The Night Before Picocon

by Robbie Bain

'Twas the night before Picocon, when all through the house
Not a person was stirring, (well, maybe the Mouse)

The planning was hatched with the utmost attention
In hopes that there'd be a successful convention

The committee were nestled all snug in their beds
Dreams of authors and chaos danced round in their heads

The chairentity, vice and the sofa as well
Were settling down for a rest they'd earned well

Out in the quad there would be such a scene
With duelling and sea-bass and maybe sardines

Until one assailant could rightly intone
4 winn0r 1s m3, j00 4r3 t0t411y 0wn3d.

But prior to duelling, before all that mess
A thousand and one wondrous things must progress

Each in its place and so carefully planned
By committee and freshers and Ali's command

Before registration, at eight in the morning
The committee will gather and stifle their yawning

With donuts or muffins or maybe some cookies
And set up the tables and chairs and the wookiees

Well, maybe not wookiees, (except perhaps Phil)
But there's lots to be done and they're carefully drilled

More rapid than eagles their efforts will be
As they dash back and forth at behest of Ali

Now, Simon! Now, Alex! Now, Ben and small Tom!
On, Jakob! On, Michael! On, Ian and Malcolm

On they will toil until doors they will open
And "Welcome to Picocon" proudly is spoken

The day will be varied; the programme diverse
With authors and panels and games to immerse

All the masses of people who come to IC
For randomness, authors and festivity

We've got Brian Stableford and Gwyneth Jones too
And Jon Courtenay Grimwood to fill up our pews

With fandom's massed hordes from all over the town
Come to listen and heckle and throw some pints down

In no time at all there's a prandial hiatus
For which we all wait with ill-hidden impatience

Since once we have paused for the breaking of bread
This can mean but one thing - for Barney it's dread

For the audience is cheering for our introduction
Of merchandise dodgy scheduled for destruction

There's liquid N2 and a big rubber hammer
And a ghost of Kenobi for whose death we will clamour

Where's your Force now, you cheap plastic tat?
Take that, and then this and then finally THAT!

And later some panels and then silly games
But we close with a quiz and some spurious claims

Of unfairness and bias which we always ignore
Until fandom and authors have all found the door

And once we've sat down and the crowds have dispersed
The con's at an end - which is much like this verse

We all find our way out for much-needed repast
Saying "Never again - this year is my last!"