Escapade 5 was held February 10–12, 1995.
ESCAPADE is a slash convention, kindly labeled "Santa Barbara's multimedia
slash slumber party", that occurs on the first or second February of every year at the Holiday Inn in Goleta, California (five miles north of Santa Barbara, and 3/4 mile from the Santa Barbara airport).
The Holiday Inn has proved *very* slash-friendly, and its staff tries hard to keep everyone happy. (One of the night security women buys a piece of classic Trek art every year. We love her, especially!) Hotel room rates are approximately $79 per night, for 1-4 people, and the hotel distributes 2 keys standard, with the room. For extra keys you'll need to sign a responsibility waiver and be willing to pay a fine for lost keys (thanks to modern times and Hard Copy or whatever dumb news show that did a feature on unsafe hotels).
Registration opens on Friday morning in the consuite. There is a no-host luncheon gathering at 12:00, followed at 1:00 by a short set of planned group activities. (Get-to-know-everybody Games) Panels begin on Friday as well, and the video room begins its programming when Registration opens. Friday evening, there is a Bedtime Story reading, where well-known slash writers share pieces of new, unfinished or premiering work, and a party in the Convention suite. ESCAPADE supplies free margaritas (mixed--and very successfully I might add--by [C], herself), Sangria, snacks and music.
Saturday morning starts with another planned group activity (more get-to-know-everybody Games). Registration is again open, the dealer's room and art show opens, and double-track panels occur throughout the day. We try to include workshops on topics of interest: the craft of writing, publishing, etcetera.
Saturday night is still being planned: thus far, it will feature the new songtape showing (cross your fingers for a big-screen tv), some other fannish video surprises, and a play written by Lezlie Shell and performed by the WHIPS (Women of Houston in Publishing)--and any honorary WHIPS they decide they need. We're looking forward to it.
There is another party gathering on Saturday night.
On Sunday morning, ESCAPADE provides a breakfast buffet and complimentary Mimosas. After breakfast the art auction is held, the dealer's room is again open, and panels and videos continue to run throughout the day.
The DEAD DOG party begins roughly at 4:00 pm in the consuite, and is attended by all remaining guests who want to visit, decompress and talk until the very end. Usually by 9:00 pm, the consuite is cleaned up and packed up, and ESCAPADE is officially concluded.
Possible points of Interest about ESCAPADE:
ATTENDANCE: About 2/3 of the attendees are historically West-coasters, with 1/3 of the membership coming from all around the world (we'll have two Brits joining us this year, and the WHIPS crowd from Houston, Texas, as well as people from as far east as New York). ESCAPADE has grown steadily every year, and we feel a really astonishing amount of gratitude to the people who keep making it fun: the attendees.
HANDICAPPED ACCESS: the hotel is *not* handicapped-accessed on its second floor. Unfortunately, we use every single function space the hotel has, and one of those rooms is upstairs (the consuite). We apologize for the inconvenience, and want wheel-chair users to know that both the hotel staff and the convention staff are available to help transport people upstairs.
DEALERS' ROOM: holds 25 tables, maximum, and tables are available $25 each. They're sold on a first-come, first-served basis. In accordance with our "slash slumber party" theme, the dealer's room opens for its first business on SATURDAY morning at 9:00 am, takes a siesta from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm and is open in the afternoon until 6:00 pm. Sunday opening is at 10:00 am.
ALL PANEL TOPICS ARE SELECTED FROM SUGGESTIONS TAKEN FROM OUR ATTENDEES. This is *your* convention. Our goal is to give people as much of what they want as we can. We work hard to create "PC-PANELS", or Purposely Controversial Panels. Our panels have a reputation for being entertaining, fun, frank and frequently surprising. We're proud of that.
WEATHER: We have an unblemished track record for beautiful, sunny Southern California Fridays (temperatures in the '70's (F)), partly cloudy Saturdays and rainshowers on Sunday evenings (last year's Sunday Rain started a polite ten minutes after the buffet breakfast that was served on the lawn). Bring a raincoat just in case the pattern continues! The day-time highs are in the '70's, with night-time lows sometimes down to the high '50's. The hotel is less than three miles from the Pacific Ocean, so we get a regular, constant breeze. Bring a sweater or jacket for evenings!YOUR CONVENTION COMMITTEE have been fans for a combined total of 28 years. We've been hosting ESCAPADE for four years now, and we're happily working on our fifth. We very much appreciate feedback, and we *listen* to it. We're always open to ways to make ESCAPADE a better organized, better scheduled, better attended con. Please feel free to make suggestions.
