Hit the Road, Jack
The True offices will be closed October 8-23 while I take a trip. This is True will still be coming out, so don't worry about getting your fix!
Where to? Eastern Europe. When I first started True, part of my plan was to do once-a-year trips to interesting places to immerse myself in a different culture ...and collect the local newspapers to do special issues of True. I got the idea on a trip to Canada, of all places. You might think that Canuck newspapers would be pretty similar to those in the U.S., but no: there are clear differences. I can't imagine how different other, non-English cultures, might be. By going there and collecting the newspapers, I can not only (perhaps!) work to sell True as a column to those newspapers, but also be in the culture so I can ask questions of locals in order to best understand what I read, and understand the context of what's "news" to the people there. And, of course, what's "weird"!
Separated by a Common Language
It's been 27(!) years since I was in England, but I vowed "I shall return" and I'll be wading ashore in mid October. As some of you know, I'm writing a book for the True Stella Awards about the loss of common sense in our civil courts, and I think there's no better way to see how our court system got started than to visit the place where Anglo Saxon Common Law began.
Live Free or Whine
Moonlite Bunny Ranch
Last week I spoke at yet another Mensa "gathering" (convention), this one a regional affair hosted by the Northern Nevada chapter. I happen to know several Mensans in Nevada: some are readers, several are relatives of good friends here in Colorado. They really begged and pleaded for me to come and talk at the first Regional Gathering they were doing, and I finally relented.
I have to admit that something on the sign-up form intrigued me: the group was planning to sponsor a brothel tour. Nevada is well known for its casino gambling, and it's perhaps less known that several of its more rural counties also license houses of prostitution -- the only state in the U.S. where brothels are legal. And yes, the cathouses have billboards pointing the way to the front door.
Library of Congress
I had a pretty full weekend -- I'm writing this while sitting in the airport, waiting for my plane to get me the rest of the way home. I had a very interesting trip to Washington D.C.; election time makes the town even more surreal than usual. My report next week will get into that a little bit more.
Visiting the White House
I mentioned in my post last week that being in Washington D.C. was "more surreal than usual" because it was election time. Well, imagine being inside the White House just two days before the election! Because indeed, that's where I was.
On Stage with Penn & Teller
This is the sordid tale of my having been exposed to Teller's bodily fluids.
Working In An Unusual Environment
This is being written in an unusual location. Not my office, not home, not even sitting in the passenger seat while Kit drives. Someone else in driving on our trip to Reno for the Mensa "Annual Gathering" (read: national convention), where Kit and I are speaking. We're on the California Zephyr — a train (yeah, in the United States!)
Dinner with Neil Armstrong
On Saturday my wife and I had the opportunity to "have dinner with" the first man to set foot on the moon, Neil Armstrong. It happened to be almost exactly* 43 years after that spectacular event. Like many kids who grew up in the 60s and watched that history being made, Armstrong was a hero to me, so when I got the opportunity to do this, I of course leapt at it.
Someone Has to Live Here
Last week my wife and I went driving to see the fall colors. I thought you'd like to see what the trees look like in the Colorado mountains at about the time the first snow dusts the top of the San Juan mountains.