To say that I had a very good time last night in Oakland is an accurate way of putting it.
A few people who normally meet on Making Light did so in the flesh at the Pacific Coast Brewing Company. Lisa Goldstein and Tim Walters couldn't make it, alas, but Xeger, who was on her way back to Toronto, was able to stop by the Bay. She was soon followed by Doug Faunt. It was rather awesome to listen to the two of them as they spoke of their respective involvement in the birth of the internet. David Goldfarb, Lenny Bailes and Kathryn from Sunnyvale appeared, and we had dinner. A bit after we were done, Lizzy L joined us. By then, we had already gotten our bill and somehow everyone had contributed so much that I didn't have to pay for my own share. I didn't wish to be a freeloader, but I also didn't want to make people again go thru figuring out exactly how much they should pay, so I grabbed Lizzy's addition(1) and took care of that.
The conversation throughout the evening ranged from the already mentionned birth of the internet to a certain enfant terrible of science-fiction who's now physically a bit too old to be an enfant. Lizzy initiated a toast to those present and to the New Year, and we added our new President, which led to a discussion of what to do with obsolete electronics. (Did you know that Kathryn and her significant other have enough 'stuff' in their home to restart Civilization when the Robot Apocalypse happens?) We talked about how googling has affected our choices of blogging IDs, and abou the criteria for keeping a book instead of finding a new home for it. We also talked about Ray Bradbury, who looked in poor health when TCM recently had him as a guest programmer. That's when I found out that everybody present either liked or loved Leigh Brackett.
Yes, we had a good time.
(*) that's the French word for a restaurant bill.