The WSFA Journal, August 1990

The WSFA Journal


August 1990

ISSN 0894-2



Mr. Nicholas Satan, Chair of the Board, Hell in '99 Worldcon Bid Committee, today announced that Hell will be closed temporarily due to extremely unseasonable weather.

The cause of the closure was an unexpected snowstorm which coated the Lower Regions in a sheet of ice. Travel into the area became impossible when the Gates of Hell froze shut. Hell has previously frozen over on several occasions, most recently in 1989 when the Berlin Wall came down.

Asked if this will affect Hell's bid for the 1999 Worldcon, Satan replied, "Definitely. Unless we get the ice out of the jacuzzis, no self respecting fan will consider our bid."

Mr. Satan was formerly an associate in the firm of Jehovah & Son, but left following a policy dispute over the admission of junior members. He is founder and senior partner of Satan & Asmodeus, and is President of Fans in Hell.


And Says So At Length


Magazines Cost $1


"We're Humanoid After All."


Cites Medical Conditions, Resigns by Fax


Theological Changes prophesied


Members Stunned by Changes

"But Not for Long!" Says One


"Can't Stand the Competition," Says Spokesfan


"It's Not Hubble's Fault," Says NASA


"Gasp!" Gasp the Members

See various stories on pages 1, 2 and 4.

First Friday in July

The first regular meeting in July began when President Tom Schaad said "Hello!" to the members, who replied "Hi!" in unison. None of the members appeared to be, but with WSFA it's hard to tell.

The business session convened at 9:14, 6 July 1990.

The President asked if the Publications Committee had a report. Before Secretary Lee Strong could reply, Tom announced that he cringed on these occasions. Lee pointed out that this was only the second appearance of the new format Journal. Tom replied that he was a fast learner. The members Ooh'd at the appearance of the July 90 issue but did not Ah. Lee stated that little clocks had been inserted into the Journal at great expense to the taxpayers for the benefit of those who had trouble with the minutes. Reading of the minutes was waived unanimously.

John Sapienza stated that the business address of Disclave 91 is DISCLAVE 1991 Registration, Box 677, c/o John Sapienza, Washington, D.C. 20044-0677. The previously reported address is correct only in alternate timelines. Memberships will cost $20 until 1/1/91.

Joe Mayhew claimed to detect a clever plot by Lee Strong. Several years ago, Lee's name was misspelled when it first appeared in the pages of the Journal. Now, Lee is deliberately misspelling everyone else's name as revenge. Lee just smiled.

The Treasurer reported $9,348.46 in the til.

Disclave Past eventually arrived in the present. Covert Beach asked all department heads to crank out those honoraria nominations so that the ConComm can crank out those honoraria. The Committee is compiling a crank list.

Disclave Present Chair Peggy Rae Pavlat requested people meet with her after the business meeting. She wants your ideas for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night activities. Tom asked that suggestions be "PG", please. "PG" is the county that we disclave in.

The Entertainment Committee, at great expense to the taxpayers, has imported Rev. Sharpton for the trial of Mayor Marion Barry. The Fourth of July picnic was a success. Doll was still feeling good.

John Pomeranz, Chairfan of the Outrageous and Controversial Committee, announced that he had nothing to say. The club went into cardiac arrest. John then proceeded to list all of things that he was not saying. He was not leaving us hanging with any snide comments about Mitch Snyder. He was not going to remark on the German mark. Brian Lewis interrupted to say that the O & C Committee had obviously missed its mark. Further, the Chairfan was obviously Stalling. NO, corrected John, Stalling was at Marion Barry's trial, not WSFA.

John went on to say that NASA's recent troubles with the Hubble Space Telescope and their inability to get a shuttle off the ground greatly concerned the Committee. It was obvious that New Orleans fandom had taken over NASA. Therefore, the Committee was hiring the Permanent Floating Worldcon Committee to run NASA. Not only will the Agency have a better program, but we'll all have one hell of a good party in Low Earth Orbit.

Steve Smith suggested the O & C Committee purchase a giant eyechart for the Hubble but Herblock published that idea.

Old Business: We don't need no steenking Old Business!

New Business: Bob MacIntosh requested the club approve $660 for our storage shed contract renewal. The contract will run for 14 months and is cheaper than the previous year. If the present trend continues for a few years, they will pay us for the privilege of storing our stuff. Passed unanimously.

Tom Schaad announced that WSFA had received two 7 course dinners at the Moroccan Marrakesh restaurant, at no expense to the taxpayers. After consulting with absolutely no one, Tom suggested that the only fair way to distribute the dinners was by a drawing to be held on the First Friday in August, after the regular business meeting. All paid up members would be entered in the drawing. This plan was immediately accepted.

