TeslaCon 3 : An Overview

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So it is that once again TeslaCon has come and gone and it took me two and a half days of sleep to compensate.  Yet it was fun, a lot of fun, the kind of fun you only get when a bunch of adults (and a few children) dress up and pretend they’re on a spaceship in the late 19th century.  Most places that kind of fun will get you arrested, but not at TeslaCon.  Never at TeslaCon.

“Tell Me More!” You say (yes, you said that).  Okay, and I’m doing it in an itemized format.

1.  People love marionette-puppet hybrids.

People just do.  On Saturday, when I was running around trying to get actual work done, I stumbled upon this…

Yup, those are marionette-puppet hybrids alright, representing “moon people” or Selanites as we TC 3 alums like to call them.  And people just loved them.  I event got hit on by one, which was… something.  But yes, marionette-puppet hybrids are the future, I’m telling you.  I reckon we’ll even have to come up with a name for them… that’s not trademarked.

2. Tea-Time jokes can still be funny.

Imagine the scenario, it’s closing ceremonies, 1500 sleep deprived and occasionally hung over people are blearily waiting to see what happens.  The “ship is about to leave the moon” (the story was basically bad guy forced us to go to the moon, we crashed on the moon, then we had to leave the moon.  That’s all I know, I was doing the music programming all weekend). Then the villain decides he’s going to blow up the ship for some reason and that the hero is going to have to stop him.  Well they’re about spar a boxing duel when suddenly on the screens is a big thing that says “Tea Time”.

And they stop.

And everyone has tea.

The questionable taste of making fun of other cultures aside (well I guess English are pretty fair game), it quickly went from groan-worthy to funny when servers decided to systematically go through the audience and offer tea to ANYONE who had a cup.  Seriously, this was planned.  I was impressed.  My only complaint was I didn’t get the memo that I should bring a tea cup.

3. Unwoman can pack a room even during closing ceremonies.

And she did.

4.  The IAPS work really really hard

They acted in at least 70% of the “immersion skits”, they worked as puppeteers, they walked around in character the entire time and Aaron Egan also acted as Krampus.  The makeup, hair and costuming alone must have taken a few hours AND he had to walk around growling while never leaving the balls of his feet.

5.  Nathan Hayes may be single-handedly financing half the steampunk musicians and artists out there.

He bought at least two of everything everyone brought.  He’s awesome.

6.  Everyone’s done smoking pipes, now it’s all about cigars

I’m sure that had nothing to do with Foundry Cigars giving away their products all weekend.  Also, Dr. Grymm, great job on the ring thing you made for them.  Seriously, fantastic stuff.

7.  People Highly Enjoy Dancing to DJs

Upon my arrival at Tesla-Con I wasn’t sure I, or any of we DJs (Q and Lords & Ladies), were going to play at all during the weekend.  Yet by the end of Tesla-Con I had racked up six or so hours of DJing.  All of it was somewhat last minute too because “people needed something to do.”

It’s funny how history repeats itself.  I think I remember reading that’s the same reason people started DJing in the South Bronx in the late 70s or why disco was invented.

8. Hendricks Gin is awesome.

They did, after all, sponsor the con events with multiple cases of their fine product.  Also, Erica Unwoman makes a mean French Gimlet.

9. Programming music for a convention is an exhausting, thankless job that should be reserved for war criminals and the criminally insane.

I got only three hours of sleep a night and required a bottle of gin and or whiskey a day to survive. Luckily, I am one of the latter in the previous statement.

10.  I’d totally program the music for a convention again!

And I’m cheap!  Hire me, I survive on three hours of sleep a night, need a bottle of gin or whiskey a day for sustenance and I can DJ until four in the morning if your patrons happen to “need something to do”.  I’m a triple threat!


Well looks like it’s a month off and then back to planning for Tesla-Con 4!  I had a great time, hope everyone else did, and thanks to Eric Larson for putting his life savings in jeopardy so we could all have a good time for a single weekend!


-The Lord Baron

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1 Comment.

  • 1 Gordon Smuder Dec 27, 2012 at 6:33 pm

    Re: the puppets.
    You’re welcome. I made them. Thank you for avoiding using the “M” word in your review. I performed the King of the Moon in the opening and closing video segments. And I was an official “guest” of the convention, though the amazing muttered “who the hell is that?” from the crowd when my name appeared on screen in the credits was the stuff of comedy legend. Even the convention security people had no idea who I was. The Captain himself had no idea. And I’d even talked with him at another convention about it. Just call me TeslaCon 2012 “Stealth Guest Of Honor”.
    I will be back next year. The Selenite delegation will be there for the Congress of Steam. I’ll be handling that.
    So thanks for the kind words about the puppets. You’ll be seeing more in the future.

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