Scattered con report with hints of odd homecoming

We had a great time at the con.  First year in a new hotel and LC is growing, so it was a bit odd, including being booked for a lot of signings — I found this odd, since I’ve only had ONE new novel out in the last two years and most people don’t even know it’s mine — and a reading, plus two panels, one on DSR and one on AFGM
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I’d have preferred to be on some more “general topic” panels, even if it was okay.   However, I ended up on more than 3 panels a day.  Don’t ask me why, but any more than that is a “killing load” for a presenter at a con, or at least for THIS presenter.  When you add Dan’s panels in, we really had no down time.

That’s a minor quibble.  I’d prefer a little more time to socialize.  It is, however, not that horrible since it was a day and two halves, not the five days of say, worldcon, over which that rhythm WOULD destroy me.

Chattanooga was lovely as always.  We got to see rain, which I always like — we’re from Colorado.  This water from sky thing is totally alien.

I got to spend a lot of time talking to Jerry Pournelle, which is good, as it’s been ten years since we’ve seen each other.  We don’t always agree, but Jerry is one of those friends I can discuss anything with, ranging wide, and have him correct me when (often) I’m a dumbass.  I also got to introduce him to sons.

Also got to meet Glenn Reynolds and Doctor Helen.  He’s just as nice — nicer? — in person as online, but Dr. Helen surprised me.  Oh, she’s a lovely person, BUT what surprised me is that for someone so forceful and full of personality online, in real life she’s shorter than I AND delicately built.  (Also very pretty, which doesn’t even make me jealous.  I never was that pretty.)  I guess it’s tightly compressed awesomeness?

Anyway, she spent time talking to younger son who normally doesn’t even like talking to adult women.  (Shrug.)

The Baen party was great, of course.

My two regrets: I couldn’t hug everyone goodbye — no time as we left Sunday from Atlanta, so we had to run — and I had NOT NEARLY enough time to see all my friends.  Notably this year we missed our usual conversation with Kelly and Star.

Now, for odd homecoming: when Dan went to get the mail from outside yesterday, there was a stick of dog poop wrapped in a dollar bill on the front porch.

We have NO idea what the hell this means but cursory searches indicate it both as an anti-gay thing — which doesn’t make much sense — and being pushed on some sites as “a way to punish your neighbors who don’t clean up after their dogs.

In either case, it leaves me published puzzled (published too, but I don’t know why I typed that.  Stupid autocomplete fingers.)  No one in the household is gay (Not that it would be all right to do this if one of us were — it wouldn’t.  It’s just this makes it more bizarre) which symbolically makes no sense, btw, and we don’t own a dog (as for leaving dog poop on the porch of people who don’t clean it, while it’s tit-for-tattish, I don’t have an issue, but WHY the dollar bill?  And again, we don’t OWN a dog.)

I’m left to assume one of our neighbors is either insane or rock-bottom-dumb.  Both of these make me somewhat uneasy.  When combined with aggressive enough to undertake such a stupid gesture… well, let’s say our feelings that we should already have moved might be justified.  HOW to get there is something else.  (We keep having a feeling we should already be in Denver.)  perhaps it’s time to reinforce window and door locks.
Update: I THINK I know what caused this and if so it was “anti gay”  — you see, it was Pride Weekend in the Springs, and apparently some people got pretty exercised about it.  The friend who house/cat sits for us when we go to cons is not gay.  (None of our gay friends live close enough.)  He is however of Apalachian origin and its being a summer day, he spent sometime on the front porch shirtless.  Clearly some neighbor of ours is looking for gays under his bed and decided shirtless = gay.  It’s still insane, and doesn’t make me happy to have someone that nuts in the neighborhood, but at least it’s PROBABLY explained.

64 responses to “Scattered con report with hints of odd homecoming

  1. ppaulshoward

    That is odd. Maybe they got the wrong house.

    • Maybe it’s dumb teenagers. But I repeat myself. :-D

      • Very odd, yes. But I agree, probably dumb teens (and I also agree, that’s redundant). But I’d have found it disturbing, too – it’s the anonymous aggression of it, kind of like with prank phone calls before caller id, even though you knew it was just some loser kid on the other end.

        Have you checked with the neighbors about a possible culprit? Or are your neighbors unapproachable, in which case, yes, it’s time to move to Denver.

        • The neighbors aren’t EXACTLY unapproachable, but they also wouldn’t really know (probably.) We’ve had a series of very odd incidents, including some years ago when some guy decided Dan was Japanese and appeared to hate Japanese… Oh, and the guy who made us mow our flowerbed down by insisting — to the city — it was weeds, a week after we moved in. It’s never been EXACTLY friendly, if you know what I mean.

  2. “…. well, let’s say our feelings that we should already have moved might be justified. ”

    Colorado is getting weird?

    Sorry I could meet you at Liberty. I was and still am broke down In North Carolina.

