for his birthday we went to spice (24 holyoke street), a thai restaurant in harvard square (don't let the name fool you, it is not a strip club). boston.com said it was a nice cheap place but a bit cramped, and all this turned out to be true. it was weird sitting so close to other customers that you can listen in on their conversations and look at them in the eye when you eat. the girls on my left were talking about the gym while the girls on my right were talking about how a friend of theirs got wasted over the weekend. sigh, girls of the 21st century, i salute you. we had a flamboyantly gay thai (?) waiter (alex wong: "is he..?" me: "um...yeah..." <nodding>). he was cute and helpful, all smiles, so i gave him a big tip in the end <snicker>. my main course had a high hot ranking which turned out to be right on the money. walking around harvard square afterwards i felt like throwing up as the large dosage of hot peppers totally disagreed with my stomach. i chased down the vomit sensation with an emergency packet of starburst fruit candy i fished out of my bag. this is the second time in recent memory that i felt sick after a meal (the other time was after a chinatown dim sum). maybe in my old age my gastrointestinal system has grown more sensitive to strange foods. it's nothing against spice though, which was a fine restaurant (it was okay thai, the ambience was definitely better than the food though, a quaint little location hidden in the heart of harvard square).

office manager amanda and i went to the harvard inn today during lunch to attend a minolta printers showcase seminar, but we were really there for 1) free food, and 2) trot nixon was there signing autographs. how the hell trot nixon got mixed with up with the shady minolta business crew i will probably never know, but i wasn't going to argue if it means meeting trot nixon in person and maybe shaking his hand and getting an autograph.

so we get to the harvard inn and it's the hottest day in boston this year so when we arrive both of us are sweating, mostly due to the heat, but also a little bit nervous because we didn't exactly rsvp to the event. but i guess they don't care, so we sign in, get our little bag of minolta goodies (pamphlets, pen, minolta mug, yippee!), and we start pretending to schmooze like we belong there. for some reason i'm sweating a million times more profusely than amanda, for a multitude of reasons: besides the heat and the nervousness, i'm also walking with an unnaturally tall office manager because of her hoochie shoes selection, and the sight of suits make me feel out of place. after we get some food and sit down to eat, i start to relax and calmness returns gradually.

so goal number one completed, the digestion of free food. not the greatest free food i ever had, but it was okay as far as free foods go. onwards to our second goal, which is to meet trot nixon. trot is stashed away in this little back conference room, and when we try to go in to meet him, a man at the door tells us trot's taking a 10 minute break and to come back then. sure sure.

with 10 minutes to kill, we had no choice but to pretend to be interested in the myriad of used and new minolta printers that's strategically dotting the harvard inn. minolta agents are everywhere and if you seem to show the slightest interest in a particular printer, they will descend up you like highly trained ninja commandos and start going through their little sales pitch extolling the virtues of so-and-so minolta printing device. it's all a blur to me, really. within the next 10 minutes amanda and i are pulling an academy award nominatable performance acting like we're genuinely interested in leasing or buying a heavy duty industrial strength minolta printer. sorry boys, i try not to print stuff out. besides my top secret work (which strictly forbids physical copies to be made), i also think paper kills trees (i thought paper kills rock, and rock kills scissors, and scissors kills trees). that's what i want to say, but instead my face is fixed into a big smile of wow excitement and phrases like oh i see and that's cool come out of my mouth as if on cue.

10 minutes later we head back in the direction of trot nixon's secret chamber. the door is still closed, but a suit standing outside (bodyguard?) beckons us, you guys want to meet trot? does a bear poop in the woods, mister? so we're ushered into the trot nixon room. and ohmigod there he is the man himself tr-tr-trot nixon. and it's crowded in this little room, and there's a bunch of suits, and immediately they notice amanda, and immediately they start getting all friendly with my office manager. in my mind i'm rolling my eyes. we're each handed a glossy photo of trot nixon since neither of us bought anything to sign (back at the office, i was joking to amanda that i wanted trot to sign my breasts). amanda goes first, shakes trot's hand, he signs her photo (nothing personalized, just straight signature and a little number 7, trot's number), and a photographer at the other end of this long conference table takes a flash photo and amanda writes down her name and our company, so that they know where to send the photo to. it's my turn now. the moment of truth. don't say anything stupid don't say anything stupid. "it's really nice to meet you," i say, shaking trot's hand. he might've said something back to me, but i don't remember. i was lost in the touch. here i was grasping the hand of a genuine bonafide celebrity, a sports celebrity no less, who works miracles with that very same hand out on the playing field. he signs my photo, we get our picture taken. during the pose, i sort of backed up into trot nixon, and boy, is this guy jacked, because i felt his pec muscles poking me in the back! flash goes off, photo taken, i shuffle down the table to write my name and company. amanda and i then slip quietly out the door, and after saying good bye to our minolta agent (the woman who gave amanda the invitation in the first place), we quietly slip out the harvard inn, quickly returning to the office.

good red sox night: nomar made his first rehab start in triple a, the red sox won against the bluejays behind david cone, and brett saberhagen is coming back. it's kind of weird, because trot nixon was playing tonight too. to think, just a few hours ago, i was shaking hands with the man and indirectly feeling his man boobs! what a small world indeed!