May 24th, 2015

krazy koati

You're everything a big bad wolf could want

Anyway, we registered and got our badges and all that. And saw the Space-Invaders-themed T-shirts for the convention. We really liked the con's retro gaming theme, and the T-shirt was a good one and we ended up both wanting one. By the time we got around to buying one, they were sold out.

Karaoke had finally returned to Morphicon, after several years absent. They had it set up in a section of the main ballroom, projected from a laptop onto an inflatable screen. The karaoke selection was eclectic. They had Paul McCartney songs so obscure that bunny_hugger barely remembered them, but they only had two Kinks songs (three, if you count the Weird Al ``Yoda'', which bunny_hugger does not, and will kick you in the shins if you start to sing). Also the song list was not very well-organized; it was a compilation of alphabetical-by-artist songs, fine enough, but there were several collections of these so that even if you searched through the main section your band might appear in one of about fourteen appendices. They had a tablet that could search for songs too, and more effectively since you could use the text editor's ``Find'' feature, but it was stil rough finding stuff on purpose.

The problem finding a karaoke song in my vocal range is that I haven't got a vocal range. I finally found something I could kind of handle, Sam the Sham and the Pharaoh's ``Little Red Riding Hood''. It's not too fast, it can mostly be sung by someone who hits about two notes consistently, and I pretty much knew it. But the song surprised me, first because apparently none of this crowd of furries recognized it somehow? It's fun doing a song that delights people who're hearing it for the first time, but how were they hearing this for the first time? Also, I'd forgotten just how pervy the lyrics are. And it's easier for me to sing low. Each octave you drop a singer makes the song about 25 percent pervier, so we were in really shocking territory for me with this song.

But it did mean that I was a hit, among the guys, none of whom really knew how to sing. They were enthusiastic, mind you, but for example the Jungle Books' ``Bare Necessities'' requires keeping tightly up with the music. The singers weren't very close to that and stuck to what we realized were auto-generated highlighting of words, that supposed verses were sung at a uniform tempo. That's close enough for many songs, but for syncopated songs like ``Bare Necessities'' it teaches a lesson: people will follow what the screen's cursor says even if they ought to know better. Anyway, bunny_hugger and another woman who stopped in for a bit were able to sing more effectively. Karaoke was scheduled for Thursday and Friday nights, although it would reappear on Sunday night too, in a happy surprise.

Trivia: In the ``Battle of the Proxies'' in July 1911, George Westinghouse was pushed out of the management of Westinghouse Electric, by a vote of 200,000 shares against 490,000 shares. Source: Empires of Light: Edison, Tesla, Westinghouse, and the Race to Electrify the World, Jill Jonnes.

Currently Reading: The Poisoner's Handbook: Murder and the Birth of Forensic Medicine in Jazz Age New York, Deborah Blum.