>APA-Q and APA-NESFA
>OF BASEBALL AND FANTASY
Nan and I have continued to correspond about the nature of interest in sports, and her most recent letter gave me a feeling for why people follow sports teams. I found her arguments very powerful and want to quote them here.
I was never keen on playing sports. I had no natural talent or coordination, and it wasn't especially encouraged of girls in the 1940s anyway. There were no formal Little Leagues. Who would have volunteered to coach? There was a war on! So we boys and girls, (mostly girls on my block) played some casual pick-up softball in vacant lots in spring and summer. Except for horse riding and swimming that was it for me, but I was always a passionate baseball fan, probably because my parents, my aunts, my grandparents, my great aunts, all followed the game, and going to triple-A high minor league professional baseball games to see the Toledo Mudhens was one of a number of things we did as a family on a summer night or a Sunday afternoon. In later years I sometimes asked myself why I cared so much, and reminded myself that it was only a game.
But apart from the aesthetic aspect and the history of baseball, I think it, and college basketball, have a capacity to fuse and unify an otherwise disparate community. One of the books in the college correspondence course on children's lit that I teach for The University of Kansas is Betty Bao Lord's In the Year of the Boar and Jackie Robinson, which treats this theme, though its main theme is duality, the delicate balance between blending into the American melting pot and retaining one's root culture, multiculturalism. In this children's novel, which seems very light and playful on the surface, easy and fun to read, but which is also rich in theme and symbols, a little Chinese-American girl in 1947 Brooklyn grapples with the dual goals, to become an American and part of the group, while remaining herself with her family's own ethnic traditions and customs. Meanwhile, Jackie Robinson, grandson of a slave, and a member of a minority group still not "melted", is inspiring and unifying Dodger fans of all colors and ethnic backgrounds as he also brings African-Americans into a cultural and financial mainstream of U.S. life in his integrating of major league baseball. I happened to be teaching this novel on campus in 1988 the week the K.U. Jayhawks won the National Championship in basketball, and that too was a very unifying experience as Greeks and independents, faculty and students, grad students, undergrads, traditionalists, bohemians, all shared in a mutual joy. It is, I guess, that capacity to unify and to supply joy, often sudden and unexpected, that attracts me to sports, mainly baseball and college hoops. I liked high school football but barely follow the college and pro games, dislike pro basketball, and pretty much ignore hockey. As for soccer, a game in which you may not use your hands, but you are allowed to butt the ball with your head??? Forget it!
When I was growing up SF was a literature for male nerds. SF was rare and that "crazy Buck Rogers stuff" to the general public. Many other fen, like me, were misfits and huddled to contemplate our "sense of wonder" and fit Nan's description. Tolkien and Spock on STAR TREK brought in the women, and then STAR WARS and other major movies and TV shows brought in the general public. Today EVERYONE watches SF but most still do not read it. But isn't that true concerning all forms of literature? I just saw in SF CHRONICLE a list of all the major best seller novels ever published in the U.S., and perhaps only six or 8 ever topped one million copies. When you think that there are about 200 million adults here, what does this say about readership in general? One author commented that the Danish translation of his novel sold as many copies as the U.S. edition. Think what this says about the relative literacy of the two countries?
Anyhow, a number of media fen do begin to read tie-in novels, move in to the more sophisticated general SF, and into fandom. Among younger fen I find far more interest in sports than I did when I first entered the field.
>OF AGE AND LIBRARIES
The S.F./FSY books I am not worried about. Sandy is not interested in any except those she might want to re-read. Many she has never read and is not interested in trying to read. However Stanley likes the idea of eventually inheriting the book collection and I hope he will have his own home and the space to store it by when both Sandy and I are gone. I have kept alternate editions on some books and older fragile copies are stored on rather inaccessible shelves high in the stairwell to the second floor. I might consider selling these though few if any are very valuable.
Magazines are another matter. Originally I only collected digests and not pulps, though I did get a few of the latter. I do NOT have the really rare digests like MARVEL TALES from before WWII, but have most post war digests through around 1970. I had concentrated on ASTOUNDING and UNKNOWN, and have all but two dozen Campbell ASFs and about half the UNKNOWNs. I have a very few WEIRDs from the '20s and the first issue of AMAZING inscribed to me by Hugo Gernsback and Frank R. Paul. I have other scattered pulps...not more than two or three dozen, and a score or two of ARGOSSYs from before WWII. Lately I have acquired only semi-prozines like MZB FANTASY, TOMORROW, HARSH MISTRESS, AMAZING until it folded a few years ago (not the recently revived media tie-in zine), etc. I have a few early Ackerman FAMOUS MONSTERS and SPACEMEN just because they WERE by Forry. I have many post-war British prozines, including some short-lived ones, again to about 1970. And then there are a few real oddballs like an issue of the Argentinian URANIA, LA REVISTA DEL ANO 2000. The condition is not pristine. I did read the magazines and while I was careful, they do show signs of wear. Some paper is yellowing, and something really strange happened to my GALAXYs. Either mice or insects loved the glue and many of the spines are gone.
