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I M icon man quitting B+H 4 IBM 2 pay 4 a brand-new used car under a volcano in '99


[7/27/2021> Flashing back to 1999, picking up where post #899 left off...]

July 2, 1999 – Axixic [Mexico]
Worked a half day then went to the airport to catch an AeroCalifornia flight to Hermosillo. AeroCalifornia definitely ranks as one of the more incompetent airlines I have ever flown. You’re almost crossing your fingers hoping to get out of it alive. Had a long layover in Hermosillo—hung out in the airport bar and saw some long-haired Mexican guy who thought he was hot shit. Everybody was gawking and asking for his autograph and wanting to take pictures with him, etc. He was with some blonde girl and his agent. When I asked some kids who he was (his name slips my mind), and what he did, they said he was a musician, I asked "rock n' roll?" and they laughed and said—"Romantico." Continued on to La Paz but didn't get off the plane there. Then back over the gulf to Guadalajara. It was raining when we landed. Lots of rain. Got a cab to Axixic (by this time it was something like 1 in the morning so [our bedder-½] couldn’t see much). Everyone was asleep when we got there (used a popsicle stick to let ourselves in) so we went straight to bed.

July 3, 1999 – Chapala
Woke up and finally met [S] for the first time, and [L] since he was 6 or so. Kind of weird at first, they were both being shy, but it didn’t take them more than a few minutes before they were jumping all over my back and dragging me around to show me things. We walked along the lake to the Nueva Posada where [D, L + A] were staying (lake Chapala is lower and as polluted as ever). The three kids were already starting to wear thin on us. Hard to get to use to, constantly tugging at your sleeves, five conversations going on at once, battles for attention . . . walked home along the old cobblestone streets passed our old house, made a stop at Stan the Birdman's house to check out all his parrots and exotic monkeys. Ended up getting on a bus to go to Chapala, all of us, except mom of course, who never goes with us to do anything. We took a boat out to Scorpion Island and ate an overpriced and crappy lunch out there. But the boat ride was fun. Then we walked around to the market and along the waterfront. Just getting all these people and children to all get to the same place was a logistical nightmare. Went back to Axixic and probably hung out at the plaza for the rest of the day, then got pozole and sopes at my favorite little Axixic dive. D, J, Bedder-½ and I went out later to the Nueva Posada for drinks, but it was dead so we went to the old Posada. A Salsa band was playing and Bedder-½ and I actually danced a whole set including some slower songs. It was fun.

[our mom's house in Axixic, where we lived ages 12-15]

July 4, 1999 – Guadalajara
Went to Guadalajara on the bus, all of us. Another logistical clusterfuck. Cabbed it from the centro to Tlaquepaque. Finally I just said hey, Bedder-½ and I are going to go off at our own pace. We did some shopping, bought some milagros, a lamp, plates, Virgen of Guadalupes, etc. Met the others at the restaurant with no name which now has a name, which is the “Restaurant with No Name”. Still had the peacocks, though most of them were locked up. The food was still good. By this time L was complaining about stomach pains, which was probably really an excuse for not wanting to hang out with us any more so D was going to put her on a bus back, but then she was freaking out so D went with her and then it was just J and his boys and us. We took a cab to Libertad and did some more shopping. We just got huaraches, but J was going nuts buying hammocks, huaraches, guitars and instruments, etc. Then we walked up at that pedestrian mall towards the central Cathedral. It was pretty cool. It started to rain, took shelter in the church then cruised around the various squares. We were walking towards the old bus station when it started to rain again and J started to doubt where we were going. So we got in a cab and he started going completely the other way. J was like "told you so" but ends up the guy was going to the new bus station which was way on the other side of town (we were only a few blocks from the old one when we caught the cab). By the time the cabbie told us we were halfway there so we figured what the hell. He said we could get busses to Chapala there. When he let us off, we found out we couldn’t. Only at the old bus station. So we had to get on a city bus and go all the way back to the old bus station. Fun way to spend a fourth of July.

[bedder-½ in Guad]

July 5 – San Juan Cosala
By the time D’s family unit made it over to the house it was almost noon. Bedder-½ and I went running and did a little shopping and were still frustrated waiting around. We ended going to the hot springs at Los Baños. New additions are a waterslide and a cavernous underground steam room. Played with the kids all day in the pools.

[unkle D being the piñata master]

July 6 – Patzcuaro
Bedder-½ and I had had our fill. We waited around again for most of the morning. Actually we went to work out at this funky new club that was where the old dance hall used to be on the plaza. The equipment was comically archaic. The stair masters were like homemade contraptions with car shocks attached to a bar, the weight machines were rickety and wobbly with mismatching and broken pieces. It was a joke but we managed to get an old school workout in. Followed by a licuado of course. When D’s unit came over, we were all debating what to do and nobody was really motivated to do anything and Bedder-½ and I had had our fill of kids so we said we were renting a car and going to Patzcuaro. They tried to tag along and suggested renting a mini-van, etc. and finally we just said we were going on our own, that it was just too complicated and there was no way we would get out of there. The car wasn’t cheap, over $50 a day, but it was worth it. Instant freedom. The wind in our hair, exploring where our hearts desired at our own pace. We drove around the lake in the rain, past Jocotepec and all the town with the red domed church and then stopped in Saguayo to eat lunch at this huge establishment. We were watching lame videos of some ranchero band called “Los Tucanes de Tijuana” thinking it must be a joke. Had a shrimp fest and fondue. Back on the road we went through all these towns as Bedder-½ was writing her perceptions of each (maybe I will transcribe what she wrote). Got higher and higher until we were up in the pine forest highlands around lake Patzcuaro. Actually got in to Patzcuaro in time to look around while it was still daylight. Had dinner up by the basilica, while watching the America Club soccer and listening to the slurping noises of a couple making out in the loft. We then retreated to our cozy hotel on the plaza.

