As soon as I left the check-in desk at the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center, I was instantly and irreversibly lost. Less a hotel than a climate-controlled, densely foliated M.C. Escher painting, the site of this year's COMMON is a maze of arched bridges, bubbling fountains, and curved staircases, all gilt in pseudo-antebellum décor. If you want to replicate the experience, drink half a bottle of Nyquil and watch Gone With the Wind (colorized). I'm exaggerating a bit. ...

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