well.. Kelly and I DDR'd, Julie watched. Kelly fended off the pad monkeys, and we kicked ass again.

Headed back to the hotel and had to part ways with Ian. Love the guy; wish he could have stayed yet another additional night.

Dinner at Tim Hortons.. it was okay. After calling Le Marche, "open 'til 12!" but not really; arrived at 10... doors locked. Bastards.

Back to the hotel yet again to babble and doodle. Sang the 'Star Wars Cantina' parody to Copa Cabana with the additional verse Taylor and I came up with. Arted, laughed, a lot. Eventually slept.


Ahh, Tuesday. Why'd you have to come so soon? Packed up all my stuff, got breakfast. Wrote a note to Keith David and took it to his room with Taylor.

Keith David.. answered the door... and hugged me again! I thanked him for coming, for interacting with the fans, for being so fun, friendly and the stories. He's totally psyched to come to Vegas in 2005. Did I mention that before? Because it's true.

Best Keith quote:
"Excuse me? You take that right back where you got it."

On phrases you bring home with you from your travels. (Like Australia.)

Keith is so much fun to talk to. He's so.. one on one, down to earth. And he invited Taylor and me to go to the spa and pool with him and his son. Spa. With. Keith David. Pool. I could have spent the day with Keith David! Gah! But Patrick, ever the calm voice of reason, happened to interceed and reminded us that we indeed have a plane to catch. Sigh. I got more hugs from Keith David tho', and that makes me unbelievably happy. Like Greg, it'll carry me to 2005.

Oh yeah. This didn't hurt:

"Where are you guys heading?"
"Richmond, Virginia."
"Ah, I have family down in Virginia Beach I'm visiting in September."
"Oh, it's wonderful there that time of year. Still warm, but most of the tourists have cleared out. I'm sure you'll have a great visit."
"Oh yes. And maybe I'll give you a call."

Again. Even if he doesn't.. that it was said.. damn! Happy Liz! More points for Keith David! More hugs too. ;>

The plane rides were uneventful, but quick. Even the 2hr layover in Cleveland wasn't bad. I sketched for Patrick on the first plane ride. Just for chips and giggles I did a female Puck.

Madeline and Mrs. Fauss picked us up at RIC and dropped us off at their house, where we collected Taylor's Tahoe and headed back to my home. Taylor dropped me off and we talked for a while, then my stuff was hauled inside, and crashed. Phew!

I had an unbelievably wonderful time at the convention this year. It's definitely been my best Gathering yet, and I've heard the same thing from some of the other fans as well. This pleases me to no end, and I hope 2005 goes as well as 2004 did. Good luck to you, Las Vegas. And I look forward to seeing everyone, and more, back in late July next year!

Remember, you have A YEAR to plan; no excuses! It's Vegas too, so it'll be much cheaper than normal. Don't let The Gathering pass you bye! If start now with a positive attitude, you will make it.

Greg responds...

I'm glad I wasn't too big a disappointment at the banquet. (I totally understand. It sometimes amazes me that the entire fandom isn't totally bored with me by now.) Think of it this way, you got me and you didn't really lose out on Keith since he didn't show until much later.

