Address inquiries to
P.O. Box 1010
Framingham, MA 01701
Long ago and far away (or, even before MCFI won its bid to
host the 62nd World Science Fiction Convention), we registered a number
of Internet domains for ourselves.
Little did we know that the Mayor of Boston also had it in
mind to host a convention in the summer of 2004
or that he'd win
his bid, too. And political parties, like science fiction conventions,
have heard of the Internet. So they registered a domain, too.
Boston04.com points to
the Democrats ... Boston2004.com and
Boston2004.org point to us.
You can see where confusion might occur
Since that time, we've occasionally gotten email (and even
volunteer forms!) from people who have confused us with that other
convention that'll be in town this summer.
To help them, and you, we've begun to compile our very own
list of why (and how) Noreascon 4 will not be like a major political
Ideally, we'd be able to list 2004 reasons and ways that we're
different. But since most of us are really busy (reason number 1 we're
different: nobody's getting paid to work on Noreascon Four!), we
thought we'd ask you for some help, too. Tell us (at firstname.lastname@example.org)
how to distinguish between the two. We'll award "Boston in 2004"
t-shirts to our favorites.
2004 Reasons Why ...
- We're not $10 million over budget. We don't even
have a $10 million budget.
- Our promises for the future are supposed to be
- You don't have to donate thousands of dollars to us (though
we wouldn't complain)we'll give you a high-level appointment to
work for us for free!
- The media will not outnumber the attendees.
- Thoats and banthas are more interesting animals than
donkeys and elephants.
- The folks wandering around with walkie-talkies are likely
to be helpful and friendly.
- The slogans on our buttons are actually funny, and many of
them are about cats.
- No one will be kissing babies except their immediate
families and friends.
- When we talk about "skull and bones" it's probably in a
discussion about paleontology.
- When we sling mud, it's probably in a workshop on making
- There may be a few folks wearing helmets with strange
antennas sticking out, but they won't be roving news reporters.
- You didn't know the results of our voting last March.
- We won't be dropping thousands of balloons after the Hugo
winners are announced.
- We won't be preempting your favorite television shows.
- Protest groups are not planning to picket our convention.
- If you wander into our facilities, alert Secret Service
agents will not wrestle you to the floor.
- Three of our Guests of Honor are not eligible to be
President of the U.S.
- The people asking you to vote for them will give you
- We aren't putting it on with your money, unless you bought
- Our speakers are actually entertaining.
- The Secret Service has no plans to shut down major highways
- You can still get hotel rooms for under $2,000 for
Noreascon Four, and you don't have to stay in New Hampshire.
- Nobody from Noreascon Four will be sleeping in university
- Traffic copters won't be grounded during our convention (so
you can get Boston traffic information, which refers to places that
used to be there).
- Businesses will be open all their usual hours.
- You'll be able to get a seat in your favorite restaurant.
- Noreascon 4 will have lots more than one party to have fun
- When someone tries to sell you something, it's because they
are a dealer in the dealers' room.
- We have members from around the world.
- Nobody ever won a Hugo by starting a sentence with, "If you
vote for me, then I promise to...".
- Pictures from our convention won't always include Faneuil
- Discworld is carried on elephants, not donkeys.
- Filkers know more songs than just "Happy Days Are Here
Again" and "Don't Stop (Thinking About Tomorrow)".
- Rather than making you wander the city to find art, music,
and shopping, we provide it all on-site!
- If we rewrite history we label it as fiction or
- The Australian ballot system is easier to understand than
the Electoral College system.
- At least some of our funny hats have propellers on
- It'll be easy to see where a person's from by reading
his/her badge, so nobody has to listen to speeches beginning with five
minutes of things like, "Mr. Chairman, Montana, where the mountains are
high, the skies are clear, the sheep are nervous..."
- In a word-association test, we respond to "Fahrenheit" with
- We are allowed to accept donations from non-resident
but our aliens may have tentacles and extra feet.
- Nobody we've nominated for anything is about to be handed
millions of dollars by the Federal Elections Commission.
- Our scheduling doesn't put all our activities during
"prime" time to take advantage of network broadcasting
things will be going on all day long.
- Neither Time nor Newsweek will be featuring us on their
- Their celebrities are politicians and Hollywood
actors. Our celebrities are writers, editors, artists, and
- Local residents will be able to get to work instead of
being trapped at home by security grid lock.
- Once on site at Noreascon 4, you can come and go at will.
No metal-detector screening!
- Our convention has programming for children.
- Some of our attendees have written books about
ghosts. Some of theirs have had books written by ghosts.
- Our attendees are likely to be wearing tee-shirts listing
the reasons we're not like a major political convention.
- Our convention organizers weren't so provincial as
to choose a "local boy" for Guest of Honor.
- At our convention, "Star Wars" has a rather different
meaning than at theirsas perhaps does, "undocumented
- Our Guests of Honor write their own speeches.
- 100% greater chance of men openly wearing tights at
- Our attendees often swear in forms unrecognizable to the
- At Noreascon 4, bloodsuckers are identifiable by the fangs
and sunglasses rather than microphones and cameras.
- Some of our founding fathers are still around.
- People at the other convention probably don't copyedit
their signage in real time.
- People in Boston won't need to indulge in blizzard-style
shopping patterns during our convention.
- People at our convention are more likely to think that
"spin control" refers to the Hubble Space Telescope's gyros.
- At our convention, none of the reading matter is likely to
- There's much conversation about "character" at both
conventions, but we've got a lot more to say about "plot" and
- One of the best parties at our convention is for the (Hugo)
- When our guests of honor make immodest proposals they tell
you that up front.
- A larger percentage of people at our convention know Jon
- People like to play fast and loose with numbers. At
Noreascon, this is called "world building". At any major political
convention, it would be called an economics platform.
- At any major political convention, much hot air will be
spent on the gay marriage issue. At Noreascon, the discussion will be
on clone siblings, line marriage, and familial visitation rights for
noncorporeal clade members.
- Corollary of the 100% greater chance of men in tights: 100%
greater odds of seeing a man in a kilt, a girl in a bunny fur (or
chainmail) bikini, or a security detail in Stormtrooper armor.
- At N4, discussions on the security threats imposed by
weapons of mass destruction will include paranomaisiacs, watching the
sky for inbound meteors, and gamma ray bursters.
- At Noreascon, people complaining about the President's Mars
program will agree that the US government shouldn't be doing
itthey'll just want the funds allocated to something like the
X-Prize as an incentive for someone COMPETENT to do it.
- Both Noreascon and major political conventions may have
protestors bearing "ORION NOW! NUKES FOR PEACE!" placards. One of them
will have attendees who actually know what it means...
With our thanks to Chris Almy, Ken Burnside, Todd
Dashoff, Elka Tovah Davidoff, Bruce Davis, Amelia Edwards, Carl
Frederick, Toby Fredrickson, Richard N. Freedman, Pam Fremon, Lisa
Hertel, Chip Hitchcock, Tom Galloway, Chris Galvin, Glenn Glazer,
Jordin Kare, Dan Kimmel, Grant Kruger, Alexis Layton, Tony Lewis,
Laurie Mann, Elise Matthesen, Gary McGath, Fred C. Moulton, C.E. Petit,
Esq., Keith Sherman, Theresa Renner Smith, Robert Sneddon, Sheila
Strickland, Alex von Thorn & Jody Zolli.