The WSFA Journal, Virtual April/May 1994

The WSFA Journal



Virtual April/May 1994

Actually published in June 1994

ISSN 0894-5411

"...Marshalling Our Energies For Disclave..."


Storage Issues Take Up Time and Space ..................... Page 2
The Bromides of March ..................................... Page 4
First Friday Meeting Held at Balticon ..................... Page 6
Everything's Under Control ................................ Page 6


Researchers Finally Slice the Pi .......................... Page 9

Maps and Directions

The WSFA 4th of July Picnic 1994! ......................... Page 10



The regular First Friday in March 1994 business meeting of the Washington Science Fiction Association convened at 9:19 "whatever day this is" [4 Mar 94]. Before the meeting, the group went Babble, Babble. There was a call for "Tyranny, now!" We got Steve Smith.

President Smith asked Secretary Lee Strong if we had anything to waive. We did and so we did.

Treasurer Robert "Guy" MacIntosh reported $1881.08 on hand. Joe Mayhew suggested we give it all to the poor. Steve pointed out that we are the poor. Short trip.

Steve reported that we need an Entertainment Committee. Alexis Gilliland, Chairfan of the Entertainment Committee, reported an incursion of water in the basement. The rug was up on the chairs. The ghods are on your case.

Disclave Present was NOT! present.

Dan Hoey, Chairfan of Disclave Future, got a Guest Of Honor (GOH), Charles Sheffield. There is a Hugo in Charles' future. Dan is filling a few gaps now. There are a multitude of staff positions open. See Dan off line.

Steve asked about Committees I'm Forgetting About? How about Fine Arts? It's in hiding.

Old Business

Was there any Old Business? No, the rug's just wet.

New Business

Guy moved that we re-up our storage facility for the next 12 months at a cost of $1080. Mike Walsh asked how much is our Treasury? {Read paragraph three, Mike.} Covert Beach stated that Disclave Past has art fund money of about $2500. We can get money real quick. Joe said Evan Phillips built shelves in the storage room. A committee of the Elders of Zion should inspect the stuff stored and discard. We have the mother lode of C-clamps. Joe went on, "I have the drills..." The club Ohhed! "... and the power screwdrivers." Babble, babble. The Zipsers volunteered to take them.

Steve asked, "When do you have to pay the money?" The lease lapses at the end of the month. Alexis suggested that we don't change over Memorial Day. Joe again suggested a committee to review the room. Peggy Rae Pavlat asked, "Can we do this as New Business?" Lee Gilliland said this is New Business. There was mild laughter.

Steve said, "Zap! You're a committee." Joe, Dan Hoey and George Shaner formed the Committee to Investigate New Storage Horizons. The commit tee will go around grabbing people. Mike Zipser's sister has some expertise. <In grabbing people?>

The club must come to a decision at the next meeting. Covert moved to authorize the committee to discard what is no longer needed. This suggestion was adopted by unanimous consent. Anything tried in the balance and found wanting will find its way to a dumpster or a yard sale.... Or a bonfire! Joe suggested the committee be named the Committee of Public Safety.

People asked about New Business, The New Tradition and Announcements before Steve restored what passes for order around here.

Dr. Perrianne Lurie noted that the First Friday in April will be Balticon weekend. Will we have a meeting here since the Gillilands will be at Balticon? No. The New Carrollton Sheraton is now the Ramada. This provoked laughter at the expense of the Sheraton Generic.

Joe moved we hold a meeting at the Balticon Con Suite. Lance Oszko offered "another suite." Joe pronounced, "It is politically tainted." Dan Hoey moved we accept the politically tainted offer. The motion was seconded & adopted unanimously. Steve stated, "We're going to drop in on Lance."


The New Tradition

Rachel Raccoon squeaked, "The Tradition! The Tradition!" Guy shouted, "Shoot that vermin!" Lee Strong asked, "Which one?" This provoked some laughter.

Steve desJardins and Jennie ______ were each here for their first times. A guy in a blue shirt named Ron announced that he was here for his second time. Joe PC asked, "Was it good for you?" There was no new money person here for his or her third time.


Secretary Lee Strong announced that his hand was tired. The club gave Lee a hand. Thanks.

