Cal Mah Con Report

This past weekend saw H and I at Cal Mah. This was the first Stargate convention in the UK for several years, run by FCD Events, who overcame the original hotel going bust and issues with the replacement venue, to deliver an excellent convention with fabulous guests.

H and I set off early afternoon, motorbiking the 110 miles to Leicester. We stayed in The Belmont Hotel, which was absolutely lovely and highly recommended. We’d already payed for the stay, including breakfast, so we’d nothing to worry about on that side of things. However, we didn’t have as much money for the con as I’d have liked.

While the convention had guests representing all three Stargate shows, for me the draw was Cliff Simon, who played Baal in SG1. We go back a little way – I run his fan site and finally met in 2013, where we got on like a house on fire.

This time was no different. I presented him with his book for signing (Paris Nights – go read it if you haven’t!) and he asked for my name. I gave him a very long look and said, “Misa.” To which he hid his face in his hands. “You’ve changed your hair!” Well, yes, darling. It had been 5 years! Since he added he’d been looking out for me and I got a massive hug, I decided to forgive him. He also signed my copy of his book.

“Misa, Good to see u again. With love, Cliff Simon.”

I gave him a woolly beanie, which turned out to be a huge mistake as right at the start of the SG1 panel, in front of a crowd of roughly 1000, he decided to point at me and tell the entire room that I ran his fan site, was marvellous, and everyone should support my new business.

Talk about embarrassing.

The rest of the panel veered between interesting and ridiculous as the actors told stories of their time on the set and what they’ve done since (apart from Dan Shea, who “has no talent”.)

There were also panels from David Blue – our sole Universe guest – and Torri Higginson and Rainbow Sun Francks from Atlantis. There were a couple of cancellations, but that’s the nature of conventions inviting working actors. Given the “replacements” included SG1’s Christopher Judge, I wasn’t complaining much!

Due to finances, I could afford just one photo shoot. I chose to do a green screen photo with Cliff, picking the Goa’uld mothership background since given Cliff wore one of Baal’s outfits. (Almost, he left off the leather pants, sadly.) I got right to the front of the queue before realising I’ve no idea what I wanted. As I flailed, Cliff pointed to his knee, meaning I ought to sit there. Short of options – and not needing too much encouragement – I went for it.

H and I managed to chat to Cliff late on Sunday, before we went, where he spotted H’s motorbike t-shirt. They talked about bikes a lot, with Cliff taking a very long look at the photo of H’s bike. SO funny. He seemed surprised we’d gone so far on the bike. He also remembered that I had been planning on taking my DAS the last time we met and wondered why I’d still not done it. Then he told me to ride safe more times than was necessary. (I got my revenge when he tweeted about leaving and I told him to “Fly safe!” *giggle*)

Cliff wearing the beanie I made him

There was hugging. LOTS of hugging. I hoping it won’t be another five years before we meet up again, but it really depends on convention organisers.

I really ought to have more to say about the other guests, but there was only one I went for. *shrug*

6 thoughts on “Cal Mah Con Report

  1. Oh wow, I had no idea there were still Stargate conventions in the UK! I’m jealous you got to meet Cliff Simon as Baal is one of my favourite bad guys from SG1.

    1. Last year’s was the first in a while, after Chevron left us in the lurch. They claimed a lack of interest. 1000 guests at Cal Mah says otherwise!

      Cliff is lovely. We’ve a bit of history and I actually run his fan group over on Facebook.

    2. There is actually Cal Mah 2.0 about to happen 6th-8th September 2019 and Cliff Simon is coming! Its held in Telford this year and you should be able to purchase day tickets on the day if you are able to attend. I highly recommend having a look. The other guests were amazing last year and it looks to be a fun one this year.

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