Tuesday, September 13, 2011


493. The Super Sized Group Lunch.

  ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------    ------------------
 | [Browser] [Postdoc] [Baby #1] [Princess Peach] [Rainbow] [Mario] ||  [Ambrosio]  |
 |                                                                                                   ||                    |
 | [Damien]    [Daisy]  [Baby #2]      [Rosalina]          [Me]      [Anna] ||      [FL]        | 
  ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------    ------------------

"Do you think we can get a group discount?" 
"Which class do we come from?" 
"Are those two guys eating with us, or they are just following? I mean, do we know them?" -- referring to Baby #1 and Baby #2, one new and one potentially new PhD students. 
"That's his punishment, for being an ass."
"I'm still not finished with the book yet, so don't tell me anything." 
"Where are you up to?" 
"Just after the part about the girl." 
"Which girl?"
*a pause* 

494. Late afternoon. As I am returning to my office, one door down the corridor Giraffe is unlocking his. Hearing foot steps, Giraffe looks up. 
"Are you dunamberassingmargin?"  he wants to know.
"Mmm?" I am equally articulate. 
Having gotten his PhD in the States, Giraffe speaks English fluently. Nevertheless, I do not have a clue what he has just said. Am I done what?
"Are you done embarrassing margin?"
As the repeated words untangle themselves, an image flashes back: Rainbow, Zoe and myself, gathering in FL's office, making fun of him for acting all precious about being invited to a girls-only drinks.
"Never," comes a loud answer from Rainbow's office.
Giraffe smiles.

Maybe we should invite him to our next girls-only drinks. 

495. "Which is why we have spouses and children and parents and colleagues and friends, because someone has to know us better than we know ourselves. We need them to tell us. We need them to say, "I know you, Al. You are not the kind of man who."" -- Richard Russo, Straight Man

Chào, early evening. Having successfully corrupted Zoe by convincing her to skip swimming, I am now studying the restaurant menu, trying to make up my mind between the traditional Vietnamese beef noodle soup and the spicy Vietnamese beef noodle soup. It might look like I just wrote the same thing twice except that one is with and one is without chili, but the two dishes are really not the same. Had I written them in Vietnamese, pho and bun bo, you would have immediately seen that they are totally different. Yet, they are equally delicious, which makes my decision process extremely difficult. 

As I am going back and forth in my mind (I'll go for pho! No, bun bo! Wait, pho! No, I'll choose bun bo!), Zoe scans through her copy of the restaurant menu. "So what are you going to eat, now that you can't eat meat?" 

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