I asked for comments on my previous post to try to gain insight into any readers I may have accumulated over the years, but received no replies. From this I can determine that either no one reads this, no one comments on what they read when prompted, or it is viewed infrequently and pending comments will arrive shortly. Gardan's Steelyard suggests my first conjecture, no one reads this, is the correct one. I could feel that as a blow to my ego, but it is helpful in that I don't feel I have to write to a specific audience, and can continue on as before, writing whatever comes to mind in a voice that pleases me.
I've been listening to the Neal Stephenson audiobook "Anathem", and find it very enjoyable. In fact, I haven't been this happy with speculative fiction since my first reading of Asimov's "Foundation". It also fits with my current level of patience; Foundation was much shorter, written when sci-fi books were sold in grocery stores on little metal racks, and the push was for thin books so more of them could be crammed in. Anathem, by contrast, is a giant tome, whose audiobook weighs in at 28 CDs! Fortunately, it isn't in high demand at the library, so I was able to renew it for a second two-week checkout period, and may have to do that once more... or just dump the remaining discs to mp3 and listen to them on my Shuffle.
I have succeeded in experimenting with alcohol without much fanfare, and without a quick downward spiral into vice or skid row. The few people to whom I've mentioned that I started drinking have seemed disinterested, none of them crying "No! Not you! You were humanity's last hope of sanity and fidelity, truly the best of us all," or anything similar. My daughter was the sole dissenter, but quickly accepted the occasional bottle of wine in the pantry. She frowned the first time she saw me sip from a wine glass, and then showed no further concern.
I can't drink anything "dry" yet, or anything that has a lot of alcohol. Sweeter wines are OK, although I quickly learned that Wild Vines and the like are cheap fare. Chardonnay and White Zin are enjoyable, Reisling seems a safe type to get when you're eating out, so you don't get stuck with something too bitter to finish, plus waitresses don't expect you to pretend to be cultured when you order it, and can easily be convinced to dispense with the tasting ritual.
My girls are doing well. Stacey and Scout recently did some art together in the form of drawings on posterboard, and presented myself, Liberty, and Stacey's mom with personalized drawings and messages. Liberty has been doing a lot of cooking recently, including some of her stand-bys like pesto and jambalaya, and dishes she hasn't made for me before like stir fry and curry with naan - delicious all.
Lastly, I had an odd thing happen to me during my normal lunch walk. Since I started taking my weight, fitness, and diet seriously in 2007, I've been taking walks during my lunch hour pretty regularly. One of my routes takes me through the AEP garage, onto street level for about 100 yards and into the Nationwide garage, up to the 4th floor where it connects to the skyway leading to the Hyatt, and through the Hyatt to where it connects to the Columbus Convention Center, to the opposite end of the convention center, and back the way I came. All told the round trip is about a mile and a half, and even meandering and with the hallways choked with traffic I can still get there and back in 30 - 40 minutes. I don't do this as a substitute for a good cardio workout, I do it as a substitute to the overeating I tend to do at lunch, to stretch my leg muscles midday and get away from my desk, and an excuse to listen to podcasts.
The area leading from the Hyatt to the Convention Center is being remodeled right now, and is detoured into what looks like an enclosed terminal ramp at an airport. The ramp itself was replaced recently as one leg of the construction was finished, and today I noticed the odd piping running along the top of the new ramp. The piping winds strangely, and is connected with pvc joints that seem too big for the job. So I was walking up the ramp today trying to come up with a theory of what the pipe was for. I had my head cocked to the left and raised up looking at the pipe, holding a can of pop, mouth still slightly agape after finishing a drink when I heard a *click* from the top of the ramp.
The click came from the camera of what looked like a 1970s reporter - something of a Mr. McGee from the Lou Ferrigno Hulk TV show, or Peter Parker from the live action made for TV Spiderman movies. He had a brown suade jacket, midlength dirty-blonde hair with bangs combed straight down, a satchel slung from his shoulder, across his chest, and down to the opposite hip, and of course the big newsman's camera. He calmly clicked his picture from the top of the ramp, and walked off to join the other men he was with.
I imagine my picture looks very odd, possibly good filler for religious propaganda, like I'm looking desperately up at God, hoping he'll intervene in whatever my little crisis is. Coincidentally, there were tables being set up in the convention center for the meeting this weekend of some local chapter of the ACJP (Amalgamation of Crazy Jesus People) or something similar, with stacks of books like "The Case for Christ", so there's a possibility that's exactly what the picture will be used for. More probable is he was getting a shot of the the way the ramp opened to the Hyatt behind me as some sort of attempt at an art shot, and I was extraneous.
That's the news from Lake Autery, where the woman is strong, the man is good looking, and both the kids are above average.