All Sorts of Anecdotes

Let’s start with an interesting encounter. Friday I had day-early Birthday Dinner with Dad, my sister and her boyfriend at our usual restaurant. We sat down and we were two tables away from Donna Shalala (linked if you don’t know who she is). Dad always likes to be a big shot and we know all the staff in the restaurant having been going there for over 20 years on a regular basis. So he calls over the second in command (the owner being on holiday) and tells him that he’d like to pick up the check for the Shalala table. We have our dinner, dessert, and a very leisurely meal and finish. They bring our bill and the one for the Shalala table. Dad studies it because he wants to know what they ate (nosey). We pay for it and ours. There are other people at her table but their backs are to us so we can’t see them.

She tries to pay and finds out that it’s been paid so she finds out who did it (or maybe they told her) and she rushes over to our table — odd since the Herald said she was on crutches and she wasn’t — and asks my father who he is and thanks him. He thanked her for helping the University so much (he went there, I went there for a bit, and my sister is currently there). He introduced her to me, my sister, but she didn’t let him finish the introductions, grabbed him and said “I’m dining with George Will — let me introduce you.” Off they went. Dad was very happy as he’s a fan of Mr. Will.

Anyway, so we left the restaurant and as we were waiting for Dad’s car, Ms. Shalala comes over to me and asks how to spell our last name. I tell her and a few moments later, George Will hands Dad an autographed copy of one of his books. This makes Dad very, very happy. He’s positively beaming.

For my birthday, I got an oil painting. You’ve heard of the infamous dogs playing poker painting. Well there’s a painter named Andy Thomas who does ex-presidents playing poker. It comes in Red and Blue versions. I got the Blue. You can see it much larger on my Flickr Page here. Here’s a thumbnail:



In other news, my Internet has been acting oddly for two weeks. Sites keep vanishing for a few moments. Sort of like something is interfering with it. Quite frustrating. I’m sure it’s not on my end and AT&T isn’t reporting problems. Like I’ll be using Facebook and suddenly I get an error from Firefox saying “facebook.com” cannot be found. That’s clearly a DNS error and I’m wondering what’s getting in the way. With all my identity theft, this makes me nervous. I may have to try OpenDNS and see if that’s better. Does anyone have experience with it? I just don’t need one more stress in my life right now. Friday wasn’t a bad day. The night wasn’t quite as good and I didn’t sleep. Saturday started okay but got rapidly worse and I tried to stay with friends all day because I didn’t want to be alone. Details of this in the private area. Saturday evening, a few people hauled my ass of to the Hard Rock for dinner at Renegade. We were treated to the thunderstorm from hell which was truly impressive. The service was good, the food was (as always) awesome though I didn’t manage to finish (!!!) which is a bad sign. And yeah, I’m still losing weight. The waitress brought me a birthday sundae which I shared with the table. Quite tasty. Afterwards we killed time until it was safe to go outside (lightning!) and then couldn’t decide what to do. Some went in to gamble. Erin is still broken and was my ride. So we went off to Starbucks. I am not supposed to drink coffee so I didn’t. Got home really late, showered, and popped into bead physically exhausted. Took my increasing piles of meds which should make me sleep and they failed. Rough night. Will confer with doctor tomorrow. Decided to have one cup of cafe con leche this morning with breakfast. Bad, bad, bad idea. I figured a tiny bit of caffeine might wake me up without any problems. False. Skated with John and Liz. Had some dizzy spells (bad). Did the whole session and my heart was okay — except for idiot me who had caffeine. Came home and wrote this post and did errands. My lip is getting worse. I’m not sure what sort of doctor one sees about such things, but I need to do that. The outside is ugly but basically healed okay — big-ass scar from bad-ass stitches. The inside is a mess. One spot continues to act as if it’s infected even though it isn’t. This one white spot is oozing what appears to be pus (but isn’t) and it tastes freaking nasty. And I now have permanent dry mouth and I think I’ve had more water in the past two weeks than my whole life.Oh, and Jethro Bodine (Max Baer Jr) is opening a Beverly Hillbillies themed casino . I am not making this up. You gotta’ read that. Really. Apparently, there’s a market for this. Scary?

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