July 7 – Parícutin and Paracho
Woke up and explored more of Patzcuaro and had breakfast. Went down by the docks where the boats leave for Janitzio but decided to forego this for further adventures. We drove around the south side of the lake and threw Urupuan, right through the downtown and by the park and all that. We went to Paracho thinking we’d get a violin for Bedder-½, but they all seemed cheap and we didn’t know what was good. Ate a sketchy meal in the marketplace and then continued on. The road to Anahuagan is now paved whereas it used to be a dead-end dirt road. The town is still the same, all the houses are made of wood and it's very poor. Of course the horse guys started chasing us from the very edge of town, a dozen of them galloping after us, offering us "a mount". We wanted to walk, but seems almost rude to deny these guys, as it is really their only source of income. Plus Bedder-½ has a fear of horses as the last time she rode one she was bucked off. We got a little boy to lead Bedder-½’s horse. Went down the steep, ash-leaden trail. Bedder-½ was scared at first but got used to it. The boy leading Bedder-½’s horse was falling asleep while he was walking. When we got to the edge of the lava flow, we told the boy we wanted to walk back, we would pay him the agreed upon price. So he left, taking the two horses with him. We went to the ruins that were buried by the lava flow. Just a steeple and some of the taller buildings sticking out. We climbed around on them and marveled at the cone of Parícutin. Walked back up the hill back to the rental car. The rest of the drive was incredible. We went and different was that wasn’t very well-travelled. Hardly saw any cars, went through a lot of funky towns. Almost got stuck in a torrential storm (it cleared up just long enough for us to explore the ruins of Parícutin). Drove up over some ridge and down to Saguayo and to the south side of the lake. Made it back to Axixic at a decent hour. D, J, L, and S had rented a car to go to the beach and weren’t back yet. So it was just D and A and mom. Bedder-½ and I went to eat at La Nueva Posada.

[making friends in the buried ruins of Parícutin]

July 8 – Chapala
Had breakfast in Chapala with mom and shopped for groceries to make an Italian feast. The boys got home later in the afternoon and we just walked around down to the plaza to eat lunch and down to the lake. Bedder-½ cooked a fabulous dinner of pasta and eggplant. The night before I had dreamt that D was leading us in a laying down version of the "Safety Dance" by Men Without Hats and I wrenched my neck really bad. I mean really bad, I could barely move it and it still hurts now, like five days later. This effected my ability to play with the little boys. And my sleep.

July 9 – La Paz
Woke up at four in the morning and watched the sunrise on the roof. Woke up L and S and said our goodbyes. They're good kids. S was so out of it that he stuck his head through his arm sleeve, he could barely roust himself up out of bed. The night before L was saying that if he didn’t get up that I should pour water on him. Much as we might miss them, it was nice to be going off on our own. Cabbed it to the airport and caught a plane to La Paz. We didn’t know where we were staying and stopped at some places in town before ending up at La Concha resort which was okay. We just relaxed on the beach. There was a fat Mexican guy from San Diego with a brand-new Wave Runner and I was asking him about it so he offered to take me out on it. It was scary as shit. He took off going 50-60 miles an hour and I had nothing to grab on to except his folds of fat. It seemed like he was going to lose control and I was just imagining what it would be like to hit the water at 60 mph. And of course my neck was hurting with every jolting wave. We went past La Paz, probably covered like ten miles or so. The rest of the day we just napped and read in lawn chairs under a shady palapa.

July 10 – Isla Espiritu Santu
Woke up early to catch our boat. Just Bedder-½ and I and some family of four from Anchorage. Little boat and a guide name Lorenzo. The trip out was nice, a fast boat and smooth waters. We cruised past the offshore islands that had cool rock formations and geological striations. First stop was the Sea Lion Colony. We went snorkeling through this arch and in crystal clear waters with all sorts of fish. Swam with the sea lions, the males would make barking noises and try to scare us off, but I petted one of them. The females and pups would play with us. A couple of seagulls were pecking at our snorkels and had no fear of us. Could only snorkel for about 20 minutes or so because the water was actually pretty cold.
     Next stop was a pristine beach in a cove of Isla Espiritu Santu. Immediately went out to snorkel more, saw all kinds of puffers and angels, Moorish idols, parrot fish, wrasses, coral, starfish, nudibranchs, rays, trumpet fish, box fish, and even an octopus and a big moray eel. Hiked around the barren and harsh landscape to warm up, lounged on the beach, watched the tuna and barracuda chasing little fish in the surf, and generally just had a good time. On the way back we stopped at a lighthouse with more sea lions. This time they were all females (until the beach master came lumbering home) so we could swim right up to the rock they were on and they would jump off and swim around us and then go back on their rock. We got stung by these little jellyfish polyp things. Stung a little bit and left welts on my arm. It went away, but the next morning it was back in full glory. We watched Mexico beat Peru in the America cup, played pool and foosball and then cabbed to town. Got licuados, bought a Cuban cigar from some guy who had blood all over his face and I don’t think he even realized it. This parade of 18-wheelers with girls in bikinis draped on the hoods went down the main drag blaring their home to announce a concert of Los Tucanes. So then we go to eat in the restaurant and who should show up but Los Tucanes de Tijuana. They’re fancy bus pulled up and took up the whole taxi parking area. They came in with their bodyguards and entourage and sat next to us in the otherwise empty restaurant and of course by-passers were gawking and coming in for autographs, or running home to get their babies so they could get pictures with the infamous Los Tucanes. We walked all the way back to the hotel which was probably about 3-4 miles. I was starting to get a sore throat.

[snorkeling w/ sea lions]


July 11 – return to Tucson
Woke up early to catch our plane. Our cab driver knew everybody in La Paz. Had a 3-hour layover in Hermosillo. Of course the plane was late, and they screwed up our seat assignments a few times— kept reassigning our seats that were on opposite sides of the plane. Finally, Bedder-½ got a seat in First Class and I got some seat that didn’t exist, had to make a stink before they found me an actual seat, a middle seat amidst some church group from Georgia. Arrived in Tucson and everything was wet from the rain the day before. It was good to be home.

July 17, 1999 – Tucson
Yesterday was M’s birthday, went to get Sushi with [G + M] and their friend [C]. C’s kind of a character. He works for the federal government writing pre-sentencing reports for the courts. Strange sense of humor. Afterwards we went to the Kon Tiki lounge where a bunch of M’s friends were to meet us. All these years in Tucson, and this was the first time I had actually been there. And what a treat it was. As the name implies, it was all decked out in Tahitian décor, numerous colorful parrots behind the bar, Polynesian statues and Fijian designs, straw and coconuts . . . a lot of flammable stuff and one exit. Most of the clientele seemed like they were on parole, mixed in with some college folk, and lots of overweight high school girls with poofy hair and tight clothes. The M b-day party group was kind of spread out over a few tables. Mostly I talked to Anastasia, G’s masseuse, and Jennifer, M’s agent. Talking with Jennifer was rather informative. Too bad she’s a one client agent (sounds kind of like the Godfather or something), she didn’t have any direct advice or connections to offer, just the usual. Interesting nevertheless.
     Got a call from DVA consultants which deal primarily with IBM, they have a position open for a tech writer. I called back just out of curiosity, $24 hr, not much more than I ‘m making now, but paid vacation and sick leave, paid health insurance, and other benefits which I don’t currently have. The other advantage is that it’s obviously a very international company, I looked on the web and they have offices in Italy, Argentina, . . . pretty much every country in the world and every state in the U.S. The cons are that it’s far, Rita Rd. and I-10, about 13 miles away. Would have to drive in which case would have to either fix Nandi or get reliable transportation. The other obviously con is that I’m embroiled in projects for B+H and don’t really have any complaints about working there. I have a lot of freedom and I would risk giving that up if working for IBM was not as cool. It’s worth looking into though, and Monday I have a preliminary interview with the consulting agency. We’ll take it from there.

