Monday, July 07, 2014

Disclaimers for Daydreams

That's the name of one of the discussion panels I "presided over" at SoonerCon 23 just over a week ago.  Here's the summary:

Come up with warning labels for fantasy or SF things.  What kind of consumer warning would the One Ring, or a phaser, require?  How about a love potion or time machine?

 And, to get things rolling, I suggested this list of things to riff on:

What kind of Warning Label for …
·         witches’ brooms
·         fairy tale happy endings
·         mind-control helmet
·         super hearing
·         love potion
·         teleportation device
·         “the power to cloud men’s minds”
·         villain’s ultimate weapon
·         magic sword
·         glasses that see in the dark
·         helicopter hat (Inspector Gadget)
·         time machine
·         a goose that lays golden eggs
·         selective amnesia device (Men in Black Neuralizer)
·         super-speed
·         disintegrator ray
·         mind-reading cap
·         the sword in the stone
·         hover-board (a la Back to the Future)
·         phaser/ray gun
·         a prince that’s been turned into a frog
·         a magic wand
·         a black hole
·         thinking cap
·         a sentient (self-aware) computer
·         holodeck
·         light saber
·         silver bullets
·         precognition
·         tactile telekinesis
·         seven league boots
·         x-ray spectacles
·         invisibility cloak
·         invulnerability
·         a Green Lantern ring
·         replicator (such as Star Trek)
ability to talk to the animals

The six or eight in the audience had loads of fun with Lou AntonelliJimmy HollamanSherri DeanMike Kennedy   and me and we suggested that x-ray glasses might require the warning, "Objects under clothing may be smaller than they appear," or that a teleportation device might need the disclaimer, "Warranty void if subject materializes within a wall."

As an audiovisual aide, I made up a few silly signs to scatter around the room to help folks get into the mood.  And since this was the final hour of discussion panels, the signs were quick to hand as we made our way to Closing Ceremonies, so I tossed them up onto the head table.

Our Guest of Honor Glen Cook (and  here ) was bemused by the signs, and as Toastmaster Selina Rosen  was trying to bring things to a semi-dignified (ha!) conclusion, he kept up a running silent commentary by holding up various and sundry of these signs.

Here are those "warning signs."

See you Thursday!

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