Tuesday, October 7, 2008

A Personal No-Fly Zone

I'm writing to you from my fella's computer.

Mine died at approximately 4:00 p.m. today. May she rest in peace.

I would like to add that in the past month, my digital camera, cell phone, and wireless mouse have all bit the dust. There appears to be a contagion. Please, if you know where I live, don't come near -- or at least, don't bring your personal electronics.

I now owe a friend of mine who works in IT about three sweaters. She (or her computer) is peeling the data off the broken carcass as I write this.

(If you're interested, today also involved me cleaning up a cockroach so scary he looked like a Reaver ship from Serenity, a teeny tear in my favorite skirt, and an increase to my health insurance payments. Oh, and the stock market.)

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Hill Country Yarn Crawl 2008

Or, Not the Thing I Did Today

Today, my fella asked me if I'd partake in a labor of love. He wanted me to go digging with him at the Austin Record Convention for hard-to-find vinyl records, in particular some rare hip-hop finds plus one or two soundtracks that usually go for around $50.

There's these moments in relationships where you look at the other person. You blink, and in that space of a blink, you must determine whether it's worth (a) an argument, (b) loving acquiescance, (c) tears, or (d) chocolate cream pie.

I almost had my answer. Then he said, "I'll go to yarn conventions with you."

I chose (b).

Quick: Can you find the only other female in the entire room? (Hint: I'm the one you can't see.)

(My fella is reading over my shoulder now and he wants you all to know that it really wasn't that bad, and that he was very sweet to hold my place in line for me to get a couple hardcover books signed by Michael Chabon for about two hours with nary a complaint or a request for chocolate cream pie. He's right, and I have treated him very unfairly. The above passage is a good example of hyperbole.)

Predictably, I didn't find anything to buy. However, I found the convention to be a veritable safari of fascinating people to observe.

I wanted to Kinear two of these guys especially, I really did. For complicated reasons, that didn't happen. One gentleman was quite tall, a black guy with what must have been a huge pile of dreads atop his head, which bobbled about on his neck under the weight as he walked. The dreads were tucked far inside a white crocheted rasta hat that looked like one of those giant, overnight mushrooms that shoots out of the ground after a hard rain and stands twelve inches high the next morning. It was as if the guy hadn't yet figured out how the mushroom had sprouted on his head, and it would be nice if no one mentioned it.

But the winner of all the goofy-looking people in the place (and keep in mind, this is me saying this) was a gentleman in the true sense. In an under-air conditioned room full of cut-off denim shorts and sweaty t-shirts, he wore a double-breasted suit, a tie, and a felted Sherlock Holmes hat. He was also spry and wirey, and he intrigued me so much that I had my fella (patiently, lovingly) follow him around with me for about fifteen minutes. Some of the things we overheard him say:

"Yes, I weigh the same amount that I did in 1967. In fact, four pounds lighter!"

To a large lady on crutches: "Have you decided? Are you going to run away with me yet?"

To my fella: "I must say, I don't think your lady friend there is finding a lot of these records to her liking."

Quite observant. Fortunately, there were other pleasures to be had.