In which one hurries to make up for one's deficiencies...

Or in other words, I'm bored so I think I'll dash something off since I've not written much in the past week. Mostly because there's been much ado about not much of anything in most everything. If you know what I mean.


Tonight finds me in San Diego where I'm at the Marriott Marquis - by the marina, two 25 storey towers, very posh looking place, but appearances can be deceiving. As DWA says with a sniff, about Marriott properties, "It's a Marriott, you can always tell. They look the same wherever they are".

I heartily agree. Despite being placed on the 25th floor, it's noisy because the room faces the city and railway tracks that are used for freight trains and the local tram. I didn't quite realise just how many freight trains go through San Diego, each one with it's own set of air horns that rend with gusts of self-importance. No wonder Warren Buffett has been buying train stocks all this while. You probably could do worse than to follow his lead, but please don't, you'll only encourage more trains to pass through the night and keep me up. The trams on the other hand, don't have air horns, but they do have a lovely set of bells that would put the entire Sally Ann's band of Santa to shame. The room also faces the airport so there's a lovely roar of jet engines, and smell of jet fuel every now and again.


I shall work backwards to where I last left off.

Tuesday: Work, minor crisis involving sudden flights to Toronto, protocols not in compliance, activity spilling out of targets and Gazelles looking less than serene. In other words, the shit hit the fan for some people, and I was asked to help shovel. I shovelled a scoop or two, then thought, No, this is not my mess to clear up and caught a plane to Seattle where my upgrade came through and I dozed my way down to San Diego where I checked into a noisy hotel (see above), and am attending talks by scientists with H-indices of 40 and higher only. Mind you the shit what hit the fan is being e-mailed to me, but somehow it's easier to ignore when you can delete whole screeds of text in one click.

Monday: Labour day. A text from the incorrigible BKKB who invited me to Main and 14th for the best espresso in town, and to view the fresh crop of local produce from Main St. Very fresh, I do agree, but not quite fresh enough unfortunately for those who publicly say they prefer Admirals when privates would do quite as well. You see, I quite agree with Benny - much more restful to not see Jack's face everywhere and to feel uncertain for always. True enough yes? Then home, and some reading done before heading for a run in the sun. Then to the pool, then to the beach where Drs. C and C had organized a picnic. There the three Samsung Galaxy S II phones communed and exchanged notes on their various owners and their respective foibles. Dr. CG was swooned when she saw the way the screens changed on DID. Then home to pack and clean up for Tuesday's flight from the shitty fan.

Sunday: A day of work at the Elysian fields where there was conspicuous consumption of caffeine to stay awake while writing up details of experiments and results I don't quite understand. However, under the circumstances, I thought I did quite well. Then home to change for a run followed by a swim in the ocean, second of the season to wash away various sins and whatnot, before visiting with T and T at the pool. Then home quickly for a shower to wash away the worst of the salt for I had been invited to a dinner party at G and R's place around the corner. There we had various meatballs made by C, and then pizza made by G - basil and cheese, mushrooms and sausage, and finally Eruca Sativa with pancetta and huge slices of fresh parmesan. Then I was put to work showing G how to mix blackberries with lime juice and syrup to make a dark purple drink. With and without gin - which started a discussion about which gin was best, and which was whose favourite, all of which lead to a gin tasting. On the table in unmarked glasses were:

Tanqueray London Dry - England (Classic)
Tanqueray Rangpur - England
Hendrick's - Scotland

I, of course, chose Tanqueray London Dry - the classic as befits someone who is classic and classical, not to mention full of himself class.

Rangpur was deemed too lemony, and Hendrick's was quite well-liked.

No bourbon though, dollop or otherwise. Apparently that's next week.

Saturday: A massive clean up of the apartment inspired in part by a conversation had on Thursday re: massive clean ups of apartments, and how dusty some pets can be. There was also a sudden dash to the train station to drop off the Bose Noise-Cancelling headphones for Dr. J who'd suddenly changed his mind about them for his flight to the UK.

"You've been on planes so much this year - remind me how to prepare for a flight!", he said to me on Friday night.

I said, "You're flying Air Transat?! Take headphones or massive amounts of sleeping pills"

He said, "You're buh-loody useless, why do I ask you anything?", and he dismissed my offer of the noise-cancelling headphones.

Then on Saturday, he had a sudden attack of remorse, and called me in a half-panic asking to borrow the headphones - so there I was at the train station on Saturday morning passing headphones to Dr. J.

Then to the Elysian for a cuppa and some reading. Then home for massive cleaning before DWA and CA arrived for left-over mac and smelly cheese - triple cream brie mac and cheese is decadent. They came, they supped, and DWA spoke of the hunger in his soul that needed to be fed by travel. I offered him San Diego, he sniffed and said, "I mean EXOTIC travel". Ah. I see. You want to go back to the beaches of Bali do you? Tramp.

Friday: Had all good intentions of going to work, but DWA and CA called up and ordered me to blow off work and go to Jethro's Pub Grub for breakfast where there was a long wait, but good coffee and massively sized breakfasts. There were pancakes the size of hubcaps, fried chicken steak with biscuits and gravy, omelets with chilli, and much larger plates of breakfast grub. Truly, it was scary. Scarier still was how we ate everything. Except for the travel-starved DWA who had a fruit cup in place of potatoes. Skinny Tramp.

Then to work reluctantly where the Shark and I planned some new studies, and formed a new organization, the ICBs, where the plan is to publish more often, and more importantly in better quality journals, than Dr. Carpet-bagger who not even Dr. T. Lily likes.

That evening, a quick swim in the pool - have to take advantage of the sun as long as it's out - then over to Dr. J's and the Gyoza King for drinks and dinner with T who's visiting. Eat and drink then watch them stumble back in the moonlight. And all this while, there was pride and more drinking in the Kootenays, followed by stumbling and passing out. Of course, I'm not saying all this is related in a linear manner.

Thursday: Goodness, who can remember that far back? I made Mac and Cheese and had that conversation about pets being dusty and massive apartment clean-ups. That's all I remember.

Wednesday: Was instructed to greet, then run. So did both. Then to the Mexican for din-din where I saw reasonable facsimile of Buck Rogers. And talk of taxes, and being told that one was hooped by accountants. And the rest is a blur - except I'm pretty sure I stopped off at Tim Horton's.

And that was it. A week of eating, mostly.