May 11th, 2004

turbo stomach

The Joyful Colon, and Other Stories.

This is my yellow sticky to remind myself to wear suit tomorrow as I am supposed to go to some alumni reception honoring congresspeople. I RSVP'ed because besides the canapes, it's being held at the Library of Congress, a nice place and one I don't get to go to very much nowadays. I spent considerable time there doing research for a legal history prof a few years ago, and got a little identity card permitting me to paw through microfiche files of long-dead S Ct Justices, and redwells full of the personal papers of one of those Famous Lawyers my dad ate lunch with. I got very mad at Famous Lawyer (he's been dead awhile so getting mad won't hurt my career) for lying to a lower-ranked law school review that he didn't have time to write a book review, when in reality he was reviewing the book for his alma mater which was of course an Ivy. (>.<) Now I understand if you are Famous and going to put in the time to write something, you'd naturally rather see it in the Ivy Law Review instead of in the Journal of the Chicken Scratch Mountain College of Law and Auto Repair, but at the very least he could have been more honest or better yet offered the enterprising ChickenScratcher who had the chutzpah to hit him up for a piece something else in return. I bet he could have knocked an extra book review out on his lunch break and made that student editor's day.

When I was little I heard that the Library of Congress had a copy of every book ever published. (A bit of an exaggeration as I later discovered they apparently get rid of most of the copies sent to them.) It quickly became one of my fondest dreams to visit the Library of Congress and check out books. I thought it must be the most wonderful place in the world. I pictured it as being about the size of three football fields or a dozen Lakewood Public Libraries with shelves reaching up to the heavens stocked with every book you could read about or imagine. Dad told me he didn't think you were allowed to just go a'wanderin' through the stacks like regular libraries, that you had to request the books you wanted and someone would get them for you. So I envisioned this big long conveyor belt, like a grocery store checkout or maybe that machine that wrapped the meat at Pick-n-Pray, with people's book requests just rolling off it all day long. Of course it is nothing like that in real life but the dream didn't totally die, seeing as how the I-net has given us Abebooks.com and while my book requests, unlike a library, are not free and don't slide down a nifty long belt, they deliver 'em right to my door like pizza. Now if I could just find the copy of The Complete Manual of Suicide on there that I've been unsuccessfully seeking for years, I'd be all set.
smurfoff

p.s.

No I'm not ready for the cicadas. I don't need more encouragement to remember 17 years ago, I spend most of my time trying to get my brain into the now and future.

Plus I'm jealous of them for getting to hang out and chill underground all those years while yours truly had to go to work.