1. I was heading to the airport the Sunday before last for my trip to Miami when I realized I hadn’t flown since August of 2001, to Seattle for my last National Poetry Slam. Nine days and six flights later, I’ve had my fill of airports to last me another 3.5 years! Almost every one of my flights experienced significant delays, including Friday night out of LaGuardia that made me miss my connecting flight in O’Hare and end up staying in Chicago overnight with a complimentary hotel room and a $300 voucher for a future flight. The voucher made up for almost everything.
2. Five things I learned on my business trip to Miami:
1) Expense accounts are a wonderful thing. Especially other people’s expense accounts!
2) My B-game beats most people’s A-games, a fact of life that makes me both a tad bit lazy and extremely uncomfortable with compliments.
2a) Never fully trust a sales rep’s compliments on your speaking voice when you know they don’t want to make the sales presentation.
3) How people respond to a themed-dinner – a la our Gilligan’s Island and Pirate/British Navy nights – is a good way to sneak a peek underneath their masks. I kept my mask on, playing it relatively safe both nights as a white-shirted, khaki-shorted Professor, and a Hawaiian-shirted, big silver hoop-earringed Pirate.
4) People other than poets drink Irish Car Bombs, though few have the appropriate tolerance level.
5) I am not the business traveling type. I can’t sleep well unless I’m in my own bed and after three days, I’m ready to go back home.
3. I’ve never been fully convinced about the whole “dry heat” concept, but I am now a firm believer in “dry cold” being noticeably different after a portion of the 3-mile hike I took with Eric in Colorado was in 15-degree weather. The whole “thin air” thing is legit, too.
4. Colorado is like a beautiful but shallow, all-American girl. Nice to look at and pleasant to spend some non-intellectual time with, but with zero settling-down potential. The fact that I didn’t see a single black person while I was in Ft. Collins didn’t really help, either. And I’ve always thought New England was too white!
5. Watching the Jets/Steelers playoff game in a Steelers bar in Ft. Collins, CO – me fully decked out in Jets gear, down to my boxers! – was an interesting experience, from the raucous cheers when the Steelers scored, to the cold, dead silence when the Jets answered back. As much as I obviously hated the Jets losing, I’m a sucker for the energy of a celebratory mob and the memory of the tingle of their whispered prayers hanging in the air as the Jets’ Doug Brien lined up for his second missed kick that will hopefully cost Paul Hackett his job, soothed the ache from my team’s season ending so dramatically.
6. I’ve never been so looking forward to the start of baseball season so early in the pre-season in my life. The Mets have me genuinely excited and believing this could be the year.
7. While Elektra didn’t suck, it wasn’t all that good, either, carried purely by the varying appeal of the actors, including Jennifer Garner who managed to finally break through my indifference towards her. The Fantastic Four teaser showed before the movie looked similarly bleh. Post-The Incredibles, the bar for so-called comic book movies has been raised significantly.
8. Two books I’ll be reviewing soon on Comic Book Commentary, but that I will wholeheartedly recommend here for anyone that thinks they don’t like comics: Men of Tomorrow and Blankets. The former’s a non-fiction look at the birth of comic books and its relation to organized crime and the Jewish immigrant experience; the latter, an auto-biographical graphic novel that is a stellar example of the unique power of the form.
9. I am so far behind on anything that is not right in front of me on a daily basis. Especially the blogosphere! If you haven’t heard from me personally recently, I’m not avoiding or ignoring you, just swamped. Lunch, dinner, drinks, D&D, and/or a poetry reading even (as a spectator only, of course) will all be done soon. For anyone those options don’t apply to, an email at some point!