July 13th

Overwhelm. An abundance of riches in and from chosen families. On occasion I feel like one of the luckiest fellows in the world, and tonite has to be one of the stellar examples.

So Panther invites me to dinner, says she and her family [husband Viktor, their girlfriend Annika, roommate Derek] want to take me out. Great - we all got together, along with Derek's new friend, at Chang's Mongolian Grill up on Capital Hill. It's a favorite restaurant of all of us. Somewhere around 30 seconds after we sat down Panther went into her "May I? May I? May I?" routine where she sat as still as a springloaded puppy with a bladder problem. She handed me a really scary bag [iridescent pink and green generates that fear in me...] that felt kinda heavy. I looked inside and ... found a new hard drive. I had been using a 3 gig HD... this new one is about 13 gig.

Sheesh. I was floored, speechless, totally caught by surprise and felt like my speech centers were stuck out of gear in neutral. I can't tell you how unexpected this was... I'd been happy just to have friends who wanted to have __dinner__ with me.

We had a great dinner, I enjoyed chatting with everyone and getting to know Derek's new squeeze for the first time, and then afterwards we sorted out logistics. Who is driving where and when and all. The new lovebirds ended up elsewhere having fun of one sort and P, A, and V ended up at my place, Viktor and Panther installing the new drive and upgrading my operating system while we all listened to the Austin Lounge Lizards, the Benzedrine Monks, and watching Roger Rabbit.

Anyone who read my paean of self pity the other day, how terrible it was to grow up and lose the balloons and gifts and Queen For The Day atmosphere of childhood birthdays... I apologize. I take it back. I was a pouty little 51 year old kid, and these members of my chosen family have so surprised me and ... well, if y'all see me on the street please give me a finger wag as a boy proven wrong.

Life is good. So good. Thanks, guys.

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