kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
Off to the SFSFC Board of Directors meeting. Then I meet up with Lisa (who is driving down from Nevada in the minivan). We'll drop the Astro with my mechanic and we'll then drive home in the Rolling Stone. A few weeks from now, we'll reverse the process to collect the minivan, which we hope will then be in better condition for the road trip to Tempe for Westercon this summer.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
Today dawned bright and sunny, and was the warmest day this week, peaking at about 18°C; I, however, saw little of it except for when I walked to the Wigwam for breakfast (and won $13 of my $14 breakfast back from the machines using free-play coupons before deciding that it was time to go). That's because today was Meeting Day. In the morning was the SFSFC Board of Directors meeting, which went very efficiently as such things go, taking less than two hours while dissolving one committee (the San José in 2018 Worldcon Bid, whose remaining affairs are folded into the separate Worldcon 76 San José Committee) and creating two new ones, including a bid to hold the 2018 SMOFCon in Santa Rosa, north of San Francisco.

After the meeting, I had a couple of hours to get all of the corporate business done (updating the SFSFC web site, generating minutes, etc.) before a meeting of the Worldcon 76 San José Executive Committee, which also took a couple of hours as we worked out initial organizational issues. I've not done a lot with WC76SJ (I'm the WSFS division manager) since Kansas City, but that's because I've been holding off making some decisions until I get a chance to talk with certain people at SMOFCon in a couple of weeks.

By the time my last meeting was over, the sunshine had gone and clouds were rolling in (it looks like it may rain tonight), but Lisa and I did have time to deal with some periodic maintenance on the travel trailer that is better done with two people than one. Lisa was very nice yesterday afternoon (which was also clear and not too cold) and vacuumed out the Rolling Stone as we work on preparing it for the next trip to the Bay Area.

The cold is possibly fading. The medication I'm taking is doing what it's supposed to do, breaking up the chest congestion and letting me clear my lungs. I hope to be back to full strength by Thanksgiving.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
Today was the SFSFC Board of Directors meeting, around which I'd deliberately scheduled this two week stint in the Bay Area. Aside from writing up the minutes of today's meeting, I'm hoping to do as little as possible. Although I got two extra hours of sleep last night, it hardly makes up for the 12-plus-hour days I've been working this past week and expect to work next week.
kevin_standlee: (Snow Day)
My plan to get errands done went quite well, and waking up early helped a great deal. In fact, it probably saved me from getting stuck on the wrong side of the mountains.

The SFSFC Board of Directors meeting ended around 1:30 PM yesterday, and as soon as I could do so, I got rolling home. However, I realized rather quickly that I really needed something to eat, and that I wasn't up to eating while driving, not in the heavy rain that was falling. So I stopped for a relatively quick burger. I'm glad that I didn't stop for a longer sit-down meal anywhere along the way, because in retrospect it would have ended badly for me.

Could Have Been Far Worse )

After getting home and unpacking, I checked road conditions behind me. Looks like I just barely made it. Chain controls had been imposed over Donner Summit shortly after I got across the top. I had the tire chains with me, but I've never used them and didn't really want to try. I'm glad that when we put new tires on the minivan, we went with a deeper tread than when I was mainly driving in the Bay Area.

We need the rain and snow, but I hate driving in it. I'm really not looking forward to wrestling the Rolling Stone west next weekend, but I made a firm commitment for a two-week stint on the west side of the mountains. Looks like I'm going to have to keep a close eye on the weather conditions and probably go when the weather lets me, not when it's necessarily convenient for me to do so.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
As I headed west yesterday, the first wave of what promises to be a bunch of storms was heading east, and I encountered very heavy rain on the way down the west side of the Sierra. At Colfax, when I stopped for coffee and to answer messages from Day Jobbe, I was very glad to catch a parking space right next to the building in order to avoid getting totally soaked getting out of Astro. While I had to slow down because of the conditions, I was glad to be driving the Astro, which feels like a sports car in comparison to the Rolling Stone.

