This year's Esozone has actually come together pretty good, which I'll admit I was a bit skeptical about. It still has a lot of the same energy as last year, but this year's incarnation is also its own being and it is an intriguing being. About my only complaint about esozone was that the scheduling could have been handled better, with topics spread out a bit more instead of grouped together, but for a second year, overall everyone really pulled it off. Let me break it down day by day. Friday
Friday's opening address was done By Wes Unruh, who did an excellent job of introducing esozone. I also got to meet Ben Mack in person, and we ended up getting into some intriguing discussions about marketing. Also Met Michael Skrtic, when Bill Whitcomb brought him by. I knew we'd get along well, when he said, "I want to talk to you about Space/Time Magic. You're the only other person I've encountered who's worked on those kinds of techniques" I also ran into Nick Pell, Edward Wilson, Nemo, Kara, Brian and many other people I hadn't seen in a while. The night itself was spent listening to the Pranks talk by St. Mae and St. Fox, the Forestructuring of 2012 by Clyde Lewis, and Trevor Blake's excellent lecture on Buckminster Fuller (Can I just say I love the sound of Trevor's voice...very melodic).
I walked in on the esotech panel, which was pretty intriguing. They seemed to be focused on radionics technology. I listened for a bit while setting up my vending booth. After that ended I managed to get some books signed by Antero Alli, Edward Wilson and Wes Unruh, and Ben Mack, which pleased me greatly, on general principle. At 1pm, Antero Alli had his eight circuit lecture, which I unfortunately had to miss because I was also doing my workshop on Neuroscience, Identity, and Magic. Amazingly enough I actually managed to acquire an audience, and a decent one at that. My lecture was almsot two hours long and ranged from neuroscience, to lingusitics, to memory to memes and much more. For those who are interested, I'll be presenting an abbreviated version of it on Monday night on my radio show. After I finished my lecture, I got to listen to Rex Church's discussion about the Ragnarok Engine, which looks rather intriguing. I also saw Oryelle's conjunctio performance and ened up swapping books for one of his framed works and his book on time magic.
After all that, Lupa arrived and after we socialized for a bit, she did her workshop, which I attended for part of the time. Really fascinating discussion of 21st century animism. Afterwards, I listened to Dennis McKenna and chatted with various people. I've met so many people at this event that I hope to follow up with.
Today was the day that wasn't as smooth as Friday and Saturday. The six hour lecture by Paul Lafolley, as well as a one hour workshop expanding into a a four hour workshop (I think he was trying to compete with Paul), made the day's offerings less dynamic than I hoped. I'd really wanted to hear Wes Unruh's workshop on cut-up, Edward Wilson's meme workshop, and Ben Mack's workshop on making an elephant appear in the room. This unfortunately didn't happen. I did get into a nice chat with Antero Alli and hope to speak with him a bit more tomorrow night.
Overall: Esozone was really good. It encouraged a much needed spirit of community in the occult community. I look forward to it again next year.
I did get some really good loot. Some art and a book on time magic by Oryelle, A book by Antero Alli on paratheatrical work,, a few cds I intend to listen to and one I'm listening to now from Hekate, and a couple of interesting magazines on fringe science. I also met a lot of really cool people and re-connected with others. Awesome time overall.