Just Who _IS_ The Flame of the Internet?

P.L. Caruthers-Montgomery

Fan Guest of Honor at MID-SOUTH CON 9
held in Memphis, Tennessee in the spring of 1990

She has been brightening the scene of Southern Fandom for so many years now that were she an ordinary person, her presence would be comfortable. Happily, she is not ordinary and her presence summons an electric excitement. I've known her almost since her first appearance in fandom, when she and I were both, of course, still in pre-school, and this gives me a certain standing in the community. It is a rare convention I attend that someone does not come up to me and ask The Question.

The Question?

Why, just what does the P.L. stand for, of course.

There are many rumors regarding what it stands for, of course. For example, some, who have witnessed her joyous whirlwind tour of room parties at any good convention, would have you believe it stands for Possibly Loony. To those unpleasant few who would disrupt a convention with boorish behavior, it definitely means Please Leave. Those of us who know her best will be forgiven if we regard the most likely combination to be Phenomenal Lady. Is that what P.L. stands for? Well, yes and no.

It actually stands for -- maybe I shouldn't say that. At least not just yet.

P.L. lives, these days, in Anniston, Alabama with her husband Larry Montgomery, who was one of the stalwarts who put Southern fandom together back in the Eocene Age, that fabled period when fan publishing was done with stone tablets and mimeographs. They each own a justly deserved Rebel Award (years before he received his, Larry invented the damned things), presented to them by the Deep South Science Fiction Convention. In addition P.L. was, for five years, the driving force behind the Southern Fandom Co nfederation and the person who edited its Bulletin.

The One And Only PLCM

She is a superb calligrapher, and her fillos can still be seen in a variety of fanzines. She was a member of the illustrious Southern Fandom Press Alliance. She has written entertainingly for a variety of fan publications (once having a column, Dixie Doodling, in Pulsar! ).

She has, in fact, done so much in fandom over a twenty-year span that one might think the most likely mental image of her would be a blur of activity. Not so, at least in my case. Thinking back over all the conventions she and I have both attended, I picture her, usually dressed in black (though I understand she now indulges in brighter colors on occasion), seated in a chair, legs crossed, auburn hair aflame, her eyes aglow with some impish mischief all their own. She is nothing if not Phun Loving. I su spect she was always surrounded by eager young fans, but I don't remember them, just her.

So, if this is your first opportunity to meet P.L., by all means walk up to her and say "Hello." She'll make you feel at home; trust me. And talking to her is both fun and educational.

That's why they call her Phannish Legend.

by Jerry Page

These Photos Scanned Courtesy of Tom Bowerman

PLCM Screen Designs, Ltd.

You might also like to check out these links...

Or Visit These Alternate Realities...

P.L.'s Realm of Speculative Fiction
P.L.'s GEOCITIES Forever Knight Pages
[P.L.'s MIRROR Site]

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Last update on October 18th, 1998