  3. All I know is that you made my day and Sanford’s when you recognized him and stopped to give him a hug. Thank you :-)

  4. couldn’t rather. (grumble…cat hair in keyboards)

    • Been there, done that, Ev. Get a compressed air can and a tube thingie. It really does help. But don’t breathe for a second, until the hair has a chance to settle.

  5. Probably some publisher tool leaving a message about the value of your writing, or perhaps the general quality and value of the tsunami of dog poop your agenda will unleash.

  6. You should write out a check list and pin it on the door, so the “Leaver of Presents” could check off the right categories if he, she, or it returns:

    O This is an Anti-Gay Message (Even though you aren’t gay.)
    O This is an Anti-Dog message (Even though you don’t own a dog.)
    O Oops! Sorry! Wrong address.

  7. Congrats on a great experience! You mentioned the Baen party. I didn’t see him on the website lists, but did Steve Stirling make an appearance?

  8. I’m left to assume one of our neighbors is either insane or rock-bottom-dumb. Both of these make me somewhat uneasy.

    If speaking of adults, I wouldn’t worry about rock-bottom-dumb as you can befuddle the type for days with a good knock-knock joke; it’s the insane that need worrying about. Don’t discount that it might simply be teenagers, who have a tendency to be both insane and rock-bottom-dumb.

  9. Not anything like what you are describing (ugh), but a dumb adult walked into our apartment yesterday. No knock, nothing. Of course, I used my lungs to tell him in forceful language to “Stop,” and “Get out.”

    It was weird enough that I am still talking about it. Who would walk into someone else’s apartment even if it is the wrong house w/o knocking. Even the Navajos expect you to stand in the front yard and announce yourself.

    • My mother had a cousin who walked into houses. But he had Downs Syndrome and this was in the 1950s. Aunt Edith and Uncle Bill ended up sending JT to the state home, where JT was quite happy.

    • Well, we had a guy walk in the front door of our house when I was about 12 years old. He was drunk, and thought it was the house down the road where he was heading to a party.

      Stupid dog just raised his head and looked at him. Any other time he would have been barking his head off.

      • Hmmm, Maureen O’Hara has a clip on Turner Classic Movies in their time-filler rotation in which she talks about John Ford ordering her to drive a very drunken John Wayne home, Duke’s bursting out of the car at a stop and into a nearby house to demand drinks from the owners, who apparently were not film fans as they showed no evidence of recognizing their two drop-in guests … but apparently were well-versed in rules of hospitality as they enjoyed a polite round of drinks with Wayne and O’Hara before their guests went on their way.

        Are you quite sure your unexpected visitor wasn’t John Wayne?

        • If it were, wouldn’t he be looking for brainz?

          • ummm – sorry … but didn’t have the hat so it couldn’t be John Wayne – besides he would now be a zombie or ghoul. (demanding flesh or brains) as attested to Sarah’s comment. ;-)

          • Nah, this was 3-4 years before he died. But RES, it couldn’t have been him – too young and too skinny. Although I would have probably expected the dog to not bark at him, either.

  10. Hmm, sounds as if you should keep a fire extinguisher by the front door.

    Mildly O.T., Sarah, but the vampire musketeer book appeared on the regional B&N’s shelves this week. I’d not seen it for sale before (which may or may not mean anything).

  11. My googling says that a “poop dollar” is a hilariously wacky prank, the height of humor; and that therefore one must always inspect dollar bills found on the street for signs of scatological humor. Though apparently some people do this to homeless people, and then pretend to be scandalized that the people go with it if truly needy. (One is reminded of the first scene in the current historical anime, Hakuoki Renmeiroku, in which a poor samurai is tested to see if he’ll scrabble after something thrown in the dirt.)

    But yeah, the doorstep makes this sound like a neighborhood kid, of the school of “Prince Albert in the can,” soaped windows, sacks of excrement set to be stepped on, buckets of water, and the like. At least you didn’t come home to TP in the trees.

    • I don’t regard it as hilariously wacky, mind you. But the sort of people who make YouTube videos of their artistic poo efforts — they do.

    • O, thank you so very much for the reminder. We had watched the first part of Hakuoki Renmeiroku in Anime club — I was charmed, but I had forgotten the name.

    • It would be more hilarious if you could find out who did it and send them a sad letter that their poop was tested and they have colon cancer. I know I’m mean.

      • actually poop dollar is not the same as what we got — that’s a dollar face down with poop smeared on it, etc. THIS is a dollar carefully wrapped around a dog turd, and the dollar is to mean it’s not an accident. (Rolls eyes.)

        • Sounds like you have an enemy – I don’t buy the teenager thing… I would put up a camera.

          • Sounds like the enemy needs an enema. I blame the current administration and its inflationary monetary policies; if the dollar were still worth crap nobody would waste one on a sh!tty prank like this.

  12. jon spencer

    Might be time for a security camera set up.

  13. This is where I plug ReadAssist.org

  14. I hate to be the one to point this out, but: Given what the lead news item in every media outlet is these days, I’d have to say this is the “stupid” end of Colorado’s “insane, or stupid” dichotomy. And these days, CO seems to be emitting more than its share of both….