Happy birthday, Jennie.

For those who knew her, today is a bittersweet day. It would have been Jennie's 26th birthday.

Jennie died in March. I intended to link to the column I wrote about her for the paper, but it seems those links only last for a few weeks and then they expire.

For those who don't know or who weren't with us, Jennie was our friend. She had cystic fibrosis. She received a lung transplant, but it didn't hold. She was on the transplant list when she died.

For her mother Selena, today was especially difficult in a manner I can't even begin to contemplate. My own son is so very dear to me, and I feel his absence even when he's just away visiting his father or my mother. I cannot comprehend the depth and breadth of Selena's loss.

But it seems an appropriate day to remind all who don't know about STEAMPOSIUM.

There's a connection. Bear with me.

As Jennie was entering her final battle, Conflation had a particularly successful year with a steampunk theme. In fact, it was so popular that many people asked organizer Alesia Clardy to form a regular steampunk convention here in St. Louis.

It just so happens that Alesia used to do a regular salon-style LARP that raised money for cystic fibrosis.

So when Jennie died shortly after Conflation, Alesia contacted me about creating STEAMPOSIUM, a steampunk convention for the Royal Order of Steampunk Enthusiasts. A convention to raise money for cystic fibrosis. I am in awe of Alesia, folks. She can create these things out of thin air, the fairy godmother of St. Louis.

STEAMPOSIUM will be April 9-11, 2010 at the Clayton Crowne Plaza in St. Louis, Mo. Click the above links for details. The room rates are great and Alesia knows how to put on a top-notch show.

I will be there. And I will try to talk every damn one of you into coming as well. What I know about steampunk couldn't fill one of Sara Harvey's hats. But this is one way our common interests can do some greater good, and bring something positive out of tragedy.

I think Jennie would approve.


Hurry up and get your membership now - the earlybird registration is only $30, but limited to the first 65 respondents! Click here for more.