February 21st Meeting Recap

The theme for February was RED, and several did in fact remember to wear red. Josée won the points for best use of red as she had made her own  Valentine tee-shirt. We found several red tablecloths stashed in the closet and quickly appropriated them for the day.

Early Birds were treated to (or was it tortured with ??) episodes of The Wizard of Aus. It proved a dark influence, at least on one of our members who started using language she barely knew existed.  A wizard fed up with the constant warfare of his world moves to the sanest place he knows:  a suburb of Melbourne, Australia.  It does not remain sane for long….  And by the way, this is NOT the Michael Shanks we know from StarGate.

Josée Bellemare: Protecting the Magic

Josée Bellemare kicked off the meeting with a debate on “Protecting the Magic” Citing shows such as The Librarians and Warehouse 13, Josée got us thinking about magic, its uses and the dangers it could present in the wrong hands. Of course, being MonSFFen, our debate quickly spawned a slew of discussions on tangential topics, such as people believing in a flat earth, magic stones, various gods, and so on. What is it about the idea of magic that draws us to it? Why do perfectly sane and well-educated people carry good luck charms? If you believe in a magic relic, or sacred religious item, does it become real, at least for the believer? Can there be a God if there is no magic?

MonSFFA 20160221-15b panellists
Keith, François, Cathy, Fern–What drives us crazy?

Next up were Cathy Palmer-Lister, François Ménard, and Fern Novo, to lead a discussion on “What Drives you Crazy?” Fern had prepared a series of slides with some of his personal irritants, which really got people talking. Space monkeys, plot holes bigger than Montreal potholes, bad use of science, inconsistencies, budget slashing which leads to us seeing the same 3 ships flying across the screen in every episode, and so on.  Like the talk on magic, we probably could have gone on for another hour! Indeed, during supper, we talked about possibly having a panel on conspiracy theories, pseudo science and just plain bad science, and the strange things people want to believe.  Apparently, lots of things drive us CRAZY!!!

After the break and the raffle, we planned our March 13th outing to the Old Port to see the dinosaurs.

Predator Trap-Stegosaurus juvenile and pack of Allosaurus juvenile_1
Predator Trap Stegosaurus juvenile and pack of Allosaurus juveniles, from website

An immersive experience steeped in realism bringing to life 14 roaring full-sized and strikingly real animatronic dinosaurs. Go back in time more than 65 million years to what life was like on Earth and imagine their breath on the back of your neck. Explore spectacular prehistoric scenes telling the story of two major excavation sites, two skeletons, and twenty fossils. Discover newly revealed secrets about these giants by probing into the most recent and remarkable discoveries about their appearance and behaviours. Take command of an animatronic dinosaur and explore our four interactive stations.

We will meet at noon, in the main lobby and  buy tickets for the show closest to 1:00 PM (if shows are scheduled), and proceed to a search for snacks. (It does not seem that there are scheduled shows, but we are aiming for 1:00 PM. ) I called the science museum, we are permitted cameras, and we can get real food at a kiosk next to the ticket booths. We are also permitted to bring our own lunch boxes.

I recommend buying tickets on line, if possible, to save time. Information on parking is here. http://www.montrealsciencecentre.com/visitor-info

After that, we got into our stop motion project, which is starting to get more exciting as we move from colouring rocks and trees to the construction and testing of the “stage” for our puppets.  A broken pane of glass caused us some worry, but a solution was found. Our “art portfolio” now boasts cratered asteroids, exotic foliage, various rocks, and of course, our “puppet” dinosaurs.  If you have not yet seen our storyboards, you can download the package here.

Mark carpentry
Mark Burakoff fits glass into frame.
camera fit
François Ménard & Danny Sichel, testing the camera.









Our producers, François & Keith, discuss strategy
Our producers, François & Keith, discuss strategy
Leslie Perryon works at background scenery.








Many more photos from our meeting can be downloaded from our members’ pages.

N-Fr-classic-amber(1)Supper was at the 3 Brasseurs on Ste-Catherine.  The food was good, the waitress seemed new at the job, but we all agreed the beer was excellent! Upstairs, we could view the brewing facilities. It was only when I was leaving that I realized we could buy their products.  That amber was delightful! I’ll be back…

2 thoughts on “February 21st Meeting Recap”

  1. Cathy,
    I got to admit that I did enjoy the discussion panel that I participated in. My slide show was done in a hurry but it did its job in starting the discussion with our audience. I was worried towards the end that we would run out of time for the rest of the meeting schedule, and decided to sum up the discussion and end the panel….what should have been a 40 minute session turned into a passionate 94 minutes of conversation and debate.
    I enjoyed every second of it too. I’m sort of glad you twisted my arm into joining the discussion panel. I hope that the membership audience (and I suspect that they did) really enjoyed the panel.

    1. I’m really glad you thought to make that slide show. I meant to come in with a list of things that drive me crazy, but got so tied up with WARP and the problems I was having with the printing, I even forgot I was supposed to be the moderator!!
      Both panels seemed to hit nerves–we probably could have gone on for hours. We were still going on about conspiracy theories that drive us crazy at supper.

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