Neither Sandy nor Stanley have any interest in any of these. Sandy does not LIKE short stories and Stanley is afraid the magazines would fall apart if he tried to read them. This is the first thing I will sell, and plan to start writing dealers in the next few months. I think I will only keep the MZBs and TOMORROWs because friends are involved in these zines. An old correspondent going back to the '50s, Peter Shulin from a Suburb of Pittsburgh, just sold HIS magazine collection to a dealer from the DC area and I have written him to find out to whom and how satisfied he was with the deal. I will also contact other dealers like Bob Madle and Rusty Hevelin to see if they are interested. I know that old pulps are considered valuable collectors' items but unfortunately most of my zines are digests. I am a little reluctant to let go of the collection but realize I will never be able to use it, nor will anyone in my family, so it should eventually find its way into the hands of those who will appreciate it.
Fanzines are a much more difficult matter. As I said, I have at least 50 boxes of them, and new ones accumulate at a rate of 2 or 3 feet a year. I love fanzines but get only a small portion of what is published today, and even then get to have read to me only about half of what comes in. Favorites include FILE 770, MIMOSA, CHALLENGER, SFC, LOCUS, TWINK, and ERG, though I enjoy many others, like FANTASY COMMENTATOR, too.
I must do something about these before I pass on just to be sure they will be preserved. I am running out of room and will have to find a home for them before too long. In March I brought this up at a fan meeting in a bar in Brooklyn (see below), and said I was looking for a home for them and help gathering and sorting them. Theresa Neilson Hayden suggested getting in touch with NESFA as they are near me, we know each other, they have a clubhouse to store them, and the manpower to dig them out and sort them. I have not yet visited the clubhouse, but apparently they are already running out of room. At Lunacon they were selling off duplicate books from their library to make room. Illogical as it seems, it still hurts and feels like I am disposing of my children, so I am not rushing into this. I do know that even if they cannot store the zines and make them available, they could help find and sort them and find a place which would preserve them.
Actually, on July 19 I attended my first NESFA meeting in 24 years and brought up this matter. Mark Olson, Tony Lewis, and others suggested that Joe Siclari and the fan history project could spend some time at my home finding the zines and packing them up for preservation. Three days later Joe phoned me and he will probably drive up some time next year, picking up Mark Olson and others, and make a start. Joe said he drove his van up to Howard deVore's a couple of times and took away many of his fanzines, and has more trips to make. Funding is a problem but the ideal is to make several fanzine collections available for reading and research in different parts of the country and to sell off surplus copies to help fund the project. They would also like to expand it to include prozines since they are so important to the history of our microcosm.
I also collect books about SF including histories, autobiographies, studies, etc., and have some 200-300 titles. I want to keep these for now but provide for their care in my will. I thought I might leave them to the High Hallack writer's retreat, which Andre Norton is setting up but Joe said that that project seems to be falling apart. Anyhow, I am making my intent public so people would know what to do if something sudden happens to me, and I will listen to suggestions and keep my plans flexible.
Finally there is correspondence. I have letters from J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, and a number of now deceased authors in our field. Many are properly stored in a filing cabinet and I have no thoughts about what to do about them. Some are quite valuable and of real historic interest and I have no thoughts about what to do with them at this point. I have not discussed this with Stanley who would have first call on them.
I have other, non-stfnal, items to dispose of eventually. Another interest of mine is subway and elevated railroad lines and I have a few books and many years of E.R.A. [Electric Railroaders' Association] HEADLIGHTS, and an almost complete run of TRANSIT MAGAZINE published for NY Transit Authority employees in the '50s. The latter had an interesting historical piece or one on a system in another city every ish.
From my teaching days I have many physics, math, and astronomy textbooks. Stanley will never be interested in these and library and charitable book sales do not want old textbooks. I want to keep some as references to look something up if necessary, or if I end up helping or tutoring someone. Some have historical interest like an astronomy book from 1900 or THE ATOMIC THEORY published in the 1880s. It is amazing to read these today and see how our knowledge has changed. But the dozens of college texts have no value to anyone and except for a few favorite titles I will probably just have to dump them. . This has gone on too long but next ish I hope to remember to discuss some of my favorite reference and textbooks.