Response recorded on May 04, 2006

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So in a tryce came the documentary depicting many a Chinese doll and also the three wise men (who may or may not have been kings) that needed sixty-two dollars between them to redeem the coupon, which offered up solace and not a little irony to anyone who hadn't yet seen the crew chewing on leaves that weren't tobacco, but might have been sage and still left horrible stains in the dirt floor of the lean-to where I left my ski poles after the overnight with the cranes that were kept on the lake domestically for the purpose of tourism but who could also speak Latin on occasion when prompted by offers of cheese or jerky -- though not just any jerky, it had to be salmon jerky -- which isn't always easy to come by when you've agreed to leave before closing on summer days in the springtime of your life, which has been known to last longer in people who aren't concerned about under-inebriation or over-intoxication or both: it's the balance which is everything when nothing else will do and no one else will participate in the extravaganza that's been created by the giant invisible flying monkey brain that is modern life in the Twenty-First Century, counting since the (approximate) birth of Christ -- as long as the lack of the number zero doesn't disturb your math sensibilities as, frankly, it does mine, though I like to think I've made peace with that and with the Skrull too, since I haven't picked up an issue of that book in about nine years, which wasn't an intentional or explicit act of cold turkey so much as a sliding away followed by a none-too-impressive epiphany -- far from the best epiphany I've ever had, say, compared to Tintagel or Lego, not to mention the birth of certain children, which couldn't get more personal than the zany antics of the semi-erotic flea circus, which used to travel the stars waiting for an invitation to land at your door, since you are the personal target of the extra-lunar probe that counted all the seahorses that Aquaman used to make the giant seahorse that he could actually ride, though no faster than he could swim himself on his own power -- and no, we're not talking Super Friends here, but something older, more primal, something that was born back when the Ptero-whatever streaked across the sky leaving behind contrails made not of smoke but of pure and unadulterated grace, a commodity in which we are sorely shy as a planet, and yet which we find in the most unlikley of places, including but not limited to contracts which dictate how we will interact with each other but do it in such a way that no normal human being could possibly wrap their heads around the language and internalize the meaning, which we declare to be progress or civilization and which is not meant as a criticism so much as a detachment of troopers marching on a hill that you wouldn't pay five ducats -- FIVE! -- to buy yourself, or so I told myself and Hamlet night after night, but now Hamlet is a Thief on FX and I haven't seen him face to face in over twenty years, which sometimes seems quite normal but sometimes blows me away, not that I want to move backwards at all, though I'm not sure that I'm truly moving forward and I'm convinced I'm not moving sideways, though the metaphor of the sidewinder is appealing, not in the cliché sense of something sinister and left-handed, though I do throw with my left hand, I can bowl just as badly with either hand, and even though I'm 42, I quite prefer to have bumpers instead of gutters, where the rain gets backed up and sometimes flows over the lip and creates leaks in the roof and drips, drips, drips down into the shiny metal bowl that's usually used for something much more pleasant like mixing cookie dough to create chewy wonderful ... well.. cookies (I mean "duh") that taste a little bit like home even when you are home and it is raining, or maybe ESPECIALLY when you are home and it is raining and the water overflows and the ocean fills and the giant seahorse peaks out and winks at the cranes, which is exactly what the documentary crew was hoping to capture when they first took out their cameras and shot the whole thing from three different angles across six different days and still never saw the giant invisible flying monkey brain, because it was, to put it mildly, invisible.

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Dylan Blacquiere writes...

The last of my Gathering journal. Now it's off to shame my friends into writing them!

