I have returned from DucKon.
The short version: it was a very good time, and good for me. There were some problems and frustrations, but despite there being a lot of excess stress in the air, I managed to be feeling good most of the time, and when I wasn't it was mostly by being overwhelmed. There was a fantastic amount of music. Because I was so busy with the music, I missed a lot of other activities that I also wanted to be at. I got a lot of hugs and brief moments with people I want to be with, which is really good.
A bunch of things went wrong at this con. As people are dealing with the aftermath, please remember that a lot more things went right. I saw a whole lot of people having a good time.
I thought I was going to hit highlights, but I ended up covering most of what I did linearly. This will probably be boring to everyone else.
The trip up was pretty uneventful until we got off the highway, where I, confidently sure that I knew where I was and where I was going, turned the wrong way on Diehl. After 10 minutes, I finally accepted that I had gone the wrong way and turned around. That got us back to the hotel in time to get our stuff unloaded just before the thunderstorm hit, which has to be considered a good thing. Got stuff into the room, got my badge, and got to the CD release, which managed to happen in spite of some troubles. I got my copy of The Face on Mars signed by Tom and Dave. I wandered around for a bit trying to find other people to go eat with, without success, and took very brief looks at the dealers and the art show. Even though I didn't want to be spending money, I would have liked to look a little more, but there was too much going on. birder2 and I headed to Schmaltz', which was most excellent yummy and delicious. There was some fun at opening ceremonies. Then the sound system blew up (OK, not literally, but it wasn't working) and forced a lengthy delay of Talis' request concert. While milling about waiting for the doors to re-open, I was on the fringe of a conversation about Ben Newman's songwriting, and I think it was phillip2637 (but if my memory is failing, please don't hit me) made some comment to the effect that the way someone's song writing brought in details about subjects that wouldn't have seemed connected before, it was as though they went to Wikipedia, hit random article twice, and incorporated what they found in the song. (This is meant as a compliment.) But I'm struck that it sounds like a really great writing exercise, and I want to actually try it, only since I don't do songs I'd do it as flash fiction. Eventually, the sound was working, and Talis sang, and it was very good. And then billroper and daisy_knotwise had a concert. I was struck by the fact that, despite the fact that I've heard "My Husband, the Filker" and "Apology" quite a few times, they still had me rolling on the floor. After the concert, there was a circle in the alternate room, and I stopped in hoping to hear shadowriderhope's amazing saxophone. She was trying to leave, but I made puppy dog eyes at her and she played one more. I have a very vague memory that I sang a couple of songs Friday.
Saturday started earlier than I'd really intended, because I found myself wide awake at 9. So I caught most of the early bird show, and then Riverfolk's concert. Then I ducked out of the filk track for an hour because there was a panel about furry fandom and I'm hoping to learn more about that fandom. I'm planning on going to IndyFurCon in August, and I'm hoping to learn a little about the fandom. Sadly, not being able to be in two places at once meant missing [Bad username: <lj]'s concert. A quick bite to eat and a little more of the bird show. Then I listened, rapt, to the first half of the Dandelion Wine concert, and I decided that I couldn't stand missing the chance to get my picture taken holding Xena the Eurasian Eagle Owl. Lady Mondegreen sang very nicely, even though there ended up being fewer of them than originally hoped. It was great hearing Scott Snyder again after so long. Talis' main concert had some more technical problems, but her songs were wonderful. I ate far too much at the prime rib buffet, but amazingly had a little time to relax before the Masters of Lightning wowed us with singing Tesla coils. A really good filk Saturday night. shadowriderhope played sax with me on "The Solitary Singer". I was so thrilled, it made my weekend. We got an unwanted break around 1:30 when the fire alarm went off, but amazingly enough the filk actually survived. I stayed up later than chasophonic and chirosinger, so there! filker0 and I did Dave Carter's "When I Go" after pretty much everybody else had left.
Sunday morning started in a really bad way, with the fire alarm going off again at 8 AM. It was so loud in our room that it was close to painful through my earplugs, so we staggered out into the cold light of dawn. The alarm stopped sounding about the time we got to the bottom of the stairs. I was much too fried to just get up. I eventually staggered down to catch the end of Toyboat. filkertom had a great concert. He's mostly doing familiar stuff, and I love it, but he did something to prove that he's truly a great entertainer. Without practicing it in advance, he sang the phone book. janmagic put the phone book on a music stand and opened it to a page and Tom started playing and singing the words in front of him. After a few bars, Jan turned the page and Tom continued his song with the new page. And he sold it. He had the whole audience rapt; it was truly a hoot. The con demanded the room back so they could have closing ceremonies, but Tom continued his concert in another room after the official end of the con. I delayed a bit getting to the pizza party, which meant that I had no chance of a seat, so I ate my pizza in my room. I didn't count, but I would guess we had at least 60 people in the dead duck filk at the peak. The room was full and the music was epic. Hope played sax with me on Dancing Bear and sweetmusic_27 played fiddle on Swing the Cat. I played Dangerous Color for Talis and I believe she liked it. I was getting a bit punchy by the end of the evening, but I was definitely high on the music, and at least as far as I can recall, I was actually playing pretty well. It was the best filk circle I've been in in a long time.