Physical activity for the week:
Monday: Ran 2 mi.; Bike 8 mi., 15 min. elliptical, 18 min. on stat bike, shoulders and arms
Tuesday: Ran 2 miles; biked 8 miles; 18 min. on bike, legs
Wednesday: Ran 6 miles, bike 8 miles, chest and abs
Thursday: Ran 2 miles, bike 8 miles, 24 min. on stat bike, back, abs
Friday: Ran 4 miles, bike 8 mils, 30 min, shoulder, arms, abs
Saturday: rest
Sunday: Ran 10.7 miles

July 24, 1999 – Tucson
Went for an interview at DVA, the agency that is setting up the IBM deal. They got me an interview with IBM next week. Excited about all the opportunity that could bring. I’m dreading the drive and am also reluctant to leave a good situation (assuming I get the offer), but if anything I could use it as leverage on B+H, say, hey, I got this offer from IBM, they are paying more and I get full benefits, you guys better hire me FT and at least match their offer or it's sayonara... at least I have something to fall back on. And if they did make me an offer, it would still be cool to work for IBM, the future opportunities are more promising, more of a chance to work in Italy or Spain or something. But we’ll just have to wait and see if I even get an offer.
      Meanwhile at B+H I have become "icon man" (sounds like the Black Sabbath song). I redid all the icons on the “MOM bar”. I’m addicted to it. It’s kind of like Haiku. This constrained art form where you are restricted to a 32 by 32 pixels and 16 colors. I start to see pixel patterns in everything. Speaking of Haiku, we went to this Zen orientation and then meditation. It’s in this funky Zendo house up on Ft. Lowell and Campbell, the Zen center. After the orientation, which wasn’t that informative, we sat on cushions staring at the wall and meditated in complete silence and stillness for 25 minutes, and then 5 minutes of walking meditation, and then another 25 minutes staring at a wall. It was pretty hard completely still for 25 minutes, but it was pretty cool. I don’t know if I achieved a state of nothingness at all, and I’m not sure I would want to. It’s not something you can try at anyway. To me it’s almost like lucid dreaming. Thoughts enter your mind but sift right out and many of the thoughts are random garbage collecting like dreams are. That’s my meditation. Why try to think of nothing, when you can just let your subconscious have full reign? Thinking about nothing is a bit ridiculous, and a waste of time. Gonna help G + M move today and tomorrow. Last night they invited us over for an evening of beer, pizza and . . . the Beast Master.

Physical activity for the week:
Monday: Ran 2 mi.; bike 8 mi., 15 min. elliptical, 18 min. on stat bike, shoulders and arms
Tuesday: Ran 3 miles; 24 min. on stat bike, legs
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: Ran 2 miles, bike 8 miles, back, abs
Friday: Ran 2 miles, bike 8 miles, 24 min. no stat bike, shoulder, arms, abs
Saturday: rest
Sunday: Ran 6 miles (indoors)

July 24, 1999 – Tucson
Left work early on Thursday, showered, put on an ironed white shirt and tie, etc., drove all the way to IBM (Sta. Rita and I-10) in the Trooper with no air-conditioning (of course it went out about a week ago) sweating buckets, into the gates, the whole rigamarole. Waited til four when I was supposed to meet him, read stupid brochures, whatever I could get my hands on while trying to cool off. Observed the people. It was strange, definitely modern, definitely corporate. Probably the biggest high-tech industry park in Tucson, incredible manicured gardens, lots of big building, guys in white shirts with pocket protectors and brief cases and ID badges hanging out of their pockets, you need an ID to get into everything. 4:15, nothing. The lobby closed at 4:00, the receptionist had left and put a sign up that said doors alarmed at 5:00. I was the only one waiting. I went out to my car to get my address book and discovered I had locked myself out and had to wait for someone to go in the side door. 4:25. Called DVA, talked to Dean Vesling himself. He called around to see if he could figure out what was going on. 4:45. I saw a man outside, I went outside to see if it was this Paul Lougee guy and it wasn’t. And of course I was locked out again. Begged someone to let me in again. But I was sick of waiting. Just this and the drive is enough to make me not want to take the job. The drive is like 16 miles. On the freeway. Full on commute. I’d rather spend the time on my bike. Not worry about fixing the car. I don’t know, I just hate preparing and worrying about job interviews.

Physical activity for the week:
Monday: Ran 2 mi.; bike 8 mi., 24 min. on stat bike, chest
Tuesday: bike 8 miles, 5 min. on stat bike, legs
Wednesday: Bike 8 miles, ran 9.7 miles, back. Abs
Thursday: Nothing (interview)
Friday: Bike 8 miles, 2 miles, 30 min. elliptical, arms
Saturday: rest
Sunday: Ran 10.7 mies

August 2, 1999 – Tucson
Was supposed to have my re-scheduled interview today and once again this Paul Lougee guy flaked on me. This time I didn’t drive out there, but I had all my clothes ready and wore nice pants and I’m sure people at B+H were wondering why. But he cancelled due to "technical difficulties"... I’m not shitting, technical difficulties. I said what is that supposed to mean and Mr. DVA said he just didn’t think he would make it because he was having problems. Hmm. I rescheduled just because I was on the spot, but I am debating whether it’s even worth my time to even go again.
     Didn’t do much this past weekend as G + M went to Flagstaff and we had to watch over Lola. We actually went on a shopping spree. It started because I just didn’t like having that damn chest as our coffee table. We saw this really nice one at Table Talk and bought it for $239. Brought it home put it in front of our couch and rolled over on the floor laughing it looked so funny. It was huge. Took up the whole living room. And was really tall compared to our little couch. With the candles on top you wouldn’t even be able to see the T.V. So we took it back just as they were closing and they weren’t thrilled but fuck 'em. It’s a consumer world. We went to Pier 1 and Target and eventually to Cost Plus where we found this cool tribal African coffee table that is round and dark and low to the ground [probly the only piece of furniture from this era that we still have]. We also bought this Mantra Indonesian statue whose name is Pangunggu and he’s a guardian for the body. M gave us a rug so we started to pull up all the furniture in the loft and it inspired us to completely rearrange everything up here, so now Bedder-½ and don’t have our backs to eachother. She’s where I was with the view of the mountains, I’m over buy the stairs and the couch is behind us and it’s much more spacious and functional, both closets open, etc. We bought all sorts of other stuff including a scanner for something like $99. Computer accessories are so cheap, it’s unbelievable. Going to Mendocino for a 4-day weekend.