Lee Strong, Executive Producer of the upcoming movie Twilight of the Dogs, announced that we hoped to have a video trailer for this exciting John Ellis film. He planned to show it after the meeting. Joe PC asked, "Should we go outside to see the trailer?" Lee retorted, "In you case, I hope so." The club hooted and Peggy Rae pronounced Joe "Stabbed!"

* [Inserted] Unfortunately the trailer did not arrive until the Third Friday meeting.

Mrs. Gilliland announced that there were slippery patches all over the downstairs of Chez Gilliland due to the water this morning. Be careful.

Perrianne announced a Balticon Worldcon meeting and that Disclave Program Book articles are due 15 April -- Tax Day -- and you know who you are.

Joe Mayhew will do a science fiction book review for the Post. Actor John Candy died of a heart attack at the age of 43.

Lee Gilliland pronounced a heart attack to be the second best way to go. Her job interview did not work out so she baked some brownies.

A Disembodied Hand announced that the Disclave Film Program needs help in choosing films.

The Trustees are thinking about elections. In you're interested in serving, please see them.

Mike had the usual selection of books. The Boskone book was signed by authors and artists.

The latest Science Fiction Chronicle reported that Keith Roberts was diagnosed with MS. His Christmas card was a farewell.

Mike Stein reported a rumor that Robert Anton Wilson had died. Victoria Smith asked when this was reported? Stein replied 22 Feb 94. Victoria stated that a minor clone of Wilson's had been observed at a gathering called Winterstar at the end of February.

Lance offered crash space at Lunacon and Balticon.

The Balticon Worldcon (B.W) bid reported its first miracle. On Saturday 19/20 Feb, the head of the Costumecon Con Suite came down sick. The B.W. bid took over the con suite, and mixed up White Whale punch. After a few applications, the head's voice was restored and she gave testimony to the healing power of B.W. bids. Joe PC asked if the B.W. bid would incorporate as a new religion?

Lee Gilliland blurted, "Let's get this meeting closed!" Guy said, "Let's move that this meeting be closed." The motion passed unanimously and the meeting was closed at 9:50.

* [Inserted] During the meeting, Lee Gilliland referred to a previous WSFA Journal article that stated that she had "hit the Big Four Oh." She clarified that "40 is my upper measurement." Lee Strong noted, "Your upper measurement is your head so "40" is your IQ! Right?" Lee Strong got no brownies after the meeting.

Isn't it amazing that there's always exactly enough news to fill up each and every issue of The WSFA Journal?



The regular Third Friday in March business meeting of the Washington Science Fulcrum Association was called to order at 9:27, "the day after St. Paddy's Day." President Steve Smith opened the ceremonial First Bheer and advised the crowd to "avoid the Bromides of March."

Steve asked Secretary Lee Strong if there were any minutes but found that they had already been waved by Candy Gresham.

Treasurer Robert "Guy" MacIntosh reported $1723.91 on hand. There were suggestions that we hold a Girl Scout cookie sale or hold a con real quick.

John Peacock, official Chairfan of Disclave Present, said, "Hi! Ahhhhhhhhh Then, Paula Lewis hit John's brain's re-set button, and he continued. "The hotel moved 15 feet to the left. The Programming Committee had a successful meeting where we discussed lots. Lois McMaster Bujold, our Guest Of Honor (GOH), has a new Miles book out: Mirror Dance."

Disclave Future is at Lunacon, somewhere in New York or New Jersey.

The Entertainment Committee is at Lunacon being entertained.

Joe Mayhew, Chairfan of the Committee to Investigate Storage Horizons, reported that Dan Hoey, Dick Roepke and he had looked at the stuff in our storage space. No decision was makeable. We will auction some of the stuff off at Disclave, including the wonderful little round tables, C-clamps,... The club went Ohhh! in wonder.

Joe continued that WSFA might store some big bulky stuff in the BISFIS clubhouse and pay them something. It would be a good idea to develop a closer working relationship with BISFIS since they might win the Worldcon bid. We need to develop people. It's fannish human resources management. This concept produced some chuckles.

Are there any Committees That Steve Is Forgetting About?

Old Business

Guy raised the issue of upping our storage space lease. He moved that we continue on a month by month basis until a firm decision is reached by the club. Joe Mayhew spelled out that Guy would be authorized to take necessary action. Passed unanimously.

