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Lloyd's Locs Box - Fanzine letters of comment Below are 20 entries, after skipping 20 most recent ones in the "Lloyd Penney" journal:

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April 28th, 2017
12:22 pm

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Loc on Vibrator 2.0.38 (Graham Charnock, ed.)
Dear Graham:

I might be a little late with this, but I have here for you a loc on Vibrator 2.0.38. As soon as I can make some sense of the cover (ah, on the website, I understand perhaps a little now), I will make it into the main part of the zine.

Please don’t worry about deadlines. It’s only the publisher that puts pressure on the editor for a schedule, and since you are both in this case, get off your back. Put out issues when you feel you can, or want to. We’ll be here, patiently waiting. I spend too much time on Facebook, too, and while that idiot in the White House irritates me too, but the reactions to his idiocy are quite entertaining.

It is always difficult to find a suitable place to live. Outside of a period of time in Brampton, northwest of Toronto, we’ve always lived in the Etobicoke section of Toronto, which is the western quarter of the metropolis. It is the quietest area, the greenest area, and it is still close to major highways and the subway. Before I married Yvonne, I lived on the west coast of Canada for a while, in the city of Victoria on Vancouver Island, and we lived in a part of Victoria that was very Chinese. They ran all the local stores, so you were out of luck for milk or bread at the best of times, but if you needed oriental-style ingredients of any kind, you could often find various varieties, and more than a dozen brand names. They could never understand why we needed bread or milk when they had such variety of other things to offer us.

We are lucky to have some good hospitals here, but when I had a detached retina in my right eye, finding a hospital willing to treat me was difficult. All the ones in Etobicoke and neighbouring Mississauga turned me away, aware of the urgency of treatment, but they didn’t have a doctor able to see me and diagnose me. It took a nearby eye doctor to get me in to one of the big hospitals downtown for an op. One of the hospitals that turned me away later had me in for an op to replace a cataract with an artificial lens.

I respond to most of the N3F zines, and they distribute zines as well, so I see them send around various zines, including this one. At least George Phillies is doing what he can to get zines out there. If only there was some way to get more people involved in writing, illustrations and loccing those zines.

So many readers in the locol…I do not buy books, and haven’t for years, but I am at least now making the attempt to get through the vast quantities of books on my Yet To Be Read shelves. Not easy…it is a habit I must reacquire.

My loc…with Yvonne’s mother’s passing, only now have we been able to gather her family together for a funeral, which will take place this weekend. All places around Toronto are getting expensive, so either we move far away from Toronto, or we find ourselves a lottery we could easily win.

Paul Skelton wonders who got Mike Glicksohn’s fanzines…well, I remember talking to Mike about them at one of the last Mikecons, but eventually, it was Murray Moore who got them.  I wouldn’t have had room for them anyway.

Time to go, I have a voice taping this afternoon with a supplements company just north of Toronto, and it is my source of alternate funds, to help me pay my bills. Thanks for this issue, see you with the next, and all of you in the Charnock household, stay well, for heaven’s sake.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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April 27th, 2017
04:54 pm

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Loc on NASFA Shuttle Vol. 37 No. 4 (Mike Kennedy, ed.)
Dear NASFen:

Thanks for the April Shuttle! I am ploughing through a tall stack of zines, and your just happens to be next. Let’s see what there is to be said.

Mention of the Fan Funds reminds me that just recently, John Purcell was announced as the winner of this year’s TAFF race. John gets to go to the Helsinki Worldcon, and will probably travel much of Europe to meet up with fans everywhere. Lucky guy! He won by only one vote, too.

It’s good to see the Hugo nominations, and here is the first time I have seen all nominations in all categories.  I have read or seen almost none of the nominees; the SF world has truly left me behind. Once again, I have hopes for Journey Planet and Mike Glyer. It looks like the Puppies have left a mess again, but each year, it seems to be easier to clean it up. Perhaps they will eventually go away; we can only hope.

This very weekend coming up is Corflu, so the FAAn Awards will be awarded soon, and a press release should be out. Also, I keep hearing about a horror convention coming up called Stokercon. I’m not sure if they are handing out awards, but the local horror writers seems, well, stoked about Stokercon. And, the nomination period for the Aurora Awards has just started.

Sheryl Birkhead has not got much good to say about CBS All Access… The only reason I’d know about this specialty channel is that the newest incarnation of Star Trek is presumably being shot here in Toronto, but CBS Paramount keeps changing the shooting dates. I have heard the show may be entirely re-planned, and we don’t hear much here, so all I can say is that I hope CBS gets things straightened out before 2018.

My letter…CostumeCon 35 was this past weekend, closeby in neighbouring Mississauga, ON. Our sales were good, but nothing to brag about. CostumeCon 38 will take place in Montreal, Quebec March 13 – 16, 2020. Now comes Anime North, and we are praying for good sales at this one.

Done for the moment, and in time, too. Thank you for this issue, and more will come shortly, I’m sure of it. Take care, and see you shortly.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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03:18 pm

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Loc on X-Rayer 134 (Ray Palm, ed.)
Dear Ray:

Thanks for X-Rayer 134. I am still at home these days, so I get to write letters every day. I’d rather be working, but until that happens, here a loc on your newest issue.

James Dawson is right, old tech is not bad tech. Our modern tech could break down very easily. I do have a manual typewriter, plus paper, envelopes and stamps if they were needed; I used them all when I started out in this in the early 80s. I also have a tablet and Bluetooth keyboard. Somehow, I think if we had to go back to the older tech of typers and mimeos, we might appreciate them more, and value each zine more. And, I certainly agree with him re Charles Beaumont and Richard Matheson. They wrote just about any Twilight Zone episode that Rod Serling didn’t,

Trump thinks he’s being the firm leader by trying to bully his allies. It’s not working…he just looks foolish. He was going to issue yet another executive order taking the US out of NAFTA, but calls from Canada and Mexico made his change his mind entirely. I expect more bullying will come with the NAFTA negotiations, but I expect we’ll just smile and roll our eyes.

Canada also has a bank regulatory commission, and it has been given new powers that make it not quite the toothless tiger it was before. It doesn’t exercise those new powers much, and I think the quotation from Matt Taibbi’s article explains why perfectly, that any action might destabilize an easily upsettable banking industry. The worst think is, they know how unstable they are, they keep the industry as unstable as it is, and with all of that, they can get away with just about any illegal transaction they can think of.

I am done for now…wish me luck, as I’ve had more interviews, and I am, as usual, waiting to hear back from them. More often than not, I don’t, but I have to keep trying. Thanks for this issue, and see you with the next one.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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April 26th, 2017
02:32 pm

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Loc on CounterClock 28 (Wolf von Witting, ed.)
Dear Wolf:

It’s a chilly day outside, so it is perfect loccing weather. I have issue 28 of CounterClock here, so here comes come comments on the contents.

