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:
   company party: V!ctoria Rose
Thursday, December 16 1999
At work yesterday and today there were several two-hour long "sexual harrassment sensitivity-training seminars" given to various collections of our employees. Each of us were required to attend one of these seminars, so, knowing by now what battles are worth fighting, I dutifully went to today's 1:30 event. I'd heard that some of the earlier groups were lively, with folks like John the Sr. Editor asking all sorts of off-the-wall hypothetical questions (eliciting befuddled expressions from the instructor, a super-serious attorney chick). But my class contained the Grand Pooh Bah II, the guy who first dryly announced we'd have to be attending these seminars, and no one in our group, not even me, had either the guts or inclination to cause a ruckus. For my part, I was hoping the whole boring exercise would get itself over with as quickly as possible so I could get on with my job. I made the most of my time, discretely typing most of yesterday's Randomly Ever After entry on my Psion palmtop. I love that thing; most people watching me probably thought I was actually taking notes on my sensitivity training.
I didn't know the bulk of my seminar classmates; a good fraction of them were youthful "greeters" from the 14th floor. Greeters are generally young adults who are paid low salaries for the job of greeting new members to our site, the idea being to increase member retention. Sitting in room full of such exuberant youth drove home the extent to which I have aged beyond their years. I found their loud, flirtative giggles and stupid remarks a continual irritant.

At six pm I was to meet Kim at her place of employment, the V!ctoria Rose, for this year's Christmas Party. It was to be a fancy affair, so up on the 22nd floor of our office building, in the most reliably tidy bathroom in San Diego, I prepared for the night, changing into a button-up shirt, tie & sweater. Having noted my increasingly desperate clothing situation, Kim recently bought me the shirt and sweater, spending more than $50 on each.
I arrived promptly at six, though it would have been better had I been a bit more fashionably late, since Vivienne (Kim's boss) and Vivienne's date were the only people there yet. They were still preparing a good spread of finger food and booze, all to be consumed during the hour or so before dinner.
Once the whole crowd of partiers had arrived, it made for a goodly and surprisingly multi-racial throng. Vivienne then sent the dates of her employees (me, for example) on a treasure hunt throughout the Victorian mansion looking for gifts she'd bought for her employees. She gave each of us clues, and mine had me thinking that perhaps I had to look in a kitty litter box.
For dinner, we went over the bridge to Peohe in Coronado, exactly like last year. Kim and I rode with Steve, the V!ctoria Rose building keeper, in his old Dodge pickup truck.
I remember being stoned on marijuana last time I came to Peohe a year ago. But the place is still a spectacle even when you're simply drunk, as I was today. I especially appreciated the interplay of grey-brown fluffy cushions echoing the appearance of the roughly-rounded stone accents.
Our crowd was bigger than last year, so we sat at two long tables, not one. Vivienne divided her employees into two groups, those 29 and less years of age and less and those 30 and above. Since Kim is 29, I sat with the young people. The fact that I was the oldest person at the table was cause for an entire subtext of humour the whole meal through.
As expected, the food was excellent, as was the champagne, and that was part of the problem; already stuffed with shrimp finger food, I felt compelled to engorge myself further until I was sleepy, bored and irritable. I became so anti-social, in fact, that Kim felt the need to tell me that I was embarrassing her.
The only real solace from my inexplicable funk was to step out onto the boardwalk and look out across the glassy harbour at the towers of downtown San Diego, all lit up with their red and green Christmas lights.

For linking purposes this article's URL is:

previous | next