Over the weekend I was up in Cleveland with the good people of Restore the Fourth. As with our protest on July 4th, I traveled up to Findlay the night before to hang out with Brian and the lady Buckley, and plan the following day’s course of action. Most of this was written at the Buckley dining room table. It’s kind of a special thing to write in the house of one of the writers you admire. Wonder why Brian never writes at my house?
It’s definitely a bummer to be away from the little red haired girl for most of the weekend. I left straight from work, so really our last night together was Thursday (Wednesday if you take into account the church meetings she had Thursday night). Still my wife is very supportive, both of the windmills I choose to tilt at, and for me spending time with my friends. Fortunately, we were able to hang out for lunch up in Delaware, which is always a treat.
Friday turned out to be a pretty hectic day at work. This often seems to be the way of things. Thursdays are actually my favorite day as they seem to be the calmest and most efficient days for me. Friday always pretends like it’s going to be a lazy day, and ends up being the craziest day of the week, coupled with the fact that I am leaving for a trip with no time to say goodbye to the wife, or even the dog. I’d say goodbye to the cat, but she probably won’t even realize I’m gone since most of her attention has been captured by a giant stuffed catnip pepper we got for her a few weeks ago. Every time I see here with it I sing a few bars of “I’m in love with a pepper.”
I’ve been having mixed feelings about Restore the Fourth lately, and hadn’t actually been planning on going to this rally until about 10 days ago. I think part of it is the energy expenditure. I’m still pretty worn out from getting the Fractal book out, and I’m gearing up to work on Surreality, so my reserves are kind of low. It’s definitely an important issue, as even the last few weeks have shown. But time away, even to see friends, can be a little taxing.
But at the same time I do enjoy a good trip. I spent some time putting together a mix CD for the car ride (yes some of us don’t have an MP3 plugin or satellite radio, and I hate wearing headphones while driving). Some Pomplamoose to lead out the mix, some solid Massive Attack, Fatboy Slim, Bonobo and Olafur Arnalds in the middle, and 99 Luftballoons to finish it out. I was in a bit of a weird mood, but that’s not exactly unusual. I also spent a decent bit of the night before trying to decide exactly what technology to take with me. It should give you some idea of where I am in the “real book experiment” when I tell you that I seriously considered leaving my paperback behind, as I was already taking two eReaders. The netbook is of course a necessity (otherwise how would I obsessively check Bundle Dragon and compose posts like this?)
The rest of my packing was done in kind of a hurry. I’ve been reading Wil Wheaton’s Just A Geek, and Thursday night, since the wife was at a meeting, I thought I’d finish my current chapter, do some Surreality reading, and then pack. Suffice it to say I now have some legitimate reasons to say “Damn you, Wheaton!” as I ended up reading him for over an hour, and getting nothing done on my book. Still breaks are good, and maybe I’ll have to take a crack at some of the book reviewing rules my dad post last week.
I got out of work pretty close to on time and marveled at how quickly I can get out of city life and into farm town. There are times when I think of Delaware as being on the edge of the big city, and a drive up 23 can certainly reinforce that fact. It kind of pleases me that most of what separates Mr. Buckley and me is along the same street, and it also makes for little need for directions, except when navigating through a subdivision where most of the streets begin with “fox”. Every time I drive up to Findlay I pass “Coons Candy” which boasts hundreds of different varieties, but for the life of me I’m never sure when they’re open (turns out 10-6 most days).
Seeing as how it had been a long day, and I had an hour and a half or so’s drive, I stopped at a Steak and Shake to try a cookie dough milkshake. I love cookie dough (it is probably my favorite ice cream ever) but as a milk shake, especially one eaten while driving, it was not terribly practical. Every few sips a chunk would get stuck in the straw, and I’d have to chew my way halfway down to dislodge it. Dietetic in a strange way I guess. I finished right around the time I passed the large pro-life signs about 10 miles from the end of 23.
The evening was spent largely celebrating the big BDB’s birthday, where I learned that Mrs. Dash can do wonders to zucchini. Brian’s prep for the rally gave me some time to chat with the lady Buckley, whose coming cubicle situation is unenviable. But best of all Brian and I had some time to talk about writing, this time story related and not the latest fractal iterations. Not that I don’t still love fractals, as Friday’s post should be good evidence of, but it has been a real treat to get back to fiction. I can’t wait to share this book with you, and hopefully others soon.
Well this getting a bit long for a post in which I drove and ate good food. There are five of us in the car up to Cleveland tomorrow, for a good 2.5 hours each way before our 3 hour time in the public square. I’m excited to see how many people turn out, but even if it’s only a few I know we’ll have a good time and spread some awareness.
Better get to bed before the netbook dies. Cheers!