Sunday, August 8

I hadn’t mentioned the Gargoyles Biology panel that I had been scheduled to give with Yggdrasil and Lynati up to this point; the reason is that I hadn’t worked on it, and so waking up that morning was just like school – making a mad rush to the Tim Hortons with a notepad and jotting down discussion notes. It looked very much like my early mornings in undergrad when I’d stumble, bleary-eyed, to the Pit (the campus coffee store) and do the work that I should have done the night before. I got back in time to greet Andrew and Mercedes parents – they were leaving early, and I gave some warm goodbyes – and then I went down to the Auditorium to get the talk ready. Check the lights, write a few things on the white-board – everything that those of us who’ve given thesis seminars know about first hand. This, though, was at least promising to be fun, though there was no degree lurking at the end of it.
It went spectacularly. We had a great crowd, and I was vastly impressed with the turn-out we had, considering that we were up against the adult round robin and the first of the mug-a-guests with Keith David (though we later found out that Keith hadn’t made it to his first one, so maybe that’s kind of unfair). Yggdrasil had got a powerpoint slide on genetic engineering ready, and Lynati had her notes on musculature and bone structure ready. I was acting more as facilitator, I suppose, but we had a lot of good questions and neat ideas on the metabolism of stone sleep, the mechanics of gargoyle gliding, the healing factor, the glowing eyes, etc. The DVD crew came in and filmed us, and so there’s the geek closet just blown wide open, but it was still a great talk filled with neat ideas and fun people. Some people told me later that they wished Greg had been there, but I have the suspicion that Greg is just happier not thinking too much about the biology of the show. I’m sure many a B.Sc undergrad would feel the same way, given the opportunity. But I have to say it again; there are a lot of thoughtful and smart people in the fandom, many of whom have tried to look at the broader scientific questions that get asked with a series like this. There were even a few questions that flirted with the blue end of the spectrum, though everything ended up nice and PG friendly.
After this it was a mad-dash scramble to get checked out of the room and to stow our stuff in Ellen’s room, and then we were immediately wrangled by Christine to go and start signing copies of the Phoenix Gate Anthology in the art-show room. I signed quite a few for the other authors and artists, and I also signed quite a few for a lot of fans who seemed amused at the whole idea of us sitting at the table and brandishing pens. I felt a little like a poser, and since Keith still hadn’t come downstairs yet, I also felt a little like the opening-act who won’t get off the stage to let the headliners come on. But we did get great seats for the mug-a-guest, and Keith finally did come downstairs; he got to talk to everyone except the PGA crew and Carole semi-firmly told him to sit down and start answering questions (Nicely, though; I’m mostly teasing. Mostly).
The night before I had been speaking with Keith one-on-one; this time I got to see him work the crowd. He’s singularly charming and he answered every question with wit and a genuine sense of enjoyment. He’s also a master of the artful segue, and quite often a seemingly closed question would branch off into a rich and expressive answer that had nothing to do with what had been asked, but gave a great glimpse into the mind of someone who clearly feels at home in his own skin and who viewed his craft as art and calling as much as job and paycheque. Just like in my conversation last night, his topics ranged from acting to philosophy, and I think he would have gone on for hours had not Carole insisted that he go and get some lunch before the closing ceremonies. With that, he took his leave, and the rest of us lingered and settled in to wait for the last Gathering event. I was starved and there was no time to run up to the Tim’s; I went looking through the underground mall for something to eat but everything was locked up tight. Annoying, but hardly the end of the world; I figured I could live of my glycogen stores for a couple of hours and wait until the airport for food.
Closing ceremonies was kind of a blur; I was kind of distracted, wondering if we’d have time to be able to say proper good-byes to friends before having to run out and catch a taxi to the airport. We watched the art show awards, and Stormy was amazed at winning five ribbons (I was happy that the Whitbourne kitbash and Revel’s picture with good ol’ Witless in it won some accolades, but then again, I’m vicariously selfish). We got to hear the pitch for Las Vegas, and I decided that I would go as long as my projected voyage to Africa for school next summer allows it. I also had to explain my T-shirt (it says “MEAT” and has a picture of a T-bone steak with a caduceus on it). a few people asked about it, and I had to tell them that it was a shirt printed for our joke-gentlemen’s club at school. MEAT stands for Medicine, Ethanol, And Testosterone. It’ll be on the DVD, I assume, since the crew was there for the biology panel, so of anyone’s curious, that’s it.
The ceremonies ended earlier than I expected, and so Stormy and I had time to join the line to have Keith sign our Phoenix Gate anthologies after all. Stormy showed him the Goliath she had dressed up in drag for the art show, and he thought that was flipping hilarious. He also sang to her; a riff on her fan-name, which he justified by saying that he’d had a friend nick-named Stormy when he was younger. He signed her book, and that book’s now at her parent’s house in Clifford, Ontario, stored safely away for posterity.
I got him to sign my book, too, right on the front page of my story. He remembered me from the night before and we followed up for a moment on the conversation we’d had. Once he got a close look at my name, he looked up at me and asked if I was familiar with the works of Dylan Thomas.
I nodded. “I was named after him, actually,” I said, and this is true, though my parents hadn’t read any of his poems and they just thought his name was interesting.
“He had some good advice,” Keith said, and then he took my book and his pen again. At that point he’d simply signed “To Dylan – all the best”, but he then added “& remember – do not go gentle into that good night”. I’ve never planned on doing so, but now I have even more incentive. Thanks, Keith.
Time was growing criminally short, now, and the last of the Gathering was spent saying farewells to all of our friends again. Lynati, Wingless, Allaine, Kathy, Maui, Princess, Mara, Aaron, Spacebabie, Revel, Dan, Flanker – the list is endless, with so many dear friends to speak of that it’s impossible to name them all. We didn’t pre-register for the Gathering next year – there just wasn’t time – but we both know that unless we’re in faraway lands at the same time as the Gathering, we’ll be there in Las Vegas. Heck, I’m actually buying a guitar and learning to play it just for next year’s Gathering, so I can go as Bonavista. (And now that’s on the Internet, so people can hold me to it as though it were a legal contract.) We got to prolong the farewell with Ellen, mostly because we were stashing our swag in her room for the afternoon, but in the end we had to say bye to her too, and that one was just like last year’s for me – bittersweet, with the promise of a Gathering reunion the next year.
We left, pretty low-key, got our stuff, took a taxi to the airport; we talked of the Gathering the whole way there, confusing the driver, I’m sure, and we looked back at the Montreal skyline, wishing we were staying but knowing that the real world was beckoning. We got to the airport – twenty minutes, thirty-one bucks, just like last time, and did the dance of the Infernal Check-In, with its ritual questions of “did you pack your bags yourself” and “did you leave them unattended” to round out the routine. We ate junk food for supper and then boarded the plane; on the way there I ran into one of my friends from med school, who had been in Montreal visiting friends. We talked for a few minutes, but we didn’t say much; she ran into a friend of hers from undergrad, and Stormy and I were tired, but still, that time we spent waiting in the gate seemed to sum it all up. At one end of the chairs was my friend Erin, where we talked about med school and Halifax, but then I went back to my own seat and read the stories in the Phoenix Gate Anthology until it was time to board the plane. Real-life and fan-life have always been sort of an interesting dichotomy for me, and somehow that image, so close to the end of the Gathering, lingers as much as anything else that happened that weekend.
On the plane ride home, I fussed and fidgeted for a while, and then turned on my laptop and started editing a fanfic story that I hadn’t touched in three months. It felt right and proper. It won’t ever get me published, and sometimes I fear that the crowd who reads that is ever diminishing, but still, it felt good. Stormy looked at me with patient understanding; Ellen, I’m sure, would have beamed. It wasn’t all that productive; by the time I started getting into the editing groove we were landing in Halifax and catching our bags and finding the car, but it was there. The Gathering had brought me back into the fold.
I’m writing this a couple of weeks after – as a crappy postscript, I just found out that the alternator on our car went and it needs to be replaced, something that seems to be a shortly-after-the-Gathering tradition – but I’m still feeling the buzz. I’m going to show my family and friends the Phoenix Gate story, and I’m going to natter them into buying the DVD. I’m going to look into going to Africa next summer but I’m also going to make sure I have time to go to Vegas. I’m going to learn to play the guitar and make enough money that I can buy all the guests a round for next year. And most importantly of all, I’m going to get out my laptop more and write, as much and as often as I can about the things that command me to write about them. It won’t always be fanfic; other muses lurk in the ether that have visions of the Giller, the Booker and the Nobel prizes in their heads, but it will be what I enjoy. That’s the legacy from the Gathering that I want to keep.
See you all in Vegas.