Physical activity for the week:
Monday: Ran 2 mi, 24 min. on stat bike, chest
Tuesday: Bike 8 mi., Ran 2 mi.,15 min on stat bike, legs
Wednesday: Ran 5 mi, Bike 8 mi., back, abs
Thursday: Bike 8 mi., Ran 2 mi., 30 min on stat bike, arms
Friday: nothing
Saturday: Ran 9 miles
Sunday: Ran approx. 8 miles around Mendocino bluffs

August 11, 1999 – Tucson
Flew to San Jose on Friday morning. Picked up a rental car and started driving. Stopped in San Francisco for a late breakfast. Mamas (where I used to go with Becky [Wreck]) was crowded, so we found some Italian place on Columbus park instead. Drove around, even drove down Lombard, drove past the intersection where Kevin died in his car, drove across the Golden Gate bridge and north. Past the wineries, onto 128, through the redwoods, in and out of the fog and drizzle, to the coast and to Mendocino. Great to see [R, M and K]. Had a home-cooked meal the first night and just hung out. Next morning R and I went off to play golf. We were originally planning on playing 18 but Bedder-½ was bummed she wouldn’t get to see him, so we stopped after 9. Good thing as we were playing terribly. M manned the shop and the rest of us went to the beach north of Fort Bragg. Just walked around and tried to go in the water but I was too cold.
     Went to eat at some small place in Mendocino, ended up being $230 with the tip and wine for 5 people. I think that’s the most I’ve ever paid for a meal before. But it was well worth it. R’s menu caught on fire while he was looking at (it was over the candle). We went to Big Dicks place, as Bedder-½ called it. Some small-town local bar with underage kids and sketchy types. Played songs on the jukebox and drank Sierra Nevada.
     Next morning I woke up and ran along the headlands while M and R went to church and Bedder-½ and K slept in. Then it was R’s turn to man the shop and the rest of us went to drive through the redwood tree. It was an insane ride. M and K said they never got car sick, so I was going pretty fast, when all of a sudden K is sick. So that kind of put a damper on things. We drove through the tree. It was huge. Walked through it. 350 feet high, thousands of years old. The biggest living organism on this planet. Bedder-½ drove the way back with K in front. Had spaghetti with meat sauce for dinner. Brought some little redwood saplings home to make bonsais with.
     Next morning everyone went to work so we puttered out of there. Drove along 1 the whole way down. Stopped in point arena to get a little breakfast at some backwardass place. Stopped at the beach somewhere near Bodega Bay. Stopped for Clam chowder at fisherman’s wharf. Through San Fran and to San Jose. Plane was late. Got back to Tucson and it was raining here and cool.
     Waking up at the crack of dawn so I can still work 10-hour days to make up for missing Monday and Friday, and still have time to come home, workout, water the plants and do whatever else like write in this journal. We have new neighbors though we haven’t met them. I caught a glimpse of one of them—older (55), big (fat), wearing overalls, slow, drives a Cutlass or something like that. Rescheduled my IBM interview for next week.

Physical activity for the week:
Monday: nothing
Tuesday: Chest, bike 8 miles, ran 2 miles
Wednesday: Bike 8 miles, ran 2 miles, 18 min on stat bike, legs (extra squats)
Thursday: Bike 8 miles, ran 2 miles, 30 min on stairs, back, abs
Friday: nothing
Saturday: Nothing (helped K move)
Sunday: 45 min on stat bike, shoulders and arms

August 18, 1999 – Tucson
Went up to Phoenix this past weekend to help K move. That’s gotta be one of the more boring drives. K was flying into Phoenix but her plane was late so we had to loiter around the airport and eat crappy food. Seemed like I hadn’t had a minute of rest since who knows when. Thursday night was G’s birthday and we went to the same sushi place that we went to for M’s birthday and also on the infamous bowling-strip club day. C went as did Caroline and her boyfriend Paul. I had to sit across from Paul and he was kind of a deadbeat. Urban planner. We ended up staying up til 12 or so, which is late considering I had to wake up 5 a.m. And it had been like that for weeks. No time to clean the house even. Anyway, Phoenix. We picked up K and then went over to the apartment. When we got there the dishwasher was running and all the lights were on. It was weird. Supposedly they had an agreement that he wouldn't be there all weekend. Even R e-mailed to ask him specifically not to be there. And he wasn’t there, yet. We were planning the siege when the garage door opened and K started to freak. So Bedder-½ and I went down to confront Rob, but he was pretty non-confrontational. Played innocent. It was awkward, after all it was his place. But finally he volunteered to leave for 10 minutes to give us time to split. We went and got a hotel. Crashed.
     Woke up early next morning (once again less than 6 hours of sleep), got bagels and went to get the U-haul. Went back to the apartment and Dan came over. We were done loading the U-haul by 11 a.m. Couches, bed, desk, dining table, tons of kitchen stuff, pretty much filled a 17 footer. K felt better once her stuff was out of the apartment. She took us to eat at some place called Ed Debevic's, this funky old diner with swag all over the walls. I don’t know what the theme was, except to get a job there, you probably had to go through acting school or be a stand-up comedian or just plain weird. Our waiter was a tall gay black guy with glasses with no lenses that were taped together, like he was being a nerd. He sat down at our table and just started being weird and rude, telling us to shut up, "this is all about me, bitches!" he would say and go on his spiel. It was pretty funny. About halfway through lunch, he joined a few other waitresses and waiters to do some dance on an elevated platform in the middle of the room. Strange.
     By the time we got to the storage unit it was hot, probably about 100 degrees. Fun, fun. Unloading shit in the middle of the day, sweating like a pig. My shirt was so sweaty there was salt stains all over it when it dried. Finished, up returned the U-haul and then went and hung out over at Dan's. We decided to spend the night, so we got a hotel right next to the Scottsdale fashion square. It was alright for a Days Inn, had a swimming pool. Dan came over later with a bottle of wine. Drank it in the room and then we went to the Fashion Square and ate dinner at some place called "Bistecca". Fancy place where you can get a steak for $24 and all you get is a little slab of meat and nothing else on the plate. I had 5 raviolis. Count them, 5. Pathetic. Bottle of wine for $30. And people were all dressed up like they were in New York city or something.... it's all "nice" and everything but when it all comes down to it, it’s still a shopping mall. A mall. How classy can a restaurant be in a mall?
     Left early the next morning to beat the heat. Lounged around watching movies, Lenny Bruce, Velvet Goldmine. Trying to catch up. Always just trying to catch up. Finally had my interview with Paul Lougee . . . left work early on Tuesday, air con busted, was sweating like a pig by the time I got there. This time Paul Lougee showed up. Led me through a maze of corridors— huge corporate expanse. “You don’t mind a group interview, do you?”
      “Of course not” –I say as my nervousness ratchets a notch almost to full panic state. Up flights of stairs, more corridors (I’d never be able to find my way back), into his office. I take the red chair, joking that I’m taking the hot seat. Enter John, Denise and Claire, other tech writers, or as they call themselves, Information Developers. Introductions all around, clammy handshakes. No real leadership from Paul (he admitted that he was fairly new to the department) so they were kind of looking at each other to see who would give me the scoop on what they do. I had to ask a lot of questions to really get it out of them. At first they were vague, we write manuals for a “product” that is on 8 platforms, the manual is 1000 pages and is different for each platform, and is translated into a dozen or so languages. The product is some sort of storage device/client server. The first ten minutes of the interview I was sweating like a pig, even got about my little hanky that Bedder-½ pressed for me to mop up my forehead. But once I cooled down I was alright. As a whole I think it went okay, I fielded most of their questions and they seemed fairly impressed with my background. I was honest, maybe too honest, about some of their questions, they were enquiring how I work in a group and I had to admit that most of the work I’ve done I’ve done it all on my own, and of course they asked about my numerous short-term contract jobs and I just had to say that’s just the way things happened. I’m not going to worry about it anymore. I’ll just wait to hear back . . . if I get it, I get it, if I don't, I don't. If I get it then I will have to make a decision. At least weigh it out so I can squeeze a counteroffer out of B+H. I guess I should be thinking about it a little bit, here’s a table of pro’s and cons.