I’ve never heard of Bards and Sages Quarterly, unless it’s a fake title so that Denny Marshall could show off his talents. (Looked it up…nope, it’s real.) There are so many online SF magazines now, and I probably haven’t heard of most of them. Where am I going? I am still trying to find some direction at my age. Yet, I keep hoping someone will hire me, and I will be able to take some direction once that happens.

The idea of Fake News is only a product of the idiots that populate the Trump cabinet and White House. Fake News is only truth they don’t like. Reality is quite subjective, but there are times that I think the age of attempted real journalism is over, and reality, in the form of real news, is only what the individual decides it is. I despair for the future of history as a record of what happened, and with the shift away from the printed word, will our descendants have any idea what happened in their past/our present? As you say later, facts should be an absolute, but the term now includes the caveat, as far as we know, to the best of our current knowledge.

As I go through the records of my past, I agree with you, that Thomas Edison was indeed a heavy-handed thief. He should not be ignored as an inventor and genius, but he often bullied his competitors, and bought them out. He did ruin Nikola Tesla, and in the graphic novel/movie Hugo, oncle Georges was indeed Georges Méliès, forced by Edison into financial ruin, and forced to operate a toy store in Montparnasse Station in Paris.

I remember the celebrations at the beginning of this year for what would have been JRR Tolkien’s 125th birthday. I have read that the professor wrote The Hobbit in 1930 to entertain young relatives. I have read as much Tolkien as I can find, and I also have a selection of books about Tolkien and his writings. I enjoyed the LotR movies so much, and saw the first of the Hobbit trilogy of movies, and didn’t care to see more.

Quite agree about the artwork of fractals. They are a pleasure to see, and videos on fractals are truly hypnotic. It will be interesting to see how much father they can go.

The study in sexism is a discussion that we need to have regularly, but I wonder if there’s been any complaints about having Bill Rotsler’s artwork accompany the discussion, unless it is meant to be a visual example of why we need that discussion. It would be fun if indeed Fandom Was a Way of Life, but I think we’re now at the point where it has become real fun, but financed only through the reality of a job, household, groceries and laundry, etc. I can happily say that my own involvement in fandom will hit 40 years this coming December, and that it has stayed fresh for me by changing up my fannish activities every so often. I got out of conrunning, where we’d been for 30 years, and got more into steampunk, which is still fairly fresh in itself. I cannot say I am aware of any fannish activities where I am that are exclusive female, but I will say that I am pleased to see any female activity in any local fanac, and will encourage their presence and activity, and leadership. This past weekend in neighbouring Mississauga, Ontario was CostumeCon 35, a rotational convention for costumers, its third time in the Toronto area. The majority of the membership was female, and many friends were there, and I was very pleased to see them. Lots of hugs for me that weekend.

Seeing all the Rotsler cartoons here and there reminds me that Bill Rotsler also came up with a list of Rotsler’s Rules for Masquerades (http://www.cosplay.com/showthread.php?t=52348). One or two of the rules may be dated, but the rest are still good, and common-sensible. Today, anyone can cosplay any character, and at CostumeCon this past weekend, it was proved, many times.

Movies…I hereby admit that I saw none of them that were listed. Given my enjoyment of past Star Trek and Star Wars movies, I did not see Star Trek Beyond or Rogue One. What movies did I see? Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, and Hidden Figures. Hollywood isn’t making any money off us.

The locol…I certainly enjoy the participatory aspect of the fandom we all enjoy. That’s one reason I write all these letters, to be a part of things. Yet, I also find that so many conventions are taking away from that participation. The message I get from these cons is…come in, buy a membership, there’s the dealers’ room to dispose of your spare cash. Now sit down, shut up, and pay attention to the entertainments provided, whether it is an actor cavorting about on stage, or an author at his reading.

John Purcell’s loc reminds me that he did indeed win TAFF, and will soon be the head of a fannish invasion force overwhelming Finland this coming end of summer. I hope you will try TAFF again. Third time’s the charm.

The rest of the issue, I shall say I read and enjoyed it, but I have no further comment to make. Perhaps the creativity gas tank ran dry, who knows. Time for me to wind it up, and hope you see this before bedtime. Many thanks for this, hope this helps to fill the next locol, and see you with that next issue.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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April 25th, 2017
07:48 pm

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Loc on Opuntia 371 - 373 (Dale Speirs, ed.)
Dear Dale:

Three issues of Opuntia are here, and they need to be commented on in order to catch up. I have here issues 371, 372 and 373, so here they are in order.

371…I guess Calgary truly is part of the prairie if there are few trees that can survive. Other than green ash, what other species are thriving?

There are some new LRT lines opening in Toronto soon, plus a few more that will open within the next few years. Line 5 will go across nearly the full width of Eglinton Ave. W. and E., and will serve as a crosstown line.

I always wondered how mad (or just slightly perturbed) scientists, who usually spend most of their time in their labs, have absolutely drop-dead gorgeous daughters. The mothers and wives are never mentioned. There must be a book on how to build a mad scientist’s lair, plus potential costs. Labs are expensive enough, but lairs must be terribly expensive. Who funds those lairs, anyway?

My loc…well, the HMV stores are all gone, and almost all of them have been filled by Sunrise Records. I think the only one that wasn’t filled was on Yonge Street. You can imagine just how expensive the rent of a store on Yonge Street could be.

372…Great mountainous photos. I’d never heard of Theatre Five. I think I have mentioned before that I used to listen to the main CBS station in New York City, and hear the CBS Radio Mystery Theatre, with E.G. Marshall. Great stories, and I wish there was another station broadcasting them.

I have friends who are experimenting with 3D printers, and I might be talking to them soon to see if they could produce items I might be interested in. In fact, seeing I have Windows 10 on my computer, I have software that could get me started on 3D printing if I had such a printer on my desk.

373…I had read a while ago that collecting of any sort was considered by some as a mild form of mental illness. I don’t think so, and many friends would agree. I have read some steampunk fiction, and admit that I liked the costuming more than the literature. Some do collect with the idea of making money, but any value that might be assigned to a book, or any other collectible, is quite subjective, and will probably never see the light of day, or that assigned value. We did make some money off a collector’s store many years ago, as we first sought to liquidate our collection, but we knew it was a fluke.

The only Olympic pins I have are the ones from the unsuccessful 1998 Toronto bid. I have learned something about the value of such Olympic pins, so I have them tucked away. I might get some $$ for them in the future, but I’m not holding my breath.

