You guys. So... a couple of days ago, rm
said, "Hey, you coming to the Doctor Who New York meet-up?"
And I said, "Uh... do I ever?"
And she said, "...Paul Cornell's1
gonna be there."
And I said, "Oh."
Thus it was that tonight, I girded up my loins, and called up magnetgirl
and said, "hey, want to come to this thing at this pub and meet Paul Cornell?"
And she (being much smarter than me) said, "Hell, yeah."
So we did.
Dude, it was AWESOME. I made an ass of myself only twice! Once, when we were all chatting, and the conversation turned to BBC Robin Hood? And I was like, "Wow, that show was terrible
. I watched the pilot, and then (because it's not fair to judge a show merely on the basis of the pilot)... I tried
to watch another one, but was unable to get through it."
And he said (in his innimitably charming British way), "Er... hope that wasn't one of my
You guys can probably picture the look on my face?
He hastened to add that he didn't think less of me. I believe his exact words were, "I'm not proud
quickly covered for me, making sure that he knew I hadn't made it to one of his
while I tried not to swallow my own tongue in embarrassment.)
AND THEN, unsatisfied with the sheer level of savoir faire I'd displayed thus far, when he brought up sexism and homophobia in genre television? (He was talking about how there was
a lot of sexism and homophobia in genre tv, but he didn't think that just because characters have drama
(and bad things happen to them), means that the show
is sexist) and I decided that would be a good time to tell him about magnetgirl
's and my argument about Steven Moffat.
"So," I say, "I mean, I think he's a fabulous writer and everything, but there have
been accusations of sexism, and I have to say that she and I watched Coupling together... and though she disagrees with me, frankly, I think it is
incredibly sexist..." (I was going to go on to say that it didn't mean I wasn't a fan of his Doctor Who episodes...)
But I am interrupted. "Er...," he says, all but scuffing his feet, "before you go on, in the interests of well, everyone, I have to tell you that Steven was the best man at my wedding, and I was the best man at his, so..."
You guys can definitely picture the look on my face now, right??? Yeah, take that previous look and multiply by... a billion.
He saw the look too, and hurriedly said, "I have to tell you that I spend most of my life apologizing for him though. We go into a room, and five minutes later, I'm all, 'yeah, sorry about the village, he didn't mean
it really' and if we're lucky, we make it out without being killed. So I completely get where you're coming from."
As you can see, I have clearly missed my calling as a socialite.
Even despite all this, I had a brilliant time. Seriously, he was very smart and cool, we actually got to talk in detail about writing process, doctor who in specific & fandom in general, being social when you have social anxiety...and spend most of your time behind a keyboard, and the art of writing villains. It was great, and hearing him talk about story boarding with Russel and Steven and David fucking Tennant, was fairly squee inducing. He was completely gracious, and made sure to talk to everyone in the pub, but he came back to our group at least three times, which was pretty rocking. He and rm
got to bond about the clusterfuck their panel at Gallifrey is gonna be, and basically, he was charming, funny, and despite my attack of foot-in-mouth disease seemed charmed by us, which is always nice.
Yeah. I may need to do this meeting people thing more often. It was fairly spectacular. The pub also seemed to have a live band? Which had... an itinerant flautist? Seriously. He wandered around the pub playing his flute. There was an attempt made to get him to play the Doctor Who theme, but it failed. Instead, endless renditions of Michael Jackson's ouevre. You haven't lived till you've heard "Beat It" played on the flute, bass, and synthesizer. 1
You may know Paul Cornell as author of DW episodes such as "Father's Day", "Human Nature", and "Family of Blood".