Greg responds...

Wow. That's bloody inspirational. And although it probably sounds like it, I am NOT being sarcastic. Honestly.

And for the record, I've always wanted to attend one of those "Gargoyle Biology" Panels, but I'm always scheduled to do something else at the same time. But I'd love to talk about that with fans at some point. Casually.

Response recorded on May 03, 2006

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Zehra writes...

Babbles on The Gathering 2004 - (part II)

Saturday, August 7th

I woke up (around 7, says my memopad. I kept a small memopad during the con to jot down notes, but I honestly don't remember waking up that early. I wonder why?) Killed time by eating breakfast and lunch. At some point, I visited the dealer's room and met Jen's dashing hubby, Alan (whose goal it would be to get me to mack on his wife the rest of the con.) Oh, like I need any persuasion... ;)

It was also confirmed that Keith David would be missing the radio play, but would be there in time for the banquet. I was kinda bummed. Because playing *opposite Keith David* would have been...it would have been close to a religious experience, let me put it that way. But I guess it wasn't meant to be. It was still insanely fun and Rob did an awesome job as Goliath.

But I'm getting ahead of myself.. Saw the cast list posted, and then wandered around. Was told by Carol that I should go down and talk to the DVD people. Eeek. I love interviews, but not unless I feel very familiarized and fresh with the subject matter (and to be honest, I've not really had the chance to watch much Gargoyles in the past 7 months abroad) So one thing I was kind of reflecting on this whole con was 'what Gargoyles means to me.'

I went down, watched some really good interviews before me (including Michael's, which just blew me away. It was everything you could possibly want in an interview like that! I am betting a large cut of what he says makes it on to the dvd.) Then I did my interview for the DVD people. Let me rephrase that. I fed spacecrack to the DVD people.

I think it was because I was grappling with that question--what does Gargoyles mean to me? I can't say specifically that Gargoyles inspired me to follow a certain career path, but I can say that it largely shaped the way I think about the world and the person I became. It was like a crash course in Shakespeare, world mythology and history, a tale of romance and humanity and drama and hope. It was a portal into countless other things, all which helped me explore different intellectual interests and grow up. And because of my idol worship of Elisa, my preteen wardrobe was filled exclusively with red and black. It was my childhood.

Thinking about my own experience with it, and hearing stories from other people, I realize--That's the power of great art. Something that can have such a transforming role in the lives of so many. It's incredible.

So I yada yada-ed something like the above very inarticulately, but the DVD staff was really cool. They were easy to talk to.

