Cactus Times Volume 4

Number 4 • Sunday Afternoon



We are told that various members of the hotel staff were offended by our heading on last issue's item about reserved seating. This was intended to be jocular, but we understand their grievance and apologize to those individuals for the miscalculation. Important Notice Your committee adds: Please respect the reserved tables which the hotel needs for meetings with external clients. The hotel staff have been extremely helpful and friendly, and this small item of cooperation will be much appreciated. We would also add that the Terrace Bar is not reserved for sole Mexicon use -- if you want to be particularly fannish/outrageous, please move down to Nick's Bar or the Cornelian Suite.

Fans Not Drinking Shock!

The bar manager says we're not drinking much. This is not good enough -- get your fingers out, we've got a reputation to maintain! (Mike Ford)

And Who's to Blame?

Shock news was leaked to us in the form of 250 copies of a lurid pink flyer that last night John Jarrold (Who he? -- Thog) left the bar area before 10.30, 'in favour of a decent night's sleep'. But who could she have been?


30 May: Hal Clement (Harry Stubbs), 1922. Malcolm Davies, 19??; Bob Hope, 1903. Joan of Arc barbecued, Rouen, 1431. Christopher Marlowe 'orribly murdered 1593. Chris Bell reports (Report (n.) A loud bang. -- OED) that St Francis of Sales, patron saint of writers, has two days: 24 and 26 Jan. One was the deadline, the other when the MS arrived. [Wot, same year? -- Ed.]

BSFA Blues

Novel: Red Mars, Kim Stanley Robinson (runner-up, Hearts, Hands and Voices, Ian McDonald); Short: 'The Innocents', Ian McDonald, New Worlds 2 (runner-up, 'The Coming of Vertumnus', Ian Watson, Interzonk 56); Art: Hearts, Hands and Voices (cover), Jim Burns (runner-up Kaeti on Tour/Interzone 66, Jim Burns). Dave Langford has changed his name by deed poll to Dav Lfd.

Popcorn Corner

Mexicon members are known for their fearless ability to seek out new and exciting experiences, and many of them broadened their minds yesterday with Piranha Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death, a feminist political thriller (not) from Linda Krawecke's extensive collection of bimbo movies. Produced in California on a shoestring too short to run to full costumes for most of the women, this remarkable film portrays a possible future with much of California taken over by Amazon-ridden avocado jungles. Of particular cinematic note were the embedded references to Apocalypse Now, 2001 and a host of other (better) films. This reviewer particularly liked the war that raged over whether men taste better eaten with guacamole or clam dip. (Alison Scott)

Corflu 10: Softball Game From Hell

Corflu 10 (the US fannish con) was held last week in Madison, WI. The ~130 members packed into the opening ceremony to see a radio play starring Ted White as Ghu, Andy Hooper as a fan of little faith and Bill Bodden as several men with a ring in his nose. Sercon fannish stuff was interspersed with good bheer and fun in the jacuzzi, climaxing with a Sunday brunch where a ten-person pyramid was attempted with surprising success. The traditional softball game was held that afternoon in conditions of extreme muddiness; Andy Hooper's team narrowly lost 16-2. (Martin Smith)

Easter Moose 1995

Confabulation is represented here by Alison and Mike Scott and a moose in a sombrero. As they have better things to do than sit on a desk all weekend, the 1995 Eastercon desk will be open in the book room 3-5pm Sunday and 10-12 Monday. Or find Alison, Mike or the moose and press £15 on them to join. May the moose be with you.


'Oh Christ there's three more!' Paul Barnett[During a conversation about Mods and Rockers] 'Is Bank Holiday violence on the agenda, then?' 'No, Greg's not here.' • Arnold Akien's Winning Conversational Gambits at Hotel Reception, #1: 'There's this expiring dinosaur trapped within the walls of my room....' • Paul Kincaid to Bernie Evans: 'Did the table move for you, too?' • 'If I press £15 on Alison Scott, will it stick? Only if you put glue on it.' • 'The slap of a wet oak leaf is one of the things I love most.' Rob Holdstock • 'Tighten your thighs, Martin!' Eileen Weston • 'Do you want to know what time I went to bed or what time I went to sleep?' Chris Bell [Thog saw doxy blush] • 'Whether it's concave or convex it's all to do with sex with you, Jack.' [Cohen, of course] • 'There's a plague of ladybirds at the other bay! All in clusters on walls, looks like they're breeding all over the place ... unhallowed abominations ... primal slime ... blasphemous ichor ... excuse me a moment.' Dave Carson

