Over the past month or so, several in Esozone’s extended network of freaky geeks have expressed interest and concern regarding the level of certainty, or lack thereof, surrounding the likelihood of an Esozone event happening in Portland this year. This is understandable, as hype for the event has been hardly more than a whisper up until this past week, especially if you compare it to the extent of effort that went into promotion over the past 3 years.
If you are among those confused about this year’s circumstances, you need no longer worry, as you can see by the previous two announcements. Yes, we are aware that one week’s notice is short. No, we’re not incredibly worried about the impact this is going to have on the event’s quality.
Several reasons. First of them is that there’s no budget to cover. You read that correctly. With the advent of Esozone’s change of working protocol to a more open-source format in 2009, and a switch of emphasis from the celebration of underground “celebrities” to the interactivity of the mutant community itself, the cost of flying out our heroes and hosting them in hotels was rendered unnecessary. This is how it was possible to make Esozone Portland 2009 the first Esozone that cost nothing to attend.
By the way, another cool thing about that change of protocol, which you might not be aware of, is that it also makes it possible for mutants in communities outside of Portland to organize and host their own regional Esozone event.
What this demonstrates is that, while we enjoyed the opportunity to honour and celebrate some of our favorite underground heroes in 2007 and 2008, we can’t avoid or ignore the most important key ingredient that makes these events what they are : The mutants that attend them and participate in them. While alot of attendee feedback from previous years expressed appreciation for our culture’s featured presenters, folks seemed to be the most excited about meeting and interacting with other bizaare creatures with similarly bizaare interests.
And guess what? It seems to be working. Last year at Esozone Portland 2009, the community stepped up to the plate and brought their “a”-game, sharing their unique specialties and hosting workshops and groups experiments in their personal domain of “expertise,” and we’re confident the community can come forward to produce something at least as interesting this year.
As cheesy as the reference to uncle Al Crowley may sound, it is fitting to note that at Esozone, “Every Man and Woman is a Stork.” Or however the hell that saying goes.
So how does one contribute to the event? As with last year, the schedule for daytime sessions are decided on the fly at the beginning of each day. There will be a grid in a centrally located spot. Find an empty slot on the schedule and put your session idea in the available time/place you’d like it to occur. Understand that your session may be bumped in time or space, to better suit the flow of the day’s goings-on.
The evening-time activities will run much more like an event at an underground nightclub, with a handpicked variety of performances from Cascadia’s own mutant underground.
Please feel free to contact us with any questions or comments you feel are relevant or pressing. Hope to see you out this weekend!