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4 kittens

the sheer production and energy and cost.

Posted on 2015.10.04 at 21:40
Today we are going to ACL again. Last night, the babysitter told us, "You don't seem like Drake fans!"  after we told her he was headlining. And we're not, much, but we don't dislike him either. (She's awfully fond of innaccurate assertions about us, like how we're raising our kids to be free spirits, and how we're really "upbeat".)

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Every Thursday there is a faculty lunch - for $5, you get braised pork or fried chicken or some other hot meal. My math colleagues  have a running thing about the toppings on the salad. The theory goes that whoever arrives first scoops disproportionately off the top of the giant salad bowl, and if you arrive later you'll miss the croutons and feta cheese and cherry tomatoes. So they always leave really early to be first in line. (This is totally ridiculous. The salad gets replenished continuously. But sort of funny.)

By the time that I get out of class at noon on Thursdays, my math colleagues are already long gone. So it was unusual when the chair of my department, R, stopped by my office and asked, "Are you heading for lunch?" I was. We started walking over.

"I hope L remembered to set out the code, so we can get a free lunch," R said to me.  I had forgotten about that. L was guiding some official visitors on campus, and so the administration will pay for their lunch, and also anyone who was eating with them. Great! Free lunch!

A few minutes later, R said, "I really don't like the visitors. I hope we don't have to sit with them."
I said, "Didn't you just say you wanted to get on the code and sit with them?"
R said, "I'm hoping their table's full. We'll get on the code and then when we get inside, we won't be able to sit with them. Because there won't be any seats left at their table."
I said, "Wait. Is that why you were so late to lunch?"
R said, "Of course. I'm waiting for their table to fill up."
!!!

We got on the code and got inside, and saw their table, and there were two open seats still.
"Oh well!" I said merrily, "I guess we're stuck!"
R fumed. "I even counted! I counted how many math people had left already! The table should be full!"

Two math people had sat elsewhere.  R was actually pissed, and I was actually laughing out loud at him.

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One other thing that's here with us is E Messily's health and illness. It's not really mine to talk about, but it also feels really phony to omit it. I think I'm getting pretty good at detecting which expressions mean that E is in a lot of pain. At first I thought, "Is she mad? Annoyed with us? Are we taking her for granted? Oh right, her pain is hugely unmanageable. It's probably that."

I'm often observing that I'm powerless to do anything substantial, and I struggle with that. It's nice to supply niceties and ice packs, but it'd be nicer if she weren't sick in the first place. There's a whole melancholy rabbit hole you'll go down, if you start thinking too hard that way, though.

When she's healthy, she's healthy, and when she's not, she's really not. It's episodic. E Messily's health is like the little girl with the little curl in the middle of her forehead.

(Hey heebie, it's a little weird to write about someone who will read about herself here, isn't it? Yes it is. So I got permission first.)

(Relatedly, I feel a little uneasy about writing about Hawaii's career goals last week. She told me it in confidence, and she's not a little kid anymore, so I should probably consider having some boundaries. But I also want to document these things.)(One thought is that if I lock things up every month or two, then there's not a whole lot of archives available for her friends to find in five years. It seems like less of a violation.)

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I have a whole list of topics yet, and also photos, but I'm beat. Maybe that's what the babysitter meant when she called us upbeat: just plain beat. Or beat up.

Jammies got back in town on Friday, and goes back out of town on Monday. Two weeks of trips done, one more week to go. This week's trip is short.

I'm on the fence about whether or not we should undertake ACL in the future. My favorite part is watching all the Austin fashion. People work it up. This year, everything was extremely drapy and silky. Long delicate jewelry. If not drapy and silky, then very 90s - structured boustiers, clomping Doc Martens, dark flowered prints. High-waisted shorts, arrows and triangles and geometric gold jewelry.  (I'm aware these aren't brand new trends - please, I occasionally flip through the Urban Outfitters catalog - but they were dominant.)

My least favorite part of ACL is the sheer production and energy and cost. I'm beat up.

Comments:


e_messily at 2015-10-05 12:17 (UTC) (Link)

there was a little girl who had a little curl

...when she was good, she was sort of mediocre,
and when she was bad she was horrid.
heebie-geebie
heebie_geebie at 2015-10-05 13:57 (UTC) (Link)

Re: there was a little girl who had a little curl

I had the odd thought that the Geebies are explicitly benefiting directly from your illness. That seems unseemly.
e_messily at 2015-10-05 16:33 (UTC) (Link)

Re: there was a little girl who had a little curl

SOMEbody should benefit! Somebody besides all those no-good doctors.

I also like to think of it as "serving the insurance company right"
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