The Committee T.I.S.H. will continue its good work. Is it better to truck the stuff back and forth to Baltimore? Referred to the committee.

New Business


Steve honored the Second New Tradition by forgetting the First New Tradition. He noted that we have multiple layered and nested Traditions.

The New Tradition

A guy in a blue shirt named Ron was here for his third time. A chant arose, "One of us! One of us!" He is now edgeable <sic> to join. Some assembly may be required.

No shirts were here for their first or second times.


The Secretary made the usual announcement.

Lee Strong, Executive Producer of Twilight of the Dogs, announced that he had the trailer for the movie and would show it after the meeting.

Erica Van Dommelen, hostess of Stately Ginter Manor, made the traditional announcements: Don't Lick the Cats. Don't Eat the Manor Cleaning Supplies. Don't Climb on the Bookshelves. Smoking is Permitted Outside.

Karl Ginter is in San Francisco again. Don't ask why. He's putting together a Discover Scuba adventure. It will probably be at the Fairland Recreation Center some Sunday morning. The adventure is free but certification costs $150. Watch kayakers practicing their rolls. Oxygen is fatally addictive.

Covert Beach is under the weather. He was invited to Boston in April to be GOH at a relaxacon courtesy of Boston in '98. Covert is CEO of Baltimore in '98. Butter up, butter up, butter up.

Robyn Rissel asked for help selecting Disclave Films. He is also being reassigned at work from the Office of Personnel Management to a contract site at White Flint doing clipper programming. The club applauded.

John Peacock has a digital VCR with a 16 channel capacity. {Yes, but does he have 16 eyes to watch them with?}

Joe Mayhew asked that we think nice thoughts about Elspeth Kovar and Dan Burgess. They are getting married together.

The sequel to Towing Jehovah will be called Blameless in Avedon. The connection, if any, to Avedon Carol is unknown.

Balticon placed Keith Marshall on its Vikings On The Chesapeake panel.

Joe Mayhew has a play, Gossip, that includes Keith. I haven't heard a thing about it.

Ron would like to join the club.

Keith moved that we adjourn. Steve asked that all in favor say "something or another." The club unanimously said "something or another" at 9:55.

* After the meeting, Lee Strong showed the trailer for Twilight of the Dogs. The humans pronounced it worth watching. "Two times is enough for me," declared Gary Romain. The cats wanted more dogs killed.

* Joe PC threatened several males with his 6 year old daughter. Specifically, she will grow up until she is 19 and seduce the threatened males. Joe apparently considers being seduced by an intelligent and attractive woman to be a threat. Joe has a lot to learn.

The WSFA Journal is the official newsletter of the Washington Science Fiction Association (WSFA), Inc. All material is © 1994 WSFA, Inc., except as noted. Violate our copyright and we will sue you and tell jokes about your lawyer.

Publisher ........ Steve Smith
Editor-in-Chief ... Lee Strong


Entertainment Committee Presents !Balticon!


Candy Screams

The regular Third Friday in April business meeting of the Washington Science Fiction Association convened in Stately Ginter Manor at 9:22 on Tax Day, 1994. President Steve Smith drove Peggy Rae Pavlat from the Presidential Chair at gavel point. Steve bellowed, "Yo! Let's have a meeting!" Susan Cohen countered, "Let's talk serious stuff." Susan's radical break with tradition was not adopted.

Steve asked Secretary Lee Strong for some minutes and pronounced them "waving in the breeze."

Robert "Guy" MacIntosh reported that he was in the midst of writing the check for Disclave. "A check?" asked one citizen. Guy reported $1525.46 on hand. There were calls for a Disclave, a bake sale, and a bankruptcy filing.

John Peacock, Chairfan of Disclave Present, was present. He has flyers. You may be allowed to help once you give your Social Security Numbers, your blood type, and your DNA fingerprints. "However, please do not panic!!" Too late. Candy Gresham began screaming.

Dan Hoey, Chairfan of Disclave Future, reported that he is also under control, calm and collected. Mike Walsh noted that Dan's Disclave is 13 months away.

Alexis Gilliland, Chairfan of the Entertainment Committee, was watching poor fools filing taxes on the midnight news. He suggested we have drive-by taxings.