Next up was Radio Play rehearsals! Where it was revealed that the script was...The Journey! (Which, actually, I already knew, thanks to a reliable source ;) ) And I found out I was going to play Elisa! Yay! Greg told me later that he thought about casting me as Castaway. (Aaaand Zehra's long history of playing men continues.) But I'm glad he didn't, because the guy who played Castaway (blanking on his name right now) was rocking.

So we did what you normally do at rehearsals, and rehearsed. I enjoyed the chance to work with a script that was more action noises than words for dialogue, because I've not really done that before (I do a bit of stage acting, often in verse.) After rehearsals, the radio play was about to start, but I remember moving some chairs to the auditorium (there was something like 31 of us in the cast.)

The one thing I remember right before the play--FLASHBULBS going off EVERYWHERE. People got really camera happy. I was blind by the time the first act started. I'll just consider it preparation for when I'm rich and famous, I guess. ;)

The show was fun to be in, and based on the audience reaction, fun to watch. Everyone rocked their parts! Applause all around.

After that, I went up to my room and being kind of tired, debated whether to sleep or not. I ended up taking the world's shortest nap, woke up at 5:55, and ran down to the ballroom for the banquet, thinking that I'd be late. But people were meandering in slowly, and I was on the early side. At dinner, I had the honor of sitting with Jen and Alan and the Morgans! And two new folks from Boston, Nicholas and Darrien. I hope they weren't too lost/scared. ;) Dinner was DELICIOUS but I had a hard time getting into it because of lack of appetite caused by the world's shortest nap. By the time the quail got there though, I was back in the game. Jen treated me to wine (read: tried to get me drunk. I have you figured out, woman! ;) ) I left to go to the ladies room at one point, and of COURSE that's when Keith David walked in. But yay, he made it!

Keith David. This man drips POETRY. Not only is his voice beautiful, but the things he says are bursting with something I can only describe as resonance. I could listen to him talk forever. He said something in particular that I wish I had written down word for word because it was phrased so perfectly and really hit home. But now memory fails me. AND his kids are ADORABLE. Also, mega-props to the folks who met him and his family at the airport--Patrick and Carol, I think--these folks were running around all evening and didn't get to eat much, if at all.

After Q&A with Keith, the masquerade began. I was blown away by the intricate, well thought-out costumes. There are so many talented people in this fandom! What is so great about the Gathering is that everyone gets the chance to strut their stuff and really shine at what they love to do.

I particularly thought the Eye of the Beholder Fox/Xanatos couple (Torvik and his sister, I believe) was a really cute idea. And very fitting that Jade Griffin was a hot Elisa as Belle, also from that episode. The cosplays were all very clever and amusing. Not to mention the STAFF whose costumes were rocking. I loved Karine's pregnant Fox. Alan was a dashing Macbeth and Jen was a gorgeous Gruoch. And Siryn pulled off a gorgeous evening gown and Tom all in one night. Now that's versatility.

After the awards had been given, the dance/karaoke portion of the evening began.
Keith David regaled us all with his acapella (with a BABY strapped to his chest no less, oh my gosh, cuteness.) I must say, our karaoke was far superior to the banshees next door.

Around 2am, the masquerade was winding down. Because of his early flight, Greg wasn't going to bed. So a group of us (Jen, Karine, Andreas and Archangel (who made a HOT Bad Elisa and Dracon at the masquerade) and Patrick--there were also some more folks there at some point) went up to the con suite to keep Greg company before he left for the airport (or what I affectionately call the "Grope Greg Weisman Panel." ;) ) Everyone was pretty cracked out on sleep deprivation (you know when *everything* becomes funny?) There was live action Sailor Moon, there was miming...I don't think I've laughed that much in ages. Sadly, we broke it up a little after 5 am so Greg could go get ready for the airport.

Stay tuned for part III, Zombie Sunday and so forth.

Greg responds...

Turns out you must have done fairly well on your DVD interview, because you definitely made the cut. That was a fun all-nighter. Almost made me feel like a young college student again... except the next day I felt like a real old fart.

Response recorded on May 02, 2006

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Zehra writes...

Hi, Greg!

I present...

My babbles on The Gathering 2004 - (part I)

Firstly, I'd like to give a huge THANK YOU to everyone who made the Gathering a blast, especially the con staff. You guys rocked the house DOWN.
I had a lot of fun meeting so many of you for the first time, as well as seeing those of you I'd met in 2001 and 2002.
Forgive me in advance for forgetting names of folks I talked to. I never forget a face, but the names are a bit harder...