The introduction of the charity swap table. From the post-convention progress report:
"The Swap Meet. We hope everyone noticed the two overflowing tables of memorabilia for trade in San Miguel. Those tables were an
experiment, a "slash swap meet". That experiment netted over $150 for our charity and cleared out any number of fan closets! It was wonderful to see people finding treasures in other people's old loves. And it was heartwarming to know that people were so ethical and generous in their contributions to charity. We recommend any convention try this. We will certainly be doing it again this year. Everyone who participatedcame out ahead: people getting rid of old fannish things, people finding new treasures, and the charity."
From the program book: "Those insane girls from the Pacific Northwest will be having a party in their room on Saturday night. Look for signs in the Con Suite to direct you there. They promise a good time for all, and plenty of 'Sex in the Rain'."
Kandy sponsored a Miami Vice party in her room on Friday night.
- Odd Pairings—led by Jane and (Charlotte Hill), "What do you do when it isn't the obvious two guys in a show that grab your interest, but rather the more subtle appeal of McCoy, or Cowley or ???"
- The New Slash: Any One Guy—led by Lezlie and Barbara, "What happens when dyed-in-the-wool slash fans start falling for shows with one male lead? Why are these shows fulfilling previously slash-satisfied urges? What to do?"
- Practical Sex—Everyone!, moderated by Shoshanna, "Everyone has their favorite scene that they swear is physically impossible. With proper stage direction, we'll prove or disprove the point. Bring your favorite example!"
- Starsky & Hutch: Best of the Old Zines, Best of the New—led by Jane and Sandy, "Saved from Slash oblivion by TNT, the boys are back! For new fans, what are the old zines to look for? What new zines are living up to the tradition?"
- Professionals: Relationships—Screen vs. Fanfic—led by Jane and Sandy, "Do we love the characters for what we see or what we read? Is there really any relationship between the two?"
- Mini Panels:
- M. Fae Glasgow Bedtime Story Reading—Nancy, Joan, and Jane "will read stories Nanny never would have approved of..."
- Escapade Party, "Hang out in the Con Suite for music, food, drink, and scintillating conversation. Margaritas, sangria, and nachos. Followed by "Bring Your Own Porn" showing at midnight."
- Blake's Seven: Blake/Avon, there is no alternative—led by S. J. and P. "Who really deserves Avon? Blake, of course..."
- Real Person Slash—led by Sandy and (Megan Kent), "It started so innocently, now our mood rises and falls with each tabloid exploit. How to deal with heroes that have their own, very real lives. Why it's more exciting than traditional fandom, and how it's infinitely more frustrating."
- Crossovers and AUs—led by Pam and Jane, "Why are they so popular? Are they held to the same (or higher? or lower?) standards than other fanfic? What does it take to do one well?"
- Fandom Trivia—led by Christy and Wendy, "So, you think you know that show? Prove it!"
- Techno Vids—Media Cannibals, "What's available with the new computer hardware and software? Can have Bodie & Doyle screwing on screen if we apply the right touches. Should we? How and when?"
- Professionals: Where's the Violence?—led by Pat and Katherine, "It's a gritty, realistic show (well, at least compared to Starsky & Hutch). Why are there so many "BSD settle down and hang curtains" stories? Why don't we see the kind of violence in fanfic that we saw on screen? Don't these guys ever fight?"
- Resurgence of SF on TV—led by Pat and Eileen, "X-Files, Lois & Clark, Highlander, Babylon 5, TekWar, Earth 2, ST: Deep Space 9 & Voyager and gobs more. Where are they all coming from? Are they giving us what we want?"
- Paired Fans—led by Lynn, Sandy, and Colleen, "They spend hours, days, weeks in each other's company. They speak their own language. Even their friends often call them by the wrong names. Starsky & Hutch? No, it's (Megan Kent) & (Charlotte Hill)! How are we like or unlike our buddy-show heroes?"
- Trek: Still Crazy After all These Years—led by Alayne and Kathy, "In the days of rabid multimedia, when a new fandom is born each week, what makes us loyal to the two guys who started it all?"
- Wiseguy: What Is It About This Guy, Anyway?—led by Christy and (Charlotte Hill), "How did this balding, short, boxer-wearing four-eyes become a popular slash hero?"
- Writing Workshop—led by Nancy, Fiona, and Joan, "Practical input from experts."
- Homoeroticism in Anne Rice—led by Joan, Katherine, and Alayne, "Are her vampires a gay allegory? Are her vampires gay? How close are her stories to slash?"