Physical activity for the week:
Monday: Bike 8 miles, ran 4 miles, 24 min on stat bike, shoulders, abs
Tuesday: Bike 15 miles
Wednesday: Bike 8 miles
Thursday: Bike 8 miles. 15 min on stat bike, legs
Friday: Bike 8 miles, ran 2 miles, ran 30 min on treadmill, arms, shoulders
Saturday: Worked in yard
Sunday: 18 holes of golf, 30 min on treamill

August 28, 1999 – Tucson
Lots of changes in the works. To start with, took the Trooper in to have the dreaded valve job. Ends up there’s a crack in the engine block, between the 3 and 4 cylinders. Looking at $2400 to fix it. Whoa. Abrupt change of gears. Looking for new car, or as Bruce Springsteen would say, a brand-new used car. The only catch being that in order to get the estimate they took the head off the engine. I was already looking at $350 just to tow it home. And something like $600 to put It back together as is. So I was kind of stuck going through the Royal fuckheads. He referred me over to the slimebuckets in the used car dept. to have it appraised and they said they would give me $500 or maybe $600 for it, and probably couldn’t take care of the $350 mechanics fee. “We could get you into a new Trooper . . .blah, blah.” What do I look like, a fucking idiot? They actually thought I would buy another Trooper after this? I raised hell and told them I was in this mess because of them, he even went to get the Neil Whiteman master Royal clean-cut slimebucket boy who sold me the lemon, ends up he’s the owner's son and is now up higher, above standing around in a hot parking lot. They’re attitude changed a little. You know, what? We might actually be able to biff it out, let me ask my boss. Eventually they were like, okay, okay, we’ll give you $1800 for a trade-in and we’ll eat the service bill. Not bad considering the trade-in blue book for the trooper in fair condition is $1500.
     Okay, now the only problem is that we had to get a used car through them (obviously they wouldn’t give me cash for the vehicle). They had a 97 Honda Civic that was cool except I noticed slight alterations in the paint and uneven tire wear, the car had obviously been wrecked. They had a 98 Corolla that was in great shape, only 20,000 miles. I test drove both of these, then rode my bike home. Scott rode past me and picked me up and we went back to look at more cars. I showed him the Toyota and the Honda, and also a Jetta and a Mercedes. We went to the other lot and test drove a 92 Lexus which was pretty nice but had 99,000 miles on it. Bedder-½ and I took our bike back later and test drove the Toyota and the Mercedes, and went over to test drive the Lexus again. The Mercedes was solid and definitely a good ride, but it just seemed weird buying a Mercedes. The Lexus seemed more rickety when we went back. So we were pretty much resigned to the Toyota, it seemed the practical choice, not that we were thrilled about it.
     So the next day we went to go pick it up for the night. Actually, I was supposed to go at 3 p.m., but I heard from DVA about the IBM job. Evidently it was between me and someone else and Paul Lougee was concerned whether I would be committed for at least a year and a half. I told Helen of course, and I even called and left a message on his machine reassuring him I would be. I waited around all afternoon on Friday to hear back. I was anxious. Luckily I had received all my new bonsai pots and soils so I was planting new bonsai’s and repotting old ones to keep my mind off of it. Never did hear from him. Not a good sign, most likely he picked the other guy and is waiting for a response. Or maybe he’s still thinking about it, but in any event he’s kind of a flakey idiot.
     Scott drove us over to pick up the car. While we were over there, we decided to test drive the Jetta. The slimeball wasn’t around but another one was. We fell in love with the Jetta, it’s a world apart from the Toyota, it’s just so much fun to drive. So we took that overnight instead. Went to eat at Brooklyn pizza in it. Took Allison out to see Austin Powers 2 in it. It was fun, we were sold. Next day we took it in to have it thoroughly checked out. The only real problem was the timing belt was about to go. We used that in our negotiation. It was a gross scene, haggling with the used car guys. Especially the leader of them who acted like an aggressive Mike Brady. Our guy was a harmless and nervous gulf war vet. We ended up getting it for something like $11,650 (blue book of $14K) and they gave us $1800 for the trooper and ate our bill. After taxes and all those damn random fees ended up being something like $10,300 and I put $1,500 down, so it will be like $475 a month for the next 24 months. So now it is ours!
     Sunday morning we took M and G out to breakfast in it. M let me read his script “Rip Ready!”. It was actually really good (I feared it might be bad). It had my interest, I could see it getting made [not sure what happened to this, but a decade later when we were working for Comedy Central they ran his "Shadow Rock" series]. It has the Red Meat creativity and originality, but at the same time it adheres close enough to the network cartoon ideas. We went out with them again later on our bikes, had Bloody Mary’s at Bison Witches.

