Pictures From The Weekend

I couldn’t (easily) post these pictures while out-and-about, so I thought I’d share them now:

The tailbackon the M6. That’s a serious amount of traffic at a complete standstill, and people million about on the carriageway. In the distance, in the first one, you can just about make out the tops of the emergency services vehicles, despite the low resolution of the picture.

Gareth and Penny’s birthday cakes. Gareth’s is decorated with a small place flying across a blue sky, while Penny’s is shaped like a fairytale castle.

This was the moment during their recollection of their boating holiday that Matt suddenly realised that what Liz was telling him about a “steaking incident” was actually true and not something he’d dreamt.

Claire, Jimmy, and Beth. I don’t think Beth approves of this photo being taken.

A fabulous example of BiCon’s non-assuming, gender-doesn’t-really-matter thinking, in the form of the signs on the toilet doors. Behind these, the secondary signs are the same, except the the “Toilets with urinals” sign has had appended to it “Standing up okay,” and the “Toilets without urinals” sign has had appended to it “Standing up okay, put you might end up pissing on the seat.”

Not only a transgender-friendly statement, these signs also function as a reminder that in an environment where your gender is one preferred by not 50% but closer to 95% of the people present, imposing privacy by something as arbitary as gender is even more pointless than it is in the rest of the world.

The organisers of BiCon run a census each year. I think this photograph of a small part of the survey really does reflect “BiCon thinking” when it comes to the definition of gender and sexuality. One question reads “What term(s) do you use to describe your gender?”, with the following options – female only, female mostly, female somewhat more, female/male equally, male somewhat more, male mostly, male only, none/no gender, androgynous, genderqueer, other (please specify). Where almost any other survey would provide in the region of two mutually-exclusive choices, BiCon’s survey provides 10, which can be used in combination, and the space to define an answer yourself if you’re not satisfied with those available.

BiCon attendees are encouraged to decorate their name badge with stickers showing their affiliation to various groups, causes, ideologies, relationship structures, fetishes, etc. These make really good conversation-starters, but the list on the first day – with about six different “codes” – tends to have no bearing on the final-day list, fully-expanded by people adding their own codes and encouraging one another to make use of them. Click on the list to zoom in.

6 replies to Pictures From The Weekend

  1. When I arrived on Thursday, that list had stickers for newbie, available, maybe, not available, pirate, goth and poly, and the orange sticker had no description so I wrote flirtblind.

    I knew it would and had grown because I was looking at badges and not knowing what combinations meant (but with a list that size, it’d be difficult at best to remember them *all*!) but I was actually surprised at the extent of the growth this morning when I finally remembered to go add things to my badge. I’m sure it’s bigger than last year’s!

  2. and people million about on the carriageway

    Unless there’s a Hell of a lot of people out of shot, I suspect they’re merely milling about on the carriageway…

  3. BiCon attendees are encouraged to decorate their name badge with stickers showing their affiliation to various groups

    You know, for an “open, accepting” group, they sure like putting people in boxes :)

    Maybe there should be a sticker for that too.

    The “lock picking” one is your handwriting, is it not?

  4. @ The Pacifist: Well said. Although as it says “OPTIONAL!” in huge letters on the sheet, people are able to put their own new categories on the sheet, and plenty of people put nothing but their name on their badges, which I think says it all.

    Boxed or unboxed, the badges – to me at least – are less about what you actually stick on them than they are about being a conversation starter. They’re kind-of cool, like a roll-your-own-hanky-code.

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