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Spaced out in San Jose

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1989-08-03 Stanford Weekly.jpg


Science fiction is a genre of fan-dom that has long been hidden away in the closets of most people's lives, or worse yet, discarded along with their youth.

Not to say that immaturity is necessarily associated with science fiction, but science fiction is often related to adolescent entertainment in the form of books, comics and movies.

In the past decade, however, with the help of such blockbuster movies as "Star Wars," "Star Trek," and "Ghostbusters," sci-fi has become much more fashionable among older age groups as well.

As a testament to this, last weekend's TimeCon (short for "Conventions of Time") was peopled with children, teens, adults and even a few families here and there.

The Le Baron hotel in San Jose hosted this spectacular science fiction convention, which attracted fans from all over California and as far away as New York.

Among the events were question-and-answer sessions with actresses and actors, panel discussions and a special showing of the "Rocky Horror Picture Show." Special guests included Gates McFadden from "Star Trek: the Next Generation," Richard Chaves from "War of the Worlds," and Janet Fielding and John Levene from "Doctor Who."

Of course, the entertainment went beyond what was being offered by the organizers of TimeCon. Without any encouragement, sci-fi fans took advantage of a chance to show off homemade costumes and to network with other fans about the latest development on a series or the newest fan club.

And the costumes! For example, there was Ratman, the vermin overlord, who wore a black cape and a rat's nose. Another fan wore a Ghostbusters outfit with handmade equipment that included some original parts from the movie's props. And a creative man and woman stunned everyone with their beautiful 17th century pirate costumes. Countless other original and replicated costumes were shown off at the costume contest Saturday night.

TimeCon speakers drew their share of interest as well. For example, Andy Pischalnikov, a Sacramento resident, gave an intriguing slide presentation on makeup and the creation of the complex prosthetic masks that put a large share of the horror in horror movies.

Then there was the question-and-answer session with Richard Chaves, veteran of "War of the Worlds" and "Predator." He began by speaking about his background, and in particular, his heritage. He told the crowd that he was a quarter American Indian, and that he considered that to be the spiritual side of him.

After essentially baring his soul to the conventioners, a lady in the audience stood up and tearfully told him a bit about her heritage, her past and what she had left to show for it: a necklace, which she wore, and pair of moccasins. Chaves tearfully embraced her.

Such togetherness typified TimeCon. Perhaps that's why nearly 2,500 people paid as much as $20 per day to come to the gathering.

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  • APA 6th ed.: Duran, Michelle (1989-08-03). Spaced out in San Jose. The Stanford Daily p. 13.
  • MLA 7th ed.: Duran, Michelle. "Spaced out in San Jose." The Stanford Daily [add city] 1989-08-03, 13. Print.
  • Chicago 15th ed.: Duran, Michelle. "Spaced out in San Jose." The Stanford Daily, edition, sec., 1989-08-03
  • Turabian: Duran, Michelle. "Spaced out in San Jose." The Stanford Daily, 1989-08-03, section, 13 edition.
  • Wikipedia (this article): <ref>{{cite news| title=Spaced out in San Jose | url= | work=The Stanford Daily | pages=13 | date=1989-08-03 | via=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=29 November 2022 }}</ref>
  • Wikipedia (this page): <ref>{{cite web | title=Spaced out in San Jose | url= | work=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=29 November 2022}}</ref>