Saturday, September 29, 2007

What I've been reading (and, more cats)

So, today has been a nice, accomplish-y day. Being woefully behind in laundry, I did about seven loads today, which wasn't even all of it, but it was most of it, so things are looking much better in that department. And, because the laundry's in the basement, I got in about three dozen flights of stairs, so that counts as exercise. Then I cleaned up the kitchen counters, doing some hand dishes and loading and running the dishwasher. As a reward, I made brownies (yum). And of course, there was copious cat-lap-ness throughout the day. It's been good. I may finish it off with a movie, as I got a couple out of the library the other day. I'll have to decide if I'm more in the mood to watch Chocolat or Howl's Moving Castle. The brownies may swing the vote to the former, which I've been wanting to watch again.

In between trips, I also read. I got the latest Robert Parker out of the library too, Spare Change, and it's due back on Monday. I enjoy his books, mostly, and they are a quick read. This one is a Sunny Randall, not Spenser, and though I'm not thrilled that Parker's brought Susan into Sunny's series, she's not as bad when Spenser isn't mooning over her and how utterly perfect she is. Somehow, when Sunny is the one looking at her, it isn't quite as soppy. I enjoyed the book, though boy, Sunny has issues, doesn't she? She and her father ... well. We get to see a lot more of him in this one, and he seems like such a nice guy, but the dynamics in that family are something else altogether. No relationships are simple in Parker's world.

I enjoyed the latest by Charlaine Harris, An Ice Cold Grave, more. It's the third in the Harper Connelly series: since she was struck by lightning as a teenager, Harper can find dead bodies, and tell what they died of. This series is definitely growing on me, though I still like the Sookie Stackhouse books the best. What's interesting to me about this author is that I find her previous, "straight" (no supernatural elements) mysteries to be rather ordinary: not bad, but not anything that grabs me. I've tried some of them, and I was halfway through one before I realized that I'd read it a few years previously. It just didn't make much of an impression on me. But the Harper books are good, and the Sookies are one of my favorite series right now. (Sookie's a telepathic waitress, in a world where vampires have come out but werewolves and other 'things' have not. If you like some supernatural with your mystery, give them a try!)

I also read the new Dick Francis, Dead Heat, written with his son Felix. (What would I do without the library?) I thought it was good, if not one of his absolute best. I'm glad he's decided to write a few more after all, since for a while after his wife died, that was very much in question. It was strange to see Felix's name jointly on the cover, after all those only attributed to Dick (his wife helped him a great deal, but her name was never on the cover). Last year's Under Orders was the first since Mary died, but it didn't have another name on the cover.

One I'm looking forward to reading is Dexter in the Dark, by Jeff Lindsay, but my request hasn't come in yet (or rather, none of the three has: I have library cards in three local systems, so I have them racing each other to see who can get me a copy first). Dexter is a charming sociopath, a serial killer who kills serial killers, and I really liked the first two in the series. I haven't seen the Showtime series based on the books yet, but I look forward to that. Now that Season 1 is out on DVD, I'll have to see about getting that out of the library too. Busy, busy!

In conclusion, more cats! I caught Harold this morning, lounging on the bed. He didn't like the flash too much:

So I went without it, lending a certain art-house quality to the shot:

This was actually a yawn:

Later on, Harold was on my lap and Pan on the cushion when Harold rather abruptly decided that he needed a bath, and moved in on Pan, who was happy to oblige.

Is anyone watching us?

Top of the head...

Ooh, get under the chin!

Uh-oh: busted! The paparazzi are everywhere!

Friday, September 28, 2007

Cat photos! We got cat photos

What a week! I'm never sorry when it's Friday, but today it was an extra wonder. It's been very busy at work, not super-crazy but constant, and while I like to have things to do, a break now and again is nice. I also had my review this week (I've been there two years, amazingly), and while it went fine, that's just not my favorite process to go through, you know? I mean, it's odd, because I've never had an awful review, but I still worry. Glad to have that over, at all events.

Wednesday evening I spent at the House of Twins, which was fun despite them being slightly fussy. I got to help my friend feed the babies before she put them to bed, and they were so cute, side by side in the crib, all swaddled like baby burritos. I gave the camera a break, since you can't exactly throw the flash in their faces when they're falling asleep, but trust me, cuteness.

