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I severely fell down on my reporting duties for this one. I didn't take a single photo of this weekend, In fact, I don't think I even had my camera with me.

See, the problem with documenting relax-a-con type conventions is that they're meant to encourage you to kick back and do nothing. Convention reporting is work. No, it's not difficult work by any means, but it's still hard to sit and take notes when all you are doing is eating, sleeping, and drinking.

So, this weekend, I put the camera away and just had fun.

Supercon 11 was held in late January, 2004, in Austin, MN. This was its first year in Austin, which meant abandoning its old (and much beloved) hotel in Rochester. While the pool and hot tub in the Austin hotel are better than at the old place, the new hotel, sadly, does not have a large, central meeting place where you can hang out and see everyone. This is unfortunate, as Supercon 2004 felt less cohesive than its prior iterations. However, I'm sure things will improve when everyone gets used to the new space. At least the new hotel is within crawling distance of several restaurants, which is always a good thing.

So, without further ado, here is the brief and image-less tale of Supercon 2004...

01232004: Friday afternoon, I carpooled with Tom Hogan, Mike Lee, and Christopher to a remote corner of Minnesota, where Spam and Supercon decided to coexist for the weekend. The road trip to Austin, MN, was fuelled primarily by Taco Bell, SMOFing, and severe Dr. Who geekiness.

We eventually reached the hotel at around 8:30 PM, well after the opening ceremony ended. The guests who arrived before us were already indulging in alcohol, conversation, and the hot tub.

I soon found Dan in the lobby, and proceeded to monopolize his time for the next hour or so. It was great to catch up with him, as I hadn't seen him in roughly a year.

I drank lots of Kyle's wonderful home brew that night. I also sat in the hot tub. I swam laps in the pool. I napped from midnight to 1 AM. I stayed up very late chatting in front of the lobby fireplace.

Yea, verily, it was good. Eventually, my roommates (Christopher and Mike) and I all crashed in our hotel room and slept like rocks,

01242004: Mike, Christopher and I slept in as long as we possibly could, so the three of us finally emerged into the land of the living sometime around 11 AM. After a cursory search for Kelvin Hatle, Christopher and I figured we had missed out on a planned Perkins breakfast. Thus, we were apprehended by several CONvergence board members for some closed-doors SMOFing.

I am often privy to these long debates. While they are often fascinating in their complexity, they primarily serve to constantly convince me to never, ever step up into a board position.

Around 1 PM, Kelvin, Tom, Monte, and Mike somehow managed to find Christopher and me, and rescued us from further SMOFing by declaring a belated breakfast run. Thankfully, the Perkins was within short stumbling distance of the hotel. In fact, the two buildings shared a wall.

Breakfast was tasty and quite entertaining. We even wound up giving the waitress a list of horror movies she should watch. Yes, we are experts.

After our return to the hotel, I napped until 4:30 PM.

I eventually came back to the land of the living, only to shortly find myself embroiled in a game of Zombies!!! with Dan, Monte, and Matt Waterhouse. Monte is the zombie master. For now.

Then there was a Culver's run with Linda Peterson, Anton Peterson, Tom, and Christopher, which further ensured that my body would hate me for the remainder of the weekend.

The remainder of the evening consisted of splitting a bottle of Chambord with Linda, Uncle Kyle's Story Hour, lots of home brew, another midnight-to-1 AM nap, and very late conversations in the lobby. Kyle is now known as Philip, Prince of Wales, and we now have a contract stating that he must "publicly and proudly" wear his antlers at CONvergence 2004. (Tragically, I was too busy at CONvergence to enforce this.)

01252004: We only slept in until 10 AM on Sunday, since the hotel check-out time was 11 AM. Phoo.

The morning went by too fast. Linda and I polished off the Chambord while we ate breakfast cereal in the lobby. Kyle and I chatted a bit over bagels and cream cheese. MISFITS party ideas were discussed.

Since Tom was coming down with a sinus infection, Mike, Christopher and I decided to make a quick exit from the convention so we could get our cohort home. Since Tom was hopped up on decongestants, I took the wheel of his Bronco and drove our caravan home. Tom snored away in the back seat for most of the trip.

So, it really was a fairly bland weekend for me. I had a lovely time chatting with several friends who I don't see very often, but unfortunately, that doesn't really make for a riveting convention report. I do highly suggest Supercon to anyone looking for a low-key weekend getaway in January.

I'd like to thank Tom for driving our caravan around; my roommates, Mike and Christopher, for all the Dr. Who rumors; and Linda for several bottles' worth of Chambord.

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