It immediately reminded me of the old generic food products—how they used to be all white with only black writing on them indicating what they were.
I was very ambivalent about whether this could possibly be the city bus or not, as—if anything—if it doesn't just say "CAT" on it, it's usually covered in advertisements. It moved forward into the intersection, and I picked up my bags, which in order to save my shoulders I usually keep on the ground until the bus pulls up, and I got my fare card ready just in case.
As the back end of it became visible, there was a red design about a quarter of the way from the rear, but basically just above one window and disappearing up onto its roof. The bus driver just stared at me as he passed me by. "Got another one," he was probably thinking.
Once the brand name bus arrived and I boarded, I didn't pay too much attention to the ridership, as I was heads down into my book with an urgency reflective of its imminent due date on Thursday. I did note that Library Man was aboard, Grumpy Boy boarded at his usual stop, and Cosmo Boy made an appearance after a long, long absence.
I'm not sure I ever named him Cosmo Boy in the past, but he's the one with the completely see-through backpack, which the first time I saw it looked like it contained an 8-inch cylindrical object with little spikes all up and down that I at first thought might vibrate, but which I eventually identified as a curling iron. Today, as if to erase any possible doubt, he carried a textbook with large letters on it that said, "Cosmetology." Thank goodness.
I had two back-to-back work meetings this morning, both staff meetings. The first was my department's staff and the second was the staff of a department for whom I'm their "beat reporter."
After that, I had a "photo shoot" in my office, during which the photographer for our organization took 48 pictures of me sitting at my desk and using Twitter. He will use those to create three photos of me, which I'll provide to the editor of the NC State Student Chapter of the STC newsletter to accompany the Twitter article of mine that's going to be published in it.
I attended a "Lunch & Learn" from noon to one over in DH Hill Library. My friend, colleague, and trainer extraordinaire, Twanda, presented, "Facebook: Beyond the Basics." Ever the consummate professional, she had prepared for the possibility of access problems, so switched to her backup presentation—slides with screen captures organized in a PowerPoint presentation.
I learned a couple of gems in this class, the biggest being about the "Share" option within Facebook and the "Facebook buttons" on many pages outside of Facebook, which provide an easy way to share news articles, videos, and links.
In my U.S. mail at home, I had the sweetest, sweetest, sweetest card from Robert. It made me cry a little. My heart was full.
I got to the gym late tonight, from 8:15–9:15, but got there nonetheless. I did 300 (15 sets of 20 reps) [Well to be totally accurate, it was 13 sets of 20 reps, 1 set of 25 reps, and 1 set of 15 reps, since my mind was drifting in the 3rd set and when I realized I was up to 24, I stopped at 25. I did 15 the next set to balance it back out. But I digress...]
I followed that up with 60 minutes on the elliptical machine, only at level 3 though, which burned 945 calories while I listened to a very, very interesting podcast of the Rest Stop episode of This American Life.
Nine radio producers. Two days. One rest stop on the New York State Thruway. In this show, we’ll bring you stories of people who are just passing through, and people who are at the rest stop every day—working. One of them has worked there since 1969. A bunch of others came from Asia and eastern Europe to pour coffee for travelers.
More images from this show here (or check out the map here).
Podcast listeners! There's an extra, bonus story in the podcast this week. Reporter Sean Cole visits the farm stand at the Plattekill rest stop, meets one of the regular customers...and recklessly gets in the car with her and her "domestic partner." Do not try this at home.
Host Ira Glass describes scenes from a rest stop on the New York State Thruway, the Plattekill Travel Plaza, and the kind of people you might meet if you ever stayed long enough to talk with them. These include Robert Woodhill, the general manager, who needs a good sales day so he can beat his friend Andy, who manages a rest stop in Maine, in their weekly competition. Ira hangs out with a group of foreign students who’ve landed in Plattekill on a summer work program, and reporter Lisa Pollak gets travel tips from Lenny Wheat, who works at the rest stop’s information booth. Reporter Jonathan Goldstein spends a few hours in the rest stop parking lot. (30 1⁄2 minutes)
More stories of travelers and workers at highway rest stop. The competition between Plattekill and Maine continues. Reporter Sean Cole observes the lunch rush at the rest stop’s busiest restaurant and stumbles into a behind-the-scenes romance. Reporter Gregory Warner watches a cashier at the Travel Mart deal with an angry customer. Reporters Nancy Updike and Jay Allison hang out for the graveyard shift—midnight to 8 a.m.—and find a surprising amount of romance at the rest stop. (25 minutes)
I went to bed early tonight, and read Big Machine for about an hour, before lights out at 11:15.