« Our Man in AfghanistanA Night in Pasadena »

I Have a Poor Attitude

Premature mid-life crisis continues. I have been imagining myself facing a lineup of younger versions of me, and explaining what exactly I am doing here at the Society of American Archivists annual meeting. My twelve-year-old self asks why I am not in the Navy, my twenty-year-old self is shocked that I sold out to The Man, my six-year-old self freaks out at the fact that I'm still in the States, and my nine-year-old self is crestfallen because I am not in orbit around Titan. None of them gives a sympathetic hearing to the complex and exciting challenges facing the archival community. None of them is suitably impressed by the prospect of a reception at the Getty with the luminaries of the American curatorial firmament.

I have a poor attitude! I have a poor attitude! I click and clack on my laptop (I am the only one at this conference with a computer), and pause to sneer at Annoying Grad Student, who is finishing a PhD in linguistics and has written "idealogy" and "phenomonon" on his Power Point slides, multiple times. I click and clack and sneer, that's me in the back, hello conference-goers. Yes, I would rather be orbiting Titan.

I missed the Getty reception with the luminaries. Instead I went out for Japanese food with better luminaries, local bloggers who were nice enough to invite me out on their weekly get-together. The rendezvous took place in the Japanese enclave on Sawtelle Boulevard; I had my first taste of Japanese curry and my first successful attempt at drinking honey tea with giant black tapioca spheres, a beverage I had tried and failed at once with the better half. Straw diameter, it turns out, is critical.

I ate with Ryan Gantz, Andrew Baio, Leonard Lin, Jonah Manning, and Mark Allen. All of them smart and big-hearted guys, who are hospitable to the out-of-town traveller and make me wish I lived in L.A.

I came back from the dinner with a light heart and a trunk full of Japanese snack foods for the better half. I have to go back for more tomorrow - who knows when I'll be here again?

« Our Man in AfghanistanA Night in Pasadena »

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