Interesting to see The Idler, I think I remember it. I suspect the next such publication that will shut down because of the lack of sales, is The Walrus. I wish it success, but can’t see it succeeding. Jonathan Kay is the editor, and his attitude, as seen on the CBC, pretty well ensures that the magazine will die eventually.

Just got past the page, so off it goes to you. Thank you for these three issues, and keep sending them to us. See you then.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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April 19th, 2017
04:03 pm

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Loc on Askew 19 (John Purcell, ed.)
Dear John:

This is meant to be a loc on Askew 19, but I suspect, it’s just going to be a big congratulations! on being the TAFF winner for this year. I don’t know who your opponents were, but they gave you a run for your money, and a one-vote victory is still a victory. You’ve got to be making plans already.

I wish I could do something like that, but right now, it’s impossible, and not likely to boot. Right now, the job hunt is STILL going on, and even with good interviews, I still can’t get anyone to say yes to me.

Nonetheless, I don’t want to take away from your victory! The fan funds sure do make things happen. A recently innocent inquiry on my part on the CUFF Facebook page seems to have gotten things going again. The funds are being raised, and there will soon be another CUFF vote. All we need now is candidates. (Non-fanzine fans have won CUFF in the past, but even with full explanations of what was expected of the winners, few actually followed through.)

The locol…hmm, New Fandom. Well, I figure that a part of New Fandom is Old Fandom just looking for something new to catch their fancy. Perhaps that’s why there’s a number of people I know through the more traditional forms of fandom getting themselves into things like steampunk.

My loc…guilty of sin am I. I kept reminding myself and Yvonne that we had to vote in the FAAn Awards. And we wanted to, we really did. I kept reminding ourselves to vote, and one day, I forgot to remind ourselves. And, we didn’t vote. Sorry, folks. I hope the results are what we all want. I can’t go to Corflu this year, so I hope to learn who won what. I should remind myself…

Eight-page zines get what they usually get, and that’s a short loc. Hate to say it, but it’s the same way here. Off this goes to you, and again, way to go on the TAFF race, and please do say hello to Helsinki for us. Hugs to Valerie, and see you the next Purcellzine.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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April 16th, 2017
07:18 pm

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Loc on OASFiS Event Horizon 352 (Juan Sanmiguel, ed.)
Dear OASFiSians:

Thanks kindly for Event Horizon 352. This will probably be a fast letter, seeing as the three-day Easter weekend is drawing to a close. Let’s see what I can do…

Hugos…still pleased that Steve Stiles won the Hugo for Best Fan Artist. He’s been drawing in fanzines and comics for decades, and he was one of the few names I recognized on the ballot. I guess we will see the next Hugo ballot soon, but I expect not to know anyone on it. Time marches on, and I simply have not been able to keep up with all the changes going on.

My letter…only recently have downloads been available for reading for the Best Novel Aurora. I rarely have the time to read to vote, so I usually only vote in the Fan Aurora categories. My love of reading is fading somewhat, and I find more and more I need things to do at conventions. I won’t just pay my way in, sit down, shut up and listen to the readings, there has to be more than that for me. I prefer to participate, and if I can’t, I just socialize.

Next weekend is the first of the big conventions this season in the Toronto area, CostumeCon 35, in the next-door city of Mississauga. It’s a five-day convention, but the real convention is in the middle three days. It will also be three full days of the dealers room for us. Anyone from Orlando and area coming up, or did everyone spend their money at the Star Wars event?

Take care, all…see you next issue.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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April 14th, 2017
09:13 pm

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Loc on Spartacus 19 (Guy H. Lillian III, ed.)
Dear Guy:

Time for another of your zines, this time, Spartacus 19. I am having a busy Good Friday with catching up with correspondence, and just finished up a loc to Chris Garcia’s Claims Department 19, mostly comics.

I had to tell Chris I am not a comics fan at all, and I was never a collector, so while I recognize Swamp Thing here, I have never read any of the comics. It’s tough to get to know anything like this when it was impossible for me to buy any of them, as a kid, and never any time after that.

Nonetheless, my commiserations on the passing of Berni Wrightson and Robert Neagle. We are definitely of the age where we may lose our friends…or be the friend that others lose. As you may have seen elsewhere, we’re dealing with our own loss…Yvonne’s mother Gabrielle passed away a few weeks ago now. Gabrielle Robert-Klein was a pillar of the French-Canadian community in Toronto, and died at the age of 94. The funeral is yet to come, and that will bring together a lot of French-Canadian relatives. Yvonne is looking after their accommodations with a local hotel, plus a nearby restaurant might get a lot of sudden business.

DT45…ugh. He is quickly pushing the world to the edge of thermo-nuclear war with Russia, China and North Korea, which is playing right into Putin’s hands. I suspect he is tired of looking like the bad guy, so with DT45 being a complete idiot, let’s make Trump look bad so we can be the good guy for a change. If the US intelligence community is gathering enough dirt on DT45 to make his impeachment easy to do, I wish they’d hurry up. It looks like many in the cabinet may be involved as well, so I expect impeachment, plus charges of treason to go around. I hope you are due another election after this mess is cleaned up, and I hope someone with more than one working brain cell gets in.

As has Al Bouchard, I have seen Robert Reich’s videos. I hope some senior representatives can gather together a level of support that will protect them as they strive for impeachment. It’s not just America’s problem now, it is the world’s problem. For Christ’s sake, someone fix it NOW! The future of the world is in the hands of an incompetent.

I fully agree with Taral re Canadian politics. Some of our politicians are self-important blowhards, and others, Like Kevin O’Leary and Kellie Leitch, are truly dangerous in the DT45 mold. One is even trying to claw back that gem of Canadian life, universal health care. And they want to public to vote for that? They are dumber than they look. Soon, NAFTA will be renegotiated, and DT45 promises hardball with his closest trading partner, for what reason, I cannot fathom.

If this is an alternate timeline, could someone flick the switch to the main one? The one where we’re all a lot safer and happier, and nuclear weapons pose no threat? This one isn’t any fun anymore. May we find the strength and smarts to dispose of this dictator, and try to regain a little world-wide harmony. It shouldn’t be this difficult. Many thanks for this issue; may the next one be much happier.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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08:11 pm

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Loc on Claims Department 19 (Chris Garcia, ed.)
Dear Chris:

Wow, another Claims Department! I guess the twins have kept you away from most of your publications, but it is good to see it again, this time issue 19. As I have written before, I am no comics fan, but this won’t stop me from at least attempting a letter of comment.

When I was but a kindergartner, and I was somehow able to get my hands on a couple of coins, I bought comic books. What title did I buy? Dennis the Menace. Loved them! But like many things, I put them aside after many readings to have a look at other things. And, because I wasn’t looking at them any more, she said, my mother threw them out, saying she didn’t like comic books anyway. Such was my comic collector career.