It did mean that I was there until 10, though, so when I got home last night (after stopping for a few things at Walmart), the cats were half-frantic with the need to be loved upon for long periods. So I went with kitty maintenance for the evening, and that's what I've been doing tonight, too. But I thought I would share a little kitty shoot from this morning, when I noticed that Pan was on the bed in the reflected sunlight from the mirror. It made for an interesting light effect:

Standoffish at first, he then had a thought: if I'm cute enough, perhaps she won't leave!

See you don't want to go to work, do you? When you could stay home with me?

How can you resist me and the allure of the undercarriage?

He was still rolling like that when I left, ever the optimist.

I hate to conclude with a depressing thought, but I have to show you this. I was in a local library recently, when I came upon a very depressing sight, and I finally brought my camera in and took a picture of it. Sorry for the blurry, but I was trying to be subtle.

What do you do with the old card catalogs, in these crass computer days?

Oh, the humanity. I loved card catalogs. How the mighty are fallen.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Actual Knitting Content

I just realized (I can be slow sometimes) that I haven't talked much about knitting lately. I have been knitting, but not blogging about it. Let's rectify that, shall we?

Having finished the square for Ms. K, I was working away on my scarf (yes, it is square, but it isn't a square, it will be a scarf):

...when I started to feel like mixing it up a little*, and I didn't have anything else on the needles. What did I want to knit, and have the yarn for?

*I used to be a monogamous knitter, once upon a time, but not lately: I put things aside and change projects much more than I used to. Wonder why that is?

The mood seemed to be for something plain and simple to knit, an antidote to the scarf pattern that requires me to keep track of which row I'm on (not that that's hard, but I find it annoying not to be able to tell by looking at it). I remembered that once upon a time, I had the idea to knit a cowl sort of thing, like a scarf in a circle, and I thought perhaps I would try that. I dug through the stash, and found some nice, soft alpaca that should be good on the neck:

The color representation isn't too bad, on my computer at least: medium green with a fair bit of yellow.

And I cast on a bunch of stitches on a circular needle (how many? enough to go around). I wasn't too worried about my join, meaning that I didn't follow the traditional instructions for knitting on circulars, "join, being careful not to twist". And in fact, it twisted, but that's okay. It's not a problem, it's a design element. For some reason, I'm enjoying the twist of it. It was pointed out to me that I'm not technically knitting a Moebius, as in Cat Bordhi's pattern, but I decided that I'm knitting on a moebius, and as long as I'm happy, I don't see why anyone else should be bothered.

Of course, photographing it on the needles is problematic. It doesn't look like much.

Here, the color washed out too much, but that's hardly the biggest problem the photograph has. Until I take it off the needles, we're all going on faith with this one, and I'm not doing it tonight, so updates will have to follow. At some point, I'll put it on a piece of yarn so I can see how it stretches out, how it fits and falls and all that good stuff. If it works, I'll either make it bigger or bind it off; if not, well, maybe I'll have to make string out of it, but I've been enjoying it anyway, and that's what's important to me.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Excited to do laundry?

Yes, this is a new low, I'll be the first to say so. It sounds like the punch-line to a joke: you know you've been sick when ... laundry is exciting. But of course, it isn't the laundry that's exciting, it's having the energy to do it that pleases me. And while the two loads I'm getting done tonight barely make a dent in the pile, it's a start.

I've done very, very little the rest of the weekend. We'll call it conserving energy, shall we? It seems to be working, at all events. I feel much peppier than I have in the last week, and my cough is currently missing, and the congestion, while lingering a bit, is not as bad. All in all, a marked improvement.

Now, I need to go put away some clean clothes, and then have the ice cream I promised myself for looking at the "bills" folder (I have to bribe myself to do that, sometimes). But first, I have a little story to tell.

I realized I never told you this one, from Nantucket. On that Sunday, my cousin took me to the give-and-take at the dump. As it sounds, that's an area at the dump where people take things they no longer want, that are still good, and so other people go to look over the offerings. It's kind of like a yard sale where you don't have to pay. Some of the things are Lesser, like books and clothes and toys, and some are More, such as while we were there, I saw people drop off a foosball table, and a few minutes later, someone else loaded it up. I picked up a few books, and we found some toys for my cousin's daughter, but no big finds. However, my cousin was telling about her recent big find.

She was looking in the clothes, and found a skirt she liked, in her size, a big-name designer (I think she said Ralph Lauren, but if not, something like), and with the tags still on. Nice, right? Who wouldn't be pleased? Nice new skirt?

And because the tags were still on, she knew that the skirt had a retail price of twelve hundred dollars.