- Cultural Crossovers—led by Jane, Jane, and Kathy, "Is it possible to accurately capture characters from a radically different culture (Americans writing Pros, Brits writing Wiseguy?) How does anyone accurately write SF? Do they?"
- The Nature of Slash—led by (Charlotte Hill), Constance, and Lezlie, "What makes something slash or not? Is the nature of slash changing with the audience? Who's to blame? Can we control the evolution of fandom?"
- Mini Panel:
- Chicago Hope, led by (Charlotte Hill)
- Forever Knight led by Katherine, "He's beautiful, he has a lovely accent, he's immortal, conflicted, guilty and depressed; of course we're interested."
- We're Not Gay, We Just Love Each Other—Shoshanna, "The classic slash dynamic; why our guys can fuck each other and not be queer..."
- Mini Panel:
- Vampires- - led by Alayne, "Why are we fascinated by blood sucking monsters?"
- Wild Wild West—led by DeeJay
- Sandbaggers -- led by Nicole
- Songtapes—thanks to Kandy and all our contributors!
- Fan Entertainment (Play by Lezlie, Stand-Up Comedy by Melissa, Four-part Filking, Dating Game)
- Honorable Discharge, a gay flick with plot, relationship, cute guys and plenty of sex. But is it slash? Discussion to follow.
- Art Auction, our lovely and talented auctioneer is Shoshanna
- Writing Workshop—led by Nancy, Fiona, and Joan, Part 2.
- Video Workshop—led by DeeJay and Kandy, "video makers & watchers discuss the art."
- Psychoanalyzing Ourselves to Death—led by Pat and Katherine, "Are we what we read and write? How sick does that make us? Or how healthy?"
- Real Injury vs. Reel Injury/Safer Sex—led by Agnes and Christy, "Everything you always wanted to know, but up until now had no one to ask. If you're going to put the details in, shouldn't you get them right?"
- Good vs. Popular Fan Writing—led by Pat, Katherine, and Kathy, "Is there an absolute standard tor fan writing? Or does whatever hits your "kink" count as "good"? When was the last time you admitted hating something that was good? Or loving something that was crap?"
- Wiseguy—led by Alayne, Jo, Carol, "Roger, Frank, Sonny, Mel, Raglin, Uncle Mike; all these great guys, why do all the stories have Vinnie in them...?"
- Why Lesbians Read Slash—led by Jane, Shoshanna, and Barbara, "What's the attraction? Why do they care? Why do they write it?"
- Dead Dog Party, "Everyone come by, hang out 'til you have to go home, bring your leftovers to share. Pick up comments sheets to give feedback on Escapade '94" [typo regarding the year]
The Escapade Play
There were two fan-written plays performed at the Escapade Friday night entertainment. The first play was called "Jurassic Fandom." The second play was "The Search for Spock's Penis."
Morgan Dawn recalls the plot of "In Search of Spock's Penis":
"Both [plays] were written by Lezlie Shell, long may she reign. [In Jurassic Fandom] A scientist has come up with a way to clone our heroes for a theme entertainment park, and as she shows her sponsors through, they pass little dioramas of Kirk & Spock, Starsky & Hutch, Bodie & Doyle.
In order (and these are NOT direct quotes):
"Spock, looks like Fleet has canceled your home leave on Vulcan, what a shame," "Captain, it is imperative that I return home...";
Starsky, my electric bill came today <choke>--it was over $100," "Oh, buddy, I'm there for you!";
"Christ, I hate going undercover as a prostitute," "Christ, I hate going undercover as a gay man." (At every mention of being gay, all actors turn to the audience and chant in unison "Not that there's anything wrong with that!")Somewhat alarmed by the direction these little scenarios seem to be taking, the scientist discovers that the person she hired to program the clones with fans' imaginings was none other than Leslie Fish (played by yours truly, and having a wonderful time), which Explains All."
It was a play based on two bits of Star Trek canon: the absolutely horrific TV episode "In Search of Spock's Brain" where aliens abduct Spock's brain to use it in their planetary computer and the Enterprise crew runs around the planet with zombie Spock in tow, trying to recover his brain. And of course, it was a play on words for the title of the third Star Trek movie, "In Search of Spock." As you can imagine, in the play it is Spock's penis that goes missing. The thief of the missing organ was a fan who had been trapped in Santa Barbara for 15 years in a virtual reality game that was failing. Spock was brilliantly played by Pat Diggs, who, if I recall, would intermittently collapse into a chair while holding up an ersatz organ and gazing at it wistfully. It was beyond hilarious.