Thursday, August 5th - Setting off!

I left for the airport around 2 for my 7:30 flight. I took a shuttle bus to the Indianapolis airport because my dad had to work all day and couldn't drive me down, and ended up at the airport ridiculously early--something like 3 hours in advance. But better early than late. Packing the night (or morning) before was a challenge, as I hadn't yet unpacked from Japan (I got back about a week before.) I ended up forgetting some essential things (like a watch) so I did some duty-free shopping at the airport.

I also took the opportunity to reintegrate myself into my mother culture by ordering a good old American hamburger from TGI Fridays. Ahhh....my love, how I have missed you! If there's one thing America can do better than Japan, it's the hamburger. Anyhoo, I write about it because I find it amusing that I have started speaking English with Japanese characteristics. For example, I didn't want the pickle. Usually you say "no pickle" or "hold the pickle" right? Instead, I said "I don't need the pickle." Which I guess is understood just fine, but I know it comes from the Japanese way of saying you don't want something "x wo iranai." (literally "I don't need x.") The ex-pat process is nearly complete. ;)

I had an uneventful flight, an uneventful connection in Pittsburgh, and arrived in Montreal around midnight. My taxi driver on the way to the hotel was really nice. He was telling me about neat places in Quebec to hit if I had the time. Also, he asked me if I knew what my name meant, and I said it's the Arabic word for flower. He said not only that, it means "rose." I don't know if that was an indirect come-on or what, but I appreciated it. ;)

More name weirdness--when I checked in at the front desk, the clerk commented on my name and asked me if it was Lebanese. It's used in Muslim families, so I guess it's used over there. I was exhausted, so I fell asleep pretty soon after I got to my room. This would be the only night of the weekend where I would get a normal night's sleep.

Friday, August 6th

I woke up around 9. I had one of the Signature Club Rooms, because when I called to make my reservation, the hotel informed me they were out of the rooms that had been blocked off for the convention. So they gave me the best deal they had available, and that happened to be for the Signature Club, which included access to the private roof lounge. Delta Signature Club--why just *feel* like a pretentious snob when you can actually *be* one? So I had free continental breakfast in the roof lounge which overlooked a magnificent Montreal morning.

Around 10 I meandered down to register, but no one official was around. There were some familiar faces down there. I must say here that I hope I didn't appear anti-social in any way throughout the con. I had planned on dragging some friends with me this time, but it didn't pan out, so I was a lone wolf. I am a pretty extroverted person, but get shy and cautious in social situations where I don't know folks very well, especially if there's already an established group dynamic. I'm workin' on that!

I forget what I did to kill time, but I got a manicure and another burger at some point. But I did get registered--I think Siryn and Rob were manning the desk when I went up.

In the afternoon, I went to the voice-over panel/workshop/Q&A/thing. And as I was about to walk in the door, who did I run into but GREG WEISMAN! Who gave me a hug and commented on my short hair.

The situation then was that Keith David would be arriving a little late, but despite his absence the panel was interesting. Something I found interesting from the director's standpoint was the idea of creating a "sound pallet" that sets the tone of the language for the show--Gargoyles was Neo-Shakespeare. Try to surprise yourself in casting choices I think was another good piece of advice. (fangirl aside: I just think it's so coool that this con exists, and that professionals like Greg and other guests over the years give these workshops and AMAZING opportunities to learn from the pros. It is MIND BLOWINGLY cool.)

Jen sat behind me during the panel, but was unaware that the woman sitting in front of her would soon become her LOVAH!!! ;)

Listening to the exercises of the panel got my acting-bug aroused, and so I decided to audition then as opposed to the next morning. I must give mucho applause to Carol Wagner, who was running the line. I had the pleasure of getting to talk to Carol a little bit throughout the con, and not only is she an amazing guest coordinator, she's an absolute sweetheart.

Ah, auditions, the sweetest torture. I love auditions, even though they make me want to die. I never get nervous during an actual audition. I'm all nerves before, but once I'm actually in there going, it's like I'm in my own little world. And then I'm all nerves after. But the part in between, man, that's fun. I was feeling kinda rusty actually, as it was my first audition in nearly 9 months (there wasn't a lot of performance opportunity when I was in Japan.) I chose Xanatos' lines, because they seemed like the ones I could have the most fun with. I think it went okay, because Jen and Greg seemed pleased.