Considerable discussion then ensued about defining membership, given the intertwined nature of WSFA and Disclave memberships. The club decided that purchase of a Disclave 91 membership by the Third Friday in July was required or the wannabe diner was SOL [that's Stranded On Luna]. Tom requested the Treasurer prepare slips with members' names to be drawn from a hat. With 74 paid up members, we will need a big hat, but WSFA has plenty of big heads!


Doll announced that lime aid was available.

The Publications Committee invited all WSFAns to submit to the Committee. Submit early. Submit often. Submit in public places. "Ouch!" commented Brian Lewis.

Matt Leger had two announcements. First, Dead Man's Hand, the seventh book in the Wild Cards series, just appeared. Second, IASFM published a novella length essay by Harlan Ellison on his bad experiences with fans. This essay may inspire some.

Joe Mayhew announced that the Library of Congress made him a Recommending Officer for Science Fiction. Joe asks for your advice: What is the canon of science fiction? What science fiction books should any self respecting library have? What academic research exists on science fiction?

Tom asked John Sapienza if this appointment made Joe's convention activities tax deductible as being research. John took the issue under advisement.

Steve Fetheroff announced that he had won his own contest to name his cat. Something was fixed if not the cat. Said new name is 'Arisia'. Steve also announced a new contest for Arisia's middle name.

Mike Walsh announced that he had no books to sell. The club went into cardiac arrest. However, he did have Locus magazines on sale for $1 each. The club recovered.

Before calling for a vote on adjournment, Tom Schaad unaccountably inserted his fingers in his ears. Alexis asked how could the President gauge the vote. Someone said By the vibrations. The club unanimously adjourned at 9:42.

Third Friday in July

The business meeting came to order precisely on time at 9:16, 20 July 1990. (Prior to the meeting, unruly murmurs were heard from a "commoner on the floor" that the meeting was starting late.) Tom Schaad, President of this fine organization, invited the members to take a seat or a floor or a whatever.

Secretary Lee Strong actually read the minutes until the President called a halt. Further reading of the minutes was waived unanimously.

There was no Treasurer's report. The Treasurer has apparently absconded and is enjoying a Brazilian vacation. We're bankrupt. We're broke. We don't even have any checks left.

The Entertainment Committee reported, "It's hot." "A cogent statement," analyzed Schaad.

Disclave Past has bills to pay. Chairfan Eva Whitley asked people to submit their bills. A cat then attacked Eva.

Disclave Present Chairfan Peggy Rae Pavlat reported on a meeting with the Sheraton manager. They want $82 per room per night. However, the Sheraton will only charge 1/2 price on Thursday night, will throw in 2 suites that we currently pay for for free, will open another meeting room, and will commit to keeping prices stable for one year. They are also working on the Exhibit Hall. Peggy took the Sheraton proposal under advisement. Alexis Gilliland suggested the Committee check out another hotel. Eva suggested that repairs to the Exhibit Hall be an important consideration. This year, the Hall leaked on one of our hucksters.

Disclave Future Future has not been selected yet. Schaad said "Future Future" so don't blame me.

John Pomeranz, Chairfan of the Committee to Make Controversial Suggestions Which Are Promptly Ignored, first stated that he had no report. Unruly comments arose from the floor that we should skip the report. Further comments were made that we skip the Committee.

John proceeded to announce that Mr. Justice Walter Brennan had just resigned from the US Supreme Court and that people should stock up on their RU-47. President Bush has asked the Committee to assist in selecting a nominee. After careful consideration, the Committee will recommend that Bush nominate a fan of outstanding judicial temperament and broad parliamentary experience, Mr. Bob Sax. As an alternative, the Committee will recommend that Mr. Sax be sent to the Moon in honor of Moon Day, 1990. Applause.

* [Inserted] President Bush subsequently nominated the equally well known Judge David H. Souter of the New Hamster Supreme Court. When contacted by Journal reporter Lee Shehr for a comment, John said, "Where does he get these guys? First Quayle and now this Souter. Is there a secret factory somewhere? Obviously the Committee is very disappointed that our candidate was not selected. Bush should remember that it was the fannish vote that put him in the White House. However, in the spirit of cooperation, if Souter doesn't work out, we can send him to the Moon."

* President Bush has not been reached for his reaction to the Committee's offer.

Old Business: The Third Friday in August will not be held at the Bloom/Morman house as the family will be visiting the Pennsic War of 990. No one volunteered their own house although it was suggested that we contact the new residents of the Heneghan/Normandy house. Tom said "Mull upon it."

Tom reminded the members that the drawing for the 2 complimentary Moroccan dinners at the Marrakesh restaurant will be held after the regular business meeting First Friday in August. Read what he said on page 3: I don't get paid by the word.

