We’re all caffeinated.

Tuesday, November 25th, 2003

Well, if I’m to believe this, we are. And I type this while sipping near-freezing coffee, quite caffeinated, and so cold because it was actually sitting outside overnight on the back porch. According to the thermometer out there, it got down to 31°F last night. Frosty! Well, kinda.

I took a look at The Weather Channel’s map of the 48 contiguous this morning, and it was a remarkably uniform frosty blue, except for the Carolina coast (hi Rosanna, Aunt Rose) and San Diego (hi Leslie.) A bracing good Tuesday morning to the rest of you.

In a fog.

Sunday, November 16th, 2003

No, really.

It’s Sunday morning (as Charles Osgood intones in the other room), and I’m having trouble seeing the back end of our back yard out my office window. It’s a fine fog we’re in. No, indeed, I’m not complaining. There’s something nice about fog and autumnal colors…they fade away elegantly, stepped down into greyscale, as if vignetted by an expert 1940s cinematographer, while the close-up leaves pop out as if it was all part of some cosmic lighting plan.

But truth is, it’s probably just the dew point. Or something.

We just got back from a couple of days in Charlotte, where I checked in on a news channel I designed last year and Sammy attended the Southeastern Archaeological Conference meetings, where, I’m sure, the papers presented are important and profound, but for me, the taste of Rob Benson’s fine home-brewed stout (in considerable quantities) will be my lasting memory.

It was a fairly painless trip. The iPod kept us company (although, remarkably, we weren’t dark silhouettes rocking out on bright flat-color backgrounds) by sending Music for People Our Age out the iTrip and thus out the radio in our iHonda. We journeyed past twin towering fireworks outlet stores that sit on I-85’s entry to and its exit from South Carolina, twin bulwarks of our Constitutional Right to bear explosives. We beheld the enormous peach (some say it’s a water tower) that guards Gaffney, SC from high gas prices, and we shook our heads in incomprehension that Charlotte would actually name a road after Billy Graham.

Once there, we enjoyed the company of some fine archaeologists, most defying the cliche of tweedy-jacketed pontificators, sherry in hand. This was more the blue-jeaned clan of big hand-gesturers, opining with a homebrew at the ready. There was dancing. There was conviviality.

And although there wasn’t out-and-out dancing at News 14 Carolina Charlotte, there was plenty of conviviality amidst folks working hard to crank out 24-hour news. And there was feasting–Meteorologist Jeff Crum brought in homemade candies that were amazing, and there were homemade chocolate chip cookies in Jim Travers’ office. So we were all on a sugar high amidst discussions of typefaces and colors.

Not bad for a quick trip.

Surprised by the calendar.

Saturday, November 1st, 2003

It always catches me napping, but hey presto, it’s November!

Seems as if it was just last night we were sitting on the steps of James and Rebecca’s lovely Avondale Estates home, watching a steady stream of kids make their way past the foamcore tombstones lit by colored lights and…hey wait, it was last night! I’m still burping the pizza! What’s all this about November, then?


Sometimes the steady clunk of the days into the ‘completed’ bin of life just lulls me into a state of complacency, only to be startled by the arrival of yet another month’s worth of bills–didn’t I just pay those the other day when we were in Seattle? Oh, our west coast trip was how long ago? Amazing. This explains the leaves in the yard.

I think we get–okay, I get–a little disoriented by the travel. When we get the opportunity to have several tastes of fall–starting with a soupçon of leaf-color in Ontario, just north of Sault Saint Marie, and savored in the next course as we drove up the Keewenau Peninsula towards a small town called Agate Harbor–all of these small morsels set me up for the big “huh?” when autumn finally makes it down here to latitude 37, Positively Atlanta.

But it’s here, complete with leaves to be raked, and since we’ve dispensed with the birthdays and trick-or-treating that marks the tenth month, hey, why not the eleventh?

Here in town, it means we get to vote in a few days for a County Commissioner from a slate of candidates of whom none of which are flaw-free as far as I’m concerned. Sure, none of them are an action movie star either, but that’s small consolation.

And it also means (it seems) that more folks are calling to have fine graphic design work done at reasonable prices, so I suppose it’s a good thing that the new G5 is humming along beautifully, flawlessly, aluminum-y.

But i just wasn’t quite ready for the view of Miner’s Castle when Sammy flipped the calendar on the refrigerator (yes, twelve months of the Upper Peninsula, courtesy of Sam’s parents.) November it is, then.