Friday morning, Bella came into the office with blisters on her nose and upper lip.
Thursday night, she was making some tea or something at home. She had the kettle on and it was steaming away. Somehow, she decided that the water she was boiling smelled funny. She tried waving some steam towards her nose, but the results were inconclusive. Eventually, confident she could move her head in and out of the steam fast enough to avoid harm, she decided to stick her nose directly in the path of the steam and take a quick sniff. It didn't work out like she'd hoped.
She says she actually has some blisters on the inside of her nose. I'll take her word for it because I'm not going to try to check.
Happy hour at the Pound and Pence.
Joan, apparently completely well-organized, got up from the table to hit the restrooms. Trying to navigate up and away from the table, she overturned a shopping bag she'd brought with her. Ollie, organized but no completely so, offer to help her gather her scattered belongings and then stood up holding two plastic-bag Halloween-style outfit sets – one for a Playboy bunny, one for a maid.
"Joan," said Ollie over the general laughter, "Will you marry me?"
"Please, people," said Joan. "Like you've never dressed up as a maid."
"I promise I have never ever dressed up as a maid," I said.
"Okay, once," said Pete. "But it was part of a charity auction."
"A secret charity known only as the Pete is willing to be an ass for money fund. For children. With problems. And stuff."
Ollie: "No maids. I'm all Catholic schoolgirl. The maid thing – too sick for me."
"Look, you guys are missing stuff. I'm drunk, by I know what I mean and screw you."
Later we discussed the trailer for the upcoming United 93. Apparently, people in New York have been walking out of the theaters, skipping their films, pissed off at the trailers. Several theaters have stopped showing them.
The general consensus seemed to one of disgust, except for Pete who is looking forward to seeing it.
I think I feel somewhere in the middle. It wouldn't surprise me if the movie was hard sell in NYC, but I suspect the rest of the country is settled to the idea of media recreations of 9/11. They may or may not like the movie, but I don't think, outside of directly impacted cities, the idea that this is "too soon" is common. I feel that NYC residents, objections or not, will simply have to learn to live with the fact that 9/11 is now mass media fodder.
That said, I'm not going to go see it because it looks like crap. I was baffled by the decision of the studio's decision to include copy screens with things like "From the director of . . . " As if it were just another action flick. They even managed to get the action-flick voice over guy: "When the rest of us huddled in fear, they stood up." I half expected them to end the trailer with the release date and a marketing phrase: "Summer, 2006. Let's Roll."
So, help the impoverished minds of Hollywood out. Pick the best marketing phrase for the upcoming flick "Untied 93." I will offer the winning catch phrase free to the four studios behind this soon-to-be cinematic classic and let's see it they can't work it into their future marketing efforts.
Met my friend Dan for dinner. Dan's the one going through the nasty divorce.
Last time I met with Dan, his soon to be ex had informed him that she and her new lover were getting married. Saturday he tells me that she told him that she was pregnant with Dan's baby.
Dan expressed doubt since the last time that they had sex was last November and she was showing now signs of pregnancy.
After fighting about it, the soon-to-be ex confessed that not only was she not pregnant, there is no wedding either.
A week after that episode, she called to ask if he wanted to call off the divorce. He said he did not.
After dinner, May caught up with us and we went to Double Happiness in Chinatown.
Hit some used bookstores looking for the out-of-print works of B.S. Johnson. I finished House Mother Normal and it was probably the most interesting novel I've read so far this year. Sadly, Johnson appears to be completely out of print, at least on this side of the pond.
I know I could just order them online. If they aren't still in print in the UK, I'm certain they can be found on Alibris or something, but that seems like cheating somehow. To truly feel satisfied, I need to hunt them down myself.
Unfortunately, no dice. No B. S., as it were. I did score an English translation of a deuterocanonical Hugo text: Hans of Iceland. From what I can understand, it was his first novel, written almost a decade before Hunchback. I am inordinately excited at the prospect of this book, even though everything I've read suggests it is one of his weaker outings.
I also found an old hardback of Sorrentino's Odd Numbers and Spike "of the Goon Show" Milligan's Rommel: Gunner Who?, his odd semi-novel, semi-memoir of his life in the British Army during World War II. Not a bad for a trip that was, technically, a failure.
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