January 17th, 2017

G-men

Playoffs, Round Two

So this past weekend was the divisional round of the NFL playoffs.

And, yes, being a football fan I watched them all, even though my Giants were eliminated last week (and the Jets never got within shouting distance).

There was good news and bad news for the people of Houston. The bad news was, Evil Little Bill and his Patriots dismissed the Texans rather soundly. (Not unexpected, sad to say. Not when you have Osweiler going up against Brady). The good news was, the Cowboys lost, thereby eliminating any chance of a Cowboys/ Patriots Superbowl, so right-minded fans no longer need to root for a giant asteroid to strike Houston. Now we can simply root for whoever is playing New England.

With neither of my teams involved, I had a lot less invested in this weekend's contests. The Saturday games were both pretty one-sided, so much so that I found myself multi-tasking and doing other stuff while watching. The Sunday games were better... especially the epic struggle between the Packers and the Cowboys. That one looked like a blowout too when the Pack went up 21-3, but somehow Dallas fought back, and tied the game at 28 and then again at 31. Looked like overtime, but they made the mistake of leaving thirty seconds for Aaron Rodgers. His sideline pass to set up the winning field goal was the thing of beauty, a throw and catch to rival Eli's superbowl tosses to Tyree and Manningham. And afterwards, in the wake of the Cowboy defeat, America got to see Jerry Jones making his I-am-sucking-on-sour-lemons face, last seen in 2007 when it was the Giants who sent the Boys home.

The Kansas City/ Pittsburgh game also came down to the last second, yet somehow was not nearly as exciting. The Steelers won without scoring a touchdown. That's not going to cut it next week against the Patriots and Evil Little Bill.

So... Pittsburgh at New England, Green Bay at Atlanta.

Should be fun.
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Hugo

Hugo Time

It's that time again. Another year has ended, another worldcon is on the horizon (The Finnish Convention, this August, in Helsinki), and nominations are once again open for the Hugo Awards for the best science fiction and fantasy of 2016.

To nominate, you need to be a member of at least one of these three worldcons:
-- MidAmericon II, last year's Kansas City worldcon,
-- the current year's worldcon, in Helsinki,
-- the 2018 worldcon, ConJose II, in San Jose, California.

Unless you've got a time machine, it's too late to join MidAmericon II, but signing up for Helsinki and San Jose is easy enough... and the sooner you do it, the less you'll be spending, since the cost of membership rises as we get nearer to the con. You do NOT have to attend to be able to nominate. Supporting Memberships are also available, at a much lower rate.

To join the Helsinki con, go to:
http://www.worldcon.fi/

To join for San Jose, the address is:
http://www.worldcon76.org/

Join one, join the other, join both. Come if you can, but nominate even if you can't.

Once you've signed up, you will be sent your own personalized link to the nominations page, which will allow you to nominate the books, stories, movies, television shows, artists, fans, and editors whose work most wowed you this past year.

The Hugo Awards were first given in 1953, and remain our field's most prestigious, important, and meaningful awards. The list of Hugo winners is a Who's Who in science fiction and fantasy, and you can have a voice in determining which names are added to that distinguished roster besides those of Alfred Bester, Robert A. Heinlein, Isaac Asimov, Roger Zelazny, Ursula K. Le Guin, Jack Vance, Connie Willis, Samuel R. Delany, N.K. Jemisin, James Tiptree Jr, Harlan Ellison, Robert Silverberg, Gardner Dozois, Lois McMaster Bujold, Orson Scott Card, Poul Anderson, Frank Herbert, Anne Leckie, Anne McCaffery, and so many many more.

And yes, come to worldcon if you can. The best place to meet and hang with your favorite writers. Including me...