APAs can be fun. Many people spread out their fanzine chops to APAs, but I did things in reverse, true to form. I started in APAs (TAPA (Toronto), APAplexy (Ottawa) and The Final Frontier (various, Toronto and I was the CM). In the paper-only era, CM usually stood for Central Mailer.

Freddie Blassie…you know him as a wrestler, and I know him as a long-time-ago contributor to the Doctor Demento Show. I guess there’s a chance for some to make their mark on more than one world. Yvonne remembers the days of wrestling from Maple Leaf Gardens, with big names like Whipper Billy Watson, Tiger Jeet Singh, Haystack Calhoun, Gorgeous George and Yvon Robert. She also remembers a tag team pair who dressed as hillbillies. Do you remember them?

I hate to say it, but I think I am done here. I wish there was more for me.  Perhaps the next one, and definitely, the upcoming Exhibition Hall. There were a number of other steampunk fanzines, but they are all gone, which might make Exhibition Hall the last one in fanzine format. I definitely look forward to the next one, and I’d be pleased to work with you on an upcoming issue. Keep me in mind, and see you later.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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04:55 pm

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Loc on The National Fantasy Fan Vol. 76 No. 3 (George Phillies, ed.)
Dear Neffers:

Hallo, all, and thank you for Vol. 76, No. 3 of The National Fantasy Fan. Good to see new names mobilizing the club for more events and more services. Show some love for these additions to your memberships, you lot! Now for more remarks…

Thanks to the Franking Bureau, I do get additional zines in my e-mail. Like I need more, to be honest, but I still like the fact that you send them out, and show your members just how important such publications are. Fanzine samplers sound great, and now to see if they work. I hope others will find them still a good way to communicate with fellow fans, or if it’s just retro fanac.

As far as I know, there are so many bids for future Worldcons from elsewhere in the world…Dublin, Helsinki (they got it!), Paris, New Zealand, more. It’s good to see more world in Worldcon, but for myself, that will mean that Worldcons will be quite impossible to afford. It was tough enough to get to US Worldcons, and I certainly couldn’t get to all of them, either. Should the rest of the world take on Worldcon more often than North America, I expect there will have to be some changes in Hugo voting, yet again, such as the voting only membership, and that’s when the real abuse, the ballot box stuffing, will take place. I hope I won’t be around to see that day, but I know it’s coming.

Are there any contacts for First Fandom as an organization? I was interested years ago in associate membership, but couldn’t find any contacts, and when I finally did, no one ever responded. I had to wonder if it still existed.

My best network is through all the various parts of fandom I have immersed myself into, or just simply dabbled in. It has served me well through the years, for I have tried my best to serve my network. The most valuable commodity in fandom is information and contacts, and I try to spread the word as much as I can. I have introduced friends to each other, and made my connections more intricate.

Been for a walk, to get some fresh air, but having a look at this loc…this is all I got, for the moment, anyway. So, off into the e-mail æther it goes. Thank for this issue, and as always, looking forward to the next. See you then.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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April 6th, 2017
06:58 pm

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Loc on Lightning Round Vol. 3 No. 8 (Al Bouchard, ed.)
Dear Al:

It’s very soon! Quite unlike me, really, but I am locking your newest zine, only a few days old at most, Lightning Round Vol. 3, No. 8. Time for some commentary from the cheap seats…

Ah, DT45 is as slick as WD40, but much, much worse for you. Satire has lost its punch on DT45 because you can’t go much further over the top than he and his cronies have. His daughter has an office in the White House? Why? A place to conduct her own business? If DT45 has broken many laws, especially conflict-of-interest laws, why hasn’t he been hauled off to jail? Being the president should not make him immune from those laws.

Comics movies? Nope, not for me. I’ve seen none of them because I’ve never been a comics fan, and neither has Yvonne. Besides, $13 a ticket is a bit much these days. The last movie we saw was Fantastic Beasts, especially for Yvonne the Harry Potter fan.

Thank you for mentioning Isaac Asimov. I met Dr. A. twice, one in NYC and again in Philadelphia. I am sure there are some fans who have no idea who he is or was. By coincidence, I saw on Facebook that today, April 6, is the 25th anniversary of his death.

My loc…with one exception, all the mentioned irons in the fire have brown cold. So, I am forced to stay with the evening work. Yvonne likens Betsy DeVos to Dolores Umbridge, the Voldemort-backed headmaster of Hogwarts in one of the later books/movies. (How many are seeing the parallels between the story of Hogwarts, and the current US administration?)

Worst of all…the Koch Brothers are setting up an organization to completely rewrite the US Constitution to suit their own nefarious purposes. Time to rise up, America, or you really will be the sheeple they think you are.

What a happy note to end this with, hm? Anyway, thank you for this issue, and I hope there will be happier things to discuss in the next.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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05:12 pm

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Loc on Beam 11 (Nic Farey, ed.)
Dear Nic:

Thank you, kind sir, for Beam 11! Yes, I am loccing it already, I have ploughed my way through so many zines lately locwise, so I can start responding in a timely fashion. As long as I keep up, I guess…like that’s going to happen… (Nic, I will also send this to Jim…I am sure he’ll be up to snuff with issue 12.)

The passing of Peter Weston and Dave Holmes…we are of the age, I guess, where we are going to lose our friends. We will continue to lose the good ‘uns, and the rest of us, too, for as long as it takes. As long as there is someone left to honour those past, they will not be forgotten. In every month’s Ansible, Dave Langford must be truly tired of the huge RIP list he puts in each issue. Some months, the list is enormous. More absent friends, all the time.

Don D’ammassa’s Practical Joke War got some laughs out of me, mostly because my two brothers and I tried that same kind of thing, a few jokes here and there, and it got us spanked until we couldn’t walk properly. The idea of a chunk of pure sodium in a water-soluble gel, and then flushed…this idea will rise again, I have no doubt. If I hear at a con a hotel’s septic system exploding, I’d have no choice but to suspect Don, or anyone else who’s read this article. No, no! It wasn’t me…

Ah, to be considered artwork… I have heard of other mass gatherings of the naked as artwork, but it’s not something I’d do, blue paint or not. I guess hundreds, if not thousands, of wobbly bits here and there would not be out of place in this, and could (maybe) be easily ignored. I admit that one thought I had was thousands of white hats to set the Guinness record for biggest collection of Smurfs…

Many years ago, we visited with a dear friend of ours in the southern reaches of Ontario, and we spent a weekend on the farm. We rounded up loose horses, generally relaxed, and in the mornings, Yvonne would go to the henhouse to gather eggs for breakfast. She would be chased by Irving, a tough old rooster who was just doing his roosterly duties in protecting the hens and their eggs, and perhaps doing them a little too well. We’d laugh about it, and go home. Another weekend on the farm came about the next year, and we went down for another relaxing weekend, but Yvonne’s gathering the eggs was a little easier this time around, for Irving was not there and presumably derelict. Dinner on Saturday night was, as you might be expecting, chicken. Yvonne was told she would especially enjoy dinner that night…we were dining on Irving. All I can say is, as said above, a tough old rooster.

