FenCon IX: The Aftermath

Triffid Ranch display

Five years ago, the Triffid Ranch had its first show at the now long-defunct Deep Ellum Sellum. A year later, we took the risk of going for a three-day show with FenCon. Five shows later, it’s still one of my favorites. Back at the first, a catgirl attendee just looked at the arrangement and sneered “Whoever heard of plants at a convention?” Well, after all of this time, the plants are now a draw for the convention all on their own.

(Speaking of which, the folks who came by for this year’s show got the last look at many different components of the traditional Triffid Ranch display. By the first show of the new year, expect a lot of new changes. It’s about time: a lot of the props and arrangements have been hanging on with spit and duct tape, and they really need replacement or revamping.)

As a heads-up for next year, the schedule for Fencon X in 2013 will be delayed by about two weeks, with it running the weekend of October 4. Since this also marks Texas-OU Weekend, if you’re planning to come to Dallas for the convention, reserve your hotel spaces early. The same holds true for attendees and vendors alike: since the guest list is full of major draws (including one who acted as a role model for me over the last ten years: friends have standing written orders that if I ever became as obsessive on a single subject as he does in public, they’re given full permission to stomp me to death), expect a lot of people. This may mean getting a second table space, just to show off larger arrangements for the first time. Either way, after the warm welcome from attendees and staff, we’re definitely in for 2013.

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I’d also like to tip the hat at the various staffers and volunteers from AggieCon at Texas A&M University. I haven’t been to one in nearly 13 years (when I topped Harlan Ellison’s story of being fired by Disney for suggesting an animated Disney porno film with my true tale of how I got my FBI record for allegedly selling government secrets to the Daleks), and it’s definitely time to return. With plants.

Dalek - Oblique

Speaking of which, this guy didn’t actually come into the dealer’s room, but he was apparently spotted in one of the party suites, drunkenly crying about how his creator didn’t really love him. It definitely beat his usual tactic of dressing up in a baseball cap and torn overalls, chasing Whitley Strieber while screaming “You will squeal like a pig! Squeal! SQUEAL!”

Elvis among the medusa head

Finally, while I didn’t have room for some of the more exotic arrangements I had planned (although that will be rectified for November’s Funky Finds Experience ), I couldn’t resist expanding a Euphorbia flanaganii pot with a touch of neo-Egyptian influence.
“I met a traveler from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them, and the heart that fed;
And on the pedestal these words appear:
‘My name is Presley, King of Kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!'”

It’s time to do something similar, only with more of an early Celtic feel. Anybody know where I can buy busts of John Lydon?

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