The following are selected memories from Manna from members past and present.
Back in the old days of Manna, we used to hang out at Neo-Tokyo, an anime/manga store in
Royal Oak, and at the time, the only anime merchandice store in Metro Detroit. It was a
very cool place and we had a lot of fun just hanging out there. One day, we were talking
about NG Knight Lamune +40, and how the ending credits of the show had the cutest animation
of Milk, a character, doing a silly dance to the ending song. Then, Ben and Jonathan
proceeded to do the dance! A pure moment of Manna silliness.
John and Justin had left a few months before, and Adam sent out an e-mail saying
he could not reserve the regular room. The Oakland County Boating Safety course or something
like that had reserved the room. We were screwed. After berating
Adam, we thought that we could reserve all the cheap rooms in the library and
have a mini con. We'd call it MannaCon, and we'd celebrate Manna's birthday.
One room would be gaming, one showing room, and one dealer room.
In the end, it turned out rather well. Our regular showing room opened up
at the last minute and we had almost every room in the library. This was the 2nd month
of Geordie no-showing, and we assumed him lost in action.
Although attendance was at its worst, and rooms were left unsupervised, and there was
great potential for disaster, it went off well, and will always be the greatest scheduling
achievement we've managed to pull off. Although future MannaCons were nonexistant, it was
still a great day for Manna, and I hope that one day we'll be able to pull off
somthing like it again.
The Parking Lot
Early on in Manna's history at the library, we had to have a meeting directly after
every showing. This meeting was to pool together the $30 or so needed to pay for the room
cost. With Michigan being the way it is. this was almost always done in poor weather.
While we were whipping out our wallets, we would talk and shoot the breeze, even with the
freezing weather, while we waited for everyone to clear out of the room and get
their equipment (we had a TON of equipment back then). This is where the tradition of
standing in the parking lot came from.
Since then, it is just not a Manna meeting unless there's standing in a parking lot,
shooting the breeze. Manna members have done this everywhere we've ever been: Neo-Tokyo,
Silverbowl Thai Restaurant, the Library of course, and now, at Oakland U.
(FYI, Jonathan was a physics graduate student at WSU while he was a Manna Member)
One month in winter, I was making hot chocolate for Manna attendees. I put in a huge load
of instant powder and added the hot water and put it on a hot plate and started taking
care of other things more pressing. Justin turned to me and asked why I didn't stir it up,
which I'd forgotten to do. With a wink and a nudge to Jonathan, I told him I didn't need
to, thanks to Brownian motion (Brownian motion basically states that particles move randomly).
The 4 TV System
Before the projector, before the large screen TV, when Manna first started up, all we had
was the TV provided by the library, which sucked horribly. It was a terrible 20" older
than all of us, and maybe older than a few of us put together. It would not do. We scoured
our minds for some way to deal with this. What we did have were 2 13" TVs and a 19" TV.
So, we did a lot of signal splitting and wiring and had 4 TVs going at once: the two larger
TVs in the center and the 13" TVs on the sides. It was nothing short of bizarre. Eventually
a kind Manna attendee loaned us his 19" so we removed the library TV altogether and had the
4 TV setup until John Pfeiffer replaced it.
For those of us that can remember back then, it was fun times.