By Lex, On April 5, 2007
April 5th, 2007 by lex
It was running late, we were, and all of the household was in a great taking, with himself bellowing at cruel fate and herself bellowing at him (on account of all his bellowing) and the little ‘uns wondering what all the bellowing could possibly signify while the chronometer continued its quiet but inexorable ticking, smugly satisfied at having the last say. And all of that was before he realized, half way to the 5, that he’d left his cell phone at home. Which wouldn’t have done at all, so round about you go again, if anything more agitated than before.
God takes care of drunks and Irishmen though, and I have at times been both, so it was a blessing to see that the waiting line at airport security was of a merely token length, as though the TSA was only phoning it in on Thursdays. Not only that, but the flight itself was delayed 45 minutes, San Francisco being a notoriously shiftless airport when it comes to the matter of timeliness. Good time then for bad breakfast.
The flight itself was uneventful, but your correspondent was reminded that it has been a very long while since he left Sandy Eggo, stepping out of the terminal at SFO and finding himself a-shivering in the 50 degree temperatures that were in it. Hope of a Thrifty upgrade from compact to something a little more suiting to his own inflated sense of gravitas were satisfied – however ironically – when the clerk offered him a minivan rather than the compact he had contracted for, none of the smaller sort nor even a decent full-size being available to hand. Steaming southward into Silicon Valley like any 21st Century Ward Cleaver then, I made my way to Moutain View.
The people I came to see had on offer a Magical Tool for the teaching of advanced UNIX-based network management protocols to any such sailors as might need to know of them. Nothing would do but that your scribe should spend a six-hour afternoon in front of the machine itself, taking a guided tour through the world of command lines, netmasks, dot-conf files and inet daemons. Temporarily smarter than ever he had been before, but with a head that felt as though it had been squeezed to mush, he begged off for to meet some friends.
Now when I say “meet” friends, in this case I mean that I actually met them for the very first time, at least in physical space. SJBill it was, whom many of you know at a kind of distance through his comments, and David, a man who prefers to correspond directly. Good men both, stout and true (and Bill bought the dinner – huzzah!), and speaking of stouts there were a couple of them went round before the evening was done, rented from the venerable folks at Saint James’ Gate, Dublin, Ireland. Because they’re good for you.
It’s a passing strange experience meeting people whom you’ve never met before that nevertheless seem to know every detail. You let it slide past though, immerse yourself in the experience and find yourself among friends you didn’t know you had. Words spill out, they tumble over each other, there’s laughter and even a strange kind of reminiscence – memories shared and contextualized through the experience of another – and then too soon the evening is over, tomorrow being another day.
I am once again reminded at the fundamental decency of so many people. We take it – and them – for granted sometimes, preferring to focus on the outlandish or objectionable.
It’s a silly preference.