Dan Hoey, a member of the Committee to Look for a Place to Stash the Stuff, is also under control. BISFIS doesn't think they have the stuff. Specifically who [said that]?, asked one. Martin Deutsch, stated Dan. Evan Phillips has the keys.

Do the Trustees have any words of wisdom? Dan Hoey, Trustee, stated that they planned to have an election on the First Friday in May. He asked for volunteers. The Trustees' nominees are: For Trustee, Dan Burgess, Lee Gilliland and Perrianne Lurie; for Secretary, Lee on the Right [Lee Strong]; for Treasurer, Bob MacIntosh, "the guy with the hat"; for Vice President, Terilee Edwards-Hewitt; and for President, Covert Beach in absentia. Nominating Covert in absentia is a hallowed WSFA tradition. The club made a couple of Beach jokes. Covert is Guest Of Honor (GOH) at a Boston in '98 bid party.

Are there any Committees That I'm Forgetting About? "Why don't we abolish them?" asked one. Steve declaimed, "I don't like to abolish committees that I don't know about. We might abolish Disclave that way." "No, no; we'll never do that," prophesied the wannabee parliamentarian.

Old Business

"I don't see any...." observed Steve.

New Business

None here either.

The New Tradition

Steve violated the Second New Tradition by remembering the First New Tradition. Three people were here for their first time each. The club chanted, "Fresh meat! Fresh meat!" Joe Mayhew insisted that each person, "Explain yourself!"

Miles Riceman explained that he was here from New Jersey. The club went, "Hi!" James And I'm Here explained that he was here. Ken Lake explained that he was here from London. "Hi, Ken!" chorused the club.

Steve desJardins explained that he was here for his second time.

Sylvia explained that she was here for her third meeting. All three Trustees are here; you can do it. Rowdie Yates repeated that with emphasis, "You can do it! " With all three Trustees? Elspeth Kovar piped up, "No, she can't; one of them is mine!" Rather forcefully, I might add. Well, I suppose Elspeth's Trustee could appoint a counter to fulfill his duties. Actually, it just means that Sylvia can do it. Can she do it three times? Well..., Robyn might get tired doing it three times in one evening.


The Secretary announced that anyone who wanted their announcement to appear verbatim should submit it in writing to the Secretary after the meeting.

Lee Strong announced that President Smith proved his wisdom in not abolishing inactive committees since John Pomeranz and Kathi Overton will return to the area.... The announcement was interrupted with applause. Dr. Perrianne Lurie asked Lee, "Date? Date?" Lee answered, "I try, but they keep saying 'No'." Perrianne then explained she wanted to know when John and Kathi will be returning. Answer: In the August timeframe. John will take the California bar exam in July.

Fast Forward is working deals thru friends of Don Maitz to appear in several Minneapolis suburbs including Eden Prairie, MN and the media capital of the universe, Fargo, North Dakota. Fast Forward says, Thank you, WSFA.

Erica Van Dommelen, hostess of the evening, repeated the rules for lots of people. No smoking indoors. Leave the cats inside or outside respectively. We have a box of books at a buck a book.

Erica also has a bottle of Diet Crystal Pepsi. It is over a year old, making it thru 12 WSFA meetings. It will be applying for membership later. We alzo have Zima tonight -- truly an educational experienze.

Joe Mayhew is producing a list of fans. He is giving copies to people and has two free diskettes and a paper copy. All of the addresses have been verified.

* Lee Strong announces that he will no longer produce the WSFA First Contact List © 1991, 1992, 1993 WSFA, Inc.

Dan Burgess announced, "We've married. We've very happy with same concept." The club applauded Dan's concept if not his grammar.

Dan Hoey announced The Australian claims to describe the discovery of the last digit of pi. See page 9 of this issue of The WSFA Journal.

Dick Lynch announced that the 15th issue of Hugo Award winning fanzine Mimosa is on sale at $2.

Robin Rissell has a new work assignment in White Flint. He has Windows -- both kinds.

Candy Gresham had two announcements. First, the US Air Force is sending her on an unaccompanied tour to Kunsan, Korea. "Kunsan" is Korean for "Dundalk." Second, she is divorcing David [Gresham] and seeing David [Grim].