To my annoyance, I found that I'd left all of the 12V USB chargers in the RV. I have several of them, and they appear to have all migrated to the Rolling Stone. This is not a crisis, but it meant that I couldn't use my mobile phone to listen to SF Giants spring training baseball on the trip west, on account of doing so just sucks the power out of the batteries, and prudence dictates preserving the charge when there's no other source of power available. (As it happens, the hotel room had bedside USB chargers, which was most convenient. Because I'm only here one night, I'm not going to bother buying another charger, and I just need to remember to get the equipment correctly rebalanced between vehicles.)

After spending about an hour visiting my sister at the extended-care facility in Sacramento, I headed out into what promised to be awful traffic, and was. Although westbound across I-80 wasn't so bad (the eastbound traffic looked pretty rotten), once I got onto southbound I-5, it was a slow crawl for the next 45 minutes. What is normally a pretty quick drive from Sacramento to Lodi Junction was 90 minutes due to heavy rain and slow traffic. To try and let traffic dissipate, I had dinner at the Denny's at Lodi Junction before the last lap into the Bay Area. This helped, as well as going reverse-commute, and I got to the hotel in Union City just after 8 PM.

Having already had dinner and because I was only going to be here for one night, there was no need to lay in supplies, and after dealing with e-mail, I settled in to get some sleep. To my disgust, I was completely tucked in before I realized that I'd left the CPAP down in the minivan. After struggling with the decision, I decided that getting a good night's sleep was more important than going to sleep immediately, got dressed, and retrieved the machine from the car.

I've been waking up pretty early all week, and have turned this to my advantage, as I have some morning errands in Fremont before the meeting later this morning. Today dawned overcast but not raining; however, the forecast is for a huge mess of rain dropping on me this afternoon. As soon as the SFSFC meeting is over, I'm heading home as quickly as is safe, which is apt to be not all that fast, actually. Snow is not expected over the passes until after sundown today, so I need to get across before then. I do have the tire chains, but as usual, I really do not want to have to use them.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
There is an SFSFC Board of Directors meeting tomorrow morning. Normally I try to arrange my work schedule so I'm down there the week before the meeting and just stay over an extra day, but that wasn't possible this time. Thus I need to head down to the Bay Area as soon as I can clear up any Day Jobbe stuff that needs doing. Because I'm only going for one night, I'll stay in a motel. The operating cost of the Rolling Stone is such that for a one-night stay, it costs me less out of pocket to stay in a motel than in the RV. I do need to keep better track of my mileage, though, because it's tax-deductible. I did myself out of a deduction when doing my taxes by forgetting one very long road trip for which the charitable mileage deduction (14 cents/mile, last time I checked) would have been applicable. (For only the second or third time that I recall, I actually had enough itemized deductions from last year to justify filing Schedule A; two trips to Spokane, excluding the side trips, were expensive.) I don't think it's enough to raise a flag on my return by filing an amended return, but it's still annoying to leave money on the table.

Complicating my life is the weather forecasts for the next week-plus. We certainly need the storms to come back, but I am running a risk of getting stuck on the wrong side of the mountains at some point in the next couple of weeks.
kevin_standlee: (Rolling Stone)
I checked out of the motel yesterday morning and went to Sunnyvale, where [ profile] lisa_marli and I did some necessary banking paperwork for SFSFC. (There are certain documents where the bank must have the corporate secretary in person to sign papers, so Lisa took advantage of my being down here for a two-week stint to arrange for us to get the banking done this weekend.) We then headed over to the regular SFSFC Board of Directors meeting, held somewhat later in the day that usual.

