May 14, 2006

sour grapes make sour wine

Back from that top secret mission, which was less interesting than it probably sounded. It was spending a week in New York consolidating our two storage spaces into one and shipping a mountain of CDs to the West Coast, then getting rid of the not-so-hot IKEA-type furniture we'd had taking up space for ages. The "getting rid of" was the curious part. When I advertised it on Craigslist for rock-bottom prices, I got a handful of calls and emails from people who wanted to buy a piece or two, and every one of them flaked on me--I'd be at the storage space and get a call from the person who was supposed to pay a token sum for an air conditioner or chair, "oh, dude, sorry, I twisted my ankle or something," etc.

So I announced on Craigslist that I was giving it all away, divvying it up between everyone who was present at 10:30 Saturday morning, gave the address, said "you can call me from 10:30 to 12:30 that morning to ask if something has been claimed yet, NOT BEFORE OR AFTER, and I will not reserve anything for anyone." Naturally, I got something like 20 phone calls on Friday and early Saturday morning, and another 25 or so emails: what's the address? please reserve the chair for me! etc.

Fortunately, there wasn't quite a riot, although I think there was a little bit of acrimony over a $5 wastebasket that two people wanted. Everything was gone by 10:32. And then I got phone calls all day from people who wanted to know if the thing they wanted was still there...

Otherwise... really, there was no otherwise. The trip was top secret because I knew if I told my friends I was coming to town I'd just see my friends & not get the storage-space work done--there was just an awful lot of box-packing and -repacking and -labeling and -moving and -shipping that had to happen (and a bit of writing afterhours). Next time, my dear ones.

I returned to find my 15th-college-reunion report waiting for me, and spent the entire afternoon today reading it. My classmates are mostly running small countries now; those who aren't are running cutting-edge nonprofit charities, or are famous creators of one kind or another, or if they have really recognizable names didn't submit anything other than their current address. Money comes to them like arrows to St. Sebastian. Note to self: comparing self to cohort only brings a mild sinking sensation. Everyone is really into their kids, by the way; good to know I'm in good company there.

But another thing I returned to made my heart glad: Free to Be... You and Me has been reissued. Daphne asked me recently where I got some of my ideas about gender & how to perform it: this, friends, is where an entire generation of kids with progressive-type parents received the message. The three friends who came over to visit today all grew up on it too, and demanded to hear it. Lisa had heard of it, but hadn't heard it before; Sterling, I suspect, is going to be hearing it a lot. Oh, that Marlo Thomas/Mel Brooks "baby" skit.

Posted by Douglas at May 14, 2006 10:58 PM | TrackBack
Comments

For me it was the 10th report as I was still in grad school-mode though finished a year but eking out non full-time living at stanford wanting to move only for a full time, tenure track gig. I had no house, no enduring love and no kids, not to mention no 6 figure income. But then I also had no heartburn and no strings attached as the song says. I just read my 20th report last fall and it was nice to see some of the high flyers reevluating what was important etc. Beyond Conan, the guy I hear most about from my year is Kevin Jennings, regularly appearing on NPR as a soundbit like the most recent GLSEN joint, the Day of Silence. Ironically i can't even remember when he came out during college.

Posted by: bulb on May 15, 2006 6:49 AM

you were HERE?!!!! BOOOOOOOOOO! You didn't let me know. Of course, I've been uber lame and haven't been checking your blog, either... go figure.

Posted by: Brooklyn Suicide on May 15, 2006 1:18 PM
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