Tales of DragonCon: Soupbone and me

Tales of DragonCon: Soupbone and me

Tales of DragonCon: Soupbone and me

Bad Astronomy
The entire universe in blog form
Sept. 4 2008 6:59 PM

Tales of DragonCon: Soupbone and me

So at DragonCon I see my old friends Evo Terra and his phenomenal wife Sheila (pssst: don't tell anyone, but I might have a HUGE crush on her). Evo is a master podcaster (he wrote Podcasting for Dummies), and I met them at DC 2006 at the podcasting track.

So it was very cool to see them. We chatted for a few, and then they invited me to their podcasting party. Yay! A con party! Drinks and dance and people in costumes and fun fun fun.

Phil Plait Phil Plait

Phil Plait writes Slate’s Bad Astronomy blog and is an astronomer, public speaker, science evangelizer, and author of Death From the Skies!  

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So I go about my day, and then evening rolls around, and then suddenly I have about 12 people with me who want to go to the party. Hmmm. I call Evo, and what does he say? "If you have 90 people we'll fit 'em in!"

I love that Evo Terra.

So we traipse over to the Hyatt, wait like 20 minutes for the elevator (they are always packed; we saw -- truthfully -- one that got overpacked and they had to call in a squad to pry open the doors because the car got stuck between floors), and then finally arrive at the party. It's a suite, with a bar in a vestibule in the back, balconies, music, people milling... but what the heck are they wearing?

Oh, no. With horror, I realize what I'm seeing. It's a theme costume party.

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And the theme? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

Pimps and hos.

Evo? Do you read my blog? Do ya? If so, then maybe next time you could TELL ME THIS KIND OF STUFF BEFORE I SHOW UP.

OK, fine, we roll with it. My friends disperse, and I make my way back to the bar. I'm standing there talking with a friend when a guy comes up in full regalia. Glittery silver hat, cape, walking stick (with skull cap), beads, and a fur-lined jacket. He gets in my face, all up in my grille, and says -- in high-pitched pimp-speak -- "You Phil Plait? You Phil Plait! I'm Thoupbone. Thoupbone wantth to talk which you, so you thtay right where you at while Thoupbone getth a drink."

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OK, fine. I have no clue who this guy is, but I'm in a party mood, and the way he talked cracked me up, so I have to give him cred. But after a minute or two, I realize I'm in the way of people trying to get to the bar. So I move over a bit, maybe six feet. After another minute, Soupbone comes out of the bar. He sees I've moved. He beelines it over to me, starts sticking his finger in my chest.

"Thoupbone tole Phil Plait not to move. When Thoupbone tellth you not to move, you do not move. Doeth Phil Plait unnerthtand that?" This went on for about three or four minutes, nonstop -- I don't think he was even breathing -- and again, wow, I have to say it was impressive.

Finally, in the middle of a sentence, he suddenly stops. He leans over, puts his mouth near my ear, and says...

"Phil, I'm Scott Sigler; we did a panel together a few years ago on podcasting."

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And I erupt into laughter. As I recall, I shouted "Awesome!!" about ten times.

Sigler is a pretty famous guy. A few years back, he wrote a scifi novel called Earthcore that nobody would publish (well, the story is more complicated, but I simplify for brevity). He thought it was pretty good, so he decided to audiocast it; he read a chapter at a time and podcast it. He got a bazillion downloads (10,000 subscribers, back in 2004!), and became wildly popular. He was the first person ever to podcast a novel, and the fans worship him.

And at that moment, so did I. I first met him around the time his fame was taking off, but I hadn't heard of him back then. We chatted for a while on that panel, and it wasn't until months later I realized the chance I missed by not hanging with him (I just reread my post about this from back then, and it's pretty funny in hindsight).

We made up for it that night. I got to hang with him all night, as did my friends. I only wish he had had the chance to meet my dear friend A. She would have liked him, I think.

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The party was tremendous. I have pictures on Flickr, if you dare.

And that is how I re-met Scott Sigler. I'm following him on Twitter, too.

And hey, Scott: if you see your cousin Soupbone, tell him that I thaid hi and to be good to hith bad thelf.