Aha! Egoboo is again mine! My thanks to Jacq and JoHn for their review of Tightbeam 275. I will happily take the description of ‘thankfully ubiquitous’, mostly because it sounds much better than ‘Oh, Ghod, not HIM again?!’ Come on into the Tightbeam locol, Jacq, the water’s fine! Your own contributions might get other fannes into contributing, too. You never know… Speaking of which, Jacq and Alan White (I got to wish him Happy Brithday on LinkedIn, of all e-places…), great article on Anna Raftery’s visit to Vegas. What I wouldn’t give to join you all again there some fine day.

An, Peter Weston has been the subject of more than a few zine articles, lately…I wish he was still with us, he’d be so chuffed. The key words I see in Martin Tudor’s article…fun, charm, successful, innovative, generous, largesse, driving, persevered, rejuvenating, giving. Seems to sum up Peter Weston, and I never met him.

Points of divergence…you’ve got an even chance to making the right decisions at the right time. Sometimes, I feel that I made some poor decisions in my life, and didn’t handle my PoDs quite right. I could just sign myself off as a screw-up, and some might easily agree. My worklife is honestly a shambles, and I question most things I’ve done, except for one very vital PoD…I met Yvonne. We will mark our 34th anniversary next month, and if I have done anything right with my life, it is meeting and marrying Yvonne Robert, and I happily state that for all to read.

And now for the locol, home away from home…I am reading my own loc, and I think I must have been overly tired when I wrote it. I now do have a little work, but it is horrific telephone solicitation, and not worthy of further mention, except that it does pull in a paycheque, and allows me to look for something better. There are irons in the fire, and hopes are still high. (Had a great telephone interview this afternoon, so good thoughts, good thoughts…)

It’s getting close to dinner time, and Yvonne’s quite busy getting a new blouse ready, so I will look after dinner myself. Time to fold it up, and start thinking of other things. Thank you for a nice-sized, unreduced Beam, and I hope you do it again the next time. Jim, get well soon, and see you both.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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02:42 pm

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Loc on Purrsonal Mewsings 57 (R-Laurraine Tutihasi, ed.)
Dear Laurraine:

Thank you for the newest Purrsonal Mewsings, issue 57. I am typing this up in perhaps the strangest of places…with my tablet and Bluetooth keyboard, I am sitting in the waiting room of a garage, getting our car’s windshield replaced. While they pop the old windshield out, here come some comments on the issue at hand.

We did not see A Dog’s Purpose, but I gather it lost a lot at the box office because there was a report of animal cruelty in one of the scenes, and that report went viral across the Web. The report was later disproved, and the report came from a single bad opinion of what was seen, but the damage was done, and I think the movie is probably now in the second- or third-run theatres.

I had never heard of javalinas before. Is there any way to keep these marauding little piggies from invading your property? They sound quite destructive. I am sure local pest control has some recommendations to keep them away.

This Jim Butcher steampunk series sounds better and better. I admit to not having read much SF over the past few years, but this series might be a good way to get back into things. I should look up some reviews on the series, and see what’s said about it.

A little bit more on our steampunk festival hotel in Lincoln, UK… The Castle Hotel wasn’t the most luxurious, and it wasn’t staffed at night (a swipe card got us in each evening), but it was extremely comfortable. Their dining room had what was called a  curated menu. Special foods here and there, and interesting ways of serving them, but for breakfast each morning, we enjoyed three farmed duck eggs. They are bigger than hen eggs, and richer. They got us through the day each day, and only once did we pause for a little lunch. So back home, when they are available, we treat ourselves by buying a dozen duck eggs. It’s hard to believe that our trip was almost seven months ago.

All done for the moment, and the new windshield is just now going into place. There’s no web access here, so this loc will go out to you when we get home. Many thnks for this issue, and I hope it gets to you before the next issue comes out. See you then.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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April 5th, 2017
12:49 pm

[Link]

Loc on Banana Wings 65 (Claire Brialey and Mark Plummer, eds.)
Dear Claire and Mark:

Another Banana Wings issue has made it, and finally, I can get to it in plenty of time. Comments galore follow!, I can just feel it… (65…the retirement issue?)

As I write, Yvonne and I have yet to vote in the FAAn Awards. I know I should get with it, but I have to admit, there’s not much incentive these days. As always, I still feel like I am on the outside looking in. Not anyone’s fault, not blaming anyone, that just how I feel. I do feel a little isolated. I don’t recall Murray Moore sending out any short lists, but then I am not on any fannish discussion lists, like Trufen or InTheBar. Maybe some of that isolation is my own fault.

Yvonne and I made a fannish career out of volunteering to help with local events and conventions. We were on concoms for 30 years. We still volunteer to help out here and there, but we get a variety of responses now…this year’s rotational CostumeCon is in neighbouring Mississauga this year, and we have made them their area map of restaurants and services, plus Yvonne will be doing a variety of panels on sewing, and we both will be looking after our steampunk jewelry/costume table, a busy weekend. However, a new Harry Potter event down the highway from us went ballistic when we asked a few general questions about their incorporation. They didn’t like asking questions via e-mail, for it kept them from working on their convention, especially the sales tables. I think they felt a little threatened. I figure we’ve done our bit for local and regional fandom here, but when we announced our retirement, we got some abuse for that, too. Maybe it was all meant to be a way to make sure we didn’t come back.

We replaced our volunteerism with filthy hucksterism. The afore-mentioned steampunk jewelry/ costume business is still going, and Yvonne is supplementing what we have with her patented Hawaiian-style shirts. It is still fun after doing it for about five years now, but sometimes we muse about shutting it down. But there is still plenty to learn business-wise. We find we do better at craft shows and flea markets than at SF conventions, strange but true.

CUFF…I have been looking for it, and asking about it, but it seems the last person who had anything to do with it was a Paul Carreau. I will ask further, but it must suspect that someone has absconded with the remaining money. TAFFwise, we both voted for John Purcell as well.

Maybe something that’s needed to add to the locol, and loc-writing primer, to tell newer people what you’d like to see in a loc. Let some new folks give it a try to revitalize the locol. I know of some zines where I seem to be the only correspondent.

I daresay that Peter Weston’s outlook on fandom was fairly sunny from the beginning, and he was treated well in those early days. That probably set the example for those who followed him in his later days. Maybe he was the only fan who could have written a fannish autobiography. Anyone else would probably be decried for having an outsized ego.

