DMS - BlackpoolTomfoolery

DNS - Blackpool - 24th - 26th April 1998

WaReZ by the Sea

Well, in case you missed it (most people appeared to have done so), there was a computer security conference in Blackpool last weekend. In the traditions of all conferences, I believe it is neccesary to write a report on the conf. as a whole....

I didn't actually turn up until 2pm on the Saturday, but the Friday night shenanigans were reported to me in some detail later. The evening seemed to consist mostly of cheesy nightclubs, strippers, beer, vodka, and lots of noise. Falken ended up staring at a strippers buttocks with cream spread all over them, and we have the pictures to prove it....

Saturday morning... most people didn't get to the hotel the conf. was in until 11am at the earliest, and so most people missed the chance to see Dodger almost passing out half way through his talk, but most people got to see Gamma vommiting in the hotel bar. The bar was quite a main feature, as it turned out. Few people actually went to the conf. to see the conf. and as such, I believe that the organiser will post a loss on it, unless we all start buying the T-shirts and the Blackpool Rock that has the words "Hackers Rock" written all the way through it. (Buy some. Be polite.)

When I turned up and looked through the doors to the conf. there were about 20-30 people in there, talking about un-configurable firewalls on floppy disks (ask somebody who heard the talk, OK...?). Deciding that there was a certain need for Guinness, a quick trip down to the hotel bar, found the regular gang of people who you would expect to turn up at a conf. and go straight to the bar.

Drinks weren't too expensive (2 quid a pint roughly) for a hotel bar, but the majority of the clients were a touch on the older side. To quote catflap "There's enough wood in here to build a few rafts" ... I considered a competition to see who could pull the oldest person (double points if it was same-sex) but everybody was so pissed, that all they could do was sit and drink and smoke (tobacco!).

We hung around until the conf wound up, and made a move towards the center of town. As we were a few miles north of Blackpool, a tram was in order, and so a large-ish crowd of drunk, happy hax0rs jumped aboard and made some noise. The conference organiser was strangely absent, which I personlly believe to be a sign of being pissed-off with us for not paying to turn up (none of us listened to any talks...), but we sorta promised ourselves to buy some hackers rock and t-shirts when we saw him (we didn't in the end, cos we ended up spending all our money on beer... doh!)

Got into town, and found a chippy. Now a similarily large crowd of haxors were standing outside a chippy eating chips, chips'n'gravy and some weird looking sausages, making some noise. After a quick trip to a nearby newsagents for cigarettes etc. we went in search of a pub.

The day before, the first guys in town had found a pub near the train station that was full of regulars, not cheesy, and had cheap beer. If you're ever in town, nip up to The Wheatsheaf near Blackpool North... the landlord's son features in this story in a little while...

The night was spent in here, drinking beer, playing pool (VERY fast table) and arguing. The people who had earlier in the day been sitting miserably in corners due to hangovers, were now starting to liven up, and to make life a little more intriguing for myself, a very small book was run on a fight that was on Sky. (I won:)

By the evening's end, it was decided that clubs were too cheesy, and dress codes sucked, so it was time to go back to the flat. 2 bottles of vodka were found somewhere, and the landlords son, being into our kind of trouble, grabbed his stereo, and came with us. This may have been a mistake in retrospect...:)

On getting back to the flats, we ensued in more drinking, and noise. Unfortunately, the landlords son, had a little bit too much too drink, and started vommiting, in to the kitchen sink in one of the flats... he was moved out (the landlady was there, watching us) and it was thought we had put him in another flat we had no use of... couple of hours later, found him in the secondary flat we DID have use of, rolling around on the floor, with some strange "stains" on his trousers. Got coolwave to confirm that these stains were not bits of chocolate. Oh dear. Back to the other flat then.

One of the atendees by now had tried to chat up the landlady of the flats, and was making a general tit of himself. This provided entertainment for a few hours at least, as did going down to the other flat and staring at the landlords son...:)

By 3.30am, I was getting a bit tired, so I found the only bed in both flats that still didn't have a body in it, and crashed.

10.30am woke up, and saw that I had been sleeping in some kids bedroom complete with My Little Pony duvet covers. Nice. Went into the main room, to find most people still awake and there was still more vodka to drink...

A few people made a move towards home, as we planned breakfast, and as the landlords son realised he had been rolling around in his own vomit all night. We offered to find him a taxi, and a hand to the taxi with his stereo. He later complained about how difficult it was to get his hair sorted out... didn't see any chunks in it from where I was standing...:) The room he was staying in, incidentally smelt awful. Fortunately, the infamous Harlequin had found another calling in his life, and due to practising cleaning up Gamma's sick the day before down in the hotel, I'm sure he felt compulsed to cleaning up this pile of sick as well. Nice work fellah! If you ever think you're gonna chuck up, he's the man to have around...:)

Forced somebody to stay in the flat whilst we were out (as we had no keys) and found a tacky little cafe that served a decent English Breakfast and Coffee for just short of 4 quid... cleared my head...

Went back to the flat without the food we had promised the guy who got imprisoned, and he winged for a while, till xoff realised that The Simpsons were on TV... everybody stopped making noise, and watched TV...

Organiser turned up, looking miserable, and generally pissed off with everyone. Hadn't enough money on me to buy t-shirts either... oops. Time for a move back to the pub.

Back to the wheatsheaf again for pool, beer and for the guy who we imprisioned, food. Stayed for a few hours, before everyone piled onto the train, and made the way home in almost silence.

So, in summary, the talks were apparently, not that bad, but not many of us saw them. Rumour was that there would never be another conf. in Blackpool organised by the same guy. Don't blame him. Personally, I had a *great* time, and would love to do it all again...:)

You're all cunts for not turning up.

-- Harvey The Rabbit. (see the James Stewart film "Harvey" and it'll make sense)