Drinking, podcasting, and making merry
I seem to be unable to write short aftermath nodes. Oh well. This does, as usual, contain long and squiggly sentences.
Flying to Düsseldorf
I was quite excited to see this city which, in all evidence provided me by the esteemable Heisenberg1, did not really exist at all. Oddly the airplane completely failed to disappear into nothingness when it approached the landing strip, but rather landed safely on the ground, and in doing so it badly shook my faith in said Heisenberg. Luckily I was to meet him soon so he could redeem himself.
Düsseldorf airport is a very friendly airport. I never had to show my passport to leave the secured area at all. Even in little trusting Denmark I have to do that when I come home from other EU countries. I later learned that was because of Schengen. Travelling does that to you: teaches you things. One might want to argue that I should really have known about Schengen, and how Denmark didn't want any part of it - and maybe that is true. On the other hand... Ah, never mind.
I was greeted at the airport by lovely kohlcass who had agreed to put me up for a few days in Essen. Likewise Wntrmute would be arriving Friday 24, so's we could travel to the nodermeet in Köln on the 25 together. Though we tried our very best any attempt to get Heisenberg to come to Düsseldorf for a sneak pre-meet beer was very much in vain2. The outcome of those efforts may well be daylogged at some point. This node is about the nodermeet proper.
Training to Köln
So, on August 25 the three of us went to Köln. We came in early and enjoyed a guided tour around the city with the good doctor as our Fremdenführer. He showed us the sights, set us down at a café and straight on the way to the Petersberger Hof, before running off to collect his girlfriend. Left to our own devices we ambled aimlessly along until we hit a tram stop that looked about right. Armed with a beer coaster with directions written on it we made our way to the pub on the outskirts of Köln, arriving at the same time as our host.
One by one the noders showed up. Kizor was the first to join us, looking every bit like a mathematician, and wearing a T-shirt that claimed that he was not as smart as he thought. He carried with him a notebook with predictions about the noders and the meet in a bulleted list. The two I remember were disproved fairly quickly since Heisenberg was not 7 feet tall, and Wntrmute does indeed have a corporeal form3.
The next one to arrive was sloebertje, and she caused me to suffer from acute and intense camera envy when she took out her very, very big and impressive camera. It would have dwarfed my camera, had I not forgotten to it bring with me to Köln.
We made with the chatting and getting to know each other, and just as we were despairing of seeing Hazelnut he showed up. Tall and very present with the most beautiful auburn hair. Kohlcass did not take her eyes off it the entire evening, and she can even be seen fondling it in some of the nodermeet pictures (links to pics at the bottom of the wu above).
We now moved from our nice but crowded outdoors table to an even nicer, slightly less crowded, indoors table. A round table, which made for an easier approach to the GTKY chatter and the planned podcast. Also, at this point Heisenberg's girlfriend joined us, bringing a fully charged recording device, saving Heisenberg from quite a lot of embarrassment and possibly drunken taunting.
So, we all had brought nodes with us to read for the podcast. Heisenberg readied the recording device and got as far as "Hello eveyone, this is Heisenberg..." before kohlcass toppled over from giggling. We have later learned that she did indeed bang her head on the table when she collapsed. This may account for some of the weird behaviour she... no, wait; that started much earlier.
Moving right along:
After Heisenberg - eventually - managed to get the introduction recorded (kohlcass spent some of the time under the table, I believe), we all introduced ourselves4. And then Hazelnut cleared his throat and began his reading. Ah, and what a reading it was. He did not stutter, he did not hesitate, and he did not laugh. The rest of us were doing less well. I think Kizor sprayed his beer onto Heisenberg's back at one time, but I might be mistaken. It was magnificent.
Sloebertje's reading was elegant and word perfect. A sweet little story, perfect in length, whereas the rest of us had brought nodes that were too long. I am fairly certain she also held the recording device perfectly, just the right distance from her mouth and everything. She also has a really cool job, I think, even if I seem to have forgotten the details since. The beer might be to blame.
Wntrmute, kohlcass, and I had brought one node, far, far too long. Heisenberg took one look at it:
"No, no. No way you are reading that!"
But, of course we did, since we were reading it together, AND we had Mr. Speed talker delivering most of the dialogue. I have no idea how he does it, but he does. Kohlcass also did a brilliant job, and I just had to remember to omit one letter, three or four times during the reading - a task I fortunately did not screw up.
After that it was Kizor's turn to introduce his awesome "Random wisdom from strangers". We had all been writing in the book earlier, and now we took turns reading out loud what we had written. The Random Wisdom notebook got baptised in orange juice a bit later on, but I hope it is okay.
1000 blank, white cards, and saying good bye
Heisenberg and his beautiful girlfriend had to run off around nine pm, but the rest of us had no intentions of calling it a night just yet. Kizor had brought along a stack of index cards, and set about to teach the rest of us to play "1000 Blank Cards". That was one of the most entertaining card games I have played in a very long time. In the beginning I understood nothing, except the concept of 'play one card, draw one card'. But as we began playing everything became very clear5, and I heartily recommend this game to y'all. It's a blast.
After the game, which I believe Hazelnut won due to Wntrmute playing a card that multiplied all our scores with -1, we gathered our belongings and settled the tab. Saying good bye and see you soon to some, and good bye hope to meet you again to others on the tram, before heading back to Essen. I'm not good with good byes, so I was glad I wasn't travelling home alone.
I met four great noders plus one very charming non-noder, and I hope I get to meet them again, some day. Thank you all for a fun evening.
- <Heisenberg> there is no Duesseldorf. Duesseldorf is the invention of the German right wing neocon media.
I WILL NOT (REPEAT: NOT) ENTER DUESSELDORF WHILE I STILL HAVE A LIVING BRAINCELL LEFT IN MY CRANIUM!!!!!
"What's with the poking of the shoulders?" (Wntrmute)
For the first time faithful podcast listeners will be able to hear my humble voice with no static noise, but I am wondering whether this is really an improvement.
<Kizor> Then wntrmute refused to use Ripping Corpse Attack on Dimview's Huggled by Giant Teddy Bears because I still had The Joint, which could be a game-breaker with all those Vampiric Lawnmowers around thanks to his own Photocopier.