Portland, OR — July 22-27, 1992
This is taken from an old email, dated August 12, 1992.
Arrive about an hour late because of delays leaving DFW. Lee (my ex from Dallas who's now working for IBM in New York) picks me up and we drive out (against my better judgement) to the Bagby Hot Springs, a 2 or 3 hour drive from PDX. The "early arrivals" were going to meet here at 6 or 8 and soak all night. It's been a long day (I was up at 6am CDT for driving to the airport, and it's 12am PDT by the time we get to Bagby); I'm exhausted. We get there, start climbing the mountain to get to the hot springs, and meet one group of soc.motssers on their way down. (Ed Spodick is in this group. Hi Ed!!) They say that there're still a lot of motssers at the top, so Lee and I keep climbing. (After all this, I *need* a soak in the hot tubs there!) We climb more, and run into a second group of motssers, who say that the rest of the group is leaving. I am beyond pooped at this point, so I say the hell with it and climb back down. Stand around in the parking lot chatting with motssers until we all get down from the hot springs, then convoy to the hotel. I arrive around 1am, and my roommate, who's already checked in, isn't back yet. Sit in lobby 'til 1:45am. Eventually, get to room and bo to ged.
Spent the morning and afternoon walking around Portland with Arnold Gum (roommate). Some minor shopping, some sight-seeing, run into a group of random motssers for lunch. That evening was the welcome dinner at House of Louie's for a wonderful Chinese dinner. (55 motssers and local queerfolk in one room, seating for 48, and plenty of food.) Met some folks from the net I'd not met before — too many to name, really — and saw some folks I'd met in Boston (Ry Schwark, Howard Solomon, Ri-Jen Chou, Alan Batie (organizing this con), Bob Donahue and his FredBear, and so on).... Was a lot of fun. After dinner, it was pretty much a nothing-planned evening, so a bunch of us went back to Alan's house (suprising his roommate, Michael, who was on the phone wearing absolutely nothing (he left after saying hello to us because he was going to continue reading and a houseful of queers was probably a bit much for him)), sat around, and chatted for a while, until the contingent from the hotel returned there. Sleep.
Morning picnic at a local park, the name of which escapes me. Supposed to start at 11am, most of us start rolling in around noon or 1 or 2... QST (Queer Standard Time) becomes a running joke for the rest of the con. Sit talk eat talk chat talk run around talk rest talk.... Around 3pm or so nine of us hopped into Tom Limoncelli's van and drove to the nearby Science Museum, because they had an ST:TNG exhibit. (Was fun, pretty high- tech, and I'm glad I went. Was overpriced though. Ah well.) After the museum we returned to the picnic and when it broke up I headed over to Alan's with him, to start setting up for the picnic there. (I had no car, so I hitched a ride, meaning I got to clean the porch while getting set up. Ah well, it was something to do.) Picnic: Food, folks, fun. Met some more IRC folk, still more motssers, and enjoyed myself. Messed with Howard Solomon's mind a little, until he started zinging me back a bit much. (I like him. Nice person.) Around 9pm or so, Tom Limoncelli herded most of us (I'd guess about 50-60 people) into the basement for his safe(r) sex workshop. Ran about 1.5 hours before I had to go to the john, but I stayed long enough to see him demonstrate the correct use of a dental dam (on Ry Schwark's knee), how properly to apply a condom, the use of dammettes (which are leather straps to hold a dental dam in place and leaving the hands free to, uh, perform other tasks; the demo involved Scooter dropping trou about 1/2m in front of me for Tom to apply the dammettes; the room was amused), and the use of a particular Hitachi product which is sold as a back massager (but with clitoral stimulator and/or anal probe as attachments). Grandmama KKKruella (Ry Schwark) was in ecstacies, as s/he was the poor hapless person who was the recipient of the Hitachi's vibrations. Went upstairs, took a bathroom break, and stayed talking to some folks up there. Around 12 or 1 it was convoy to the hotel and bed.
This morning, a bunch of us met in the hotel lobby to do brunch. After brunch, the more politicized crowd went along to the gay pride march; I went back to the hotel for a rest. After the march, we were going to go to a local clothing-optional beach for the afternoon. I exercised my option, and took it all off; most people did likewise. Sand was very hot, water was very cool (and very welcome); we brought food for a mini brunch (leftovers from the BBQ the previous night, mostly), and lots and lots of sunscreen. (Had fun applying it to each other as you may well expect. ;-) ) That evening, we were going to meet at Alan's house to determine what to do for dinner; 20 of us headed out to Alexis' for an excellent Greek dinner (20 queers doing Greek, <sigh>). Then we broke up — some to the bar scene, some to a leather-bear gathering, and some simply back to the hotel to cuddle.
The traditional Dim-Sum brunch, again at House of Louie's. Was fun watching Mara Chibnick (I sat next to her) trying to determine who was who, as she'd met us all yesterday at the beach. (She'd remained clothed for medical reasons.) After brunch, we split up; a contingent of us headed off to Powell's Books again. Back to the hotel around 2. My bum knee was acting up so I grabbed a book (Agatha Christie's *There Is A Tide...* if I recall) and went to the nearest park — Riverside Park, which is a block-wide strip of park — grass, trees, benches, fountains, sculptures — along the riverfront, and all of one block from the hotel. Sat and read until about 4pm, then back to the hotel to meet the group for dinner. Dinner was to be at a place called Old Wives' Tales, which is a lesbian-owned mostly-vegetarian (they have chicken and fish, no beef or pork, on the menu) restaurant across the river from the hotel, and about 32 or 36 of us showed up. Excellent food, great company, and a lot of fun. After dinner, we were going to all get dessert if we wanted it, and meet back at the fountain in Riverside Park. About 25 of us made it there, and we sat and talked and listened to Marc play his violin (concert-quality, allowing for the wind which continued to detune it, no matter how hard he tried to keep it in tune). (A funny: John Dorrance pulled off Bob Donahue's soc.motss cap and tossed it down onto the ground. Someone else (I forget who) pinned an anti-OCA button onto it. I tossed in a few coins. General amusement. While this is going on, the straight teens who have been throwing each other into the fountain came by to listen to Marc's violin, and I think one even tossed in some change.) After an hour or two, there was a group grope — uh, group *hug* — in front of the fountain, whereupon we all sang the Moose Song (okay, Cliff and Ellen sang the lyrics and we all did the choruses) to the amusement of the one presumably straight gentleman who'd been sitting nearby throughout all our antics (he left shortly after the Moose Song). Was a long time since I sang in public. I enjoyed it. After that, we sort of broke up, and wound up having about 20 of us in Cliff and Ellen's hotel room chatting for a while. Was a nice close to the evening and the con.
There was a scheduled brunch, but several of us had early afternoon planes to catch, so I skipped it. Arnold and I went to brunch with Ri-Jen and Chris Adami, and got back to the hotel to finish packing. Said g'bye to the brunch bunch in the hotel lobby, and Arnold and I drove out to return the car and catch our flights.
Overall, it was a lot of fun. I'm glad I went, even if the hotel *did* cost more for me (my half of the room) than the airfare.