My first con was Midwescon in 1964. My introduction to fandom had been
through the infamous Jim Sanders, who was a year or two older and was a
freshman at Columbia. Jim was a neighbor of mine in New Jersey. Jim
had introduced me to Mike McInerny's Fistfa, first when Mike lived at E. 6th Street and later at W. 16 Street. Mike's appartment has sometimes
been referred to as the First Federal Roach Preserve, but that is
My friend Bob Whalen was the only one with a access to a car, his
fathers 1955 Buick, which was wheezing toward the end of its life.
We agreed to pick Jim up at Columbia and then to continue on to
Cincinnati. We had gotten an early start but when we met Jim, he
diverted us to Ross Chamberlain's house to borrow Ross' mimeograph.
Ross not only loaned Jim the mimeograph but had also drawn a cover on a
stencil for Jim's fanzine. Jim had become obsessed with the notion of
being the first in fan history to publish a fanzine in a car on the way
to a con. Then we were diverted to locate an obscure shop in lower
Manhattan which was reputedly the cheapest source of mimeograph paper.
Finally hours later, we drove onto the old Weehawken ferry, which ceased
operation shortly thereafter.
For the entire 800 some odd miles to Cincinnati, Jim alternately typed
and ran the mimeograph. When we got to the con, the fanzine was nearly
complete. Jim thoughtfully left the typewriter at a table by the poolside and
allowed passersby to contribute comments. Finally though, Jim's
fanzine, Zeus, was finished and I suppose, in a very minor way, fan
history was made. Jim, by the way, wrote under the nome de plume of
Norm J. Cascajo.