[Note, an earlier post deals with events that came chronologically after the events in this post (a bit like Luke-Acts?), because I finished that one first.]
After the Historical Jesus section at which Ted Weeden was speaking, I bought some more books, and was pleased to see that Continuum were now offering 50% discount (early 40%), so it was almost worth having waited. I say almost because I had wanted to get the three volumes of Davies-Allison on Matthew, which was super-cheap, but it seems that everyone else wanted it too and only volume 2s were left. Maybe next time. I might blog on some of my other purchases over the coming days.
I spent a little too long at the book exhibit, though, because I missed the very beginning of Stephen Carlson's Secret Mark paper. Apparently one of the speakers dropped out, so Stephen was on 25 minutes early. (Strong mental note: make extra allowances for such things in the future). But I heard almost all of it, thankfully, and it was a tour de force. Stephen presented extemp, and regular readers will know that I am a fan of that, and the talk was clearly illustrated with all the relevant samples of the hand of Secret Mark, the hands of other mss from Mar Saba, and the hand of Morton Smith himself; readers of the book will know about M. Madiotes and Stephen brought up all the relevant information about this character (I won't spoil it for those who have not read the book yet -- it's my favourite part) in dramatic fashion, with one bullet point at a time on the left, and then a photograph of Smith added on the right; at the point when it was added, there was a general laugh of surprise and recognition. Stephen added one interesting element not in the book, where the text of a word had been written around one of the foxing stains in the book.
I felt a little sorry for the speaker who was on after Stephen, since virtually the entire room got up and left just as he started, and there were only about seven or eight of us left, and some of us no doubt because we were not quite quick enough.
There was a reception for Stephen Carlson's book in the evening in the Baylor University Press suite, with some nice food (some high quality beef, asparagus, cookies). There was no booze, though, and afterwards several of us retired to the Independence Brewery Pub and continued our conversations. That pub is a definite must-visit if you are in Philadelphia -- a great variety of good draft beers and not too expensive (by American standards, at least; at $3 or so a pint, we are in the range of a standard English pub pint).