Physical activity for the week:
Monday: Bike 12 miles
Tuesday: Bike 8 miles, run 2 miles, 30 min run on treadmill, legs
Wednesday: Bike 8 miles, run 2 miles, chest, 30 min on bike
Thursday: Bike 18 miles,
Friday: Bike 8 miles
Saturday: nothing
Sunday: Run 6 miles, par course

September 6, 1999 – Tucson
Just when I had pretty much given up hope and resigned myself to my dismal job, I get a call on Tuesday (didn't even bother following up on Monday) from DVA. IBM wanted me. I told Helen to tell Paul (this middleman thing sucks) that as long as he was all right with me starting in two weeks, I was game (even though he had been dilly-dallying around for a month and half, he suddenly needed me ASAP). As an aside, I urged Helen to see if she couldn't squeeze a little more out of them, maybe $25 an hour. Given my experience with them, I held off on giving notice (though I had the letter all typed up and everything and had gone through in my mind what I would say.) The timing couldn't have been better. I suddenly had all this shit dumped on me that was due in two weeks. Suddenly EyeSpy was this life or death priority and I keep trying to get information but the product still changes every day, so how the hell can I document it? I also had to finish Chameleon and the IntellaSert 4.8 changes by Sept. 15. It was an unrealistic goal. I was just fed up with the logic and release schedule mentality. Ralph promises a customer a release or product by such and such a date. Everybody is frantically working up until that last day making changes and writing code. No time for QA. No time for testing. It's no wonder we screwed up ATT Charlotte so bad. And how can you have a manual written if everything you write, the screenshots, etc. change at the last second, and the people you need to help you get stuff documented, are frantically busy trying to finish code. There needs to be a month where there is a freeze on code, and nothing but testing and documentation goes on in that month. And also the Carrie Cote fire flared back up. She called me wanting to discuss the upcoming plans for the Gecko documentation which of course I want to be a part of, because if I'm not, what else would I be doing? I tried to enquire about the future of the Lynx documentation and pretty much got brushed off of that, too. Carrie Cote was evidently the document manager for Gecko so if I wanted to be a part of a Gecko it seemed like I needed to diplomatic with her rather than hang up on her like R Horton was telling me to do. But Ron's my boss, so what he says goes, right? These are just things I shouldn't have to worry about. The bureaucratic crap was just getting too deep when all I want to do is write manuals and get paid for it.
     Given the projected Sept. 15, 4.8 release, the IBM offer was perfect timing.. . . I didn't hear back from Helen until the next day, a day in which I was so fed up I was tempted to just say, you know what? I'm giving two-week notice. But I didn't. Helen called back and said there was a problem. Evidently there had been some sort of mix-up in all the bureaucratic paper-work, and IBM had not filled out the necessary requisition forms or whatever, it was hard to say whose fault it was because my only contact is through the DVA, but the bottom line is that the $24/hr rate was for a class 4 tech writer which according to their rigid bureaucratic standards, I was not. I'm not sure what exactly this was based on, whether you had a degree in English, whether you had 5-10 years of tech writing experience, etc. and part of it seemed to be that there was another tech writer (Denise, who was also at my interview) who was in the conference call concerning my employment, who freaked out when she heard I was getting $24/hr (evidently she made much less), so who knows what the reasoning was, but the whole thing was put on hold while the "purchasing department" in San Jose filled out the required "requisition" forms (appropriate -- I was being purchased as a product) . . . what gives? Nothing. No flexibility. Was I really willing to work for a company that was so rigid and unwilling to bend? I told Helen that I wanted the original offer or forget about it.
     She called me back the next day and offered to pay me $24/hr. with no benefits, or $22.50 with the benefits. Was I not making myself clear? It wasn't the damn $1.50 an hour but the principle of it. "Maybe you'd like to think it over and get back to me tomorrow." Okay, so I can go home tonight and eat some corn... so when I tell you to eat my shit tomorrow then it will be nice and crunchy for you? I didn't say that, though I wish I had. Instead I told her I could give her my answer now, that it was $24/hr with benefits or nothing, and even then I didn't feel too good about this whole thing. . . so the whole IBM thing has probably fallen through the cracks.
     Things turn out how they do for a reason, I guess. I probably would have been miserable there. I also think it was strange that this guy had only interviewed me for an hour and not asked for sample writings or references (even though I had offered them). I guess I should just be happy with what I've got. So I switched gears at B+H, from trying to put everything off until I heard from IBM, to take anything and work my butt off like I was in for the long haul. I brought my clippers this morning to clip back all the Palo Verdes and Mesquites that have been getting in my way on my ride to work. I didn't want to do this before, because the bike path to IBM didn't go this way.
     Saturday morning we went to Phoenix. Kind of a strange idea. We were going to go the mall and shop and see an IMAX movie, or maybe we just wanted an excuse to drive somewhere in the Jetta. We went the scenic way up 79, stopped along the way to take pictures (Bedder-½ had her 35 mm fixed up and is now the photography mama). We ate bright purple prickly pears and looked at flowers. I found a rare puddle of water that had tadpoles and these other strange creatures in it. They looked like miniature horseshoe crabs that were frantically digging around in the silt, as if they had one day a year of life to live. I had never seen anything like them. Maybe I had discovered a new species?
     When we got to Phoenix, the check engine light came on, which put a dark cloud over everything. We just bought the car, and I passed on the warranty option. I don't know, the light went off, and hopefully it was related to the timing belt which I knew I needed to take care of. But it was also acting funny... We went downtown and had a bagel and coffee at Einstein's. I had never really spent any time downtown. It's kind of unique. But it's annoying because there is nowhere to park even though there doesn't seem like there's that much to do. We spent the rest of Saturday shopping like maniacs at the Scottsdale fashion square. Probably spent over $500. I did most of my shopping at Structure. Had lunch at Nordstrom's. Lounged around the room. Had dinner at Avanti's which was some mob-owned joint that looked like it had its heyday in the 70s. Really tacky leopard-skin booths and black and white circus tent material hanging from the roof, valet parking, the whole bit. Some beaut of an owner with an exposed gold-chain laden chest was walking around doing the PR thing to all the tables. It was amusing, but also annoying at how badly you can be treated if you don't suck up that mentality, even if you spend $100 on a meal. You get seated at a lousy table and given lousy service because, who knows, maybe because everyone else slips the host $20 when they come in. Or just because they've never seen you before.
     We watched HBO in bed and woke up and went for a swim in the pool. We started back and stopped at the Arizona Mills mall (being the mall crawlers that we are) and saw the IMAX on "Extreme" sports, it was pretty cool, surfing, skiing, snowboarding, windsurfing, climbing, ice-climbing, etc. All the things that we should have been doing besides hanging out a mall watching movies about it. Did some more shopping, went the Virgin Megastore and got a bunch of CDs. Now I'm at work and it's Labor Day and everyone has the day off except for me. Oh well, I can't complain. I can do things like write this journal entry and I even wrote a story this morning "Placebo" or should it be Placenta? Or maybe it should be called Ichthys o placebo? Psari?

