I've been in Raleigh for five months now and other than a trip to minor league ballparks in Durham and Zebulon and a quick late-night drive to Chapel Hill to pick up an inebriated pal who was being refused her car keys, I haven't ventured outside of the city. Tonight, that will change. Despite the fury that was Ernie--a twig fell from one of our trees--I'm heading to Carrboro to meet up with the esteemed George Kaplan for fish tacos and Superchunk at the Cat's Cradle. Fish tacos would follow carne asada burritos on my list of things I miss most about San Diego and Superchunk will always remind me of some of my better times in Pensacola, those times that I can actually remember anyway, so it should be a great night of nostalgia for old Jeff.
Not to be overlooked, though, is the town of Carrboro which seems to be popping up everywhere these last few days. According to an article in the Chapel Hill News, Carrboro resident, fellow Alabama expat and the man who wrote Big Fish, Daniel Wallace has penned a 2,000-word user's guide to the city of Carrboro, which the town hopes to place in a national publication soon. Of the town, Wallace said, "You can see other professional writers at the grocery store, coffee shop, all around town. It brought the whole process down to earth, and [it seemed] doable. I thought: 'If they can go shopping at Harris Teeter, I can do it, too.' Because writing full-time seemed impossible."
And just so I can work a little of everything into this post about a small North Carolina town, I should mention that Eric Bachmann (Archers of Loaf, Crooked Fingers) is from this area and it shows on his most recent album, To the Races, which might be one of my favorite releases of the year so far. And one of my favorite tracks just happens to be one that mentions--you guessed it--Carrboro. Check it out for yourself:
I just wanted to say thanks to Jeff for having the confidence to invite me into your lives. Even though my paying job has involved routers and little pieces of the Internet for over 15 years, the actual coding of content is something new to me. I'm like the guy who builds roads but can't drive a car. If such a guy exists.
So I appreciate your patience.
I met Jeff when he asked to borrow an unused chair showed up at my Storm Squad fan fiction group at the Barnes and Noble.
I thought about writing one of those classic five-paragraph essays highlighting the adventures of my six weeks of unemployment now that my period of being unemployed is coming to an end but I've forgotten all about the placement of the thesis statement and probably couldn't come up with a good concluding paragraph seeing as anything that concludes with going back to work could never be good. And who needs structure like that when I have bullet points? Oh, and I can't remember much beyond last Friday so I'm only going back that far. Thus, the highlights of my last weekend of freedom:
Elaine and I spent a few hours at the Raleigh Farmers Market sampling strawberries and tomatoes and absorbing the deep and true North Carolina flavors--people and produce. But the real find for us was the NC Seafood Market and Restaurant, where I chose from the menu a large, three-piece sample platter (fried oysters, shrimp, and catfish) and what I got for the $8.99 I paid was so much food that I might be eating seafood for the next two weeks.
Saturday afternoon, I watched Samone, the laziest cat in the world who until last week spent 23 hours of every day on the end of our bed, become a fearless backyard hunter. At first, I thought she was crouching low in the high grass going after a bird, but then when she took off, cat quick, and charged a third of the way up a tree I realized that she was going after a squirrel. She didn't catch it, but she looked quite nimble going after it.
I bought Elaine her first Mother's Day card. Ok, a little premature, but I figured I should get in the habit. Plus, I heard rumor (from Elaine) that a father-to-be these days is expected to buy their wives a "push present" to give to the laboring wife on the day of delivery. Seriously, what the hell? Who came up with that absurdity?
I'd planned on driving the thirty or so miles to Zebulon to take in a Carolina Mudcats baseball game. But thanks to Richard Grayson and his new collection of short stories I couldn't leave my reading chair. More about this book tomorrow I hope.
Thanks to a proud citizen of the Caryon Nation, the true highlight may just come tonight (Sunday) in the form of a ticket to game five between Carolina and New Jersey. My first NHL game and it's playoff hockey to boot.