austin_dern (austin_dern) wrote,
austin_dern
austin_dern

I'd be tender, I'd be gentle, and awful sentimental

One of the key factors during my visit to bunny_hugger was that it was the hottest week in existence. Particularly hot was Thursday, when the Earth briefly passed through the Sun.

However, this was as predicted, and we were able to plan around it. Originally we had figured to go to the Ann Arbor Art Fair, along with her parents, to see the three or possibly four art shows going on and wander around a town which was quite appealing last time I was there. But with the forecast heat we decided to put it off a day, to the projected-cooler Friday. This would have further knock-on effects, since we had expected to go to an open-air movie with one of bunny_hugger's friends Friday. We could go to a movie Thursday, easily, but it would be in an enclosed building instead.

So Thursday became my chance to meet another of bunny_hugger's grad school friends. It would even have the chance to be useful, too, as he's been thinking of buying a Mac and she and I could give perfectly contrary advice about how to do it. She's of the school that buys the cheapest computer which meets her needs, often going for refurbished hardware if available. I'm of the school that buys the most-frilled-out computer for the projected budget, and overspend a modest bit if there's any little extras that look appealing. Both strategies have their virtues, of course, and I don't think either of us is perfectly dogmatically tied to either strategy (I bought my car by pretty much her strategy, for example), but saying it out loud should give the chance to hopelessly muddle the issue.

Besides the initially expected friend we met up with another friend, thus helping further refute the suspicion that I'm just bunny_hugger's imaginary New Jersey boyfriend.

Our movie was Harry Potter 7: Part II: The Squeakwell, making either the third or fourth Harry Potter movie I've seen (I honestly don't remember) and the second I've seen with her. I believe we saw the first half in 3-D, but this was the plain old two-dimensional version. Between the heat and that it was the Last Harry Potter Movie Until The Rebooted Remakes Start Next Year it was packed. There was no sitting in the comfortable middle of the middle rows for us; we had to sit far enough up front that we were twenty feet beyond the screen and had to watch in rear-view mirrors bought at the concession stand.

bunny_hugger worried that I would find the movie baffling since I haven't read the books and that, while I was fairly sure I gathered what happened in the first half (``They walked across every valley in Great Britain'') the two halves were getting to be pretty sketchy touchings of plot points rather than weighing stuff down with exposition. This time around, I still felt like I was keeping up. I'm sure I missed subtle threads and payoffs, but I never felt like why things were going on was too mysterious. I admit also that I may have just been hopelessly infatuated with the visual design of Hogwarts and all the other settings; it's just gorgeous to look at. And I liked the feel of the school kids rallying together to save the school; it felt like tapping a feeling that I never got, since I never went to a school which had any self-esteem.

We figured to eat, most likely at a bar, after the movie. Somehow in the discussion of where we might, though, we settled on a sports bar in the same mall parking lot universe as the movie theater. I'd had the impression we might go to another bar which bunny_hugger had named and I don't know just how it fell out of contention.

The bar was curiously heavily decorated with Spartan gear for whatever reason, but I suppose exotic places like mid-Michigan will have their curious local customs. Actually, despite the enormous TV screens promoting a Tigers game the bar didn't feel very sports-focused. Possibly the crowd was just too thin. The food was decent enough and they were even able to make vegetarian versions of all the hamburgers, considerably opening up the dining options, although the beer-ordering hit some kind of obstacle that I couldn't quite follow since I just get Diet Coke or the nearest equivalent anyway.

We had a lot of fun talking during dinner, most of it the shop talk of life dealing with students and just how ridiculous they can be. The only really substantial difference between the teaching experience in philosophy and in mathematics, as best I can tell, is that mathematics students are caught in plagiarism less since they get fewer essay compositions. When they do get essay compositions, they're no more aware that the instructor has heard of Google than philosophy students are, though.

After the end of dinner bunny_hugger realized we never said a word about computer-buying.

Back home we got comfortable for the night and welcomed in bunny_hugger's talk show friends. And we watched her rabbit in his nightly free-roaming time, although he spent much of this sprawled out on the relatively cool-feeling tiles in front of the fireplace and breathing rapidly through his nose. Rabbits don't sweat, or at least sweat much; whether the rapid breathing does anything in the heat is not really clear, but she's observed him doing more of it when it's hotter. It would eventually cool down some.

Trivia: A volunteer satellite observation team for astronomer Fred Whipple's early 1956 Project Moonwatch formed on Fletcher's Ice Island T-3 in the Arctic Basin. Source: Project Vanguard: The NASA History, Constance McLaughlin Green, Milton Lomask. NASA SP-4202. [ Fletcher's Ice Island T-3 was an occasionally-occupied glacier used for scientific observations between 1952 and 1978, and isn't that an awesome premise for a place? How has this not been the starting point for a couple dozen dopey action cartoons? ]

Currently Reading: Locked Room Puzzles, Editors Martin H Greenberg, Bill Pronzini.

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