Twelve. Hundred. Dollars.

That's where my mind warps, because I try to imagine someone buying a twelve-hundred-dollar skirt (which, to be honest, I have trouble with in the first place, spending a mortgage payment on one article of clothing), then deciding not to keep it for whatever reason (it didn't fit? don't like it after all? nothing to go with it?) and, instead of taking it back to the store, she took it to the dump and left it at the give-and-take. And my mind boggles.

Does yours?

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Still not fully well, but by the way, I did talk to the Mazda guy

I was supposed to go out with friends today, and when one called this morning to see if I was feeling up to it, she said she knew as soon as she heard my voice what the answer was. What she didn't know was that I sounded like that after sleeping 12 hours last night, and then taking a 2-hour nap. If my father didn't do the same thing when he's sick, I might start to worry, but there you are. Strange things, genetics.

I actually got through Thursday and Friday at work okay, but by the end of Friday, I was wiped out. I headed for home telling myself, you can just go to bed. Go home and go to bed. Maybe a little kitty maintenance, and then go to bed.

And that's about what I did. I tried to stay up a little, to give the medicine time to kick in and soothe this nagging cough (I simply must stop nagging), but gave up and crawled in bed at 6:19 by the wonder-clock. Enjoyed the simple pleasure of being horizontal for a little bit before falling asleep. I woke up a couple of times (gave Pan his pills at 11 ish, took more cold meds at 2 ish), but didn't really awake until around 7 this morning. Even then, I wasn't quite sure if I wanted to get up, but I decided I ought to at least have a bowl of cereal, since I never even ate dinner last night. I did that, watched a little TV, then gave up and went back to bed for the aforementioned 2-hour nap.

I was awake when the phone rang, though. Harold was trying to get me to play with him, pet him, love him, and I was being a bump on a log, and in his wiggly enthusiasm, he slipped right off the bed, poor love. I was trying to call him to come back on and be consoled when the phone rang, and he came and sat on my lap instead. Silly thing.

Anyway, Mazda! Back on Monday, when I just had a slight sore throat (ahh, those were the days), I called the Mazda place and actually got to talk to the customer service manager, after all our phone tag. Surprisingly, I had a not totally waste-of-time conversation with him.

It didn't start well, when he asked what I wanted to talk about. What I wanted to talk about? That would be in the letter, sir. But he agreed with me that the annoying guy from my last visit should have explained himself better, and not just blown me off with his "if it comes out, bring it back" line.

He also told me that the guy in question has since been let go, and although part of me thinks that's a rather convenient answer, it would be a pretty quick lie for him to get caught in, if he was lying, so maybe he isn't. I mean, he (the manager) wants me to come back, and if I did (which is still a really big if), and saw this guy was still there, I would turn right around and leave.

Beyond that, he told me that they're under new management/ownership, which I didn't know. They used to be 128 Mazda together with 128 Ford and I think another brand, at the old location, and I hadn't noticed that at the new spot, where they call themselves Liberty Mazda, they're only Mazda (and I thought they were trying to reinvent themselves to get away from their reputation). He's right, though, that they weren't as crazy-busy when I was there, in the new spot. At the previous location, they were always buzzing like a kicked anthill, which I always thought was much to blame for the mediocre service I received there (see: three-hour oil change). There is such a thing as being too busy for one's own good.

I just don't know. I'm not even trying to decide now. I just wanted to thank you guys for being out there, because it helped me not procrastinate on calling him to know that someone would ask if I had.

And now, I'm thinking scrambled eggs and toast, a rest, and then if I feel ambitious, a shower. Woo-hoo. I see the need for another minion, you know? Help when you're sick? Especially for those of us who live alone. I'm so glad I got to the grocery store...

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Feeling Better, if not yet well

I managed to get to work today, and pick up some groceries after work (so necessary), so that's a definite sign of improvement. On the other hand, right now I can hardly keep my eyes open, and so far from sitting up straight I'm completely C-shaped. There's room for improvement yet.

To add insult in illness, I was supposed to visit my friend and the babies yesterday, and now I have to wait until I'm all better. I am so irked.

Of course, if we think I'm irked, Pan apparently felt that Tuesday and Wednesday were the start of a new era in our lives, when I would stay home all the time, being in bed or on the couch almost 24-7. His dismay this morning when I started getting ready for work had to be seen to be believed. And when I got home tonight and was trying to put away the perishables before getting involved with the heavy-duty kitty maintenance, he got quite insistent: "Did you know that you were gone All Day?" The things he has to put up with.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

I Am Sick

I want this to be a 24-hour bug so much.