I have already given part of my stamp collection, which I have had no interest in since I left high school in 1954 to NIEKAS co-editor Todd Frazier who DOES collect stamps. I am giving away my Lithuanian books to individuals as I find them and institutions which might be interested. And that leaves my thousands of cassettes and other recordings. I have runs of GALAXY and ANALOG on 8-1/3 R.P.M. phonograph records, hundreds of SF books on special format audio cassettes (to play six hours on a c-90), and blind-related books and magazines. I expect when I am gone they will be simply dumped. Maybe Stanley will want my 50 or so filk tapes, many pirate copies but some purchased originals. I do not want to leave an impossible mess for Stanley to clear up when I am gone, and am in a house-cleaning mood. If anything can be used or appreciated by anyone else they should go there. I am even beginning to wonder about art objects and fine crystal, china, silver, which belonged to my parents but which our life style does not make use of. We do NOT do elegant tea or dinner parties and I doubt Stanley will. I really have to talk to him about this, and if he does not have any interest perhaps we should find antique dealers so they would eventually go to someone who could use them.
>THE HARRIED LEISURE CLASS
From February 12 to March 20 Sandy and I spent a frantic and exhausting five weeks of "having fun." Feb 12 to 14 was Boskone in Framingham, Mass. I was on two panels, and attended (and sometimes kibitzed) on others. I had a NIEKAS table in the Huckster room, and sold Fred Lerner's new book on the history of libraries for him. (Before that I had been in DC on N.F.B. Business Jan 29 to Feb 3, and had dinner with Dick Eney and Tamar Lindsay Sunday night. Also I helped at a support meeting for elderly blind, on Feb. 3 going straight from the Manchester airport to the meeting in Laconia.) The next 2.5 weeks were tame with one N.F.B chapter meeting, two Lions Club meetings, and one session helping them operate their fund-raising bingo.
Friday March 5 we took off for Lunacon at the Ryetown Hilton in NY, a.k.a. the Hilton Escher. This meant driving to Concord NH, taking a bus to Boston's South Station, Amtrak to Stamford CT., and Metro North to Rye. There, like at Boskone, we shared room and food with Jane Sibley, Ed & Wenna Hutnik, and Jim Reynolds (we also had Lis Carey with us at Boskone). Todd Frazier couldn't make either con because a labor shortage at work kept him from taking time off. Again I was on two panels and kibitzed on others from the audience, especially one on the history of NY fandom and one on the new Worldcon non-rotation plan.
Sunday afternoon we returned to Brooklyn with the Boardmen and had a nice visit the next few days. John got me caught up reading APA-Q, though NOW I have to find the time to write up my notes. Monday Sandy and I took the subway to the Polish neighborhood in Brooklyn and I stocked up on provisions to bring home...fresh (non-smoked) kilbasa, two kinds of heavy rye, cheese babka, and poppyseed babka made by the Lithuanian Bakery in NJ, Chruschik (ausukiu in Lithuanian), basically pie dough which is deep fried and sprinkled with confectioner's sugar while still wet, and very substantial Polish/Lithuanian jelly donuts. In ENTROPY 14 Everett Bleiler said he thought I was describing "paczki." We got all these at Eagle Provisions on 5 Ave around 18 St. When done we needed lunch and Sandy found an excellent Greek luncheonette right across 5th Ave. from Eagle. We went by subway and returned to the Boardmans' by bus.
We were really ready for a late lunch and were getting a little tired, so we kept our eyes open for a restaurant. Just a bit later, Sandy found an Indian restaurant, Karahi 508 Broome St. (n side, just west of W. Broadway) NY 10013, tel 965-1515. They had an OUTSTANDING luncheon buffet at a VERY reasonable price. It was late and little was left on the buffet, but they cooked up some extra just for us. Their Chicken Tandori was marvelous, as was their dessert of rice pudding. Everything else was excellent, too, but those were what really struck me. Since the buffet was shutting down for the afternoon they put the whole bowl of rice pudding on our table and we each had three helpings until we finished it. Anyhow, two days in a row Sandy found excellent restaurants for lunch.
