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27 September 2004

Ah, FantasyCon. What romance, what exotic thrills are conjured up by the name alone. Add that this year it was a road-trip, Three Men in a Car, and you just know that adventure and self-discovery lie ahead...

Except that this is FantasyCon UK, the public instrument of the British Fantasy Society, and therefore it happens in a motorway hotel near Walsall, and all the in-car entertainment was Radio 4 and the Goon Show. Sigh. The most exciting moment was when I fell over (cut lip, chipped tooth, ripped jeans, scabby knees - I feel eight years old), and the greatest moment of self-discovery was another reminder just how acidulated I can be when Iím in a mood.

But I shouldnít knock it. I do love FantasyCon, because itís not about the venue (thank God) nor the side-issues of what happens to me (assaulted, seduced, locked naked out of my hotel room, passing out in a Chinese restaurant - the list goes on and on, one year after another). Like all good fictions, itís about the people. And I disagree with much of what they do, I think the awards are a shame and a scandal, neither the event nor the Society are ever as good as I want them to be and they are far too resistant to change - and yet, I love íem dearly and I do keep going back.

And this year there is at least one conspiracy afoot, which I am forbidden to tell you of. There might very easily be another, only that would involve a swift coup díétat with Jules and me taking over the committee, and we are firmly sitting on our hands to stop ourselves from doing that. Donít have the time. No revolutions this October. Just a relentless grinding of the teeth, as heretofore.

And then I got home, to find that my chipped tooth is the one that I check rice (and pasta, and vegetables, and and and) with, to see if itís done yet. Canít do it now, the chip is in exactly the wrong place. Trying to learn to do it the other side of my mouth is like trying to learn to write with the wrong hand, or cross my legs the wrong way, or do anything by looking in a mirror. Itís all colleywest, and I canít do it.

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© Chaz Brenchley 2004
Reproduced here by permission of Chaz Brenchley, who asserts his moral right to be identified as the author of this work.