Balticon 14

(Don - 12th)

1980: April 4-6

Hunt Valley Inn, Timonium, MD

GOH: Algis Budrys
Art GOH: Sean Spacher

Balticon 14 was an important Balticon in many ways. It was the first with an honest-to-ghod masquerade; it was also the first with a weapons policy ("Unsheathed swords, knives, axs and similar items are subject to confiscation for the duration of the con. If you're caught twice, we will refund your membership and send you on your way.") This year, Clam Chowder was a featured item on Friday and Saturday nights -- and they had moved out of the "esculator" lobby and into the King's Pleasure Room.

Balticon 14 was also the first with a video room, where Don spent many happy hours revisiting old friends from the past: Silent Running, Earth II and Monty Python and the Holy Grail are among the videos marked in his program.

Sadly, this was the last Balticon for two fine fannish traditions: the Amateur Film Festival and the Easter 10:17-1/2 AM Wakeup Party.

Some overheard snatches of conversation impressed Don. The following exchange, in particular, was amusing:

"Aha! Are you a Tenth Century Frank?"
"Close enough. I have a persona in Tenth Century's good to see someone from my own cultural framework." (Smiles wistfully.) "Of course, my persona was just carried off to Norway by a Viking raid. After that, it's a life of slopping pigs and cleaning the kitchen."

This particular Balticon was Don's first experience with the free and easy sexual life of fans. It didn't turn him into a raging maniac, but it was enough to cast a happy glow over the entire weekend.

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