I'm also a GAMES-related recruit–a good few years after writing for the magazine and playtesting games in the offices on Tuesday nights, I joined up, but couldn't make any sense out of the Enigma, and so let my subscription lapse. I went to Montreal, though, and had a fine old time. At the ChicagoCon, I could stay away no further, and my fiancee and I both rejoined. And so:
Manx and G,Ames and 317537 (this last of whom I think is no longer a member) were editors at the magazine. Chainsaw, Jo The, and myself were contributors. (This is all before the mag moved from NYC to Pennsylvania; I still contribute to the mag, but less frequently.) The others were assorted Friends of Games, who could be relied upon to show up at the offices on a moment's notice to play Wizard or The Great Dalmuti or whatever was hot at the time.
Whether all these people knew each other from the NPL or knew each other BEFORE the NPL, I don't know. But the whole group's enthusiasm, as a whole, definitely grabbed me and convinced me to join, and then rejoin.
Source: npl-folk email from Storyteller.
For me, we have the simple story and the complicated story. The simple story is, I am Storyteller because I am a playwright, writer and, by gosh, a storyteller. The complicated story is, I wanted my name, Eric, to be my nom. The word came back: No can do, it's already taken. And if I had thought about it, I would have remembered the mighty odd conversation I had with somebody at a party at Helene's house, after the World Puzzle Championship in New York: Stranger: Hi, I'm Signore Me:(thinking this guy doesn't look Italian): I'm Eric. Hi. (He gives me a very odd look.) Of course, he was not Signore but Senor, and I was certainly *not*, to my later surprise, Eric. All this had slipped my mind when coming up with a nom with myself. Anyway, after Eric was rejected, I moved on to what I thought was the logical alternative: Mister E. No can do, the word came back. Mister E isn't a very active member, but he's still a member. (Or was at the time: He's not in the 1997 Directory. Figures.)
My reply to having two noms shot out of the air was: Not joining. No wait. I subscribed to The Enigma for a year, nomless, did not understand even a single word printed therein, and let my membership lapse. It remained lapsed even as I attended the con in Montreal, although that is where Storyteller made his first appearance. (And indeed, one story was told repeatedly over those days: First, I had wanted to be Eric…)
Anyway, Storyteller and his nomsake more or less vanished until Chicago. I attended that con with my girlfriend J-9, whose etymology see. We sat during the flat competition and learned from… Quip? Quiz? QED? Damn. Wish I could remember, because he deserves a lot of credit, for he actually explained, in actual English!, how to solve rebi. J-9 and I got hooked. We joined up, her for the first time, me for the second, and we make a semi-habit of solving the Enigma, and I always am amazed when we get a flat that at first glance seems impossible, and indeed would have been impossible during my first NPL days.