Then we headed north and west to the "S F Shop," sharing a location with a comicbook store, on Sullivan just north of Bleeker, where we found several wanted titles. From there we had planned to go on to the Strand Bookshop, the Barnes & Noble superstore at Union Square where I wanted to investigate their "instant remaindered" titles, and the children's shop, "Books of Wonder" and two used bookshops on 18 St. near 6 Ave. However I was pooping out and suggested we quit. The others felt likewise so we grabbed the subway at West 4 St. Sandy went home with John, but I took the R train to 9 St. and walked to the Gate Pub at 5 Ave. and 4 St., where a fan group meets on the second Tuesday of the month. (They are moving to a new location just NE of Union Square in Manhattan.) The group started as an offshoot of an online chat room or something like that whose members wanted to also meet face to face. There was no formal organization, mailing list, or announcements other than on the Internet inviting all readers to drop in. Gary Farber sent announcements to a few people, including me, which is how I had heard about it.
Around ten P.M. people realized they were getting hungry Pat and Theresa Neilsen Hayden invited us to their home a few blocks away on Union Ave. between 4 and 5 Ave, where we phoned out for Pizza while our hosts plied us with beer and hard cider. As Theresa was lifting a six-pack out of the fridge a wet bottom tore, four bottles shattered on the floor, and she cut her bare feet to the accompaniment of expletives. After she patched herself up things settled down to faanish talk. I was very interested to learn that on that very day Gary Farber had been put on a train to Boston where he would be staying with a friend until he could get back on his feet financially.
A bit past midnight I was getting tired so called Perdita who had promised to pick me up and Moshe Feder gave her directions there. Theresa came out to wait with me but it was cold and she didn't have a coat on. Others started to leave too, and Moshe and Lise Eisenberg decided to wait with me. They saw Perdita find a parking place a bit down the street so they helped me find her before she could get out and start looking for the right house number. Perdita offered to drive Lise home, as she lived less than a mile away on Montague St. Moshe rode with us to a spot a little closer to his subway station.
Next day Perdita drove us to Penn Station and John came in with us to help us handle our luggage, which unfortunately is NOT made of sapient sandalwood.
We did nothing on Thursday, my 63rd birthday, but Friday I led a group of nine Federationists to a leadership training seminar in Wooster (or however they spell it) Mass. I got home late Saturday night and next morning right after church Sandy and I drove to Middlebury VT for a Tom Paxton concert. We stopped in a wonderful "home hostel" where Sandy cooked dinner before the performance. We greatly enjoyed the concert and bought a CD of his favorite classic songs during the break. He had a fellow folker from Cambridge with him who backed him up on several songs, and did one solo. Unfortunately I messed up my Braille notes and cannot remember his name. In the performance Paxton did only a few of classics like "Can't Help But Wonder Where I'm Bound" and "What Did You Learn in School Today" but otherwise did songs all new to me. He started with a few topical political satires and then did many love ballads and other general songs. Most of the audience was middle-aged like Sandy and me but there were a few young people in the sold-out house. Paxton only sold his nostalgia C.D. but said that all his recordings can be found on AMAZON.COM or by dialing 1,888-npr-disk. Also he no longer does a newsletter announcing his appearances and recordings. A website, "dirty linen," lists all performances of virtually all folk singers.
Next morning we drove home and had a Lions Club dinner meeting that night. Tuesday morning Sandy had her Tai Chi class and that evening I took a Red Cross sponsored course in first aid. (On March 2nd I had taken the CPR course.) After three days' recovery we had a N.F.B. chapter meeting Saturday afternoon and that evening we attended a concert by "Woods Tea Company" at the Old Mill in Laconia. Woods Tea had been originally a pair of musicians doing a mix of Celtic and folk music and come from Vermont. Every year they perform in Laconia shortly after St. Patrick's Day. This year they acquired a third voice and were better than ever. Again we bought their latest C.D. which was basically a re-creation of their current concert program.
>OCTAVIA BUTLER AGAIN
>OF MAURI AND SERBS
Then a European ship stumbled on the island and the crew casually reported their find at their next port of call, on New Zealand. A group of Mauris immediately went to their war canoes and invaded the islands. A few weeks a second load of Mauris followed. They purposely killed all but a few inhabitants. They had no interest in negotiating with the natives or sharing the new land with them. They simply wanted the islands and their seafood resources for themselves. Initially they took a very few prisoners, but at whim a Mauri would kill one of them. When asked why they did that, they asked why shouldn't they kill them? Anyhow, in a very short time the last Chatham Islander was exterminated. Is there any difference between this and what the Serbs did in Srebenice? This brings two further thoughts to mind.