Corporate Stuff )

I am back in the RV for the remainder of my stay (through Friday), and I laid up in one of my usual locations for weekend nights. (The Security people have shown themselves unhappy with me staying in the company parking lot on weekends even when I am working, such as I am today.) Overnight, a storm moved in, and the rain bore down loudly on the Rolling Stone. That did not bother me, however, and it actually warmed up a little bit, after a week of overnight lows hovering around +5°C. I do have a furnace on board the RV, but to use it I need to open the propane bottle, which is outside the RV, and remember to close it before moving the vehicle, for safety, and thus I've been loathe to turn it on; instead I just huddle under the blankets, where it has been warm enough. However, getting up in the mornings has been a chilly experience.

Today I'm getting some Day Jobbe done — Security doesn't seem to fret over me being here in the daytime — on account of needing to spend a lot of time on Tuesday at the dentist and also wanting to leave for home as early as I can on Friday.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
Everything went well yesterday. I can see why they want post-operative patients under the care of a friend, although it was nowhere near as heavy as when I had my wisdom teeth out 35 years ago. [ profile] melchar and [ profile] gil_liant ferried me back and forth between the motel in San Jose and the Palo Alto Medical Center and made sure I made it back to my motel room safely, for which my thanks. I called Lisa to let her know all went well, fell upon the food I'd stashed in the room to break my operationally-required 36-hour fast, and went to bed early.

Today I move out of the motel back into the RV for the remainder of this stay in the Bay Area (through next Friday) and head off to the regular SFSFC Board of Directors meeting. The rest of the weekend looks like lots of Day Jobbe from things people were trying to get me to do Friday morning.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
[Note: I speak for myself only here. This post does not represent the official position of SFSFC or any of its committees, including San José in 2018 and the prospective Worldcon 76 Operating Committee.]

A couple of days ago, I linked from here to the announcement that Kevin Roche will chair San José's Worldcon if SFSFC's bid wins. Said announcement was deliberately written in such a way that you could chop each paragraph off the bottom without affecting the total story, even to the extent of chopping everything but the first sentence. Apparently this announcement had Too Much Information for some people.

Grumpy Old Fen )

Worldcon bids who spend their entire marketing effort solely trying to sell to the people who already know the entire process are unlikely to win their elections unless they are running unopposed. That doesn't mean that you should ignore the "base" (you'll also probably lose if you do that). It just means that you must not assume that the only people who vote are those who have voted in the past and have attended Worldcons since the 1960s.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
The San José in 2018 Worldcon Bid has announced that Kevin Roche will chair Worldcon 76 in San José, California should their bid to host the World Science Fiction Convention win.

The San José in 2018 Worldcon bid’s parent non-profit corporation, SFSFC, unanimously voted to select Kevin Roche as the chair of the committee that will host Worldcon 76 should the San José in 2018 bid win the election to be held at the 2016 Worldcon, MidAmericon II. Members of the 2016 Worldcon will vote on where to hold the 2018 Worldcon.

Full details are in the press release posted on the SFSFC corporate web site.

Slightly behind the scenes: SFSFC met last Saturday to formally create a Worldcon Operating Committee to run the 2018 Worldcon should we win our bid and to conclude a decision on who would lead it. In our corporate structure, the Worldcon Bid Committee (which has existed for some time now and is chaired by Andrew Trembley) is separate from the Operating Committee; the two committees work with each other, but have separate leadership. (We only do Worldcons this way; all of our smaller bidded conventions like Westercon, World Fantasy Con, Corflu, CostumeCon, etc. are combined bid-then-operate committees.) This separation means that we dedicate some of our corporate energy toward planning for how we'll be operating from Day 1, should we win. If Worldcon members select a different bid, our operating committee is obviously moot and we disband it; however, by doing things this way, we avoid the trap into which some Worldcon bids have fallen whereby they win and then don't know what to do because they were working so hard on bidding they forgot to plan for being a Worldcon.

