The rest of the week was not quite as solemn, and even a little fun. Thursday, of course, it was shopping, and then James had his six-months visit to the dermatologist. She froze off two little moles on his left earlobe, but otherwise gave him a clear bill of health. Unfortunately we should have popped in the pharmacy and picked up a new box of Ferrex. Now we're going to have to pop in at a Kaiser facility sometime in the two weeks he doesn't
have an appointment just to get Ferrex. Bother. (Don't suggest online. Everyone is five dollars a box more than Kaiser.)
And Friday it finally happened! The first time in two years there has been a library book sale! Report is here. Later in the day we went to Kaiser's TownPark facility and got our COVID-19 booster.
On Saturday we spent the afternoon at Monsterama/Spycon, a combined horror/spy convention put together by Anthony Taylor and others. James and I are not big horror fans, so basically we were there for the conversation and the spy panels. We saw Louis Robinson for the first time in ages, and stopped to talk to local author Bobby Nash in the dealer's room. James bought one of his books, an old-fashioned pulp-type aviation adventure. Sue Phillips was also there, and when we took a break to get something to eat in the con suite (since the hotel restaurant didn't do any lunch specials like last time) we sat together and got to talk (although mostly eat since we were pretty hungry by that time!).
Our first panel was a little disappointing. It was supposed to be about spy cars in different movies and television, but we just talked about the Lotus Enspire (sp?) car used in a James Bond movie. The presenter had a Lotus car which he mocked up to look like the Lotus in the film, and also the "submarine" version of the car which he also owned. (He also has a killer Jaguar convertible, all three which were out front. I'm not into sports cars per se—the only car with a place in my heart is still Twilight—but the Jag looks like it would be fun to drive.)
We then went to a panel about doing research—which, of course I get off on, because doing research on something you're interested in is fun!—and did have to laugh about them talking about doing research on murders and making some really dicey records in their browsers!
Other panels were one about the music of spy music in films and television series. Again, much Bond orienting, but then the James Bond theme by now is iconic. And how you can't hear the Get Smart theme without thinking of that corridor with the doors! And how no one is writing great theme songs for television anymore because of the need to shove more commercials in, and lots and lots about the classic composers like Jerry Goldsmith, John Barry, Lalo Schifrin, and more. And one other panel that was a "spy fight" of television spies versus movie spies done like a Fantasy Football competition. Black Widow won eventually.
Our favorite panel was the spy trivia. I did well on some historical stuff, fictional stuff, and a couple of others, and started out well out of the gate, but James pulled ahead with more technical stuff. Also playing were two other guys, Kevin and Lee. We had a great time and the moderators, including a woman (Bernadette Johnson) who wrote a book of spy trivia, were absolutely great. I hope they do another panel like this next year; it's been years since we played trivia at Rockford's on Saturday nights, and I do miss it!* We all got prizes: James and I both chose the book, of course!
James said wistfully as we were leaving that that was what we had really missed: just talking to people with like interests. I really wish I'd checked the calendar when we made the vaccine appointments, or we could have come on Friday, too, but by the time we fought our way through traffic up to TownPark (it was hideous...you might have thought the entire city was being evacuated) and then gotten the shot itself (mine began hurting immediately), neither of us were in any shape to go anywhere. And of course we couldn't go tomorrow because James works. Maybe next year...
* We'd get to trivia early and everyone would end up meeting at Media Play in the same shopping center. I remember when Jake and Nancy showed up with a Cyberhome DVD player and told us you could make it region-free. We had three of them eventually! We loved when Matt showed up because we had our movie expert for the night!
(Plus I have never had anything that was as good as Rockford's Asian salad—with grilled chicken strips in it—and haven't found an Asian salad dressing yet that was as good as theirs.)
On the drive home—Rockford's was way out past Stone Mountain—in summer, it was usually cool enough to ride with the windows down and we'd have the Sixties channel on SiriusXM playing Cousin Brucie...those were the days!
Labels: books, conventions, food, friends, health, shopping