There is a really cool convention in Las Vegas every year hosted by James Randi, The Amaz!ng Meeting aka TAM. It is not, however, the cheapest thing in the world. Registration costs $450 and a room for three nights would be $250 (not really that bad), which brings it to $700 upfront costs. Also, two days of lost work, gas, and eating out of town. And if I had an extra $1000 I could eat dinner with James Randi and Richard Dawkins.
Obviously, I don’t have an extra thousand. I don’t even have the first thousand to go to TAM in the first place. Suddenly, $50 to eat dinner with PZ Myers makes him seem like kind of a cheap date.
Anyway, I was bemoaning this yesterday, being in a particularly bad mood thanks to a migraine, and Jen “inventor of Boobquake” McCreight over at Blag Hag ended up bemoaning her own inability to pay for it. Made even worse in her case in that she was invited to speak, but JREF doesn’t cover speaker’s registration, travel, or hotel expenses. In 8 hours, she raised $1500 dollars. That’s insane!
Suffice to say I am jealous and astounded, probably in that order. Because, in addition to Dawkins and Randi, who are both pretty much 10s on the awesome scale, there will also be Penn&Teller and Adam Savage, all of whom are probably 11s.