We didn't make the announcement immediately because we wanted to be sure we covered everything we wanted to cover in the press release. We also couldn't easily make this decision earlier because so many of us were tied up in various roles with the 2015 Worldcon in Spokane. After Sasquan ended, we could actually make a formal decision and focus on the future.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
SFSFC Board of Directors meeting sufficiently well organized that I got the draft of the meeting minutes out to the directors within an hour of the end of the meeting. Sometimes I forget about this step and don't get the minutes out until just before the next meeting.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
I woke up for some reason in the wee hours of the morning and was awake for a couple of hours before falling back asleep. I then awoke with a start at 9 AM realizing that I'd not turned the alarm clock on at all and it was an hour later than I wanted to get up. I rushed around and managed to get packed out of the motel room and over to where SFSFC was holding its meeting today and we started only about ten minutes late. (As I was the one hosting the conference call on Skype and I'm also the Secretary, I was the one holding things up.)

After the meeting, I gave David W. Clark the two boxes of books I carried back from San Diego via Fernley for him, then headed home. I was in a sufficient hurry to get out of the Bay Area and go home that I forgot that the van was due for an oil change from the Jiffy Lube in Newark where I've been taking it. I'll still have to get an oil change done before we head for Spokane next month.

As I came into the Reno/Sparks area, I saws some spectacular cloud-to-cloud lightning over the hills to the east, and hit some heavy rain through the Truckee River Canyon. Fortunately, the rain had already passed through Fernley by the time I got home and thus Lisa and I avoided getting soaked while unloading the van.

Now I get to get reacquainted with my own bed again, and I expect it to be much more comfortable that the one in the motel in which I was staying.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
I went to the SFSFC Board of Directors meeting yesterday (about which more when plans actually mature). When I left the meeting, it was already late afternoon, and when I got hung up in traffic trying to leave the Bay Area, I bailed out and went to have lunch/dinner at the new Fremont location of the Smoking Pig BBQ, where I had a good meal of fried catfish and waited out the traffic clog. But that means it was a very long drive home. Including a fuel stop at Lodi Junction, 20 minutes to visit my sister at the rehab hospital in Sacramento, and a coffee stop just before 10 PM at Colfax, I did not get home until just before Midnight. Lisa helped me unpack the Rolling Stone and I headed to bed as quickly as I could.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
Today was the SFSFC Board of Directors meeting. Nothing earth-shattering, although it took us four hours to do what I think might have easily taken only three or even two if we'd been a little more efficient. (And I'm just as bad as anyone else.) We were able to discharge two of our standing committees: Westercon 66 (Sacramento) and the SFSFC Nebula Awards committees are now officially dissolved, having dealt with all of their responsibilities. It's not as though we don't have more projects down the road, most prominently our San Jose in 2018 Worldcon bid.

After the meeting I set out for Yuba City, planning to visit my sister for a while. As I left Milpitas on I-680, I ran into slow traffic. By the time I'd reached a point of no return on the Sunol Grade, I turned on the radio and found that traffic was stacked up for many miles ahead of me due to a big rig accident. It took close to an hour to go less than ten miles before I finally escaped onto CA-84, which was also heavy but moving. Then, when I got to Lodi Junction and refueled, I saw fog starting to appear. I hate tule fog. Fortunately, traffic was not heavy. I slowed down due to the fog, but did not get to Yuba City until nearly 9 PM. Long before that, I spoke to my sister on the phone and said I'd see her on Sunday.

So where am I? Parked in the Wal-Mart lot in Yuba City. I may not like Wal-Mart for many of their policies; however, they have a very RV-friendly parking policy, and there are two other rigs parked near where I spotted the Rolling Stone, one of which even has its slide-out deployed, so I'm reasonably comfortably staying here until tomorrow morning. And because I believe in paying for services rendered, you might say, I broke my usual rule about shopping at the Evil Empire and bought some small groceries to make dinner.

