Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   birthdays don't take snow days
Saturday, January 19 2002 [REDACTED]

Snow started falling this afternoon and by nightfall it had accumulated to a depth of a couple inches. For New York City, it was the first snow of the season, and the off-leash dogs in Prospect Park (including our own Sally) were in full celebration.
This evening, Gretchen and I celebrated her 31st birthday at her favorite restaurant, Uguale on the west end of 10th Street in Manhattan. It was the first time I'd been to Manhattan in an entire month. As we rode over on the subway, we walked down to the very last car of the train and stood watching the subterranean world peel away through the back window. I realized that I could tell the techniques used to dig the subway tunnel just by the shape of the the tunnel ceiling. In most places, the IRT line was created by digging trenches in surface streets and then covering them. This results in a flat ceiling. But in other places, as the tunnel passes (for example) beneath the highlands on the east shore of the East River, or under the East River itself, the tunnel was dug using sideways burrowing techniques. The celing above such tunnels is always domed.
Due to the snow, Uguale was relatively empty, but it filled up a bit after we arrived. A drama that played out at a nearby table featured a giant gentleman whose boyfriend was evidently being introduced to the giant's mother for the first time. Later, another drama unfolded at this same table: a gentleman with a closely-shaved head was on a date with a young woman whose makeup looked excessive even in the low romantic lighting. Gretchen figured this was a second or third date and that it was probably the night they'd finally be having sex. But the poor woman, she was so self-conscious and her lips so lipsticked that she couldn't eat anything. She held a forkful of pasta for several agonizing minutes, never once putting it in her mouth. Finally she just put it back down on her plate. All the savory goodness of Uguale was being wasted on her. Though I was facing away from the action, Gretchen was supplying a steady stream of play-by-plays.
Gretchen tipped-off the waitstaff that today was her birthday, so they made fools of themselves by singing "Happy Birthday," something they had to do for another table nearby some minutes later. The place was rich with birthdays tonight; it's not like a birthday can call in sick or take a snow day after all.


For linking purposes this article's URL is:

previous | next