Food Spots

Another Italian restaurant is Angelo's, a little way down Eastborough, also serving 'proper garlic bread'; for the two flying Dutchmen that was a bit of a surprise: the 6in pizza bottom would have done very well as a full meal ... if we had only known before we ordered. (Jan van 't Ent) • £20 for two -- and that includes £7 on wine -- and it was too much [wine? -- Ed] to finish ... Fagin's Restaurant. NOT Mexican, Indian or Chinese. Go out along St Nicholas Street to the right, turn right at Currys, turn right opposite a shop called Nic-Nacs, and Fagin's is next(ish) to the, er, Bell Inn. (Chris 'No Relation' Bell) • The quality/price controversy concerning the Hong Kong (CT passim) can be resolved by eating Duck in Plum Sauce or Sizzling Beef or Paper-Wrapped Chicken, all excellent: three courses (plus unlimited tea) for £12.50 a head. Avoid the noodle dishes and the Spare Ribs (plus limited coffee): uninspiring and also works out at getting on for £12.50 a head.

Pigspurt -- The Lock-Out

People wishing to witness the incomparable Ken Campbell in performance tonight should take note that doors will be opened at 7.50 and closed at 8.15 or when the room is full, whichever comes first. There is room for 180 people, so don't be late. No one will be allowed in during the show. However, there will be one interval during the performance. (Colin Harris)

Langford Smut

The Cactus Times editor who checked into room 140 on Thursday is still wistfully hoping that his shower will be fixed one day. (So is his co-editor.)

Make Rog Peyton Happy!

Don't remind him that yesterday afternoon he made not a single sale after 3.00pm.

Famous Beards of Fandom

For too long Kim Newman has languished in obscurity and shy reclusiveness. This must cease! Join the Kim Newman Appreciation Society at Linda's Shirt Emporium in the book room now!

Emasculation Update

In a wonderfully choreographed display of articulate wrath, Faith Brooker laid into hapless Dave Langford last night for mentioning a vile rumour that the very wonderful Gollancz graphic-novel line had been cancelled. 'We've signed up Terry Pratchett's Mort,' she screeched forgivingly, 'and something by Neil Gaiman and Dave McKean too, you offending headline!' Searching the floor for portions of his anatomy, an ashen-faced Langford muttered, 'This is what comes of believing things in Critical Waev.'

Speller Bares S.F. All

Sorry, the report submitted wasn't the one we were after, and cannot be reproduced here (sets of photographs on sale separately). But keep watching this space.


1 paperback, 3 magazines and 1 A4 pad. Please claim from Bernie: Registration or newsroom.

Adendas and Coriggendas

Correction sheets for The Encyclopedia of SF are now available to order from the newsroom for 25p (to pay for copying five sides in small print). Ni Kol-Tse adds: 'Where's the correction about "dei ex machinaaaaargh!"'

Hugely Expanded Credits

The bit that should have been in #3: Editor Paul ('Hey this editing's jolly easy!') Kincaid. Bits from DAVE ('No it jolly well isn't!) LANGFORD, Abigail ('You jolly jammy chappie, Kincaid!') Frost, Alison Scott, Simon Ounsley, Martin Smith, Paul Barnett, GFP. Photocopying and poffreadin Maureen Speler. This issue: Sc•m Barnett and B•st•rd Langford again, plus Your Committee, Abigail Frost and contributors credited in their own items.

The Wayside Pulpit

'Jesus Christ I'm reading this bloody thing right now and I can't believe it. It's worthless. It gets Brit fandom a bad name it hardly deserves, bad as it is. Every copy ought to be sought out and burned, with [the editor] securely roped down in the middle of them. My fury knows no bounds.'