While the Serbs are not the only villains in the former Yugoslavia, they are by far the worst. I do find them comparable to the Germans under Hitler. However the world is an awful place, considering the religious massacres in India and Sri Lanka, the Communist murders in Russia under Stalin, Cambodia, China during the "Cultural Revolution," the ethnic wars between the Hutus and Tutsis (I know the spelling is wrong) in central Africa, etc. Germany has become a peaceful democracy with no more Nazi fanatics than can be found in the U.S., and perhaps some of these other lands will become truly civilized some day. And look at the absolutely horrible Vikings who murdered and plundered from Constantinople to Ireland. Today they are the Danes, the most civilized people in Europe, and have been that way for many years. And were the Normans or Saxons who invaded the British Isles any better? While modern England is not as civilized as Denmark (look at the horrid conquests of India and other lands and the concomitant dehumanization of the native populations only last century), they still are far better than their ancestors.
Finally let us look at the very depressing lesson to be learned from the Chatham Islands. I hate this conclusion but I cannot avoid believing that any pacifistic ideal society cannot survive if any aggressive society exists anywhere. Larry Niven made that point in his first published story, "The Warrior," in which humanity has conditioned itself as a whole into a pacifistic society and then runs into the Kzin, a warrior race, for the first time. In this story man learns to fight again only at great psychological cost. Please, can someone convince me that I have drawn the wrong conclusion?
>SERBIAN FEN CONTINUE DESPITE WAR
Or you can go to the greater good website and click on NFB as your preferred charity, and go on from there. I would greatly appreciate any such help on your part! (Unfortunately not all of the stores in the mall have sites accessible to blind users, but the NFB is working to educate them and get them to improve their sites.)
~BLANCMANGE (Mark Blackman). In Q 431 your comment, "if only deer overpopulation could be used to solve the problem of human hunger" brings to mind something Fred Lerner told me many years ago, and what I just read in Diamond's GUNS, GERMS, AND STEEL. Fred had commented that deer meat all the requirements for kosher meat as long as they are slaughtered properly, so why aren't the animals raised for food? He said he had asked a forest ranger that told him that when the animals are confined into herds they develop and share diseases. Diamond said that in the history of mankind only fourteen large (>100 lb) herbivorous or omnivorous mammals have ever been domesticated, and not for lack of trying. Other animals have been tamed, like Indian elephants, but not domesticated. For an animal to be domesticated it must have every one of six characteristics, one of which is to huddle together when frightened, not flee madly. If a herd of deer were to be spooked, Diamond said, they would panic and kill themselves on the barriers. Domesticated animals have been genetically altered by their long association with mankind, and behave differently from their wild cousins.  The first time I had "Dos Eques" beer was in 1969 when John & Bjo Trimble took me on a tour of the less seamy parts of Tijuana. John loved the stuff and suggested I try it, but Bjo hated it and quipped, "Dos eques, that's two horses and it tastes like it." I enjoyed the pun and never imagined that someone would REALLY think that the name meant that!  In re the famous JFK "ein Berliner" gaff, I liked your English parallel, "Poul Anderson is Danish, not a Danish."  Loved your "penguins and walruses are poles apart."
In Q432 I liked your very realistic comments on the situation in Serbia. While the general thrust is similar to Boardman's it does not have his shrill hysteria and does not raise hackles. Yes there have been insane killings by all involved, and the almost united efforts of NATO are as likely to be unsuccessful as the UN in Korea or the US in Vietnam. On the other hand I do feel that Melosovich is a mad killer of the stripe of Hitler and Stalin. I do wonder why during WWII the US made no effort to bomb the infrastructure supporting the death camps and to even deny their existence. Has anything come out in the post-war memoirs of allied participants or unclassified documents on strategy? In early April, a few weeks after the bombing started, NPR interviewed a Serbian university professor of history who said the bombing was helping Melosovich gain fuller control and stop his opposition, but explained that the current action is in accord to Serb plans going back to before WWII. Back then plans had been drawn up to incite an Albian uprising to use as a pretext to exterminate the Albanian population in Kosovo. He said that the plans were kept in readiness for an opportune moment, and that was now!  Thanks for the update on Tom Feller's address.  Thank you for giving me again the name of the Greek, Eratostatnes, who first measured the diameter of the earth using sites in Alexandria and southern Egypt. The inf. is in many of my astronomy textbooks but I have to get someone to help me look it up. By repeating it here I will be able to go back to the disk with thish of ENTROPY to find it again.  Yes, Niagara Falls WAS turned off when Sandy, Nan, and I stopped there on the way back from St.Louiscon in 1969. Most or all of the water was diverted through the powerhouse shunt, and temporary dams kept the water away from the falls themselves. I no longer remember whether just the Canadian falls were turned off so that some water still went over the other half, or both were turned off so that all of the water went through the shunt. This was done to permit rock work on the faces to slow down erosion.  I think all copiers in the '50s used wet processes. Whether the one with the brand name "Verifax" made positive or negative copies I do not remember. When I graduated from college in 1958 my parents felt it necessary to make up a backup photostat of my diploma in case fire or something destroyed the original, and that copy was negative. Later that summer when I was working at Evans Signal Labs of Fort Monmouth NJ the library gave me a negative photostat of the journal article I needed. When I attended a physics conference August 1962, at U of Washington in Seattle and saw a wonderful cartoon on the bulletin board the secretary made a positive copy for me on their wet copier. Whether this was an advance in technology or simply use of a different brand copier I do not know. In both processes the color was dark brown rather than pure black. Xerox was the first successful dry copier and took its brand name from the Greek word for dry.