Physical activity for (last) week:
Monday: Bike 8 miles, ran 8.7 miles
Tuesday: Bike 8 miles
Wednesday: Bike 8 miles, ran 5.7 miles
Thursday: Bike 26 miles
Friday: nothing
Saturday: Ran 7 miles
Sunday: nothing

September 12, 1999 – Tucson
It's a Saturday morning and I'm at work. I've been going at it hard this past week to finish up the 4.8 stuff. Typing away like a madman, making drawings, etc. It's getting to be so bad, that I'll be typing something, and I'll be eavesdropping on a conversation between Orin and Ralph while I
am typing, that totally contradicts what I am writing! Writing, re-writing and re-writing, it's good for my writing skills, I guess. Then I have to re-fudge all the drawings. The whole meaning of EyeSpy has changed multiple times. And it probably will still change this next week when they go test it out in Dallas. Are hemorrhoids stress related? All I know is yesterday it felt like red ants were eating away at the rim of my butthole. Maybe it was the Tiki Masala that we had the night before. Or maybe it's from riding my bike.
     Speaking of bikes, I am considering riding the Tour de Tucson, and as I was riding to work this morning, I had an inspiration, I'm going to ride the Tour de Tucson (two days before thanksgiving) dressed up as a turkey. Full on feather suit with a red phalangey thing on my helmet, feather tassels
streaming from my bike. It would be cool. I would strap a boom box to the back of my bike and make an infinite tape loop of "he's going the distance" by Cake. But actions speak louder than words. It's one thing to think it and another to actually do it.
     Met Gwynn at Bob Dobs last night, and we got onto the Joe Boyle subject, and she still is convinced that she will never marry him, that they are too much like brother and sister, and I'm still convinced that they will someday get married. So we bet $1000 on it, actually to be honest, we bet $999.99, in honor of the date being 9/9/1999. Of course there had to be a counter bet, and the counter bet was that if she married this guy in New York that she has a crush on, then I would have to give her $999. I am not sure about the nature of her relationship with that guy, I just know that she will marry Joe Boyle. The bet stands for 11 years, before the date of Sept. 9, 2010. That will be a nice chunk of money some day in the future. [the date came + went + neither of us won]
    Dr. Lei finally officially let the cat out of the bag, the kitty cat of Bethesda, Maryland. Granted I love the name "Bethesda", I am not crazy about the name "Maryland". Maybe if we lived across the border in Virginia or something. Name is everything right? Bedder-½ has been preoccupied with this decision which she will have to make my November. Dr. Lei thinks she can get her PhD by June, but that it will be rushed and premature, and that it would benefit her to do a post-doc for 6 months or a year (or longer?) to wrap things up, get a few papers out based on all this work she has been doing, etc. But god, did it have to be Maryland? Why can't it be Hawaii or Mississippi or something. Not that I've been to Maryland, so I shouldn't be so judgmental. He might fly us out there to check it out if we are interested. I don't know. I am open to moving pretty much anywhere I haven't been already, and if it's a good opportunity for Bedder-½ that is good for her career, then so be it. I'd find something.

Monday: bike 26 miles
Tuesday: bike 8 miles, run 2 miles, 24 min on stat bike, Chest and abs
Wednesday: Bike 10 miles, run 2 miles, legs and abs, 15 min on stair machine
Thursday: Bike 8 miles, back, 24 min on stat bike
Friday: Bike 8 miles
Saturday: Bike 8 miles
Sunday: Bike 25.6 miles (to Sabino Canyon and back)

September 15, 1999 – Tucson
Crazy week at work, trying to finish up documenting four projects at once, while those four projects are themselves still not done. Wednesday I got a call from DVA, she said the requisition form or whatever was finally filled out, meaning they were finally to a state where they could actually hire someone, I don’t know how much of this was true except she wanted to give me a second chance to accept the offer. I asked her if it was DVA or IBM that was responsible for the whole fiasco and she took the blame, saying that Paul Lougee had wanted me this whole time. She asked me if I was still firm about the original offer and I said yes, so she said she would work on her boss. Evidently IBM “purchases” a commodity like “a class 4 writer for a year” from DVA acts as a middleman and supplies the commodity (me) and they pay me. She fed me all sorts of hogwash to the effect that there was a clerical error, and really if they were gonna pay me $24/hr. than they would lost money and I answered to effect that that was bullshit and if it was there error they should suck it up. So then I got off the phone, pretty confident that she wouldn’t have called me back unless they would give me what I want, and I wrote an e-mail to Ralph and R Horton and told them what was up, that if they didn’t give me warm and fuzzies, and perhaps give me a raise, that I would split. Ralph was in Durham, and hurricane Floyd was on the verge of bearing down on North Carolina, and meanwhile I’ve got tons of work to do, and top of it, we started to have the “kick-off” meetings for the Gecko documentation, and they were a complete joke. They have a whole team of 4 (led by Carrie Cote) to do this project, and just lots of talk about what meetings they would have and the way things would get done, rather than just do them. It was an insight to corporate inefficiency at its best, not that I wouldn’t experience any of this with IBM... talking about how we need to work as a team, and we need to be communicate, and just vague stupid common sense shit that if you don’t already know, you are definitely not going to start doing because you read some memo saying you should. R wrote his typical terse 1-line e-mails back, saying he would check the project schedule and get back to me (part of my “inquiring ultimatum” was to try to get an idea of how much work Bell+Howell would have for me, whether there was any short of secure future.
     Ralph came back the next day (just before Floyd hit) and we had a good talk. He really wants me to stay and said I was the best tech writer that he had worked with and that I was far better than any tech writer in Durham. He was fighting to keep me in whatever way he could, trying to talk to R Horton or trying to devise ways to maybe put me back on his payroll, but he told me on a personal level that he would recommend I go to IBM. There’s really nothing Ralph can do, it’s in R Horton’s hands. The next day we talked some more and we came up with an offer to present to R Horton, he took IBM’s offer and translated the benefits into an hourly wage of $26 /hr. and we called Ron. But R was a prick, said that none of his writers make that kind of money, he seemed almost peeved that I was already making $23/hr. and that was really what I wanted to hear, not that I cared about the raise, but just to know that this guy’s such an idiot. It set my mind clear. It’s not a sure thing, I haven’t given notice, mainly because the starting date hasn’t been confirmed, but then again isn’t this déjà vu? And (after working long days, including 15 hours on Thursday night, I finished all the manuals). So the timing is pretty good, rather than have a hectic last two weeks with Bell+Howell I can just take two weeks to pass the buck and just collect 2 weeks pay.
    Went out to Rosas Friday night with M and G. Went to the football game with Scott and Bedder-½ on Saturday night after having a tailgate party at our house with Italian sausages. The game was a disgrace, got their asses whooped by Stanford. Today I went golfing with Scott and I shot an 87, my lowest score yet. Despite a monsoon that slammed us off and on through the back 9. This has got to the best, or worse monsoon season on record in terms of rainfall amounts, and how long the season was. Went to the climbing gym this evening and went to see the Sixth Sense, a cheesy wanna-be intense tear jerk Bruce Willis with every cheap Hollywood trick and cliché in the book.