The good part above being here in YC is that I can sleep in pretty much as late as I'm likely to ever sleep before getting breakfast and heading over to my sister's house, as she doesn't expect me much before noon. And the weather over Donner for tomorrow is showing clear, so the remaining 150 miles until home shouldn't be too much trouble, I hope.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
We checked out of the hotel in Fremont this morning and headed over to the Depot Cafe for today's SFSFC board of directors meeting. Unfortunately, wires were crossed at the Depot, the people there didn't know we were coming, and the person with the keys to the meeting room was out of town. This led to a rather uncomfortable meeting, including a final half hour kicked out to the outside deck where it was too warm. I guess that was incentive for ending early. (The management has since apologized for the snafu.)

After the meeting, Lisa and I headed home. Lisa drove from Lodi to Sparks, where we had dinner at the Oyster Bar at the Nugget. We got home to Fernley around 9:30 PM and am currently trying to air the place out. Tomorrow morning I have to pack things into the Rolling Stone and drive back down to the Bay Area. That's because in order to keep to my 50/50 work schedule and still make things come out evenly for Lisa and me to fly from SFO to London on August 12, I have to work in the Bay Area this coming week, then home the week after that, then drive Lisa and me to the Bay Area and work for one day down there, then fly out to London. It's all a bit frantic. I'm glad I already loaded some of my work clothes into the RV before the Detroit trip.
kevin_standlee: (Applause)
Because of the SFSFC Board of Directors meeting this afternoon, I had to stay Friday night in the Bay Area, and thanks to (a) finally having had something approaching enough sleep and (b) being able to leave work on Friday at a decent hour, I was able to go to The RetroDome screening of Goldfinger with an introduction by a Bond enthusiast who gave us some facts about the movie that I was unaware of. I met up with fellow BASFA members Jerry Majors Patterson and her husband [ profile] dprisoner, although Ken wasn't able to join us until the second half of the movie because he was running the Box Office for the show.

I'd seen the movie before, of course, but never actually on a Big Screen, and the Century 21 is a great place to see a movie. Alas, this may well be the last time I'm there, for the word has come down that movies end at the end of this month, and while work to try and declare one of the remaining domes a landmark approaches, that by itself won't save things. The owners of the land are certain they can make a whole lot more money knocking down the old dome theaters (as they already did to the RetroDome's old home and to similar Century theaters) and doing something else with them. So I have to get to these shows while I can. I do very much hope the RetroDome team are able to find a new permanent home so they can settle down and put on some more live theatrical shows again.

Because of the movie, I was out relatively late and was grateful that I was able to sleep in clear until 7 AM (two hours earlier than I've been getting up for Day Jobbe when I'm in the Bay Area; I get an extra hour of sleep when working from home) and was able to have a fairly leisurely morning before packing out of the room up to Fremont for the SFSFC meeting. After the meeting, I started off for Fernley, only to get a phone call from those still hanging around telling me that I'd left my extension cord and Giants coffee mug behind. Fortunately, I hadn't even made it to Niles yet and was able to reverse course relatively quickly and retrieve my stuff before heading off again around 2:30. Seven hours later, I was home in Fernley, where I'll be for the next week. Lisa had a fire going and both she and [ profile] travelswithkuma were happy to see me. The Bear now has his own computer running a continuous slide show of Fish and Bears eating Fish.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
Today was the SFSFC Board Meeting. Three of the eleven directors (Cheryl, Wolfgang Coe, and me) couldn't be there and were participating via Skype. This went very badly for the first hour of the meeting, with those of us online only hearing about one word in three. At the first break, those in the meeting room in Fremont tried a different hardware and internet connectivity arrangement and all was well for the rest of the meeting.

Somehow, I managed to act as Secretary for the meeting despite not being present in person. Of course, it helps that I can always start with the document of the previous meeting as a framework and that many of the bits of routine business are boilerplate.

