This event was an incredibly special moment in my life that I will never forget. It was an absolute pleasure to meet Don S. Davis, Carmen Argenziano and he’s partner Eileen Grubba. All three of these guests were amazing and lovely to chat with. I’m so honoured to have had the opportunity to meet such amazing people. Much fun was had with friends and guests.
My friends and I brought VIP tickets and got to have dinner with the guests the night before the event. Started the night off sitting next to Don, he was an absolute sweetheart and spoke very lovingly about his wife Ruby. At one point I was persuaded to recite my all time favourite Stargate blooper, the “I’m stuck on a glacier with MacGyver!” classic. I had a chat with Don about one of my favourite childhood movies ‘Look Whose Talking’. I don’t remember why but I was playing ringtones on my phone, specifically the Stargate theme song with lyrics. When I played my message tone ‘Most people I know, think that I’m crazy’ Don got a good laugh out of it.
After a time Don and Carmen swapped table and he and Eileen joined us at ours. We shook hands and introduced ourselves I said “I’m Janelle, but you can call me Smiley”, he thought that was very fitting. Carmen spoke very lovingly of Amanda Tapping and how great she is. How much she helped in on the show. We spoke more about Stargate and Amanda, talked about careers and family. He told me about his daughter who was the same age as I was.
After dinner was over and Don had retired to bed, but Carmen stayed and chatted with us. It was a very comfortable and relaxing conversation. When it was time for Carmen and Eileen to go, I told them that I would be wearing a costume the following day. Carmen said “Well if I don’t recognise you, just smile”.
Costumes & Photos
The next day at the event I was dressed in an Australian Air Force Blues outfit. It seemed fitting since both Don and Carmen played Air Force Generals. When Carmen walked in and saw me he looked really impressed and commented on how it looked great. He then followed it up by giving me a big hug and I’m pretty sure there was stupid fangirl grin on my face. I got to watch on as Don and Carmen did a little photo-shoot together. They were puckering for kisses and all sorts, they were very entertaining to watch. They looked like two mischievous kids taking photos together.
After they were finished it was time for attendees photographs. A lot of us attendees were chatting and getting to know each other in the queue for photos. We got to watch as everyone got their photos taken and it was nice to see and be entertained. I got a photo with both Don and Carmen and they were both lovely. Carmen gave me a big hug as I walked up for my photo as did Don, who also commented on my costume. They both loved the costume, I’m so honoured to have been able to wear it to meet them. The costume is an actual Australian Air Force uniform belonging to an older friend of mine. He allowed me to wear it for the weekend which was an honour, he even allowed me to keep the jacket.
Carmen was up for his panel first whilst Don went off to explore the city. He was hilarious and it was a great panel with many laughs had. He spoke about working with Amanda and the rest of the Stargate cast. Speaking very highly of them all and how he loved working with them. Also mentioned how he would have loved to explore the character of Selmak more.
The big Jack and Sam shippers in attendance had to ask Carmen his opinion on their relationship. I love that he answered from the perspective of a protective father. He said Jack wouldn’t be good enough for his daughter, but that if she was happy it wouldn’t matter. I thought his response was great, I’m not a definitely not a shipper, I prefer the subtle hints. I thought it was amazing how he answered this question though. It was obvious something he had really thought about. He’s daughter is lucky to have such a loving and caring father.
As Carmen’s panel came to an end it was time for the Evil Vegemite Girls to strike again. Scotty introduces us and I throw a tube of Vegemite to Carmen. He opens the tube, lifts it above his head and squeezed it into his mouth. At first a little bit, but then followed it with more, his reaction was priceless. When the taste hit him he picked up a bottle of water and skulled most of it. Then tipped the remainder over his head, then reached out and popped a mentos into his mouth.
Up next was the auction, many items were auctioned off including the photos of Don and Carmen from the beginning of the event. I managed to score myself one of these photos and it included an autograph from each of them. After the auction there was a screening of the last episode of Stargate SG-1 ‘Unending’.
I had my own special moment with Don and it’s something I’ll always remember. Whilst everyone was sitting watching the episode I was standing at the back of the room when Don came in. He walked over to me, draped his arm over my shoulders and we chatted. I don’t remember the exact conversation, but I enjoyed the moment. Before he headed off to prepare for his panel he gave me a huge hug and kissed the top of my head. He was such a loving person and it was such an honour to have been able to meet him.
When it was time for Don’s panel he got up on the stage and told us some great stories. He spoke so lovingly of his wife Ruby and their animals. Shared the stories of how he and his wife met, how Teryl Rothery helped them get together. He told us about their wedding, and how Amanda had a big sign made and put it on her house congratulating them. He spoke with such love about Amanda and Teryl. When asked what his favourite animal was, he answered Human, female.
He spoke briefly about his time in the military. Talked about his artwork and drawings, informed us of an upcoming exhibition he had. He spoke about working on Stargate and working with the cast and crew. He said that coming to work on the show was an absolute pleasure.
When it came time for the Vegemite, Don declined to taste it on stage. Saying he had tried it once before and wasn’t going to do it again. As the panel came to an end Locky presented Don with a present, an Australian Army Slouch hat. Locky, Scotty and Don had gone to a sunrise service on ANZAC Day together a few days before. Don was honoured and wore the hat with pride.
Autographs and Don
Queuing up for autographs is as much of the experience of an event as anything. You always meet and make good friends when standing in queues together. Someone in the queue was talking about photos they’d seen online, it was funny because they were my photos. At one stage we were mucking around and singing random Aussie songs. When it was time for me to get my autograph from Don, I walked up singing ‘Old Man Emu’. Don had a laugh about it, I mean it is a pretty ridiculous song.
This is an event I will never forget, I’m pleased I was able to enjoy these special moments. Not just meeting such amazing human beings as Don, Carmen and Eileen, but making friends too. I had some really great chats with Eileen throughout the day too, such a lovely person, very sweet and friendly.
Don S. Davis
I’m so honoured to have been given the opportunity to meet these guests. I’ll always remember the special moments I had with them, especially Don. Don passed away the following year, it made these moments even more special. We were so lucky to have had the opportunity to meet him when we did. Such a love and caring person who is greatly missed.