|The Way We Were||Stacy D & Liz||Wiseguy Frank/Vinnie|
|The Best Thing that Ever Happened to Me||Stacy D||Harry & Johnny|
|Side by Side||Jackie E||Planet of the Apes (TV)|
|Macho Man||Jackie E||Garrison's Gorillas|
|Strong Enough||Jill (vidder)||Wiseguy Sonny/Vinnie|
|Just Another Day||Sharon P||Miami Vice Crockett/Castillo|
|Night & Day||Sharon P||K/S|
|Hotel California||Kandy Fong||Blake's 7|
|Rock & Roll||Media Cannibals: Megan Kent & Sandy Herrold||Led Zeppelin|
|Out of Tears||Media Cannibals: Sandy Herrold||Wiseguy: Frank/Vinnie|
|500 Miles||Media Cannibals: Sandy Herrold & Alexfandra||Pros|
|Promises||Media Cannibals: Megan Kent & Sandy Herrold||Led Zeppelin|
Run time: 45 1/2 minues
Vid Show Review
""The Way We Were" (WG) by Liz K and Stacy D -- A bit maudlin, but apt F/V. Technically well done except for very uneven sound (at least on my copy)
"The Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me" (Harry & Johnny) by Stacy D -- I need to state at the begininning that this is a fandom I don't understand. Having said that, this is a well put together vid, although it would have been nice have more of the two of them interacting. As it stands I feel very sorry for Harry if Johnny's the best thing that's happened to him judging from the interactions.
"Side by Side" (Planet of the Apes, the series) by Jackie E -- I never watched the show (or liked the movies) but thought the vid was a fun "buddy" vid. My only technical complaint is the fact that the source tapes could have been better.
"Macho Man" (Garrison's Gorilla's) by Jackie E -- Another show that I've never seen, but I enjoyed the vid. The show had enough macho men to fill the song without boring me. This isn't the sort of vid that needs close attention, but is fun for large groups.
"Strong Enough" (WG) by Jill A -- my memory of this vid at Escapade was one of the reasons I wanted this tape. Very well chosen and executed S/V vid. Thinking of this vid has made the hearing the song five times a day on the radio a treat rather than a torture.
"Just Another Day" (MV) by Sharon P -- Better editing and selection of clips. Does a much better job of illustrating the song lyrics.
"Night and Day" (K/S) by Sharon P -- Nicely done K/S.
"Hotel California" (B7) by Kandy Fong-- similar to the other B7 vid (by MVD????) I've seen done to this song. This one is more chronological, but less coherent.
"Rock & Roll" (Led Zep) Megan Kent and Sandy Hereld-- Well composed Plant/Page retrospective. It fell much more Plant/Page than Tris/Alex (this based on by *very* limited sense of T/A).
"Out of Tears" (WG) by Sandy-- Poor Frank, just wait 'til 4th season. Nicely put together vid of an angst-ridden Frank.
"500 miles, the remake" (Pros) by Sandy and Alex-- Best Pros vid on the tape and much tighter than the original. The ordering of clips and the timing improved an already strong vid."Promises"(Led Zep) Megan and Sandy-- Very well done, feels more like Tris/Alex than "Rock and Roll".
Convention ReportsIn 1995, Sandy Herrold wrote the following in depth convention report and posted it to the Virgule-L mailing list. It is reposted here with permission:
My favorite panel was definitely "Paired fans" (which to everyone ELSE's enjoyment, I kept misspeaking as Faired Pans). What a hoot; People denying they really were paired fans, new paired fans being alternately either amused or horrified to realize that completely unconsciously, they were wearing nearly identical clothing...talking about the difference between paired fans, and fans that are actually a sexual emotional couple: we decided that once you're a couple you can't be called a paired fan anymore, but if you just have sex with each other, once, at a con, while under the stress of reading one too many pornographic stories and drinking one too many Escapade-con-suite-margaritas, that's ok...
The first Pros panel sucked: I was helping run it, and it was like being on the train in SPEED: you know it is crashing, but there's nothing you can do. Some of the people in the panel disliked one of the people running the panel, and so disagreed, bitchily, with everything she said. Once in desperation, I changed to topic to FOOD in Pros, and got people talking about Bisto gravy ('the Bisto boys') and whether Doyle can cook...
Other fun ones: "Definitely the Nature of Slash." Charlotte Hill tried valiantly to find things about slash that we all could agree with. After much disagreement, (It's not slash if: they're both gay, if there are original characters, it's produced by non-slash fans, they're not the same sex, they're both women, it's about literary characters, there is no sex, there's no tension (I voted for THAT one), the story isn't about the major pairing or pairings...), We could only agree with: 'Slash is about a sexually-charged relationship with at least one "self-aware" (we rejected "sentient" because of teddy-bear and Vila stories ) creature....'!