St. Jack Chalker announced that the Marrakesh serves bunnies, bambies and prunes. They ought to serve WSFAns.

New Business? What New Business?


Steve Smith talked to Cat Slusser: she turned into a poodle. Steve did not explain this remarkable feat of genetic engineering.

Erica Van Dommelen firmly requested that people not call her between 5:00 and 7:00 on Friday nights. People are doing so to ask if WSFA is meeting that night. Erica needs the time for herself to unwind after a week in the office. Calling is really rude since Erica is no longer the President of WSFA. As alternatives, Erica made three suggestions. First, people can keep track of WSFA meeting days themselves. Second, people can check with people other than either Erica or Jim Tracy. Third, friends may talk to Erica at other times. If you do call Erica during personal time, two things will happen. First, she will not tell you when WSFA meets. Second, she will do the same thing to you! Friends are to be enjoyed, not abused.

Martin Wooster will be writing the Book World Science Fiction column next month.

Eva announced that, for those who were disappointed by not getting wet on the Fourth of July, BISFIS is having a Fourth Friday in August party at a swim club.

Peggy Rae would like to know who is going to Worldcon.

Steve Fetheroff announced that he brought Sheila Nolastname as a guest, and that his parents and sister might attend the First Friday in September meeting. There was a groan from the floor.

Michael Enoch is looking for programmers of C, OS/2 and Oracle.

John Pomeranz announced that he is not in law school yet. Applause. He is wait listed at Georgetown University. No applause. As a consolation prize, he will be attending Worldcon although he might have to leave the Con to fly back to law school. No applause.

St. Jack Chalker announced that Mirage Press just published a book with the longest lead time in history. In 1971, he signed a contract and delivered a story. In 1990, the story is being published in The Harlan Ellison Hornbook. There will be 750 signed and numbered copies, all bound by an Oregon Christian commune. Ellison canonized Jack, who shalt now be known as St. Jack. Let us pray.

Martin Wooster asked What about The Index to the Science Fantasy Publishers? There is a long profile on Harlan Ellison in the Los Angeles Times Magazine, which claims that Ellison relieves stress by chewing bark off trees in Ellison Wonderland. Upon hearing this Eva shouted, "Thank Ghod, (St.) Jack (only) smokes!"

Dan Hoey will return to Heinz for an Artificial Intelligence conference, and to see if there are any Noreascon goers still wandering around. He will take several copies of the Resnick book to sell.

Brian Lewis announced a new computer for the college bound, the 1000RL. The official announcement will be made next week in The Wall Street Journal, not to be confused with The WSFA Journal.

George Shiner announced that the Commandant of the Marine Corps wishes to encourage independent thinking in his junior officers. He has therefore placed Ender's Game on their required reading lists.

Joe Mayhew is interested in running Disclave 1992. Please ask Joe for details.

* The Publications Committee regrets to announce that Mr. Tom Schaad is as blind as a bat, and cannot see the Secretary when Lee is holding his hand up for recognition. Just because Lee was hiding behind the fish tank is no excuse to ignore the press.

* The Publications Committee further regrets that we do not know the names of everyone in WSFA. Therefore, we will, from time to time, be asking people who they are so that they can receive full credit for their momentous deeds, noteworthy accomplishments, and witty remarks in the science fiction fandom newsletter of record, The WSFA Journal.

The meeting unanimously adjourned at 9:48.


But, is it science fiction?

Wherever it is in the literature of ideas, Ghost is good stuff. Go see it.

New York yuppie Sam Wheat, played by hunk Patrick Swayze, seems to have it all: big bucks job, nifty living loft and Demi Moore as a live-in girl friend. Then, he's killed, and has to adjust to "life" as a ghost.

It's no easy task since Sam can see and hear the material world, but he can't affect anything. He finds that New Yorkers are still New Yorkers, dead or alive. Then, he discovers his killer is still after his grieving girl....

Characterization is excellent all round. Naturally, the stars are Moore, Swayze and Whoopi Goldberg. The latter plays a fake medium who suddenly discovers she has real powers, and a real opportunity to help people. But keep an eye on the minor characters for some excellent development and real revelations.

The cinematography is outstanding, with New York looking more like Gotham City every day. The plotting and pacing is well handling, shifting expertly from introspective moments of grief to thrilling action. Did we really touch so many emotional bases in only 2+ hours?

Outstanding special effects highlight this film, especially the demonic shadows that materialize to conduct evil souls of the Down escalator of the afterlife. Yet the effects never overwhelm the basic human story of love and sacrifice.

The theological underpinnings are generic Christianoid, but probably inoffensive to most.