After the audition I think I went back to my room. Opening ceremonies was fun. I always love seeing Greg's spiel. It's kind of bittersweet though, because I see those pitches and think wow...those would have been awesome shows. Also nice to learn the DVD release date (December 7th!) I really hope they start releasing more of the Disney Afternoon shows on DVD (my life won't be complete until I have Darkwing DVD.)

After opening ceremonies, I was hungry. And really didn't want to end up eating at the hotel restaurant again. And was looking for company. Here's where that shy thing comes in again. I was wandering lost through the lobby and luckily I ran into Greg and he invited me to come along with a group to this crepe place. It was a nice walk through Old Montreal to get to the restaurant. Very European feel. There were street performers with accordions and bagpipes and cobbled roads and charm.

I want to marry the crepes I had that night. Mmm... As great as the food was, the company was greater! It ended up being Greg, Karine, Kathy, Siryn, Shaun and some cool folks whose names I didn't catch (sorry!) The restaurant had a really interesting outdoor lighting scheme that changed from red to pink to orange to yellow. The waiter was a nice guy, but sort of dangerous dropping plates with food and knives and what not here and there. It was fun talking to Siryn about Japan/Asia. I had been semi-miserable being back in the US for the past week, so it was nice being able to reminisce and swap stories. (But let it be known that thanks to the Gathering, I'm not miserable anymore!) Greg also regaled us with the story of how he met his wife. I'm such a sappy girl, I love stories like that.

After dinner, we headed back to the hotel (Greg rushed ahead so as to not be too late for the blue-mug-a-guest) I almost went to the blue-mug(which in retrospect I wish I had,) but I was kind of feeling dead when I got back to my room, so just decided to call it a night. Also, being that Gargoyles is kind of like my childhood, I was afraid of being SCARRED FOR LIFE (that would happen the next night. ;) ) So to sleep I went.

Stay tuned for part II, Saturday shenanigans!

Greg responds...

Ah, Zehra, we missed you last year in Vegas. I hope you can make it to Los Angeles this year. You are always so much fun!!

But what's this about you and Jen being "LOVAHS"? I must know more.

Response recorded on May 02, 2006

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Puck writes...

Since Kaylle has opened the line of discussion on things related to gargoyle sleep, I might as well ask...

Do gargoyles dream of stone sheep?

Greg responds...

On occasion, who doesn't?

Response recorded on May 02, 2006

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HollyAnn writes...

Hi! Here's my con-report for the Gathering 2004 "Le Gathering".

My husband and I live in the Champlain Islands of Vermont, so we're very close to the border, so we just drove up to the convention every morning, and then drove back everynight.

This was the first time I've ever been to a Gargoyles convention. I had been a fan of the show since I in college (back in 1995), so when I heard that a Gargoyles convention was happening so close to here, I just couldn't pass it up! I even learned how to draw Gargoyles by watching the TV show. Having been an anthropomorphic artist, I've been to furry conventions before, so I had a rough idea of what a Gargoyle convention would be about. I actually heard about the Gathering through an online comic that one of my friends has; he had a banner that I clicked on, and the rest is history.

The first day was a little slow, but that's very normal for any convention I've attended. Having never been to a Gargoyle gathering before, I was pretty much a stranger to everyone, and vice versa. But I met some artists in the Artist Alley who were very nice and friendly to talk to, and I had the chance to check out the art show. There was some VERY talented artists in there! I wish I could've voted for more people in a particular category, it was very hard to choose just one.

Later that afternoon, I attended the Opening Ceremonies. I've never been to them before, at any convention I've ever been to, so I thought that I would go and see what it was all about. It was interrupted during the beginning of the ceremony for the first event of the Clan Olympics. I had a very vague idea of what it was all about, but I had no idea that they looked so fun! We watched the different teams rushing around, trying to get as many plastic balls into specially-made holey shirts and the teams were given points. After the event was over, the ceremony resumed, and Greg Weisman talked to us for a while. He played us a tape in which Ed Asner and Keith David as well as other cast and crew of the cartoon had recorded themselves on tape and addressed the audience. We were also treated to some videos, in which a younger Greg talked to us about different possible spin-offs of Gargoyles. Personally, I think I would love to see two of these spin-offs make it: The Dark Ages and Time Dancer. I've always liked the idea of Gargoyles staying in the medieval/dark ages setting, so I think the Dark Ages show would be great. As for Time Dancer, I'm a fan of time travel stories, and it features Brooklyn (my favourite Gargoyle) so I don't think they can go wrong there. ;) We even listened to a recording of a show that was never animated, where the crew of Disney's Altantis meets up with Demona, which we all thought was interesting as well as funny from all the grunts and other things from the actors. We left after the Opening Ceremonies for the day.

