Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The Amazing Meeting 2012, Day Four (part 2)

I was still in the TAM hall, sitting by James Randi (resting, not bugging him), when I saw SinGar the goat demon once again. Someone came by and offered to take a picture, and they did, but for whatever reason they mostly got the blank wall, so you cannot see SinGar's goat legs (which are put on the right way around this time!).

TAM 204

Of course, even SinGar has to ask for James Randi's autograph!

TAM 205

And that is only our starting point this time, boys and girls...

Back in SinGar's Room of Weirdness, where there was a two-foot tall margarita growing out of his cooler, we could hear all this weird noise and music coming from what might have been a party down at the pool. As you can see, in the hotel across the way, there was also this huge, multi-story TV-screen-thing as seen through the windows:

TAM 206

I tried to get closeups as the screen changed colors, but didn't do the best at this. It may be a job best suited for the Photoshop application that can correct motion blur!

TAM 207

We discussed many interesting things, including the best way to bring shock value to my readers. Ba-a-a-a-a-aaaah!

TAM 210 - Because goat demons are so hawt!

All too soon, SinGar had to get to A Carlin Home Companion -- a show by George Carlin's daughter, Kelly -- and after that, the Skeptic's Poker tournament.` Also, he helped me pour some of the giant margarita into a bottle for my own refreshment later.

When I entered the elevator, I didn't know what I'd be doing next, but this was solved for me when I got out of the elevator and was greeted by Skeptic Zone host/origamist Richard Saunders and anthropologist/noted creationism opponent Eugenie Scott.

They invited me to go swimming with them -- because I'm that awesome!!!

Needless to say, I rushed back to my room, found some duds to wear to the pool, grabbed a towel, and then fled back downstairs with my gear.

I got another one of my 'random videos' of walking out to the pool at the same time as Eugenie Scott, where she is squeezed by Chupacabrologist Benjamin Radford, and Richard Saunders says "Hi, Spoony!"

Just to prove to you that I'm not making any of this up. It really happened.

Bob Novella and his girlfriend Kate were also out there, and collectively we set about braving the frigid lukewarm water, very slowly, using the steps. Bob had the most problem of all (even his superpower, gluteus maximus hypertrophy, was of no aid), so I jokingly threatened to help him get in the water before becoming distracted by the amount of fun I was having.
` In my head, I was thinking; "EHRMEHGERD!! Swimming is so fun when the water is not freezing, and I am so lucky to be with some of the coolest people evr that I love so much and could hug them but won't, and oh hey I can see underwater even though it's dark! Wheeeeeeee!!!"

Seriously, that's the kind of dreck that runs through my mind. What? Me? Sophisticated?

It wasn't long before I needed to expend my pent-up excitement-based energy that I asked if anyone would race me or something, but they said no, so I set out to do a lap, largely underwater because I swim so weirdly, with the others keeping count. Yes, they were actually counting, ha!!
` However, I not only ran into a dead end, but by the time I surfaced and got my bearings, they had gotten out of the pool, so I walked around to them, and they said that everyone had been called out of the pool because lightning had been sighted.
` Not that we had seen much of the weather, but I remembered then that storms kept kicking up here and there. Yes, it was thunder, not the bowling alley, for sure!

I remember suggesting that we work on our moon-tans or some such, while we hoped that the hot tub would not be closed as well, being under a shelter and all -- but it was.
` As all of us realized the preposterousness of being struck by lightning, here are Bob, Richard and Ben, looking all brave and stoic in the face of possible electrocution -- at least I think that's what they were looking at:

TAM 212 - Bob, Richard and Ben

I just couldn't resist:

TAM 213 - Bob, Richard, Ben and me

See? I'm not lying, this really happened! It wasn't a dream! I even got to be in a picture with Eugenie and Kate, posing in the same manner as the men -- like some sort of diptych.

Anyway, as the pool and hot tub really were closed, we walked back into the hotel, and doing so, I got a clip of Bob being all scandalized that he didn't know that the mini-pool had hot water in it, with Eugenie and Ben chiming in about the Great Pool/Lightning Injustice.

Because of said Injustice, I found myself in an elevator full of wet people -- I've always wanted to say that in a video, in an elevator, so here goes:

After a quick shower (and, since I had been too paranoid to bring my own damn razor, secretly using the one Leonard puts against his own face to do a little edging -- lucky him!), it was back to the bar. Hey, there's that Walker guy, with the Guy Fawkes mask-type facial hair:

TAM 216

What's funny is, from within the bar it's hard to hear the slot machines, but step outside and the jangling cacophony fills the air! I'm wondering if there's some big secret going on!

