Early on Sunday afternoon, we drove over to Falls Church to link up with Dan and Lynn Steffan. They were in the process of moving the last of their belongings out of 1010 N. Tuckahoe, the house next door to Ted White's place and their home for the past few years. To readers of the focal point fanzine of early-1980s transatlantic fandom, the two houses had a collective identity that Dan's departure was now ending forever. Being the fan that he is, Dan appreciated the significance of the occasion.

"You realise," he intoned, "that you're among the last to see World PONG Headquarters as it was?"

Indeed we did, and we observed a moment's silence at its passing as a mark of respect.

Dan & Lynn Steffan ("Who the hell were those people? Jesus, I don't think I was ever that thin."
- Dan, 2013. "Those were my boy band years." - Lynn, 2013.)

Dan and Lynn had moved to the Adams-Morgan district of DC proper, which is not one of the more salubrious areas of the city. However, when we followed them over to it, their new apartment proved to be surprisingly pleasant. Reached by steep stairs, it was the upper floor of a converted two-storey Victorian house. The high-ceilings added to the feeling of spaciousness while Dan and Lynn's, ah, eclectic taste in decor gave it a quirky feel. Dan handed me a copy of The Washington Weekly, the magazine he was then art editor of, and chuckled as he demonstrated his battery-powered toy chainsaw. It truly is a wonderful country that would make such a thing. Meanwhile, Lynn had put on a record album by Captain Kirk himself, William Shatner, so that we could all marvel at his unique interpretation of 'Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds', which he delivered in a style that can best be described as over-emoted declamation.

"God, that was awful!" I said with great feeling when it was over.

"Sure is," laughed Lynn, "but I intend to sell it to a rich Trekkie eventually and to retire on the proceeds."

Dan & Lynn later treated us to dinner at an Ethiopian restaurant called 'The Red Sea'. This was the first time I'd encountered this particular cuisine and I needed directions from the Steffans before I could figure out how you're supposed to eat it. Basically, you're each given a plate of small, bready pancakes and you use these to pick up mouthfuls of the various dishes provided on a large tray in the middle of the table. The food was delicious, though since it bore little resemblance to any other cuisine I knew, I can't really describe it to you. To my delight, the restaurant carried imported British beers, and it was with immense pleasure that I drank my bottle of Theakston's Old Peculier. It was inevitable we'd discuss the Bergeron Affair at some point, and it proved to be the main topic of conversation during our meal. Fortunately, that was the only time it was mentioned all day.

Back at the new apartment we watched TV and I got to see an episode of 'Monty Python' for the first time in a decade, the BBC having never re-run it in that time. I also got to see my first ever televangelist, and was fascinated by him. The Reverand Ike was a wiry, fast-talking, black man, and while not as glitzy as others of his ilk was no less a salesman. I watched in fascination as snippets from the Bible were interspersed with exhortations to send money, phone numbers flashing as a host of operators readied themselves to fleece the gullible in what was obviously a well-practiced operation. Reverand Ike was less subtle in his appeals for money than more celebrated televangelists, but he was slick enough to pull in the rubes.

"Send money for the 'Secret of Good Luck' package," urged the Rev, "straight from the Bible. You'll learn how you can get what you want -- success, good luck, and more money!"

The Bible must've changed considerably in the years since I was given religious instruction in school as I don't recall material success and the secret of making more money being a big part of Jesus' teachings. But then, I never understood what the world's last great absolute monarch, the Pope ("Vicar of Christ, Successor of the Apostles, Pontifex Maximus of the Universal Church, Patriarch of the West, Primate of Italy, Archbishop and Metropolitan of the Province of Rome, State Sovereign of the Vatican City"), with all his pomp and splendour, has to do with them either, so what do I know? For entirely non- religious reasons, Dan was a big fan of the Reverand Ike and regularly sent off a couple of bucks for the various religious artefacts the Rev plugged on his show. Dan thought these things were hilarious, and when he showed me some of them I could see why. They included cheap plastic crosses, 'holy' oil (in a bottle the size of a thumb-tip), prayer rope (a four-inch piece of string), a 'holy' shower cap (indistinguishable from those supplied for free in hotel rooms), a 'holy' prayer mat (being a material sample swatch), and a prayer fish (which was one of those cellophane fishes that curl up when laid on your palm).

"Holy shit!!" I laughed, shaking my head at this junk.

"Not yet," said Dan, "but I'm sure they'll offer that soon."

Avedon and I had greatly enjoyed our day with Dan and Lynn, and left them that night feeling pretty good. Alas, this mood was rudely disrupted the next morning when we received a bumper crop of mail from Bergeron, Locke, and Mayer, which depressed the hell out of Avedon. In the hope of finding something to cheer her up I turned on the TV ... right in the middle of a news report from the Vietnam Memorial I'd visited a few days earlier, about a Vietnam veteran who'd committed suicide in front of it during the night. It looked like it was going to be one of those days, and so it proved to be.

In the afternoon, Avedon and I drove to her bank to deposit $180 of TAFF money I had on me but was unlikely to need in the few days remaining of my trip. Though she'd been banking there for 15 years, the bank staff were unable to find her account. In the aeons that passed while they searched for it, I ambled across the road to the small local track rail station, a wooden building all cream and brown, bearing the legend 'KENSINGTON, 1891, B&O'. I suspect this would've meant more to me had I been any sort of railway enthusiast, my appreciation of the building being purely aesthetic. When, finally, the bank had located Avedon's account and the money had been deposited, we drove up to Barbarian Books which, of course, was shut.

However, the day picked up considerably that evening when Ted White treated us to dinner at a Mexican restaurant. I tucked in to beans, rice, and chile rochas -- washed down with liberal amounts of Dos Equis beer -- and felt considerably mellower afterwards. Later, back at 1014 N. Tuckahoe -- the other part of World PONG HQ -- we sat around drinking cola, calling Dave Locke names, and generally chewing the fat. I played Ted the tape of the Kettle interview and also the three Astral Leauge tapes I'd brought over with me. Ted was greatly taken with these, and offered to release them on vinyl.

"Since when are you a record executive?" I asked, skeptically.

"You can put out short-run vinyl recordings quite cheaply these days," he replied, taking a couple of record singles off a shelf, "and here are some we've already put out."

Ted gave me one of these, by a band called 'The Young Proffessionals', whose sleeve notes listed its Executive Producer as Ted's buddy Matthew Moore. Inevitably, Matthew arrived at 1014 just as I was reading them. I told Ted he'd have to contact Graham Charnock about the Astral Leauge tapes. Whether or not he ever took this any further I don't know but, sadly, no Astral Leauge albums ever appeared.

We phoned Patrick Nielsen Hayden on a three-way line shortly after 11pm to get the latest report on the Bergeron Affair and, as usual, he had a few choice tidbits to impart. Looking back, I can see that even at this early point we were beginning to get obsessed by the affair. In his autobiography, Isaac Asimov -- as big a Nixon-hater as Avedon's father -- talked of needing his regular "Watergate-fix". As much as we deplored the snowballing feud that Richard Bergeron had set in motion, the horrible fascination it had for us meant that we, too, needed our regular "fix".