Friday, April 27, 2012

A Gourmand of Adulation

Did you miss me? What? You didn't even notice I was gone? Okay! That hurts. I went to Baltimore to read my story "Sex Devil" to an auditorium full of teenage boys at a prep school, I guess you call it. John Brandon set the whole thing up and it was great to get to hang out with him again. And let me say that if you ever want to read my story "Sex Devil" out loud, an auditorium full of teenage boys turns out to be the best place to do it. As usual, I jotted down a few things that happened to me on my little trip and I hope you will find them entertaining. 1) You know I don't like to fly. But the flight attendant on the first plane I took made me feel better. As he was making his announcements over the loudspeaker he said of the pilot and co-pilot, "They're going to fly this tube like they stole it and land it like they own it." His confidence cheered me up! Overpriced gin at the airport bar also helped a lot. 2) On the airplane I read passages from a book called NEW YORK DIARIES: 1609-2009, which consisted of excerpts from New York City diaries from 1609-2009. One guy called Andrew Jackson "a gourmand of adulation." I thought that was pretty good. Dawn Powell had some nice things to say about MAD magazine in her diary. She seemed to be a big fan, which I never would have guessed. She said it was good that they underpaid their writers to keep them "bitter and irreverent." She said a lot more stuff about MAD magazine but too bad I accidentally left the book on the airplane when I got to Baltimore so I can't tell you what they were. Nor can I be too specific about the diarist who went to George Washington's inauguration and was so disappointed and whining about George Washington's stupid hand gestures, which the diarist hated. He also made fun of John Adams for seeming to forget what he was going to say and just standing there gawking at George Washington. This guy was full of complaints about Washington's inauguration, that's how I remember it, but I lost the book. 3) As we strolled around the grounds of the prep school, John Brandon said, "Look at these foggy, wistful athletic fields." 4) John took me to a nice restaurant which was perversely serving as an appetizer special a duck egg in which a baby duck had begun to form! Egads! We did not order it. "One guy got a couple of feathers," our server said encouragingly.