Archive for November, 2008

More Entertainment Than I Require

Last night, the missus and I drove up through self-obsessed after-work traffic to the Barnes & Noble in Buckhead to see and hear a reading by one of my favorite contemporary writers: John Hodgman. You may know him as the Resident Expert on The Daily Show or as the PC to Justin Long’s Mac in Apple’s ad campaign. He was on Conan the night prior, in fact: see the evidence! (It’s cued up and everything.)

Last night, at our reading, he was wearing the very same tuxedo, with many of the same jokes still in it from his visit on Late Night. Also, he was reading from his new book (“the new technology”), More Information Than You Require. Ostensibly. To be fair, he did get around to it, but who the hell cared? He was terribly hilarious before he even got to his fake-trivia tome, and I already had the book and could read it myself. I was happy just to see him riff on us in the audience. (If you were there, I was the guy dressed in the style of the 19th century, apparently.)

John Hodgman and The GTGs. (Photo by birdpony. All rights reserved.)

John Hodgman and The GTGs. (Photo by birdpony. All rights reserved.)

Earlier in the day, Hodgman shot an appearance for your local morning program, Good Day Atlanta. (It’s not my local morning program, because I get up at 11am.) On set he met the Internet-famous GA Tech rap duo, The GTGs, and they showed up at the reading, too. They rapped. We sang along (in our fashion). Hodgman laid down some beats. Good times.

You can see some more photos of the evening here.

Standing in line to get my book signed, I chatted with some other glasses-and/or-beard types about MMO games, like World of Warcraft and Lord of the Rings Online. It was nice to be reminded that talking to real folks about silly games in real life isn’t like reading Internet forums. Thanks, guys.

I sort of blacked out during my time at the signing table with Hodgman. I do that. Somehow, I came away with the nickname “Stardate.” Could be worse.

Afterward, we stopped off on Ponce to try out the Book House Pub, which I’d heard was mostly hardwoods and paperbacks. It was. Also: stained glass, glowing rocks, and a bathroom that smelled like strawberries. But that place deserves a post of its own. Short version: yes.

For whatever reason, I don’t get out to many local readings. I really should. So should you. Let’s try a little harder to make that happen. Any readings coming up that I absolutely must attend?

Don’t think I won’t run you over.

Okay, I might not…but I’ll think about it, and shame on you for making me.

You know who you are. You pack of people who piled out of the MARTA station at Lenox like ants from a hill that had been kicked. You who followed the young woman in the red high heeled boots, trailing her by 15 paces out into the intersection when the flaming hot hand on the digital pedestrian sign screamed DO NOT WALK at you with its solid illuminated signal. You who stood in front of my truck when I had the green light, then waffled about what to do like a squirrel on a country road causing me and the cars behind me to miss it entirely. And specifically YOU, schlubby wannabe rebel boy with your shaggy hair, horrible posture and 70’s sunglasses, who smacked the hood of my truck with a fist and yelled “pedestrians!” at me.

You give us a bad name.

I’m a pedestrian. I love walking around this city, I love that I get to live in a place that affords us mobility options (in some neighborhoods, anyway), and I love that we have the right of way. That does *not* mean you should abuse it by hiding behind the law (that you’ve conveniently misinterpreted) and it does not mean that given the chance, I won’t pull over and Nancy Kerrigan your ass with a tire iron.

I won’t, but you shouldn’t put it past me.

Seriously, thanks, to all you negligent pedestrians for giving us all a bad name, and for giving the people at organizations like PEDS one more hurdle to jump. I really appreciate it.

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