Last night I just had a slight sore throat. This morning, it was raging, with that nausea and lethargy that says, "Oh, you are so not going to work today, not a chance." I called in and went back to bed. Woke up about 4 hours later, looked at the paper while eating chicken noodle soup, lay on the couch with cats watching TV, then went back to bed and slept another 3 hours or so. I should have something more to eat. Must go see what I have. Then lie down.


Monday, September 17, 2007

Weekend Wrap-up, part two

Before I get to the rest of the weekend, I have to say, I just read the Yarn Harlot's latest entry about her tour (I've been having trouble accessing her site recently, anyone else? Getting the "can't find the server" messages a lot?), and that squirrel bandit is so funny! (It's at the end of the post, if you want to skip past the rest for some reason.) She has some wicked funny fans.

So, where was I? I was in Boston, walking along by the Charles River. It was so lovely on Saturday, with the sun sparkling on the water, and sailboats circling around and all.

You won't catch me in one (bad experience years ago), but they form part of a scenic exterior, don't they?

Things I like about Boston include the juxtaposition of old and new:

and how if you look up, you are rewarded with lots of interesting things:

You have to remember to look down, too, though:

Lots of that going on. Watch your step!

In the Public Garden, I saw not one but two wedding groups having photographs taken. Having glimpsed a bride, I at first thought this was a bridesmaid:

but no, apparently she was something else altogether. Prom? But no Prince Charming! QuinceaƱera? I don't know. She was carrying a magic wand sort of thing... and spoke Spanish with the photographer as I walked past. Interesting. I could tell she wasn't with the bridal party once I saw the actual bridesmaids of the nearer group:

And farther off:

Near the Common, there's a church undergoing renovation. Someone with a sense of humor works there! It's a little blurry: can you read the fine print? "Exterior renovations" and the months that's taking place; "Interior renovations" and the times of Sunday services. Nice!

So, in the end I walked around for almost 3 hours. I got a couple of slices of pizza at Pizzeria Regina at Faneuil Hall, then got back on the T to head home. Tired from all the walking! In what turned out to be sort of unfortunate in the long run, I wasn't really tired the next day, so I went ahead with my plan of walking into my suburban town center (it isn't a long walk) for our local town day festivities. You know the sort of thing, full of booths where the local candidates and organizations are set up and they sell fried dough and lemonade and have raffles. It was fun, but it was walking, all walking, and by the time I got home again, my legs were on strike. They're still sore today. Worth it, it was a good weekend, but still. Not unalloyed joyfulness.

And have I mentioned that I'm tired? I was watching TV last night, and I was comfortable, and I meant to go to bed early, but I had a cat on my lap, and I ended up watching Mystery on PBS instead. Where is my willpower? Has anyone seen it? I need to go look for it now. I'll leave you with one last photo. Monica and any other Ms, this one's for you:

Sunday, September 16, 2007

A Good Weekend (in which I wore myself out)

Yes, I walked myself silly, or at least foot-sore and yawning, in Boston and out, yesterday and today. It's been a good weekend, but boy, am I tired!

Actually, I was somewhat social Friday night, too. (Wasn't I going to take it easy in September? Well, it wasn't really like that.) I met friends at the house of my friend with the new twins, and we hung around and admired the babies and gave them bottles and had a wonderful time (they are So Cute). Then one of my friends came over to my place, and we had something to eat, and made cookies, and watched part of a movie (Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban). Just an overall fun evening.

My Saturday didn't start well. As I mentioned before, I was thinking of going in to Boston to watch the Bruins at training camp, but when you wake up at two-something AM with a migraine, and then do a sleep-wake-sleep thing until ten trying to get rid of it, you just don't get up and moving the way you wanted to. It was somewhat better, or at least not so bad, when I got up, but not in a way that left me with a lot of energy to get moving. I took it easy and waited to see which way the wind was blowing, head-pain-wise, instead, and watched the rainy morning with dismay. As long as I was paying to go in to Boston, I wanted to do more while I was there, but it didn't look like it was going to be the kind of day for walking around, and so many of the other things one can do in the city lead to spending money, which I am trying to not do these days. Small dilemma.