(I checked my shelves for Octavia Butler books…I thought I had more than just Mind of My Mind in paperback. Oh, well, should the interest strengthen again, I should get my hands on a few more.)

The locol…Anne Gray, I always enjoyed ConFusion, the few years we got to go. We attended in 1983, 1985, 1987 and 1999, and I wish there’d been more. We never really met other fans there, but there was the usual group of Canadian fans in attendance. Now, US cons are largely too expensive for us, with the exception of a steampunk convention in Michigan in July, which we paid for well in advance. We will definitely do our research, and make sure we have everything we need to get across the border, like a convention flyer, and a copy of our hotel reservation. The real prospect of physical and verbal abuse by US Customs agents is very much a concern, but we will tackle it when we get there.

Yes, Philip Turner, having recently watched the entire regular run of Time Team (see my loc), with all its specials, I certainly know what a vicus is. The idea of a vicus of other fandoms around Fandom as a Whole sounds about right. We are slowly moving from the central area, and into the vicus.

The Hugo ballot is just out, and I know so few names on it. Good luck to Chris Garcia and James Bacon on getting yet another silver rocket.

Robert Lichtman…I don’t feel obligated to respond to every fanzine either, but I certainly like doing it, and it does keep me busy and a part of things, IMHO. A few new zines have popped up, but I can’t do it all, as much as I might like to. Tossing the Best Letterhack FAAn Awards back and forth between us was great fun while it lasted.

Ah, it is great to see mentions of Mike Glicksohn here and there, plus Terry Jeeves and his fanzine Erg. Banana Wings strikes fear into the hearts of letterhacks? Well, not so much here, and I am in the middle of page 2 of this letter. Murray Moore mentions Torcon 4…Murray, I thought that 3 was enough to ensure there’d be no 4.

When I was a kid, my Scottish grandparents would send our family a regular parcel of newspapers local to the town of Ayr. We’d get The People’s Friend, the Ayrshire Daily News, and the odd other paper, and I’d get the Dandy and the Beano, and later on, I got the Hotspur and the Wizard. Do any of those publications exist anymore, especially the comics? (When Yvonne and I were in London this past August, in one of our tours, we spotted the D.C. Thomson building on Fleet Street, and so many memories came back to me. And as for the comics…I suspect only the Beano is still around.)

I believe I am done here. Spring seems to be tentatively here, and the heavy coats are put away for another year. After whining about no work for 16 months, I finally do have something, but it is the largely horrific telephone solicitation scam I am involved with. It is bringing in a much-needed paycheque, such as it is, and allows for the continuing search for something better. I guess I’d better get a job so I can have something to retire from. Yvonne’s retirement is immanent, and she can hardly wait.

Time to go…many thanks for this zine, and I am just shy of two full pages, which means it certainly allowed me to catch a ton of comment hooks. Many thanks, and we will see you with the next creation.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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April 4th, 2017
12:55 pm

[Link]

Loc on Ethel the Aardvark 185 (Edward McArdle, ed.)
Dear MSFCers:

You’ve all been good enough to send me yet another Ethel, no. 185. I hope there will be plans for the big no. 200! But, that’s some time away. Now for the issue at hand.

I very much enjoy conventions, whether they are the regular annuals, the one-shots or the specialty cons. A good variety of such events makes for a busy social season, which can last the whole year if you’re lucky. Here, it is often seasonal, as long as the season isn’t winter. I wish there were events like the one on Sydney Road. We have our own little steampunk business (you can find Penney’s Steampunk General Store on Facebook), so we are always looking for opportunities to vend at conventions and craft shows. We do better at the craft shows than we do at the conventions, with two exceptions, and those two exceptions are coming up shortly, to our relief.

Happy 40th to Austrek! Canada has never had a national club like Austrek, but I have belonged to at least two Trek clubs. We’ve known about Austrek for most of its history because for 15 years each, Yvonne and I belonged to the Star Trek Welcommittee. Yvonne took care of any letters written to the STW from French-speaking countries, and I compiled the regular book list. The STW regularly put out a Directory, and my booklist gradually dominated the Directory, until the time when the STW shut itself down, knowing it couldn’t compete with the relatively new Internet when it came to disseminating contact information to the world’s Trek fans. So many Trek novels, indeed…I stopped compiling that list when the STW shut down, and it’s just as well. How many novels now? 500 to 600? More? I can only imagine how big that list would be, and I am glad not to be doing that kind of research now.

I think I may be done now. Not much of a letter, but it is what I can do at the moment. Thank you for issue 185, and I will keep an eye out for 186, and we will see you then.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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April 3rd, 2017
01:27 pm

[Link]

Loc on Ansible 356 & 357 (Dave Langford, ed.)
Dear Dave:

Two more issues of Ansible, 356 and 357, have arrived, but only one letter of comment. It may be a little unequal, but it is what I can do at this time, and so, I am doing it. Here goes.

356…Good for you on upcoming awards and new publications. Is the SF industry in the UK that connected with local fandom? Here, it feels very much like two solitudes. With a few exceptions, and this may only be my own experience, fans and pros are quite separate. The fans who are close to the pros, or are wannabe pros themselves, stage the litcons, and anyone else is let in to sitdown shut up, and be an appreciative and buying audience. I guess I prefer events where there are things to do, and fewer conventions have those participatory events.

Once again, John Naylor is staging The Asylum Steampunk Festival in Lincoln coming up this August, the 25th to the 28th. I wish we could go again to see even more. Tickets are available as I write, and I checked with the website asylumsteampunk.co.uk.

It’s great to see William Ledbetter on the Nebula list…some years ago, Yvonne and I attended a space conference in the Dallas, Texas area, and we met Bill there. He was a local fan and space advocate, but had considered launching his writing career. He’s done more than launch it, he’s probably surpassed any expectations he ever had.

Fangoria’s had circulation problems since its inception, I think since Kerry O’Quinn started it up in Texas. I am no horror fan, but I think much of the appeal of a horror magazine has been picked up by Rue Morgue magazine, which is published here in Toronto. (They have my resume…)

357…The Scalzi/Beale affair is entertaining to a small degree, if only to see how pathetic an attempt an attempt was made in the name of envious plagiarism. Parody? I don’t think so. If the Beale book had been released some time after the Scalzi book, maybe. But released at the same time? No way. The antics of the Puppies certainly pushed me away from Worldcon, and I expect it will continue until they are just gone, or they give up.

