Jay Lake (jaylake) wrote,
Jay Lake

[cancer|events] Today's benefit auction at Gaslight Gathering

I am the emcee and auctioneer for today's benefit auction at Gaslight Gathering. I've done this a number of times before, and it's a role I generally enjoy quite a bit. Given my affinity for being the center of attention, this should surprise precisely no one.

The auction has some very good items in it. All of them are donations. Many are from the originating authors or artists themselves, others are people putting items from their personal collections. Still others are goods or services. A couple of these things have some serious "wow" factor. As the weekend has progressed, I've spent time on bid ordering, auction logistics, all the things one thinks about when arranging such an event.

The thing is, the beneficiary of the auction is me. Gaslight Gathering and all these donors are generously raising funds to help me in my struggle with cancer. And that puts me in a curious position. Normally when I'm conducting a charity auction, I spend time talking up the charity, pointing out to people how much their bids will mean, that sort of thing. Except today if I take that approach, I'll be talking about myself.

Normally I have no troubles talking about myself. Lord knows that's not an issue. But talking about myself in a fundraising context like this feels inescapably self-serving. As always, I need to be fun, funny and fast-paced — that's the only way to keep an auction moving along. But it feels so strange.

I am thrilled and pleased beyond measure that Gaslight Gathering is doing this for me. But this will be a very different auction from my usual approach. This produces interesting emotional and social tensions within me.

Tags: cancer, conventions, events, health, personal, steampunk

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