Eventually, I decided that the head was going to be well enough, and I drove to the T and went in to the Garden. Getting there, I was in a medium-flat mood, enough that I didn't feel like taking a picture of the sign outside that said training camp was going on, but inside, they had a little more of a fuss, and I felt my spirits lift slightly. Enough to get out the camera, anyway!

Yes, there were balloons all over. Not, I think, for such as me, but more for the season-ticket holders, for whom they were having further festivities. Still, it was nice. The season returneth. And, as I told a nice young lady who invited me to consider joining the ranks, when I win the lottery.

So, I was there for the afternoon session, which was the rookies, most of whom I know nothing about, and the team didn't help by not putting numbers on their jerseys (I suppose they don't even want to invest that much on them, which is kind of sad, but most of them won't make it on the team, it's true). The only one I could ID was one of the goalies, Tuukka Rask. I was intrigued to see how he tucked his stick in the top of his pads when he needed his hands free, instead of putting it on top of the net.

I don't recall noticing another goalie do just that with a stick, though perhaps they do; I'll have to keep an eye out.

At one point, a number of players were alternating taking shots on Rask, and he made a save that sent the puck up into the netting and over the glass not too far from where I was sitting. No one else was near where it fell, so I went to pick it up (hockey pucks make good paperweights). It was wet and cold, like holding the promise of winter. I kept it in the palm of my hand for a few minutes, but it didn't warm up.

I'll spare you the rest of the hockey pictures, as even I can see they aren't that exciting to hockey-muggles. It was just so fun to be there, seeing hockey, hearing it. Eventually, of course, it was over, and they kicked us out, and I went out to find that the cloudy, maybe I'll rain again weather was passing, and the day was turning nice. What a surprise! I promptly decided to walk around for a while before leaving, and headed toward the Esplanade and the river. On the way, I got sidetracked into Beacon Hill, which is probably my favorite part of Boston. We used to live there when I was little, before we moved to suburbia, and though I don't remember it much at all, maybe that's why I have such fondness for the narrow streets and hidden corners.

I stopped to look at the Hatch Shell,

and at first I mis-read the inscription.

Did you get it right, first time? For some reason, at first I was thinking of it as being done by her will, by the force of her personality, rather than her Last Will and Testament, which is more than likely what is meant. I guess I was still a little in la-la land.

If you look at the side of the first Hatch Shell photo, you can see it has this odd decorative element off to the right. There was one on the left as well. I can't think what they are, other than decorative.

I did rather expect Superman to leap out of it, fully costumed, but other than that...

I learned something else about the Hatch Shell just by walking by it, which is that the Pops don't just bring these in:

for the fourth of July. I love the 1812 Overture!

Near the Shell is a memorial to Arthur Fiedler, commonly called the Fiedler head. Is it cool, or is it creepy? You decide:

Wow, you hear that? I actually did enough this weekend to break into two posts! Who would have thought?

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Boston Bruins Are In Training Camp

The Burning Question: How Badly Will They Suck This Year?

I know, pessimism. I usually try to maintain optimism, but my beloved Bruins have been sucking the optimism out of me for, oh, twenty years or so now. It's not even that they haven't won the Cup, because it's much longer than that since they won the Cup (1972, if you wondered). They haven't played consistently well, "get into the playoffs and compete" well, in what? Fifteen years? Roughly? So I think a little pessimism is understandable, don't you?

On the other hand, I'm still glad that hockey season is starting again. As Bob Wilson used to say when one team or the other tied the game, "It's all brand new and shiny." That hope is still there.

They could do well this year.

They might do well this year.



I want to think they will. And today, it's all possible. Because in training camp, at the start of camp, it's all about possibilities. Every player is the next Gretzky, the next Orr, the next Lemieux, the next Bourque. Until he gets out there, until he proves otherwise, he could be anything.

And in Europe today, he could be a she! Canadian Olympic gold-medalist Hayley Wickenheiser is reported to be close to signing with Swedish men's team IFK Arboga, which would be pretty cool. I approve of that (like she gives a tinker's damn what I think, but anyway).

Back to the Bruins. I won't copy the training camp roster here (why reinvent the wheel?), but it's on their website, along with training camp schedules and a number to call for updates. I don't know if I'll be going into Boston to see them on Saturday, but I probably will. I mean, how can I resist? It's silly of me, but Wilmington feels closer, though technically it isn't, since I have to deal with transit to get to Boston. I'm not being logical. I can understand that they're trying to appeal to a wider audience by having more of camp in Boston this year, but I was happy with it in the familiarity of Wilmington. On the other hand, the inside of Ristuccia is colder than a witch's ... maybe it's not so bad to have it at the Garden after all.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Today, I remember Paul

My cousin Paul died eight years ago today.