Megan Kent and I had a blast at the "Real Person Slash" panel. Of course we talked a lot about Jimmy and Robert [Page], but there was a lot of general discussion as well, about how in the big non-media fan world, it is more usual to be a fan of an actor (say Mandy Patinkin) than it is to be a huge fan of a 'character'(say, Jeffrey Gieger)...Admitting you are a fan of a *character* is what leads to the, 'we don't know life from fiction' and 'get a life' comments. On the other hand, there is a real difference between admitting you're a huge fan of Mandy Patinkin, and admitting you'd like to know if he's in a relationship with his co-star...
The Escapade bar never seems to be the center of the fun, but it did make a nice quiet get-away; pool side parties were more common this year with gorgeous sunny weather both Friday and Sunday (yah!...though the Seattle crowd, at least, went home to measurable snow.) The Escapade party itself, Friday night, was a little more low-key than last year (though the margs were still excellent), but the Saturday night entertainment was great; I didn't hear anyone bemoan the change from strippers to fannish entertainment. (Even my incredibly small about of personal modesty prevents me from reviewing the Saturday night singing and theatre...)
Video Show, Friday night--Not a lot of new stuff, but definitely a few things stuck out: A Garrison's Gorillas vid to "Macho man." The vid was waaaay too long, but I heard a lot of people saying, "Hey, where can we find episodes...? Lots of pretty men with their shirts off being beaten by other men...ooh...! Also, a stunning Wiseguy (Sonny/Vinne) to Sheryl Crow's "Are You Strong Enough To Be My Man." In the improbable pairings category, Stacey D had a Harry/Johnny vid! (Not that there's anything wronge with H/J, but not much of the fannish relation appears on the original screen source...) Megan Kent's and my Zeps vids went over about as well as we'd expected: a few people who laughed in the right places, showing they had some idea, a lot of totally confused watchers, and at least one person saying that the vids were in terrible taste as 'real person slash'...
The vid room went to Open Video this year, and got a real work out. I showed Megan's Starsky and Hutch blooper tape to a few people, who then showed it to a few more...It must have been played 20 times during the weekend. They also had the B7 and Red Dwarf blooper reels...I more than once came in on groups doing MST3K to gay male porno in there.
Along with the fun of meeting new people (It was great meeting Katharine Scarritt. And Jane Carnall! Thank you Shoshanna for arranging her passage over here) and sharing time with seldom-seen friends, comes missing people you like. I kept walking by people I like and not actually connecting; maybe next con...I've forgotten or left out all kinds of great stuff: having a great time spending the week before the con down here in Santa Barbara helping Megan and Charlotte get ready, getting to read friends proofs and encouraging other people to finish stuff, getting people to read my drafts and getting encouragement to finish them, talking story, drinking, gossiping about other fans, chatting about the list (boy this seems recursive)... I can only agree with whoever said, 'start saving now for next year's con.'
The post-convention progress report published comments from attendees:
"In case you've forgotten, here is some feedback we
received about last year's convention ...
• Start saving now for next year's con!"
- Escapade has some of the finest, most intellectually stimulating panel discussions of any fannish occasion. They would, for the most part, do justice to a college classroom.
- The Paired Fan Panel-Has anyone ever timed Charlotte Hill and Sandy to see who talks faster?
- The Dating Game with Vinnie having to choose between Sonny, Frank and Roger. Naturally he chose Frank, but I have it on good authority that it was rigged.
- "Jurassic Fandom" was written by Lezlie Shell, long may she reign. A scientist has come up with a way to clone our heroes for a theme entertainment park, and as she shows her sponsors through, they pass little dioramas of Kirk & Spock, Starsky & Hutch, and Bodie & Doyle. In order (and these are not direct quotes): "Spock, looks like Fleet has cancelled your home leave on Vulcan, what a shame," "Captain, it is imperative that I return home ... "; "Starsky, my electric bill came today <choke>-it was over $100," "Oh, buddy, I'm there for you!" <hug>; Doyle: "Christ, I hate going undercover as a prostitute," Bodie: "Christ I hate going undercover as a gay man." [At every mention of being gay, all actors turn to the audience and chant in unison "Not that there's anything wrong with that!"]
- From "Spock's Penis" (also from the twisted mind of Lezlie Shell)-Incredulous Kirk: "They've been locked in in there for twenty years?" Fan responds: "We did fine until we ran out of junk food and diet soda ... "
- The con was absolutely wonderful. And I didn't even get sick until I got home!"
- from her personal notes, accessed March 27, 2011