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Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Party Animal

Dog Mantra

Laila's dog apparently fell asleep reading. (No, this photo was not set up.)

I've been shunning the computer for a while, putting my brain on sabbatical and opting for direct human interaction when available (which appears to be every waking hour of the day, but sadly still not the other eight). I have been to four parties and two social dinners in the last week, each quite different from the rest.

Maui House Party
(Click image for video/music)

My current social indifference is proving handy. "Hi, my name's Simon. Someone who I've never met invited me to this party by phone but came and left before I got here. What's your name? And this is a going-away party for who? Perhaps I should meet them so I can help celebrate their departure. Here, have some vegetarian spring rolls. I heard this was a potluck. Why yes, I would love to try some raw vegan cheesecake." I hear the cheesecake was delicious, actually, but it vanished before I got around to trying it.

Now I'm running into everyone everywhere, and it's wreaking havoc with my cognitive sabbatical because apparently in between the jumping around and spewing content-free witticisms I let slip enough actual thought that people are approaching me in the grocery store with questions like "why would you want to create an artificial intelligence with feelings?". I feel like a cute girl who can't go out without getting her ass grabbed.

But alas, I can't expect people in today's culture to comprehend reciprocity here. "Listen doll, let's go someplace where you can dance around naked while we're having this conversation." It's really annoying having all these women just after my mind. I'm trying to be the mental equivalent of fat, but it's hard to balance that with being completely unnoticed since I'm already the physical equivalent of fat.

Apparently jumping around helps. I've "danced" approximately twice in my life, once a decade or so ago and once a few days ago. I can't dance. At least, not in any normal way. Enter social indifference. I can glide and jump and bounce and spin and flow with the music, something that might be called dancing if I were on a music video in the middle of a grass field and wearing a jester's cap, but such behavior in any serious night club would get me excommunicated from my clique. Here, however, I got smiles and complements including such adjectives as "fun", the dubious "genuine", and--hold on to your teacups--"high energy".

Really I just included that last paragraph to assuage the common misconception among my online-only affiliates that in real life I wander the streets scowling at puppies and muttering "stupid!" at everyone I pass on the street. Whereas, in fact, I occasionally do other things.

Laugh, it's funny.

Truth is, I'm having a reasonably good time, enjoying the music, the dancing, the people watching, the views, the weather, the food. (Unfortunately the conversations, like everything else here, are mostly recycled.) I'm accomplishing absolutely nothing. But then what exactly is accomplishment in an impartial universe anyway? (Shhhh... don't tell anyone here I said that--there's another recycled conversation I don't need.)

I could do for a break from the bad luck, though. Turns out centipedes carry strep-A, and a few days ago all six punctures (and to a lesser degree the pair on my arm) went red, puffy, and painful. So now I'm on max oral dose antibiotics (interleaved with acidophilus) crossing my fingers I won't end up in the papers.

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Simon Funk / simonfunk@gmail.com