Bill Roper (billroper) wrote,
Bill Roper

A Bad Night for Inanimate Objects

Let's see. Where did I leave off?

While everyone was hearing the concerts in the Internet Cafe and the main space quite well, my attempt to record them with the Firebox that I'd bought the previous year was still failing with dropouts just as it had before, despite my having adjusted the latency settings. This was getting pretty annoying.

Before tollers helped me set up on Saturday, I got down to the Internet Cafe early, fired up the laptop and discovered that the drivers for the Firebox had been updated from version 1.20 last year to version 2.46 (!) this year. Downloading and installing the new drivers and the included firmware update seems to have fixed the problem, but I won't know for absolutely sure until I get a chance to play back all of the recordings.

Debbie was good enough to cover most of the sessions in the Internet Cafe on Saturday, which allowed for the time when I had to help cover the table and wrangle Katie while daisy_knotwise went to recover the slide projectors I'd forgotten and catalana ran her dance class (which seemed to go quite well). After the last concert there, Debbie and I struck the portable sound system and took it back to Ops, despite the best effort of the folks who were riding down from the lobby to the basement in the elevators.

I took Katie to the hotel restaurant where I was waiting for Gretchen and Erica to arrive. Gretchen did. Erica didn't. After climbing four flights of stairs to her room, she discovered that her key didn't work. Reprogramming it didn't help. The maid's key didn't work either. They managed to get Erica and Grace into their room, but then they weren't allowed to leave until hotel security showed up to reprogram their lock.

Which didn't work. So engineering took the lock apart. And replaced parts. And replaced more parts. And after three hours, Erica finally made it downstairs -- I'd dropped dinner off for her earlier -- for the last half of Moonwulf's concert, having missed bedlamhouse and ladyat completely. *sigh*

But we had fun at the open filk. Gretchen and I managed to sing "Apology" early on and Erica and I sang "Behind the Mask" and "Illusions" to close out our evening there, plus a number of things in between, at least one of which needs to go on Erica's new album. :)

The pirate show next door started at midnight and was a bit louder than I would have preferred, but there wasn't much to do about it, given the space available in the old Capricon hotel. (New hotel next year!)

On Sunday, despite Gretchen and I having board meetings for our respective conventions, life was reasonably relaxed for most of the day. We got lunch, chatted, and spent time trying to keep Katie from dismantling the room, including a trip to Bast's Garden where she picked out a winged white tiger for her collection.

Erica and I managed to pack the table up in an hour while Gretchen wrangled Katie and the assorted dealers. Gretchen had suggested that Erica and I grab dinner then while she dealt with the stragglers, but Erica decided she was more tired than hungry, so the two of us set out to the house to pick up the old TV that Gretchen and I are giving her.

The good news was that the rain and warmer temperatures had pretty much eliminated the ice on the driveway, so loading the TV was easy. Then Erica dropped me back at the hotel and headed home.

Eventually, the last dealer left and we were able to load up our stuff and go. By this time, ice was forming on the cars and on the ground as the temperature started rapidly falling, but we managed to get out without incident. I called our local pizza place and ordered dinner for later pickup.

And I got to Dempster to the stretch where I'd earlier warned Erica about the potholes and proceeded to hit the mother of all potholes which thoroughly flattened my right front tire. I got out, inspected the damage, and considered calling AAA immediately.

Then I considered the trunkload of crap on top of the spare, the already ordered pizza, and the fact that I was about two miles from home. I limped home on the flat and then had Gretchen call AAA while I unloaded the car which I parked in the driveway so I could get at it.

I was moderately suspicious of our driveway, but when I got out of the car, it seemed fine. I remained suspicious, which was good, because there was a nice patch of ice right behind the trunk of my car. I carefully emptied out the trunk and the rest of the car and went inside to collapse in a heap, pressing the button to close the garage door.

Which started down and then reversed. I pressed the button again. Same result.

And on the third or fourth try, it stopped about halfway down. With the minivan inside and my car -- the one with the flat -- outside.

Did I mention that we'd ordered the pizza for pickup? I pulled the emergency release and eventually managed to get the door locked in the up position so Gretchen could get out and get the pizza.

While eating the pizza, I managed to spill half a can of soda that I was trying to protect from Katie down the front of my shirt. Apparently, I had to destroy the soda in order to save it. Fortunately, the cellphone in my shirt pocket survived. :)

AAA has come. My tire is changed, the rim is slightly bent. They say the shop should be able to hammer it out when I get new tires tomorrow.

And Gretchen gets to go out and buy a new garage door opener. It was ten years old. It wasn't a great surprise.

It was just the timing. *sigh*

Thanks to everyone who helped make the filk programming at Capricon a big success this year, whether they worked on it formally, helped me wrangle gear, gave advice, gave permission (Thanks, Leane!), sang in the circles, or just came to listen. Despite being run off my feet, I really did have a great time.
Tags: capricon, cons, filk, musings, tech

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