Eight years. That hardly seems possible.

Life goes on, you recover somewhat from the staggering blow, but you never forget, you never entirely become the person you were before that phone call, the person who was half-watching the Emmys and thinking that you wouldn't be caught dead (caught dead) in most of those outfits, wouldn't take them for free, and hello? hey, are you watching too, what?


And everything stopped.

Eight years later, it isn't as harsh most of the time. Most of the time. As with any death, little things make me think of him, and because he and my friend Pat both died that year, when I think of one I think of both, so I get doubly sad, or sad twice as easily, or some such mathematical equation. Thus, it doesn't take much to give me a twinge:
  • motorcycles
  • cancer
  • this movie has been formatted to fit your screen notices
  • wolves
  • NASCAR (especially Dale Earnhardt)
  • Saturns (the cars)
  • the Emmys
  • packing peanuts
Usually I just think of Paul or Pat, Paul and Pat, and move on; less often I wallow and remember and then move on. You have to remember. Not that I could forget, of course.

And I don't want to. I'm glad that remembering hurts less, has fewer sharp edges than it did. That's enough.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Stephenie Meyer Rocks Burlington B&N

AKA, if I'd waited to have my book signed, I'd still be there.

So, Stephenie Meyer writes this excellent series of so-called Young Adult books* that have some vampires (and werewolves) in them, and not just vampires but ones that all her readers really, really wish and in fact want to believe are real. Edward is the "hero" vampire, Jacob the biggest-name werewolf, and before the Q&A started there were rival factions shouting "We love Edward!" and "We love Jacob!" back and forth. (I would vote for Edward myself, since my feelings for Jacob range from friendly to big-sisterly, though I wasn't shouting.)

*I was far from the only non-teen there tonight, though when she arrived, it did sound like the Beatles on Ed Sullivan.

There were the official t-shirts, like this one from the fan club (sorry it's fuzzy, I was trying to be slightly subtle; it says Official I Love Edward Cullen Fan Club Member, and then it's just her website, linked above), but I also love the girl wearing the Red Cross Got Blood? t-shirt:

These two had matching shirts, and I don't know if they did them themselves or bought them somewhere, but I managed to Kinnear a shot of them front-and-back. Can you read the front? It's a quote from Bella: I'm Your Brand of Heroin. (You have to read the book!)

And of course, the 'I have a t-shirt and a magic marker' classic, "every guy should be a bit more like Edward!"

When I got there, they were out of wristbands for the signing line. That is, they had passed out red, teal, pink, and green wristbands, and white ones in groups A, B, C, D, E, and I believe F. Maybe it was only through E. What that meant was that they couldn't guarantee I would get my book signed, if I stayed until all the wristband groups were done. I'm not blaming them, you understand. Just, wow. Lot of people there (photos below).

And after all, she was in Ohio yesterday and is in Pennsylvania tomorrow, which makes me wonder who put her into Massachusetts today*, and how firm their grasp on geography is. (She was running late, and said she had been on planes and in airports all day. Ahh, the glamor of the million-copy book author!)

*Again, not complaining!

After a wide-eyed look around the store, I went back to the car for my camera. I knew you had to see this. Although I missed out on the wristbands, I just made it into the store before they stopped letting people in:

I don't think these people got to hear the Q&A at all, poor things. (They were going to let them in, but only after others left.) It was short, but fun. Best question: does Edward wear boxers or briefs? (Answer: boxer-briefs.)

The first arrivals (and at heaven alone knows what time), the red wristbands, got upstairs, where I couldn't even see (I never saw Stephenie herself, by the way, just heard her). The next group, the teal, were seated here:

and here:

This should be pink (hence the pink square, I get it now):

My, people everywhere!

The white wristbands were downstairs, with group A lined up:

And up there somewhere, greenies:

A jungle. She mentioned how amazing it was that something she wrote for her own entertainment was appreciated by so many others.

The screams when she appeared!

And the line when I left:

...went around the corner of the building:

With, remember, no guarantee she'll still be signing by the time it's their turn. Unbelievable.

They are good books, though. I like them a lot.

Finally, this isn't related except that I took the picture in the Cafe tonight. Any other Depeche Mode fans out there? Ever seen this drink?

Too funny! I guess they have fans at Jones Soda, eh?