January 25, 1999
Sushi With Rodney and Billy
Drat. Drat. Drat.
The Pelikan was already sold. Luckily, Battersea is expecting a few more in in the next few weeks, so I may still get the pen, one way or another. Amusingly enough, on Pendemonium I found the same model and make, used, i.e. inked once already, for about twice as much. Seems they're harder to find in the U.S. than in the U.K.. So that's cool.
Spent a lot of the day making plans and getting things together for the afternoon meeting that pretty much set our schedule for the next week. This is going to be fun.
Bob was pretty astonished when I walked in the door in red silk pants and pretty red blouse. Unusual for me. We talked through some interview stuff, and there's lots of work to be done that'll be fun. Mostly dressed up because we were going out to dinner to Shiro's.
We've been going to Shiro's restaurants for the last twelve years, when they were in the old Nikko, when he was still working at the Westin, and now in his new place. I pointed Billy at the place when he first came to Seattle, and Rodney told me to tell Billy where the good sushi was. We mostly went because of Jon Singer, who introduced us to Shiro and to the whole way of eating sushi.
So, for the first time, I was going to meet Billy and get to see Rodney again. John and I stayed late at work, as we had a 7:45 reservation. The drive out to Belltown was free and clear and the night was cold and clear, and we walked the short way to Shiro's only to find that no one there yet. They seated us when it was time, as we'd arrived about five minutes early, and we sat and contemplated the menu for a while before Rodney arrived. Billy was soon after, and we dove into conversation.
Some of it was catchup with Rodney, as we hadn't seen him since John's ten year reunion at Caltech. The rest were marvelous stories about food and nerd adventures before the phrase 'nerd' was even coined. It was very cool, very detailed and the sushi was pretty marvelous for table service. There was no room at the bar, and even if there had been with four it would have been hard to concentrate on conversation rather than the food. It really was more a meeting for talk than the food, though, as usual, the food was excellent. We started with grilled black cod that was crisp on the outside, smooth and delicious and nearly creamy rich inside. Nice gyoza and then two platters of local oysters with spice and green onions. Then came the sushi.
It was much fun.
We also invited Rodney over to see the house, the dog, and stuff. Fezzik, however, ran off the moment John opened the gate and went tumbling down the ravine. John and Rodney spent about fifteen minutes out on the back porch calling Fezzik before giving up and coming into the house. The Penny Tour was given and then we all got into bathing suits for the Hot Tub. A nice, steamy hot time was had by all, and my muscles finally relaxed for a bit; but I got overheated before either of the guys, so I wandered up to the bedroom to put on sweats, silk socks and a sweater. Fezzik arrived at the back door panting and completely bedraggled, dragging pine tree bits, blackberry bramble and soaking wet and muddy. He ate his dinner, panting, and then just collapsed on the livingroom floor in a heap. Now that I was warm enough, I wandered out to the tub with a mug of hot tea and talked with the guys until I got cold again. So I went back in, spun for a while, and Rodney wanted to see how spinning wheels worked, so I showed him.
It was good to catch up on the years and mutual friends that we both knew. Who had gone where, who had done what, who'd gotten married, who had died. We tracked nearly fifty different folks that we'd known from Tech to various places, parts of the country, and various callings.
Eventually, we realized it was about 1 a.m. and all of us had 8 a.m. start times on meetings and Rod was here for one of the Microsoft Dog and Pony shows, which is more marketing than real technical presentations. Poor Rod. Anyway, he realized why he was tired, and so wandered off.