Physical activity for the week:
Monday: Bike 8 miles, ran 2 miles, 30 min on treadmill, arms, abs
Tuesday: Bike 8 miles
Wednesday: Bike 8 miles, ran 7 miles
Thursday: Bike 4 miles
Friday: Ran 2 miles, 40 min on stat bike, chest, abs
Saturday: Nothing
Sunday: 18 holes of golf, climbing gym

September 21, 1999 – Tucson
They still haven’t given me the definite word over at IBM so I’m kind of in Limbo. Just showing up at work and putting in the hours and not really wanting to embark on any new projects as I was fairly certain I would be leaving. But the more I have to wait, the more unsettled I’m feeling about this whole thing. Evidently they are filling the “procurement” (didn’t even know what that was until today) and the IBM headquarters are in San Jose, and Paul Lougee is sick. And I’m looking like a jackass because I was like give me a raise or else, and R Horton’s like, ok, what’s or else, and now I’m just sitting here doing nothing when I wish I could just tell him to piss off.
I bought a new bike just now. A Bianchi Boardwalk. I was gonna get something more retro, something hybrid, but then I figured may as well go a little further and get a good hybrid, one that I could do the Tour de Tucson in. It has 24 gears and is fast enough, and light enough, but at the same time is durable, and has wider tires (but not clunky like a mountain bike). It’s sea foam green with a red seat and red leather handlebar grips.

September 27, 1999 – Tucson
I didn't even turn my computer on this weekend, so I am writing this from work on Monday morning. The culmination of the IBM saga . . . I called Wednesday to try to figure out what was going on, no word. Finally Helen called me on Thursday saying she had talked to the people in San Jose, evidently the budget was tight because it was the end of the year, that I was just getting pushed around on people desks. So I assumed the worse and tried to figure out how I could save face (after all I did pretty much tell Ron H. "match IBMs offer, or else, and his answer was pretty much "no fucking way" in this signature three words or less). There was a glimmer of hope when Fred Perry called me to beg me not to quit, that there was going to be some re-structuring of ISDG, being that R Horton had too much to handle with training and writing, and his focus was on training, so they were considering appointing a Supervisor for just the writers, and that person was most-likely to be Fred. So at least I had some sort of excuse to fall back on (though I still wasn't getting a raise, and I would still have to deal with Carrie Cote, etc.) Suddenly I'm getting all these compliments, about what a great writer I am, about how good the manuals are, about how much I will be missed, isn't that always the way it goes?
     Luckily on Friday I finally got word that all the i's were dotted and the t's crossed and all the signatures were gathered and it was official. It took me two seconds to whip up a letter of resignation. Victor came up to my desk as I was typing it and was talking to me and then reading over my shoulder, and his speech slowly faded to a silent awe, and "what the?" I gave him a casual smile as I marked R Horton and Ralph Anderson and TekWork as the recipients and then casually clicked the Send button, the flying envelope. He couldn't believe I did what I did, but then again, he didn't know of my plans. It's funny how things work out. The timing was perfect really. I start work at IBM after our 3 day gathering in Vegas. If I had given notice earlier then I would've had to take a day off my first week at work which wouldn't have looked to good. And this way I get to spend my last two weeks wasting time doing stuff like this rather than frantically trying to finish up manuals.
     We were going to celebrate on Friday night (being that G had also been offered a job as an editor that week), but we lost steam and fell asleep early. Next day went to the Cup for breakfast and did errands, then went up to Mt. Lemmon later in the afternoon. I gathered some Bonsai specimens, a couple of Manzanitas, some Pines and an Oak. Bedder-½ was taking pictures. It was just nice to be up in the tall shady trees next to a cool flowing stream (I gathered rocks from the stream). And it was good to have a comfortable reliable car to do it in. You can see the towering cliffs and trees overhead much better with a sunroof. Saturday night we drank a bottle of champagne at home. Sunday I worked a lot in the garden, I built a little shelf for the Bonsai's outside in the patio. Planted some poppies and sunflowers and basil and cilantro. Watched Prefontaine hoping it might inspire me to run the Tucson marathon. I think this last weekend was pretty much the ultimatum for deciding to do the Tour de Tucson, the Tucson marathon or neither, and I pretty much decided neither, though Prefontaine had me momentarily inspired. I don't know, maybe I will go home today and run 13 miles to get back on schedule, but doubtful. It's just too time consuming, and I have nothing to prove except to keep my good health, which I feel I have, except I have some virus, or maybe just allergies today. Didn't sleep well because I was congested. Need to start devoting more time to writing (and now with all my new Bonsai's, that's something else to do on a daily basis).

Exercise for the week
Mon: Bike 8 miles, ran 2 miles, back, abs
Tues: Bike 8 miles
Wed: Bike 15 miles (rained out), 24 min on stat, chest, abs
Thurs: Bike 26 miles
Fri: Bike 10 miles, 30 min on stairs, shoulders, arms
Sat: nothing (short hikes)
Sun: Ran 2 miles, 20 min on stat bike, legs and gardening

[... October—December 1999]

902 <(current)> 904> Reflecting on the journey of Calamari as we transfer the physical archive to Pittsburgh
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