Eric Jablow is employed at Logicon Ultrasystems but has no more brownies.

Mike Walsh has books for sale, altho they are not as cheap as Erica's. Arthur C. Clarke liked The Rude Astronauts. He liked it.

While Steve Smith was on a business trip to New Jersey, the washing machine committed suicide in 8 inches of water in the basement. It killed two computers and numerous business papers. Is water in the basement a new WSFA tradition?

The meeting then adjourned unanimously.

After the meeting, the Trustees admitted the bottle of Diet Crystal Pepsi to membership in the club -- the first proven nonsentient member.

Later, a quorum of WZFAns declared, "Zima zucks." Mike Walzh iz waiting for Cryztal Guinezz. Zpike the Cat was offered zome Zima. He zhook hiz head, "No," and left the room. And zome people zay catz are ztupid. The Zima Queztion and Comment Line iz 1 (800) 648-0800.

Researchers finally slice the pi

Computers have finally solved one of mathematics's longest-lasting puzzles with the discovery that the mathematical constant "pi" has a finite number of decimal places.

It's official: pi ends at the 2,075,932,542,102nd decimal place, according to a mathematical theory laboratory in the United States.

Researchers were left open-mouthed last month when a computer given the onerous task of finding pi's last decimal place suddenly started printing "millions of zeros" at the end of the "irrational" number.

"After years of computation, using the most sophisticated programming, we have found that the number pi ends at a little over the two-trillionth decimal place, thereby proving that it is indeed a rational number after all", the Advanced Computer Numerics Foundation in Colorado announced.

Pi, approximately 3.1416, had wrongly been assumed an irrational number -- a number that could only be expressed by an infinity of decimal places, according to the foundation's director, Dr Warren Tomaczewski.

But after "doggedly pursuing this matter to the fullest," researchers ended the uncertainty, declaring pi to be a "pure ratio of one complete number divided by another complete number".

"A supposed `proof' that pi was an irrational number had been kicking around academic circles literally for centuries, and everybody just bought into it without doing the real empirical nuts-and-bolts research to confirm it", the foundation's director, Dr Warren Tomaczewski, said in a formal statement.

"When the preliminary results started to come in, we were stunned and put the computer onto the problem full-time", he said.

"The results were the same.

"With the advent of computers there has been an ongoing race to find the last decimal place of pi and I guess it was just on the cards for us to actually do it."

Dr Tomaczewski said the discovery had tremendous theoretical implications, since the result "casts severe doubt on the adequacy of previous methods to arrive at so-called `mathematical proofs' of scientific premises."

"It is not at all like the theory of relativity, which has indeed been confirmed by empirical results in space and astronomical research" he said.

But despite the revision, architects and engineers, who use the mathematical constant daily in everything from bridges to electric circuits, may breathe a sigh of relief.

In practical terms, the difference in the two trillionth decimal place was "completely insignificant", Dr Tomaczewski said.



Yes, fellow SF fans, it's that time again and Jack and Eva have volunteered their home once more. Please remember that the 4th is on a Monday this year, so consider that the day after is/may well be a work day.

General house rules: children in pool area must have a responsible adult present; ditto in the hot tub. WSFA & BSFS have contributed towards the meat and some condiments, but specialty stuff, special requirements, unusual tastes, and side dishes are your responsibility. To insure that we don't have 47 egg salads and no beans, please call as soon as you can if you plan to bring a common dish. Gas grill provided.

The start time is condiered noon. Earlier arrivals will be put to work setting up. We close at 10 PM. We think 10 hours is more than enough. Fireworks will be shot off at the Farm Museum; it's not a bad display but enormously crowded.


[ Directions censored from online version ]

If you plan to swim, remember to bring your own towel and swimsuit. Also remember to bring your contribution to the party. If you arrive empty handed, you will be given directions to Baugher's with instructions on what to bring back at your expense!

Questions? Lost? Telephone [410] 875-0558 between 10 AM and 11:15 PM. If you want to fax something, it's [410] 876-9510 24 hours. Hope you can make it, but RSVP the Entertainment Committee or us and tell us what (and who) you are bringing. This is open to WSFA, BSFS, and SF fandom in general; if you have to ask what they are, we must know in advance that you're coming and who and what you are. This is a club function; it is not open to the world.