TAFF TALK TEN: latest TAFF data from Dave Langford, 22 Northumberland Avenue, Reading, Berks, RG2 7PW, UK. (European administrator, etc.)
The 1981-2 TAFF Race is now under way, with candidates Rog Peyton and Kevin Smith contending savagely. Which is why I don't need to slip in the usual tedious definition of TAFF for newcomers: every copy of this TT should be accompanied by a ballot form containing all that stuff, plus urges to vote for one or the other candidate (or Hold Over Funds if you feel that way), plus a genuine Mistake. In a burst of over-enthusiasm good old Peter Weston described Rog as being chairman of the 1977 Eastercon: wrong! it was Pauline Dungate (since Pauline Morgan). The ballots have been distributed via the BSFA and the Maules' Nabu 11 (many thanks), and are also expected to go out with the BSFG newsletter, DNQ, File 770 and other jolly fanzines: thanks in advance. Litho/electrostencil masters are available.
Greg Pickersgill's Bane: Greg's displeasure with TAFF (on such grounds as that 'anyone can afford to go to America who really wants to') was discussed in TT9, and provoked a few letters. Quoth JOSEPH NICHOLAS: 'You and (Greg) are both completely wrong about his point that anyone, or almost anyone, can now afford to fly to the States under their own steam. At present, yes, perhaps -- but the remaining months of 1981 are likely to be the last chance for anyone to fly the Atlantic for under £100, because the era of cheap transatlantic air travel is now definitely drawing to a close... The 'culprit' is our very own Freddie Laker, who 's been losing money hand over fist since he introduced the Skytrain service... has had to put some of-his 'surplus' aircraft up for sale, with rumours of ticket price increases to follow. Such will immediately take the downward pressure off the other carriers, allowing them to raise their prices; and not before time, since at present nobody makes a profit on the North Atlantic... Which means, of course, that from next year TAFF will become just as necessary (and hopefully just as important) as it was in previous years." Must admit I'd temporarily lost touch with the horrid Real World in this area, boss. Meanwhile we have AVEDON CAROL: "Pickersgill is right! I can afford to go to America any time I want to! Who needs TAFF? Not me -- hey, I've been to America thousands of times, and it 's no different than being at home." No doubt. TAFF was debated at Silicon too, the most persistent voice (Keith Oborn's) urging that no race should be held until a sufficiency of candidates had made their eagerness known. (Wouldn't have made any difference to the current race: never seen so many bloody candidates, only they all melted away as the moment of truth and the Actual Ballot Form approached.)
Misc: Twll-Ddu 19 is still available from me at 50p-for-TAFF, with the first instalment of my own TAFF report. Boonfark 5 may be had for $2.50 or the usual from [COA] Dan Steffan, 1010 N Tuckahoe St, Falls Church, VA 22046, USA: this contains the second bit. The third is in Nabu 11, 50p-for-TAFF from Ian Maule, 5 Beaconsfield Rd, New Malden, Surrey, KT3 3HY; the fourth should be in Warhoon 30 from Richard Bergeron, Box 5989, Old San Juan, Puerto Rico 00905, USA; and the fifth in Tappen 3 from Malcolm Edwards, 28 Duckett Rd, London, N4 1BN. Don't worry if it all seems too much effort: there'll be a collected volume one day, Mr Pelz. Meanwhile, both TAFF administrators have been compromised! Rashly I promised to nominate a certain lady (mentioned above) for TAFF when my term was over, and this has been prematurely revealed in File 770 to many a veiled sneer from editor Mike Glyer. Rashly Stu Shiffman collaborated on a cartoon with Messrs Barker and Bell, and this now evilly appears on the back of Out of the Blue, with the sinister addition of a Canfield For TAFF slogan. Where will it all end? Hopelessly compromised though they may seem, the administrators still maintain their utter infallibility, impartiality and all that stuff. (Mine's a pint, candidates.)
TaffTalkContinued: My thanks to those who've already voted for TAFF, often with astonishingly huge donations -- full list next year. Meanwhile, a last legacy from SEACON '79: a few copies each of Mood 70 (fanthology ed. Kev Smith, 64pp), Fanartist Scrapbook (portfolio ed. Eve Harvey, 50pp), The Enchanted Duplicator (Willis/Shaw ill. Carol Gregory, 43pp) and the glossy Seacon Programme Book (ed. Charnocks, 136pp). All £1.50/$3 post free from me. Thanks, Seacon -- and John & Eve.
GUFF will not bring an Australian to Channelcon '82 (shortage of time and thus candidates): plans are to run a northbound trip to the '83 Eastercon; there being now no pressure to schedule a British trip to an Australian worldcon that year. DUFF: deadlines for the 0z-->US 1983 trip extended through lack of candidates...