On Saturday, I was supposed to be in Artist Alley to try my hand at drawing gargoyles for people, but we were exhausted from our drive, that I wanted to sleep in. I missed out on selling and drawing for people, but my main concern was that I wanted to go to the auction. I LOVE going to auctions! I had seen the many things that were being offered up for bids on Friday, and I really wanted to get myself a Brooklyn action figure (I'm kicking myself for not getting one when they used to be in the Disney Store years ago). So, I went to the auction, and it was TONS of fun! The hosts (auctioneers) were very friendly, out-going, and joked around alot. I didn't get the chance to get a Brooklyn action figure, but I managed to walk away with a few things. I was amazed at just how much some of the prints were going for as well. And it was fun to watch people fight over the animation cel they had there as well. After the auction was over and after I had paid for my new Gargoyle merchandise that I had won, we had to leave early so that I could get some housework done. The job of a housewife is never done!

Sunday was the same as Saturday: We slept in a little bit and we got to the convention in time for all of us to sit down and meet Keith David. I was expecting that he would just wave to us and sit at his table, but he surprised me when we went to everyone in the room (myself included), shook hands with them and actually greeted them and asked how we were enjoying the convention! I thought that was really nice of him. He was very friendly when questions started and it was interesting to hear a glimpse of behind-the-scenes of Gargoyles of when he was the voice of Goliath, and to hear his own opinions of things. I had a question for him as well, but I was much too shy/chicken to ask!

About half an hour after the Mug-A-Guest was over, they had the closing ceremonies. It surprised me to hear that I had won a CD! One of the dealers in the Dealer's Room was having a draw for a CD and I had entered at the last minute, not really thinking I would win anything, so it was a surprise :) They announced the many winners of the artists in the Art Show, and I'm glad that many of them won something, their art was definately worth it! They were also talking about the next Gathering, which will be held in Las Vegas. If we could afford to go, I would...but unfortunately, we're already planning a big trip to a different convention next year. It's too bad, because I remember going to Las Vegas when I was 13 and I missed out on the slot machines because I was too young...

All-in-all, I had a great time! If The Gathering ever plans on coming back to the area (either in Montreal, or in the Nothern NY state or Vermont area), I would very much like to go again! The hotel was located in a wonderful location, so that it made it very easy to find when coming over the border. I'm actually Canadian myself, and I was glad that many of the workers in the hotel will speak English for you if you're not familiar with speaking French, and they were kind and polite there as well.

I'm really excited about the first season of Gargoyles coming out on DVD, and just in time for Christmas as well! You can take a guess what'll be on my Christmas list this year ;) Again, I do hope that they make some spin-off shows of the Gargoyles, or even start making new shows of it. The whole reason why I like Gargoyles is that it's different, and it's also a different style for a Disney cartoon as well. I had a great time at the convention, and it really made me more interested in wanting to know more about the Gargoyle fandom and viewing more Gargoyle fan art as well.

Thank you everyone for the great time! I hope I can go to The Gathering again :)

Greg responds...

Hey HollyAnn,

I'm glad you had fun. You might think about attending G2006 this year. It'll have about 50 special guests (artists, actors, writers, etc.) and only about 300 attendees. That's a pretty stunning attendee to pro ratio. You won't get that at ANY other con.

Response recorded on May 01, 2006

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John writes...

Hi Greg,

Ok, this might be a bit off topic (YAY) but first I want to say a BIG. HUGHE. GIANT. Thanks to Disney for releasing season 1 on DVD!!! I'll try to get my hands at it here in Europe and just hope I can help bring the series back on screen!!! And I hope Season 2 will follow soon...

Now the question:

You often stated the large number of spinn offs occuring even after the Gargoyles-timeline (meaning Timedancer, 21** etc.). Well, that would mean that eventually, Gargoyles would have a spot where it would end in time. Wich year would this be? Around 2030?

Thank you for awnsering and for pushing so much time in all that stuff (just SOOOO excited on the DVD finally REALLY comming out!!)


Greg responds...


I'm glad you're excited.

But as to your question, I'm not sure I follow your reasoning. I guess if you're asking: "Is there a point in time when the original "GARGOYLES" series would end?" I guess my answer is, "Yes, in March 2198." At which point, we'd change the name to "Gargoyles 2198" and the spin-off would become the series.

Response recorded on May 01, 2006

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