BACUS Entertainment

BACUS is the professional society of mask makers for lithography and it holds a week-long conference each fall in Monterey, California. The highly geeky conference attracts hundreds of specialists in an arcane and fascinating technology niche of semiconductor chip manufacturing and is characterized by long days of physics-laden talks and longer evenings of shrimp cocktail-laden hospitality suites with even more tech talk fueled by open bars.

On Thursday night of conference week the typical conference banquet is followed by the typical conference announcements and the typical industry awards. But then something very atypical happens. An entertainment show begins, put on by people in the mask making industry (and a few ex-mask makers who tasted show biz and can't give it up). It's a Saturday Night Live-like show full of inside jokes skewering the companies and people populating the audience. Singing. Dancing. Acting. All performed by people who really can't sing, dance, or act. Actually, I'm only speaking for myself there, since I have been in the show for several years now. In fact, I met my now-wife at the cast party of the show in 2002 - I was invited after being the subject of much skewing that year. I thought she looked pretty good in fishnet stockings during the Rocky Horror Mask Shop number they did, so I made a point of meeting her that night. But that's the subject of a different story...

If you don't believe that engineers are capable of imaginative (OK, bizarre) fun, take a look at some of these photos.

2003    2004    2005

And a song from  2007