Well, it's two days later, and nobody better qualified has posted a post-mortem yet, so:

Squished tubers and dead bird 2002 took place at WonkoDSane's parents' beautiful house - a brave move on their part, we all agreed. There were three big turkeys, two or three different kinds of stuffing, plenty of salads and casseroles, cornbread, and thirty (yes, THIRTY) pounds of mashed potatoes (not including mashed sweet potatoes, IIRC). In addition, there was enough chocolate cheesecake to feed an army, a pumpkin cheesecake, pecan pie with chocolate chips, Strong_Bow79's banana birthday cake, vast quantities of Russian Cream, Bitca's chocolate mousse which was promptly declared "Sex in a cup", and chocolate-covered nuts as well as two trays of cream-filled eclairs.

If this hasn't given you an idea of how much food there was, let's just say that there were over 25 people present, and one of the turkeys was still intact by the end of the evening.

Since this happened at Scott's parents' house, the predominant beverages for the evening were soft drinks. There was beer in moderation, and a bottle of Scotch made an appearance towards the end of the evening, being mixed with coffee. Scott's father is a not-so-closet pyromaniac, so he started a fire on the back porch, where the smokers congregated most of the evening. His parents, btw, are both AWESOME, with a really cool attitude and sense of humor.

The after-dinner entertainment consisted of the family dog, Trooper, a black lab, who is very sweet and affectionate, has the tail of doom, and is capable of vacuuming up a plate of summer sausage in approximately 5 seconds flat (we all kind of stayed away from the sausage after that...). Trooper's great love is his aptly named "Jolly Ball", a soccer-ball sized red plastic thing with several large holes in it. He carried it around proudly, then proceeded to demonstrate vigorously why Scott's mom calls it his 'date'... Additional entertainment was provided by my spawn, Rowan and Ian, who fairly rapidly warmed up to the crowd, then proceeded to hold court in the living room, knowledgeably discussing Cartoon Network cartoons with WonkoDSane, Spackle, avalyn, Iconoplast and Walter, if memory serves. They had gifted Strong_Bow79 with original stories for his birthday, which were read to much critical acclaim, especially The Power Rangers who killed the gooey bad man by Ian, age 4 1/2. My son outdid himself, telling metacognizant she looks like a turkey because she has a red mohawk, and calling karmaflux a girl. The kids had an awesome time playing with metacognizant and Spackle, who conceded defeat graciously after being bested by Ian in a game of 'Criss, cross, ____ sauce' (which I believe was invented on the spot) - the winning declamation being "Criss, cross, YOU sauce" (directed towards Spackle by Ian).

Witchiepoo is a sweet, beautiful person; radlab0 gives the BEST scritchies, bar none; thefez THESE WORDS DELETED TO PROTECT HIS IMAGE; karmaflux is a jerk, but has such a cute little-boy look that it's really hard to be mad at him, and a very sweet smile; jessicapierce is an awesome, beautiful person who won my kids' hearts instantly; enth is a sweetheart with the most GORGEOUS shade of blue hair I have EVER seen; metacognizant was really sweet with the kids, very funny, and I would never have guessed her for as young as she is; cowofdoom is SOO cute :-) I bet he gets carded all the time, and is amazingly witty; Bitca is way cool, and has a really wonderful laugh; Chris-O and Ladysun are great people and liked the stuff I brought them from my school; WonkoDSane is a really great guy, but was kind of on edge for much of the evening for a reason I will let him explain himself; ummm, who am I leaving out? I'm sure it'll come back to me - this being my first noder gathering, I was kind of overwhelmed trying to keep faces and names straight.. I apologize to the people I've left out - I'll add you as it comes back to me!

All in all, it was a wonderful evening, and my only regret is that my daughter broke out in chickenpox the next morning (hope everyone there has had them...), so we couldn't go back down the next day to spend more time with these awesome people.

Photos of STaDB 2002 are available for viewing at http://www.wertperch.co.uk/gallery/, with more to come soon. They are also posted at http://community.webshots.com/user/e2gwenllian.