Good on Jacq Monahan on her TAFF trip report. I remember when we did our CUFF trip report a long time ago, we submitted copies to all groups who were offering bounties on trip reports, and we got it all, which truly revived the CUFF treasury. Not long after, it was announced by at least some of the bounties had conditions, that the report must come from a major fan fund, like TAFF or DUFF. We’d done our bit, but these conditions made sure that CUFF was to remain but a poor cousin to the bigger funds.

Done for now, I think, and getting close to the full page. I must toddle off to my horrible evening telemarketing job shortly. Take care, and see if with more issues.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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March 31st, 2017
03:44 pm

[Link]

Loc on OSFS Statement 456 (Grant Duff, ed.)
Dear OSFen:

Another Statement, and thank you. Portrait design this time, I see, always did look good, and I still remember the goldenrod covers. Issue 456 this time, and here come some comments.

If science can resurrect the wooly mammoth, what will science do with it? Study it for scientific knowledge, I guess, which is fine, but how do you support the mammoth? What does it eat? Could it integrate into an elephant herd at a park? I see it will be born to an Asian elephant, but do we know enough about the genetics of this crossbred elephant? I hope someone has thought of all these questions, once the mammoth is unextincted. As the article says, it is good for science, but takes away from projects that are much more useful.

I need to take the time to get the convention list out to you, and Cathy Palmer-Lister in Montréal. I hope the membership is finding it of use. I know of some who will never attend any of these conventions, but are at least aware that there’s lots happening out there, and they are pleased with just that knowledge.

My loc…I have found a little work, but it is evening telephone solicitation. Okay, it’s telemarketing. I hate it, but I am relatively good at it. It is bringing in a paycheque, which is something I wasn’t able to do in 16 months. Now for the next step up to a regular 9-5 job, which doesn’t sound so bad if you haven’t had one in so long.

We do have a table at the upcoming CostumeCon 35, and just a short time ago, we were finally able to secure a table at Anime North. We won’t be in the Crafters’ Corner this year, but in the Pro Plaza, nearby. We hope to see you there!

So…crap work, but it is work, April is around the corner, and CostumeCon will be here in about four weeks. Such is life right now, but I am working to make it better. Take care all, have a great weekend.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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02:50 pm

[Link]

Loc on BCSFAzine 520 (Felicity Walker, ed.)
Dear BCSFen:

Issue 520 of BCSFAzine is here in paper and electronic forms, and thank you for sending both. Remember, if the finances are strained, I will be happy with just the electronic version. It means less need for storing lots of paper zines (as much as I prefer them) in Bankers’ Boxes. And now, here’s a loc.

I definitely agree with Dave Haren on Mike Jittlov’s green wizard, both the original short film and the later movie. Many years ago, Yvonne made a green wizard costume for a friend from Buffalo, and made it in time for a local convention with Jittlov as one of the GoHs. Mike saw the costume, and deemed it perfect, except for some wire in the front hem of the hood to give it a pointed peak on the forehead. A straightened paperclip did the trick, and our friend modeled it for Mike. Not sure his feet were on the ground at the time…

If we live in a simulation (and sometimes, you can almost see the wiring ala holodeck), who gets the feeling it’s coming to a logical, or perhaps illogical end? Will we see GAME OVER flashing in the heavens one day? Do we live in a multiverse, or infinite layers of reality? Will our civilization live long enough to care?

Clinton worse than Trump? Nope, I don’t buy that story either. (Saw a great bumper sticker on  Facebook… Elect A Clown, Expect A Circus.) I think Hillary would have had much more progressive policies, with husband Bill to guide her, and I think Bernie Sanders would have helped a lot, too. I am amazed that Trump’s getting away with so much crap, and so many broken laws, and no one is calling him on them, unless organizations like the CIA, FBI, etc., and working together to present a fool-proof case for impeachment. The Democrats better get their hands on a top-notch candidate in four years, and in two years, there are Congressional elections. Even Republican voters are shocked by the utter lies and destructive policies of Trump and his cronies, so I suspect a Democrat Congress will try to turn things around, and stop this idiocy. In the meantime, some voters say they admit Trump is a liar and a fool, but they also say they will vote for him next election. My head hurts…

John Purcell is getting ready for a fannish/steampunk tour of Europe for his TAFF trip, should he win it… He probably already knows about The Asylum, the big steampunk event in England Yvonne and I were at last year, but he probably already knows that all attendance and special event tickets were snapped up within minutes, in some cases. It is great fun, and maybe one year, we’ll go again.

My loc…we moved our hotel craft show table to its May event. Our next conventions where we are vending are CostumeCon 35 in Mississauga April 20-24, and Anime North in Toronto May 26-28. Two big conventions, and we could use the sales. We wish all VCon attendees a good time, and please, volunteer lots to make your relaxicon as much fun as a full con.

We plan to go to Michigan in July for a steampunk convention, Motor City Steam Con, and we do not expect any problems at the border, as long as we are prepared properly. The tablets will stay at home, and we will have a folder with important documents. Flyers for the event will be with us, as will copies of our hotel reservation, and of course, our brand new passports, all of which can be made readily available to any US customs guard. We plan to be ready to make our weekend as hassle-free as possible.

Thank you for this issue, and seeing it’s Friday, have a great weekend! Keep ‘em coming.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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March 30th, 2017
02:05 pm

[Link]

Loc on Trap Door 33 (Robert Lichtman, ed.)
Dear Robert:

It’s always a pleasure to get my hands on the latest Trap Door, so thank you for another one sooner, issue 33. Yes, I’ve had it a bit of time now, but I have been studying it, and I think I have my commentary ready.

I know that Boyd Raeburn lived for some time in Toronto, and I heard his name sometimes from local fanhistorians like Taral, but I never did meet him. Some generations of fandom are not destined to meet, I guess.

It’s good to see that modern medicine keeps you and Carol going, and long may it continue to do so. We’ve had our own brush with death…Yvonne’s mother Gabrielle died about a week ago as I write, and she was aged 94 years. My own father has been forced to move into a nursing home somewhere in rural Nova Scotia, so I may have another unhappy report soon. He’s now our last remaining parent. For ourselves, I would like to think that by taking various vitamin and mineral supplements to go with our prescriptions, we've lengthened our own lives by a few years. I sure hope so.

Just before starting this loc, I locked Chunga 25, with Andy Hooper’s biographical researches into the attending members of the 1939 Worldcon. This article in your zine is more of the same, and by “the same”, I mean extremely fin and thorough research and exploration of that event. These articles prove to me that once again, there is always something new to learn. More, please! I wonder of these articles are the genesis of another research book into our early days.

John Baxter might like the fact that while little BBC content is available to me, I watch what BBC content I can on other channels. BBC Earth is on free preview right now, and when other channels disappoint, as they often do, BBC Earth is turned on. I listen to Radio 2 or the World Service when I can. I wanted to get into broadcasting, but did that through journalism, which was a big mistake of mine. The broadcasting door in Canada is firmly shut to me. I do occasional voicework as a result.

