Today, I returned home from the Gap (a store I would probably shop at even if I had billions of dollars), and found the electricity in my building was out. A quick evaluation of the neighborhood revealed that most of the area was out as well. As darkness approached, I realized that, while I have a gas stove, I couldn't see what I was cooking, and if I was not able to watch TV while I was eating, I might as well be married. So, I put on my extensive winter-gear and made off for Coolidge Corner and Upper Crust. As I approached, I realized how far-reaching this outage was, as many of the shops and street lights were also out. It looked sort of eerie. Thankfully, Upper Crust was still up and running and I was able to eat.
Oddly enough, while I ate, I read an essay from Chuck Klosterman IV about how for years people have been making movies about machines rising up against humans and fucking us all over (Terminator, I, Robot, etc.). Chuck is a brilliant man, by the way, and his analysis of why we do things is hilarious. Why wuld we keep making these movies unless we unconsciously fear that one day it may happen? Even beyond that, I saw real irony in the fact that I was reading this essay about technology at the very same time that I had fled my home because I had no power and so couldn't eat, couldn't watch TV or couldn't even write this blog. Klosterman was right; the war is over. Technology has already won.
The second prong of this post is that while there, I was approached by Wayne, who used to work at the BU post office that I used to frequent when I was at the height of ebay selling period. I always thought Wayne was a surly man who hated his job and hated everyone. One day, he (rightly) berated a law student who asked for a money order for eighty dollars and balked when Wayne told him that it would cost him $81.50. "What'd he think? They were free?" he asked me. From that day on, I made sure I had everything in order when I went to that post office. When I heard that Wayne retired, I was shocked because he didn't look that old, but I just figured that he'd had enough pf people and quit.
Tonight, he seemed to be having a ball. He was checking out a reading at Brookline Booksmith with his girlfriend and visiting his grown kids who lived in Brookline. He had seen me in the window and came in to say hello, and he said he often wonders how his customers from BU are doing. Um, what?
The point is you really don't know people, I guess. That's why I get overly concerned with how I am viewed. I don't necessarily need people to like me all the time, but I want them to know the truth about me. I'd like them to know who I really am (even though most of them don't. i don't even know if I do all the time.) I'm not some surly, old cynic all the time. I'm not the guy that I thought Wayne was. He had a girl and was a huge Red Sox fan and liked books (he even asked what I was reading). And I'm not just some weirdo who hooks up laptops. I have a life, too. We all do. We all have stories. So, I guess I learned my lesson to try and find out what those stories are.