~HOW TOO (Don Del Grande). In Q 429 you mentioned fanatical environmentalists who want to defend all animals from any human encroachment or exploitation. Recently when REAL environmentalists complained that minks stolen and released by wacko animal rightists were killing off an endangered species, the nuts said basically, "So what. Minks are carnivores and should be free to do their thing."  You commented to Blackman that you thought non-North American had their own slot in the rotation plan. They did for a short time about 30 years ago. The original rotation plan was put in as a result of fan-political shenanigans in the voting for the 1953 Worldcon site. New York fen wanted to bring the con back to its point of origin in NYC but because of internal feuding they were not given the nod. The first eight worldcons had gone in two cycles east to west ("orderly progression westward" to quote FANCYCLOPEDIA II): NY, Chicago, Denver, LA and Philadelphia, Toronto, Cincinnati, Oregon. Then it went to New Orleans and Chicago. My reading of fan history is not thorough enough to know what years NYC had put in bids. In Chicago in 1952 San Francisco had a major bid for '53 (back then voting was one year before the con and done by show of hands at the business meeting) and had splurged by renting the hotel penthouse for an all-con-long (I believe) bid party. NY fan politicians decided that if they couldn't get the con they would throw their support to neighboring Philadelphia and then help run the con. Phili won and SF got the con a year later. Fan histories say that the initial loss took the spirit out of them and the '54 con was not what it would have been a year earlier. Anyhow, that prompted the establishment of the original rotation plan with three zones moving west to east, with the provision that if the con ever left North America the rotation would be delayed a year and no zone would be skipped. Thus when the con went from NYC in 1956 to London in 1957, in 1958 it went to Los Angeles. Also when it went from Oakland in '64 to London in '65 it went to Cleveland in '66. Around this time an official fourth, non-North American zone was added. To spread the burden of having to go overseas to put on a bid among all three North American zones, the overseas zone was put on a five-year cycle. The 1970 con went to Heidelburg/Frankfort Germany. Some jingoistic US fen did not like to have "our" con go overseas and resented the scheme. Jack Chalker spearheaded a bid to hold the 1970 con in Bermuda, which technically fulfilled the requirement for a site off of North America. (Bob Silverberg's bid to hold the 1965 con in the Virgin Islands was a joke pure and simple and not meant to derail Loncon II--though it almost did--and I have heard it said that Jack Chalker put in his bid in order to wake up a moribund Heicon committee and get them back on track though it did look like a serious bid to an outside observer.) Then the jingoists sabotaged the whole scheme by pushing it too far and destroying the significance of the Worldcon. They voted that the Worldcon would go overseas every second year, but that on these years an "American" con would be held, and that the Hugos would be awarded at this American con on those years. Thus we gave overseas fen only the hollow name of a Worldcon but kept the real things for ourselves exclusively. The very next year this system was rescinded but instead of going back to either of the first two plans where a zone would be delayed by an overseas con, the zone would instead hold a bastardized NASFIC or rumpcon. The first NASFIC was held in LA when the Worldcon went to Australia. Without any legal requirement overseas cons have continued at intervals of approximately five years (1979, 1985, 1990, 1995, and 1999), but with an extra one thrown in in 1987. The last time I remember voting for site selection by show of hands was in 1967 when Oakland won over LA. Because of many personal concerns I was almost gafia from 1970 to 1979 and am not sure just when the mail ballot came in. Because of advance reservation
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