As I became progressively more drunk -- thanks to men who think I'm awesome -- my accent took on a more British bent:

I remember that this event was scheduled on Facebook -- playing Cards Against Humanity. And I actually showed up to it, what are the odds?
` And what is this game? If you've ever played Apples To Apples, it's like that, but more cynical:

We were laughing and playing and having a good ole time, when this blue-haired girl named Glenda appeared with her sparkly hula hoops, and we all started whooping and clapping. Here's her standing on one leg with the hula hoop going around it, along with my drunken comment of "Do no legs!"

And now, a dizzying frenzy of tricks with two hula hoops at once -- check it out!

Now armed with three hula hoops, she began to give us little 'science lessons', such as inertia. Way cool!

And now, something about LEDs:

Here I am so evidently drunk and distracted that I am stumped over pretty colors... because they're so shiny!

I can't quite make out much of this, other than us using the phrase "That sneaky bastard!"

Boo! They be kickin' her out! Apparently, hula-hoops are deemed to be too dangerous to be whipping around in a bar....

So, we went back to our card game when who should appear but astronomer Pamela Gay, whose talk I missed. I am so drunk that I admit that I'm Gay for her. Get it? And amazingly enough, she says she's never heard that pun before. Can you believe it? Well, I got it on video:

Similarly, I've told Frasier that I am Cain for him (via Facebook), and he thought that was funny. Come to think of it, I'm not sure if I ever told James that I was Randi for him, but I should have. And now Pamela knows my true feelings for her -- as far as puns go!

As for her talk that I missed, she says that the text will be on her Starstryder blog. And I've found it. And it's fairly inspirational, called Make the World Better (Ask if Anyone Minds Later). There are bigger things out there in the universe that we can dream of, and actually work towards!
` [Edit: The recording of her actual talk is here.]

After what seemed like hours playing Cards Against Humanity, I felt the need to get up and stretch my legs. And this was not just because someone else had finally caught up with my score, which was ten:

TAM 229 - My points

I remember the 'For My Next Trick' card, I won by finishing with, "I will pull Bruce Willis out of the Kool Aid Man." LOL! And in the M. Night Shyamalan card, I filled in the second blank with 'an M. Night Shyamalan plot twist". Is that cheating?
` Amazingly, a few minutes after I got up, I came back to the table only to find that the rest of the players had gone. Probably because my magnetizing awesomeness was the only thing keeping them there....

Also, in my notes, I wrote down that I was talking with someone about weirding out Richard Dawkins -- which as my bloggy little readers will know, I have done. Apparently, though, it is easy to do, so I'm hardly the first.
` And BTW, the JREF president DJ Grothe plus beer equals way past cool:

TAM 230 - DJ Grothe plus beer equals awesome

Also, this guy went to Christian college with DJ -- I saw photographic evidence of this, too!

TAM 231

He also bought me a vodka and cranberry, because I'm just that awesome to talk to. I thought he was pretty awesome himself. If only I could remember his name...
` Maybe it's best if I don't, because he told the bartender he would order a beer for Leonard... who isn't quite 21. POOR LEONARD!! But hey, at least there were parties going on outside the bar!

Richard Saunders was also there, and I got this really weird picture that makes his facial expression even more hilarious:

TAM 232 - Richard Saunders in that T-shirt

And, while I wasn't stalking Geo, I did get a shot of him talking to some blurry guy:

TAM 233 - Geo and blurry guy

Unfortunately, I wound up annoying Geo because I couldn't talk coherently to him, but it appears that he, Pamela and Bruce are part of some sort of Secret Skeptic Team, talking about secret matters that I imagine had to do with the strippers who were hired to give guys a hard time by playing chess with them at the penthouse party -- which I almost regret not going to, if just to see that for myself.

TAM 234 - Geo, Pamela and Bruce

Eventually, I got going back to my room, ironically at the same time as Geo! No, this was not a plan that I had evilly orchestrated. Nevertheless, it could have turned into ElevatorGate Two: Being Stuck On An Elevator With Spoony. The horrors I have put that man through. He doesn't deserve it!

Especially since I am actually cooler than he is. So why has he been my weak spot? I don't get it!

Luckily, I managed to gain some semblance of normalcy, and after I stopped tripping out over Geo, I managed to write down on a piece of paper what was actually going through my head so that he could know, once and for all.

By the time I was done, this was what the sky looked like:

TAM 235 - Skyline with moon

In any case, Leonard and I were glad to see one another, as early in the morning as it was, just before I fell asleep, and woke up to... Day Five!


  1. Thanks for allowing me to tag along, Spoony.

  2. Of course! Anything for you, and my other readers...


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