Some things in fandom don’t change at all. This goes back to Boyd Raeburn…I have never seen a copy of A Bas either, and I know it’s not on eFanzines. Splits in fandom? Say it isn’t so! See the first sentence in the paragraph again…

Being on the other side of the Atlantic, we don’t see much of the Queen outside of stamps and money, but when we do see her, and many of her relatives, we tend to make a fuss about her. I think more of us realize that she’s the only sovereign we’ve ever known, and has marked 60 years on the throne. She said she’d devote her life to the service of her subjects, and she certainly has, GStQ. Roy, I know your pain when it comes to last names. So many people think it’s funny, but it truly isn’t, especially after the first hundred times.

The locol…Yvonne is getting ready to retire. She wants no fanfare, no lunches or dinners, no recognition, nothing fancy. She simply wants to leave where she’s working, and one day not come back. I have the same attitude. In two places I worked, I just said goodbye on my last day to a few people. Some didn’t know I was gone until a couple of weeks afterwards. Shows how much of an impression I didn’t make.

I have always felt like the youngest of the old crowd, especially when I attended big fannish events, like a Worldcon, or the few fanzines cons I’ve been to. Now, with newer interests, like steampunk, I feel like the old man in the room. My slowly shifting hairline dissuades no one from that attitude. I have never found my peers in terms of interest and age.

I have found a little bit of work to help supplement what little I have left, but it is telephone solicitation, and I hate it. I may hate it, but I am good at it. So I will continue with it until I can get someone to say those wonderful words, “You’re hired.” I haven’t heard that in so long. Either that, or win a local lottery so I may never darken an office’s door again.

Thank you for this issue, it gave me my commenting muscles a good workout. I look forward to some more…I hope your schedule of future issues is more than annual. Whenever it comes out, we will see you then.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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March 29th, 2017
12:25 pm

[Link]

Loc on Chunga 25 (Andy Hooper, Randy Byers and carl juarez, eds.)
Dear Randy, Andy and carl:

That big slab o’ zine, of which you three do the voodoo you do so well, has arrived again, and my thanks for your good works. Chunga 25 is here in a hefty paper format, easily recognized as Fandom’s premiere hokumzine, and I could not do less than to try to put together a decent letter of comment in return.

In doing my TAFF_voting duty, I wondered about the other candidates I wasn’t familiar with. It’s good to see we’re accepting candidates from other areas of fandom, like Trek fandom, because, I gotta be honest, that where I can from, too. Yvonne and I were past members of Shirley Maiewski’s Star Trek Welcommittee. And, good to see an article from Sarah Gulde. Fandom is not only more faceted than we imagine, but more faceted than we can imagine.

Andy, your biographical directory of the ’39 Worldcon is a masterful piece of research work. Each entry is the right size for inbforming without taxing the researcher, pearls of information for each attendee, short and sweet, no matter their importance. I hope this project can continue as more of SF’s and fandom’s names are added. This could be a sizable reference…any other project in mind to include what you’ve done so far?

In a past era, conlangs/auxlangs would include Esperanto and Volapük. Today, it is LotR Elfish (indeed, anything by Tolkien), and of course, Trek’s Klingon. Their pop culture beginnings make them more popular than their predecessors, I suspect.

The article on communication with D. West shows me how underappreciated fan artists have been , and are, especially those who have been studemts of the art masters. I had admired Don’s homages to some of the world’s best artists, and some of its most admired artists, like Escher, and the wonderful works are created and provided, all for the limited audience of a fanzine. My, we have been spoiled.

Yvonne and I have been on Worldcon committees before. In some cases, there is mass appreciation for the work that you do, no matter how small your workload may be, but in other cases, as you might imagine, the long knives come out, and often stay out. I’ve run a couple of fanzine lounges (Winnipeg and Montréal), to the delight or dismay of many. I have no regrets at all; I have done my best to fulfil the responsibilities I take on. It’s a great experience to work on such an event, but I suspect that my experience with the last Worldcon committee I was on, Torcon 3, was so negative, it put me on the eventual path of not attending Worldcons at all. The last Worldcon we attended was Reno. We had ourselves such a good time, but our time and responsibilities there didn’t allow us to actually see any of Reno itself. We rectified that by going to London to see the city, two years after Loncon.

In the locol…the Paramount/Axanar settlement means an end to all ST-related fan productions? Truly a shame. I figure you learn by doing, so creating television will, I hope, lead to a career in same for those who produced the productions, about half-a-dozen of them from what I remember. I also believe there are at least three full Trek sets in warehouses across the US, so those amazing creations may go to waste now. From the initial reviews of the preps for Star Trek: Discovery, those fan creations would be much better received, I’d wager. I have seen pictures of the stars gathering in Toronto for initial rehearsal and fittings, and a breakfast or two together.

My loc…I can now update my loc with the fact that the N3F zine, Tightbeam, has been taken over, revived and actively edited by Bob Jennings, bless his heart. For me, the best thing about steampunk costuming, and I think John Purcell, will agree with me, is while there iconic themes within it, there are no iconic characters, so whatever costume design you come up with, no one could say it didn’t look right or accurate. Your design is original, and perfectly fine as is.

Just a last comment on going to England…someone mentioned scrumpy. When we were there, during dinner near Victoria station, and at the Assembly Hall in Lincoln during the steampunk events, we enjoyed Bulmer’s Ciders, in all its varied flavours. And, we are both relative non-drinkers, too. A delicious treat most nights.

I agree with John Purcell on those fershlugginer zines. They are all communications, mostly personal, and some historical, but I enjoy them all. I wouldn’t be writing all these locs, all these years, to help fill out the zines if I didn’t. I believe I have been in the locol now about 36 years.

I will have an early day today…do a little banking, get my hair cut, and get to my evening job. Finally, after 16 months of looking, I had to take a telemarking job. Yuck! That, plus the odd bit of trade show registration work I do, plus the voicework, gives me my first real paycheque in over 16 months. Ya gotta do what ya gotta do, and I am doing it.

Life is a little sad around here…Yvonne’s mother Gabrielle died about a week ago at the age of 94. She was a pillar of the French-Canadian community in Toronto, and Yvonne and her sisters have been running around and planning a suitable funeral and remembrance. When it is my time, I would hope someone might do that in my memory. The will will be read and explained at a later date, and there may be some fireworks over that, but we shall see what happens.

It is nearly time to go, so I will wrap it up, and grab some lunch. Thanks to all of you, and it’s never too soon to think about the next one. I know I am. See you with that next one.

                                                                                               Yours, Lloyd Penney.

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