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October 26, 2000
two years ago

Being Read

I didn't sleep at all well.

Fezzik, after a relatively quiet time, did get up a few times during the night and he actually made it back up the stairs. He had to haul himself the last few steps, with lots of bumping and effort, but he made it just fine. So I really didn't have to worry about him not being able to do it at all. My digestive system was still mildly unhappy with me. No shooting pains, but enough to make sleep harder. So I was still careful when I got up and had a very mild breakfast.

Work was straightforward and I had to read a lot of source code for a review and other things.

The medication seemed to be working, so I decided to go out to lunch with Bob as it was sunny and the weather predictions were uncertain for the next few days. It was such a gorgeous day that we sat outside at KT's and just ate and talked and talked and ate. One thing Bob did that surprised me very pleasantly, he mentioned the entry where I'd written the thing about how it's taken a while for me to figure out that love isn't longing, that it is more the long-term commitment that happens in daily existence. He said that it had crystallized something for him that he'd experienced, but hadn't clearly seen before the words I'd written. That was very, very cool.

I like knowing when something strikes someone else when they're reading this journal. It's very cool. I have also figured out, though, that I don't really write this for that, though. That I'm really writing it for myself, so I have a reason to think some of this stuff through, but it's just cool when sharing it with everyone through this medium actually gives someone an understanding of what they've experienced, too. That's cool.

Some of it is also just having a memory that isn't just my fallible and sometimes really pessimistic brain. That the emotions of the moment are never as bad as they might seem later. Though, sometimes, I get as tired of the shopping list of events that happened as anything. It's far more fun to think about stuff, or get a view of what it is that I'm doing or seeing or such that isn't like what could be easily ignored. Bob was also pretty clear that while he thought I was a good programmer, he really thought that my real calling and gift was writing. That always surprises me a little and makes me really think some more.

The talk with Bob really helped me feel good in general. It was just very nice and echos what Carl often tells me.

Carl rescued me from work at 5:30 again and we went, this time, to the Gondolier, the nice homemade Italian place in Boulder. American-Italian, admittedly, but it was very good comfort food. The garlic cheese bread was really, really good tonight, the bread was nice and soft on the inside, crust on the outside, redolent with garlic and butter and covered with a thick, chewy, gooey, yummy blanket of mozzarella. The baked shells were as good as ever, with the really tasty sauce and Carl got a special that he really liked, roast chicken and sun dried tomatoes in a cream sauce on fettuccini. The restaurant itself was good and quiet and we could talk all we liked without having to raise our voices and given that Carl had said, yesterday, that he didn't really like loud restaurants it fit what we wanted just fine.

After dinner we went to Crossroads to get Carl some sunglasses as he liked mine well enough to want a pair of Oakleys. It was very quiet in the mall, too, and we found our way to the Sunglass Hut pretty easily and Carl got to try on a number of things. He finally settled on a pair of M Frames with hybrid black iridium lenses as they were both comfortable and provided really good coverage for his eyes. My Zeros didn't cover nearly as well, and he wanted his peripheral vision covered thoroughly and the M Frames do a good job of that. It was kinda cute when he said that the M Frames were too stylish for him, but when he tried on the Strait Jackets, they were too tight, so I said he should go for comfort, not looks and if the M Frames were the most comfortable, then that's what he should get! So he did! That was pretty cool, so when he drives around tomorrow, he should be well set.

There was a Walden Books in the mall as well and he wanted to see if they carried the book he was looking for, so we went there, and I came out with five books and he didn't have any. The problem was that they had both of the George R. R. Martin books I wanted in paperback, so I got those and one other book and then the lady said that if I bought four I'd get the fifth free! So I went back and found two more books, and then she tried to sell me on a membership card and I said, "No." That was easy! So I ended up with books.

On the way home, Carl spotted the Borders right by Whole Foods, so we swung by there, and Carl managed to find the next book in the series he was reading without finding the rest of the series, so he was very happy. I was very happy that I actually got out of the bookstore without any books.

We got home and just started playing all the other games as well, looking through most of the demos and things. I even got Carl to play some of them for me to watch a bit, as I didn't have any clue on some of them and we were both 'not very good' but that wasn't really the point, in some ways. There was one very interesting plot line game called the Fear Affect that looked like it would make for a really, really interesting story, but the puzzles and ambushes were really hard to deal with. The character and object rendering was pretty, though, too. There was another game where you're a vampire eating vampire hunter that wasn't as pretty, it was a little awkward even, but anything that has a button dedicated to 'Suck Souls' wins points for me.

We played and critiqued and stuff until John arrived home, rather late. Carl had given me housewarming presents when he first arrived, but I was good and hadn't opened them so that John could open them, too! And it was really cool! Carl got us a copy of Ape Escape, a cool cartoony capture the apes escaped in time game on the PlayStation, which is just the kind of thing that John really likes. It's in the genre of the Crash Bandicoot like things, but a bit more anime.

He also got us a copy of The Amber Spyglass, a Phillip Pullman book. One of the books I'd bought at Walden books, The Subtle Knife, was the second in the series and Marith had, long ago, given me the first, The Golden Compass, which I'd enjoyed and admired a lot. So far, the series has been very sharply cut, it feels a bit like a stained glass window made of ice, cold, brilliantly colored, and pieced together with a clear intricacy of intent. The language is very distinct and vivid. I admire it greatly, and enjoy the craftsmanship a lot, but the brutality and fear and hardship that the kids in the book are going through almost hurts. The world they're in is very hard and very mean and very nasty and they have to harden to deal with it. It is fantasy, but it's certainly not escape fantasy or pretty fantasy and sometimes it's extraordinarily depressing.

Extraordinarily well written though, so I welcomed the gift.

Since it was nearly midnight, we all just went to sleep very soon after that. Fezzik was just fine all night after the worry of yesterday, but we also had to get him to the vet tomorrow.

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