Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Vacation Two: The Vegetation

The first snow of the season dumped itself on southern New England last night. Or maybe this morning; I’m not certain. I stayed in bed scandalously late today because I’ve been officially On Vacation since last Friday night (burning through some unused days off). Here’s the breakdown of my sabbatical thus far:

Friday night: journey to Costco with housemate. This is admittedly a lame and domestic way to spend the first weekend of Vacation, but there’s a certain satisfying security in the knowledge “if civilization collapses tomorrow, we’ll have enough soap to last at least six months.” And I could trade the vacuum-packed whole-bean coffee for some chickens and start an urban egg farm, what the hell.

Saturday: stay home and vegetate.

Sunday: Ditto.

Monday: Again.

Today: I’d already decided last night that I would go out today, as I’m given to understand that a totally hermetic existence is supposed to be psychologically unhealthy for reasons I largely disagree with. But I had to run a couple of errands anyway, so of course Mother Nature dumped damp slushy snow all over my town because she’s an abusive bitch who figures “If Jennifer wants to do psychologically healthy stuff, by God I’ll make her work for it.”

I am, at least, supposed to go visit friends in New York this weekend. And for tomorrow I’ve obligated myself to make chocolate-chip pumpkin bread for Thanksgiving, and at some point this week I should try to squeeze in some self-improvement activities too.

If it snows again tonight I’ll go outside once everyone else is in bed, and see if I can’t hear the tiny sound of the falling snowflakes hitting the ones already on the ground. It’s one of the few Zen-style experiences I can seek out without going mad. Besides, Zen-like states of mind strike me as remarkably identical to pure vegetation, which is what I'm trying to avoid for the rest of the week. Unless it snows again.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Mistress Of The Obvious

Whoa. Did not see this coming. Apparently I’ve become a subject of controversy in the Furries’ blogosphere because of that story I wrote about going undercover to one of their conventions.

I was actually quite unhappy with the story when I turned it in; it wasn’t as polished as it could have been and there were a lot of details I had to leave out due to space constraints. “Ugh,” I thought. “My worst cover story to date, so I’ll keep my head down and hope everyone forgets about this as soon as possible.”

Then I started to get a bunch of comments and e-mails from people thanking me for being honest about what I saw rather than inventing some sensational spin. These were flattering in a bemusing sort of way; it’s like having someone say “You were alone with a helpless little child, and you didn’t beat her up and steal her lunch money! Thank you!” And I’m thinking “Jesus, what the hell kind of person do they think I am, anyway?”

Then I remember: a journalist who went to their convention undercover because she thought there’d be weird sex things going on. Hence the aforementioned controversy, as many furs feel that sneaking in search of sensationalism is an unforgivable sin. Many others have rallied to my defense.

I first learned of this after a Furry e-mailed me a link at work. Very odd, reading total strangers talking about you like that. Flattering to be sure, but in a very odd way.

Speaking of odd, here’s the point of this post: this evening, a few minutes before leaving work, I told my boss, “I just forwarded you and [Other Boss] an e-mail I got from a guy asking permission to translate my furry article into Polish. For a furry forum, not a magazine.”

My boss laughed, and then said “Did you know another blog linked to you today?” Apparently they’ve been getting a number of hits from some members-only forum.

Cool, very cool, but then I got hit in the gut by a complete emotional grasp of something I've known intellectually for a long time: chances are good one or more of my bosses has read every post ever made, either here or on some libertarian-dork forums I frequent, that links to a story of mine.

Not that I'm worried about getting fired or anything; I'm just thinking "no wonder they think I'm so odd."

And I would like to add that I love my bosses with a love too great for words, and worship the very water on which they walk.

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