I don't blame Skype for the problem here, aside from the mysterious way in which some microphone/speaker/computer combinations just won't work with it. It's certainly the only practical way we could hold conference calls nowadays.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
Today was the SFSFC Board of Directors meeting in Centerville. Glenn Glazer was good enough to pick me up and take me to the meeting, which was in the train station meeting room near where I used to live. (Still no word on the van.) I'll have more to say about the meeting once I've caught up on minutes and such, but there were no real surprises from today's meeting. We just kept moving along on our current projects. However, long-serving SFSFC director and Vice President Nancy L. Cobb, who was up for re-election, announced her retirement from SFSFC business, and in the ensuing election, Andy Trembley (who was already a non-voting director on account of being co-chairman of Westercon 66) was elected to fill her seat. I was also re-elected for another three year term along with Cindy Scott.

Speaking of Board meetings, it looks like there's going to be a board meeting of the SF & F Translation Awards' parent corporation tomorrow morning. Unfortunately, it is going to happen while I should be on a train somewhere in the Sierra Nevada on the way to Reno. I'll try to call in to the meeting, but cell phone reception on the Amtrak route is terrible because in many places it's away from the freeway. I'll do my best, but I've turned in all of my pieces of the corporation's business, so the other directors can get along without me if I can't make it into the call.
kevin_standlee: (SFSFC)
Or so it seems, particularly when my apartment in San Jose is effectively a hotel converted into apartments, or else purpose-built on that plan. Anyway, this morning I packed up and drove to Fremont to attend the SFSFC board of directors meeting in the Centerville Depot Cafe, a location I originally touted because I lived within walking distance of it. I still actually like the location, but the space in which we've been meeting has become a small gaming store run by the landlord's nephew. As part of the conditions of letting him use it, they had to let us hold our booked meetings today and in November. After that we'll revisit the matter.

Personally, I prefer holding our meetings in meeting space rather than in personal residences. The latter may be more comfortable, but the former IMO make it easier to remember that at least in theory we're meeting to get some work done, not just socialize.

After the meeting I planned to head to Yuba City, but I needed first to refuel my van and I thought I could finally cash in a large number of recyclables that had accumulated in my van over time. As seems way too common most of the times I do this, the person in front of me was utterly clueless about the process and held up matters for nearly 20 minutes arguing with the person running the redemption kiosk over twenty cents' worth of containers. (The woman was trying to redeem non-redemption containers and didn't seem to understand that not every plastic container has a bounty on it in Calfornia.) I finally managed to get away from Fremont about 90 minutes after the SFSFC meeting ended.

The drive to Yuba City was uneventful but warm. It's very hot here. I'm certainly glad that the air conditioning in the Econolodge is powerful. I do wish, however, that I had remembered to bring my swimming trunks, as this would have been a good evening, I think, to use the small pool in relative comfort, especially as it doesn't appear to full of Screaming Kid Soup.

Since the internet connectivity in this hotel isn't very good, I'm going to post this now and not expect a whole lot more for tonight. It might just be a good night for turning in early.
kevin_standlee: (Default)
As I was out quite late last night attending a birthday party, I slept in today and haven't gone outside at all. I've done some packing, putting away a bunch of the stuff in the bathrooms of this apartment and realizing that I probably won't have to buy soap or shampoo for ten years, assuming the stuff I have doesn't dry up before I get around to using it. There was a lot of stuff pushed to the back of the cupboards that I'd completely forgotten about.

Also on tap: gathering together expired medications and bagging them up to take to a local pharmacy in the hope that they'll accept them for safe disposition, rather than just dumping them into the trash where they can get into the water eventually.

I boxed up most of SFSFC's corporate papers into a couple of bankers boxes, and will try to fob them off onto one of the corporation's other officers because I don't feel quite right transporting things like the corporate seal out of state. I can come and get them back after I've moved and have a better idea of how much room I'll have for such things.

I've also reserved a 10-foot moving truck — I'm hoping I've calculated correctly that it is sufficient for the two sofas, one entertainment center, and one queen bed — and am going to see about reserving my train ride back on the Monday following this round of Moving Daze on April 21-22.

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