I rate Ghost Excellent. --SDN


by Joe Mayhew

The Emperor of Lost Virginia had two friends, both elephants, who built a resort hotel atop Royal Mountain. It was a massy pile. Great colonnades stretched out in layers of Greco-Roman Gothic awesomeness. Even pilgrims speeding by far below in their dusty Chevrolets could tell it was built for elephants by elephants. Its public rooms were decorated in BarBar-oque and from the Howdah-check stand to the vast tennis wallows, the place was equipped with the latest pachydermophoric technology: six lane moving sidewalks, cosmic elevators, and golf carts with 24 hour kitchens.

Naturally, when the proprietary elephants invited their friend the Emperor of Lost Virginia to pontificate at the Grand Opening, he arrived with troops of well-connected baboons, cigar-smoking lions and riding a horse descended from Robert E. Lee's Traveler.

Crowds of honest, glad-to-be-hard-working employees were lined up along the colonnade in their appropriately spotless uniforms. Fireworks lighted the night sky above the neighboring mountains and the Imperial Militia did military things under the klieg lights while the Emperor showed off on his horse for a little girl he hoped would one day include it in her memoirs.


My text today is from Shakespeare's King Henry V, Act IV, Scene II. The Constable of France, Charles de la Bret, is summoning the flower of French Chivalry to the field at Agincourt, where he and most of the others will, of course, die.

He says, and I quote here the Arden Shakespeare version:

"Then let the trumpets sound / The tucket sonance and the note to mount: / For our approach shall so much dare the field / that England shall couch down in fear and yield."

Now, where are the tucket sonances of yesteryear? (pause for good natured nudging and perhaps a titter of laughter, if I'm lucky.) I chose this passage because, well, I was re-reading Henry Five the other night and it stuck to the roof of my brain like peanut butter (perhaps a knowing nod or two from an elephant?). So, I thought, well perhaps that's the muse knocking and so I decided to talk a little about tucket sonances and the like. Well, first, there's the sub-conscious level, very appropriate here at this momentous mountainous elephant occasion.

(Here there be puzzled looks, but patient expectation will win the field.) Let's see; Trumpet. That's pachydermic to the core, and Tucket - that resonates with Tusk-ed and Ticket and thicket and back to trumpet. Neat, eh? (The elephants relax a bit) Thence to sonance, a rare word, even in the Bard's time, nevertheless a good one. "Tucket sonance." That rolls off the tongue as nice as "cellar door" or "you have just won the Irish Sweetpotato", doesn't it?

Well my good friends Orville Wellrogue and Clovis Ringling have certainly sounded their trumpet from purple mountain majesty to the enlightened world, and this new Agincourt Country Club Spa will surely drive Old Man Depression from the fields of our Lost Virginian Empire. The clientele of this splendid inn will couch down in pure luxury and yield themselves to many happy returns.

(Good natured tolerance is all I ever expect) Thank you one and all, and now if someone will give me the scissors, I'll cut this here ribbon. (I cut the ribbon to a spate of applause and try not to be trampled).

The Emperor of Lost Virginia re-mounted his horse and trotted across the klieg-lit parking lot to review his troops (baboon and military) before retiring to his trailer for a smoke.

He opened the envelope stuffed clumsily into his pocket by Clovis and found the following note:

Dear Pierpont:

Twenty years ago when you opened the Empire of Lost Virginia to free elephants and we stampeded here in search of toleration and mammoth opportunity, being elephants, we knew we would never forget your benevolence. Now that Lost Virginia has become the home of nearly all of our endangered species (destroyed elsewhere by Ivory hunters, boring zoos, atomic wars between tiny African nations and mice), we want to do something to repay our debt to you and to Lost Virginia, beyond the jobs, tax money, and prestige we are already bringing to the Empire. If you get any neat ideas how we might do this, please get in touch.


Ory W. & Butch R.

The Emperor made a paper airplane out of the letter and sailed it around the trailer for a while and then took a nap.

Tomorrow would be another busy day, a delegation from Pennsyltucky pleading for annexation (not feasible), a NRA investiture ceremony for Gun Nuns, and, of course, the state dinner for the Ivory Syndics would probably run late into the night. [tree]

The WSFA Journal is the official sounding newsletter of the Washington Science Fiction Association (WSFA).

Publisher..................Tom Schaad
Editor in Chief............Lee Strong
Religious Affairs Editor....
     ....The Right Reverend Mr. Kitty
Spiritual Consultants...
..Moses Ben Israel, Joshua Ben Yosef, Odin Burisson, Jack Chalker, Cybele, Danu, Slayton Ford, Hermes, Ruhollah Khomieni, Kickaha, Cornelius King, Nyarlathotep, Coy O'Tee, Q, Fikri Ramadan, Salman Rushdie, Bishop Ib Scoglund, Michael V. Smith, Thoth, Jim Tracy, Urizen, Sam Wheat, X

and a Cast of Hundreds of Thousands!