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November 4th, 2002

A night out of laughs...

I had a restless night last night, waking up several times during the night... 2:33, 4:24, and finally, 6:15, at which time I just got up. I'm having some pain in my neck that I've been trying to ignore for a little while now. I think it's probably related to that incident at the beach on Saturday, October 5th. I'm also having some jaw pain today. At first I thought it was related to my recent crown on my upper, back right tooth, because the pain is in that area. But the more I examine it, the more I think it's actually my jaw.

I had pizza buffet for lunch today, and ate more than I wanted to. I really do need to find out "what's eating me," that "keeps me eating." Weight. Dieting. It's like a chronic illness. Just get tired of it sometimes.

It was a good work day today. I got a lot done, and it really is a good bunch of folks here. Kevin R. Sametimed me to set up a meeting to talk about him taking a more active role in Singapore's EAGLE group. That was cool. We set up a conference call for Tuesday. I also set up a call with Susanne for tomorrow, Tuesday, to cover the changes to the rebranding process for servers versus agents. The UNIX installation code wasn't ready, so I didn't work with Sue. About half way through the day, Kim told me that the Windows 2000 installation code was ready and being dropped to test, so I should work on that instead. Bonus. This means working with Casey instead of Sue. :-) Hopefully, we'll get started on that tomorrow. Also, today, Kim told me that she was going to go ahead and request a one-week extension for my stay. This is no surprise.

I was at work until 7:00, doing some TCW stuff after hours. At about 7:00, Casey walked by and asked me if I was joining the group for dinner. Sam had mentioned it earlier, and I had declined because it was a Sushi place, but Casey told me he hates Sushi but Sam promised him they have "regular food" on the menu as well, and said, "Why don't you come?" I packed up and ran back to the hotel to drop off my stuff, and to ride with him and Sam.

On the way back, I was rushing to be there by 7:15, I was listening to Steve's long message on my cell's voice mail, and I took the left before the one for the hotel. This was a costly mistake, as there was no quick turnaround, and once I did, and got back to the main intersection, I just missed the left turn light, and it took forever to cycle. I drove like a maniac into the hotel. They were waiting in the lobby for me. I dumped my stuff into my room, and ran out to join them. Sam drove, and I navigated.

At the restaurant, we were joined by a friend of Sam's, Albert, who works for Global Services, and a lady friend of his (not clear if she was a colleague or his girlfriend; a colleague, I believe), and I think her name was Christine. They were both Asian, he quite talkative, but almost exclusively about IBM, and she hardly said anything. (She did laugh at Rob a lot though, as did all of us.) Rob joined us, and he had a girl with him, too, but none of us caught her name. She hardly got a word in edgewise, what with Rob being her date.

He really is quite hyper, and pretty funny. Though often his talk was very PC. He joked a lot with the waitress, and at times it was hard to tell if she thought he was funny or a pain in the ass. She did say at one point, "You can get away with anything, because you're so handsome." One thing we know, she's not blind. He really is a sight for sore eyes.

Rob was talking about how he doesn't drink, and everyone agreed it was probably a good thing. He said, "Yeah, that way I don't ever have to wake up the next day and say, "I'm sorry for the way I acted last night it was the alcohol.'" I said, "Yeah, it's so much better to say, "I'm sorry for the way I acted last night, it was just me."

He talked about how Japanese and Chinese people eat with chopsticks, and especially their rice, picking up a pretend bowl, and pretending to shovel the rice in his mouth "like they do." He just didn't hold back. The whole night was like that. The phrase "pit bull on crack" came to my mind several times.

However, we all did laugh a lot during the evening, so it made for a pleasant evening. We never did know what kind of relationship Rob had with this girl. It was clear, however, that she wasn't his girlfriend, though, because he made some comment about his (next day) trip to Austin, and how they might try and fix him up with several girlfriends in an effort to keep him there. One would hope he wouldn't make such a comment in front of his "girlfriend," but we are talking about Rob here. At any rate, she didn't look horrified at the statement, so we're thinking good friends only.

Robert called during the meal, and I took his call outside. It was great to hear from him. We didn't have much to say, but it's always just "a little piece of home" when I talk to him. I was very glad he called.

When we left there, me, Sam, and Casey stopped by Seattle Coffee for a drink and dessert. Casey doesn't drink coffee, so he had an Italian Cream drink. Sam had Iced Chai. I had regular coffee. Sam had a raspberry tort. Casey and I each had a white chocolate macadamia nut cookie. Yum. We sat outside. It was a little chilly. We had some laughs talking about Rob, and the two girls that were also sitting outside, reading passages from a hugely thick book.

On the way back, Sam showed us "how to peel out with a Mazda 626." You have to shift it into reverse, the sort of slam the accelerator, and shift it into drive at the same time. I made the comment that when he returns the car, they'll say, "He didn't put too many miles on it, but he went through two transmissions." He has the exact same car as I do, only his smells like smoke (even though it's a non-smoking car), and is gold/tan and mine is white.

We got back to the room a little after 10. I watched some television. What a vast wasteland. I cam amazed, and somewhat transfixed on this one station, that is some religious organization trying to get TV stations tuned to them or signed up with them or something. There's this dreadful looking woman who looks like (and it may even be for all I know) Tammy Faye Baker. She's usually writhing in some way. Last night this black lady was getting into it. She was doing weird shit with her lips, that may have been the beginnings of speaking in tongues (is there such a thing as speaking in lips?), and she would do extra syllables and shit at the end of her words. She would say, with a hand up in the air and her head tilted back, "Spin around 3 times for the Lord," and people in the audience would be turning in a frenzy. They have a counter up in the top right corner of the screen, "Available: 45 Busy: 125"

"Pick up the phone. We have 45 lines open now. Make a pledge." What a racket.

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