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Friday, June 11, 2004

It's a good thing this day had a happy ending, because the beginning and middle were a mess. I spent most of it waiting for a phone call that never came. When someone says, "I'll call you back," I don't expect much. But when they say, "I'll call you back right away," I get peeved when they don't. Peeved and cheesed off, if you want to know the truth, especially if this person knows that I'm trying to plan my day around what I learn from that phone call.

So I cooled my heels for a couple of hours and then tried to call him back. (The Boss. Who did you think I was talking about? Nobody else does that to me.) I got to talk to his ex-wife, with whom he's staying for the next couple of weeks. I don't know exactly how she feels about that, but I know I'd much rather talk to her anyway. She gave me his schedule, which was completely different from what he'd told me earlier. That freed me up to run my errands, but it also tied me down for the weekend, because it now appears I'm going to have to meet with him again some time before Sunday night. Oh joy.

But did I mention there was a happy ending? I walked out of my office (and my house) at 4:45 this afternoon, carrying a bowl of baked beans that I'd just whipped up (a la Rachael, of course) for David's birthday party. Our David, who became a daddy ten days ago, is now 23. Can you believe it?

He didn't want a big deal made out of his birthday (and I've done my share of big-deal-making over the years). But he was happy to be around family and friends for a few hours tonight. I guess he was happy. I know he's happy when he gets to spend time alone with his own little family, too. (Not so little, is it? There are five of them now.) But this wasn't a big blow-out, just a backyard barbecue (hence the baked beans, my modest contribution).

Birthdays were always a big deal when my nephews were younger, and David's comes at the bare beginning of summer. What a great time for a get-together. In those days it was mostly the family and his parents' friends. Now it's the family and some of his parents' friends and some of his own.

It's funny how life cycles around like that. In two months we'll have the first party for the next generation at the new house, when we celebrate Dakota's birthday. And so on and so on.

11 June 2004

The birthday boy's baby boy.

I also gave D.J. his graduation present tonight. Some of my favorite photos (and yours) that have been posted on this site were those taken by him, especially his wedding album. So I gave him a disposable camera and told him to take whatever pictures he wants, then give me back the camera and I'll get the prints made. A set for him and a set for me. If anything interesting (or artistic) comes of it, you'll be the first to know.

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It must have rained in Baltimore today, because I turned on the car radio at the time the game was supposed to start and all I got was a sports call-in show. I don't listen to those because I always think I know more than the callers about the topics I care about. I dislike talk radio in general, especially political talk radio, because it raises the level of contention while at the same time lowering the quality of public discourse. Opinion masquerades as fact and becomes common wisdom, while meaningful dialog goes out the window. So I guess that means they'll be playing a double header tomorrow.

Recent recommendations can always be found on the links page.

One year ago: Clippings
"It's a fast and furious lifestyle the crows lead."

Two years ago: Magic Carpet Ride
"One minute he's a curious, talkative nine-year-old, and whoosh! He's 21, still curious about the world and still with an answer for everything."

Four years ago: Nineteen
"It's one of my greatest joys to have him in my life, and it'll be an honor and a pleasure to see where life's journey takes him."

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