April 26, 2000
This, my dears, has been a near perfect day.
I rose and went to work (Ha! Part one of the "near" qualifier!), which wasn't bad. Had a meeting with one of my uberbosses, who, it turns out, is one of the originators of the McDonald's Happy Meal. We're right up against the bright heart of capitalism, here...
I took my little brother (who I've been having fun with right along) to Espresso News where he met the lovely Robin, coffee server, antique buyer, radical feminist, and punk-band afficianado. I like to think I'm widening my brother Wayne's horizons... I'm reading Tim Powers' The Drawing of the Dark which is really super lovely, and I read that while my brother glugged coffee and sneered at the latest Billy Graham column in the paper. After a bit I worked on outlining, in minute detail, the next several scenes of the novel. So those scenes are practially done, except of course for the actual workaday scribbling (and painstaking hours of revising that will come in a few months).
After that, I joined my girlfriend Meg and roommates D. and Brian for pool at Rafters, local beer-joint and microcosm for humanity. The other bars have somewhat defined clienteles, but at Rafters you can see guys in suits and ties shooting pool alongside chaps-wearing bikers, raver kids rubbing elbows with frat boys, bearded mountain men and shaved-headed punks. We shot pool. I lost, mostly. Those few who've seen me play pool can attest that I do lose, mostly-- and that so losing doesn't inhibit my enjoyment of the game a bit.
If this doesn't sound perfect to you so far, we've got no shared frame of reference, darlings, and I just can't convey.
Then home, for the true focus of the evening. My brother and me in a three-round front-yard battle royale, just like when I used to whup him in the old days.
Of course, in the "old" days I was a teenager in decent shape and I outweighed him by lots of pounds. Now I'm a cubicle-trained twenty-something in no kind of shape and he outweighs me by twenty-something pounds.
I still whupped him, though.
My roommates and S.O. found the actual wrestling quite dull, but the trash-talk convulsed them (Brian laughed so hard he wept). I talk a lot of trash, and it runs in the family, it seems. I can't recall any great examples right now-- most were funny only in context. Oh well. If you ever wrestle me, you'll hear what I mean.
(I'd never tell my brother this, but man, I'm still sore)
The greatest discovery I made on this trip regarding my brother is that he's funny. He didn't used to be. Apparently escaping my shadow made him blossom or something like that.
Then my girlfriend and I turned in...
So: Coffee, outlining, a good book, beer, wrestling, and so on... Perfect.