Friday, July 20, 2007

I am back from California. Getting there I was delayed two hours due to weather, both ways. On the way out, the plane pulled out of the gate, stopped, and then stayed there for two hours while they played a free movie for us (Blades of Glory, seen it) and a thunderstorm slowly passed over us. On the way back, I had a stop in Pittsburgh, where my plane was stuck in St. Louis due to a tornado warning. They were two hours late. When it finally arrived, I was extremely dismayed to see it was a very tiny commuter plane, three seats across. It was an hour ride and fairly bumpy and scary, but I survived.

And California. Well, I didn't make it to the Kwik-E-Mart, but I did see Harry Potter at the Universal CityWalk. My ticket cost $11.50, but my seat was like a La-Z-Boy and the screen was dizzyingly big. I also found my way to Griffith Park to ride the mini train they have. I was under the impression it would be steam-powered, but instead it was diesel. I stayed at a Sheraton right next to the Hilton I usually stay at, which was uncharacteristically sold out. I discovered after I arrived that the hotels were filled with people there for a sex toy convention. Actually, the signs said "AVN [that's the organization that puts on the porn awards, that's all I know] Novelty Expo." It took me about a day to figure it out. What tipped me off: Sample bags, like the ones I pick up at Toy Fair, except these had the logos for various kinds of lube on them; a guy wearing a Doc Johnson embroidered polo shirt; me reading a few guests' Expo badges and seeing companies like "O'My Products"; and finally, two girls in push-up bras and super-tight tank tops with over their boobs. Then there was the motorcycle that had been airbrushed with a constellation of condoms, dildos, single-use lube packets -- I didn't look too long. The best thing about it was that the other people at the hotel, the ones not attending the Expo, were all families with young children. The Expo people were very discrete, mostly. When they chatted in the elevator with me, it was to weigh the pros and cons of using a certain Chinese manufacturer, and they could be talking about any product. And the special motorcycle only came out after dark.

Now I am home and trying to get prepared for a week vacation. I went to my garden after work today and did some triage on my huge tomato plants that had been blown over by the storm on Sunday. A neighbor got his car crushed by a tree, so I got off easy. I picked a bag of snow peas, a lot of basil (just trying to keep up with the flower buds), and my first eggplant. Now I am contemplating using my jet lag to my advantage and doing the midnight Harry Potter pick up. Hmm...

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