My BSI Weekend of January 12, 2024 by Janice Weiner

My BSI Weekend of January 12, 2024


Janice Weiner


           It’s always a busy time at the BSI weekend or, in my case from Tuesday the 9th through the 15th. Through a twist of fate Terry McCammon was in Chicago at a time when we could then travel to New York together. I have to admit I was glad to have someone to help me with luggage. Arthritis and luggage are not a happy pairing. We arrived on that Tuesday and then had dinner with David McCallister at Reichenbach Hall, a German restaurant. I do not know if the owners know the Sherlockian connection. The boys enjoyed their beer though.

           Wednesday was the ASH dinner at a new place, but with familiar company. Noisy as usual, but it’s fun conversing with friends. On Thursday I was at McSorley’s talking to many Sherlockians I know through attending the weekend, various Zoom meetings, and newsletters. It’s an informal gathering where the conversation is enjoyable and there’s no pressure to be there at a certain time or leave at one too. Terry and I usually have stopped at the Strand bookstore before McSorley’s. That night I had the pleasure of going to Terry Hunt’s Foundry Dinner. More interesting conversation.

           I have realized that I only have so much energy these days and, though I could have filled just about every minute with Sherlockian events, I have to pick and choose what works for me now. On Friday I had breakfast with Ellen, Terry’s wife and we had a nice chat (and good bagel sandwiches too). I just can’t do a group breakfast, the Gillette Luncheon and then the BSI Dinner in one day. So, I saved my energy for the dinner.

           Most important to the Chicago Sherlockian scene, three Chicagoans were invested in the BSI. Rudy Altergott is “Old Patrick”. Stephen Chahn Lee is “Alec MacDonald”. Bob Sharfman is “Killer Evans”. Many congratulations to all three. I’ll let you look up the investiture references.

           I’m sure most of you heard I believe I was infected by COVID at the dinner . . .  sigh . . . I was at a number of crowded activities, but the timing of my illness suggested the dinner as my source of infection. Sometimes you just can’t win.

           On Saturday I did my bit for the Sherlockian economy by buying some books. I admit I haven’t had the chance to really check out Canonical Cornerstones: Foundational Books of a Sherlockian Library, edited by Peter Eckrich and Rob Nunn. It’s their take on what should be in one’s Sherlockian library. I believe I have most of the seventeen books they mention, but I am interested in their reasons for recommending those particular books.

           I then attended the BSI reception. The buffet was nice, though I missed the chocolate dessert option. Sigh . . . It’s always interesting to watch the auction that helps fund the Dr. John H. Watson Fund, a lovely way to help Sherlockians attend the Weekend. And, it’s very nice when the newest invested members are recognized again.

           Sunday was the ASH Brunch where one can enjoy a nice breakfast and get to say good-bye to many friends who must leave that day. I was leaving Monday, so I stayed at the restaurant for a good part of the day before going back to the hotel to rest and pack.

           It turned out I had the pleasure of traveling back on the same flight as Rudy and Bob. We had a nice chat while we waited for our delayed (no surprise) flight. I will thank Bob here for his concern about my getting home in the very cold weather. He had arranged for a driver to take him and Rudy home and he asked the driver to take me home too. What a nice thing to do! And the driver took my bags right up to my back door. My arthritis thanks him.

           I recommend people try to get to the weekend at least once to see all the action, though I will be rethinking just what I will do in the future. It’s quite an adventure in the Sherlockian world.