austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,
austin_dern
austin_dern

He's not a mandolin

Sometimes I worry that I'm just going to run out of the strange incidents that happen around me. Then I go out and do something, and the universe configures itself so that something turns up. For example, I went to the library. This was just a returning-books expedition although I ended up buying something from the used book shelf. I'm making progress on my unread-books pile anyway.

While wandering around the biography section on spec, a young man walking by stopped, looked at me, and said, ``You're big. How tall are you?''

I gave not quite my best guess --- I shaved an inch off, for no possibly expressible reason. Maybe I was afraid of sounding like I was bragging. I also restrained myself from launching into how I'd lost a lot of weight since that's the only other interesting trait about my body and it's not anything he was interested in.

He judged that to be cool, though, and asked me how big I thought he was. I'm not a natural at guessing that sort of thing, but I did my best, figured he was several inches shorter than me, and came back with, ``I don't know, maybe about five-ten or so?'' He thought over my assessment of his height, nodded, thanked me, and gave me a fist bump before walking off.

I have the feeling that this somehow meant something, and I'll never actually know what.

Trivia: Dr Henry Rose Carter's historic study proving the need for a period of ``extrinsic incubation'', time between a mosquito sucking the blood of a yellow fever patient and being able to transmit the infection again, for the spread of yellow fever was delayed in publication for two years, until 1900, because the editor of a medical journal judged his paper to be too long. Source: The Path Between The Seas: The Creation Of The Panama Canal: 1870 - 1914, David McCullough.

Currently Reading: Search The Sky, Frederik Pohl, Cyril M Kornbluth. Guy tries to figure out why galactic society is broken and keeps visiting Planets With A Problem Too Shallow For The Original Star Trek (Old-Age-Is-Good, Youth-Is-Bad World, Women-Rule-Stuff-Like-They-Were-People,-The-Little-Dears World, Conformity-World, and oh yeah Overbreeding-Lunkheads-And-Oppressed-Minority-Of-Responsible-Geniuses-Keeping-It-Together World), keep getting arrested, keep escaping, conclude that maybe some kind of trade or cultural contact between worlds would be a good thing.

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