Issue 22
Volume 6 Number 1
January 2001

In This Issue

 •  Contents
 •  Cover Illustration
 •  Editorial
 •  Do Artists Dream of Electric Shepherds?
 •  The Rocket's Red Glare
 •  Flay Your Friends And Family
 •  Santa's Little Helper
 •  Occupational Stresses of Sentient Locomotives
 •  Lokta Plokta
 •  Friends Come in Boxes
 •  Great Airplane Disasters of OurTime

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[Plokta Online]


FOLLOWING months of rain, rain and more rain, the weather let up just in time to provide snow, snow and more snow for New Year. Now that the picturesque bit of the year is over, we're back to rain, floods and months of misery before the half-hour of spring that's all we seem to get these days.

It's a depressing time of year. We're all depressed about the US Presidential election, none of us enjoy having to work for a living, being stuck at home with two small children is no fun etc. and so forth. Oh, it's all so awful. Whinge whinge whinge, moan moan moan. There, that should be enough angst to reassure everyone that we are a serious and worthy fanzine after all.

Actually, we do seem to be a serious and worthy fanzine this issue, what with art criticism and serious scientific papers and so forth. Don't worry, normal bollocks will be resumed as soon as possible.

In case any of you don't know, we won the Nova for Best Fanzine last November. We're delighted. We arranged with Tony Berry that no matter who got the most votes, he would carefully refuse to count suspect ballots, lose locked ballot boxes, and disenfranchise convicted TAFF delegates until Plokta's victory was assured. This worked splendidly well, but unfortunately appears to have set a trend.

Um, you might notice that this issue is, um, late. We wouldn't dream of explaining why an issue is late, but thanks to Victor for getting us an article in time for us to support his TAFF campaign, and we're sorry we didn't then get the fanzine out. Whoops. It's probably a bit late for us to flog you any "V For Victor" badges, too. Still, as we write this, the campaign still hasn't finished. So just in case, here's the Plokta Cabal's supportive gesture for Victor:

For just about the first time ever, we've got material to hold over to the next issue, which looks like being another Arts and Sciences special. This gives us a chance to get a vital piece of original scientific research by Dr S Bradshaw (et al) peer reviewed before publication.

Thanks to Sheryl Birkhead for sending us a copy of the envelope in which she received Plokta, without which we'd never have understood all the Singapore jokes in the locs. Thanks also to whoever it was that told us about Gardner Dozois' other patented pickup line: "Until you've had sex with an old fat guy, you haven't lived".

So, who put the mug in smug?

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New Readers Start Here

Longtime followers of Plokta will know that when Marianne was born, Sue produced a pair of piccies (in Plokta 6.5, the Attitude conreport) illustrating how little our lives had changed.

Novacon '96: "Having a baby isn't going to change our lives" enthused Alison

Attitude: "See, cons are still as much fun as ever."

However, with Jonathan's arrival, surely the peace and quiet of the family unit would be shattered?

Novacon 2000: "Two are no harder than one, really"

But no. Apart from that unfortunate evening when Alison left the baby in the bar, it's as if nothing had changed.