once more i decided to forgo the office lunch and seek my midday meal elsewhere, despite the fact that the weather outside was ass. last week at this time we had temperatures in the 90's. today, the temperature dropped down to the 40's, with cold rain mixed with a little bit of that post winter flurry action. sometime during the day it even started hailing. from our 2nd floor office so close to the corrugated rooftop, it sounded like loud static. i went to get lunch at au bon pain, dragging eliza jones (girl needs coffee!), who in turn dragged barbara, who in turn dragged zac. the four of us - two with umbrellas, two without - walked the few blocks distance to the little au bon pain adjoining the marriott hotel. i ordered the thai chicken sandwich, which was what eliza ordered on that fateful day where i saw what a messy eater she was. "it's the sandwich," she'd tell me, as if a sandwich could cause her to stain her pants and not blink an eye about it. so i ate my thai chicken sandwich in the food court area while the other three sat around me sipping their beverages. zac was in a tizzy about telephone companies and how they screw you over. i was just busy concentrating on my sandwich. i will admit that the thai chicken is a messy affair, but i'd still never eat it in such a way that it'd stain my clothes.
a few weeks ago i did a random search on yahoo.com for "boston blog." lo and behold through sheer coincidence i came across a depository for boston area weblogs (bostonblogs.com). it hadn't been set up yet, but the creators of the site were holding a gathering of local area bloggers on this night. elias and i decided to go, so after work we made the pilgrimage towards porter square. as we were there early and the gathering wasn't until 8pm, we got dinner at boca grande. i've never been to this boca grande before, although for a long time my former office lunch subsisted entirely off chicken colorado burritos from the smaller boca grande by the galleria mall. it's now kind of hard for me to eat burritos since i've had so much in the past, but in terms of cheap food, it's hard to beat that mexican price.
walking to the 608 in somerville (608 somerville street), i purposely went down garfield street through eustis street, to show elias the exterior of my soon-to-be condo. elias is the first person other than my parents to have seen the place (from the outside at least). it was also my first time walking from porter square to my future home, and in my mind i could see how everything felt new now but soon it'd all be very familiar. every crack in the sidewalk, every misaligned brick in the pavement, every untamed tree root bulging through the ground, all these little idiosyncracies i would over time memorize. the stores and restaurants nearby, i was making little mental notes to myself. so this is where i'm going to be living in 2 more months. i better get used to it!
so we got to the 608 and saw a young woman standing outside the establishment. "they don't open up until 8pm," she said to us as we rattled the door. we stood outside in the drizzle for a few seconds. "you're not here for the boston blogs, are you?" she asked. turns out this was sooz, one of the organizers of the event. after some more waiting, they let us inside, where elias and i met shannon, the 2nd half of the organizing duo. slowly over time people started filtering in. lee and rebecca (different rebecca, not ketcham), then susan, then more and more people whom i wasn't formally introduced to and who sat at the other end of the table, thereby making that "getting to know you" action sort of impossible. the conversation wasn't as awkward as i would've imagined it to be, despite the fact that the only things we had in common were we live in the boston area and we have weblogs. some people were able to match the face or the name with a list of weblog url's sent out prior to this gathering tonight. working from home euphemism, hiakus, gadgets, choice of drinks, all were discussed. rebecca entertained us further by making obscene drawings in shannon's palm pilot. rebecca and i also discovered we live fairly close to one another, she in watertown, me in belmont, and she raved about this one donut store that i see every single day that i commute to work but have never gone in and visited.
at 9pm those who wanted to pay the half price $6 ticket to watch the live show stayed, while the rest headed out to the sky bar a few blocks further down the same street. walking down the rainsoaked sidewalk, rebecca narrated to us all the special places brazilian men used to leer at her from when she lived in this area. at the sky bar, while elias and i nursed our second coke of the night while taking photos, there was a half hearted attempt at a pool game, until someone sank the cue ball and nobody could get it back out because the pool table was designed to lock the balls. there was also live music at the place, this tandem power house of one drummer and one bassoon player (i think that's what that instrument was), all over a screeching techno beat freshly killed from the 80's. shannon ordered everyone to quickly drink up so we could dearly depart the place.
while the remaining cast of characters headed out to yee's in davis square for chinese food, elias and i took our leave and walked back to porter square.
being in porter square was a weird feeling. for the past 15+ years, harvard square has been my de facto t station. it's weird to think that soon porter square will be my new station, that i will come in and out of this place every single day. though i've been to porter square on many occasions, tonight the place seemed new to me.
so it didn't turn out so bad, meeting boston area bloggers. i'd feared it be a lot of awkward silence punctuated by, "um...so...you like to write and stuff, huh..." but it turned out rather nice. elias and i met a lot of interesting people, and i was surprised to see how funny they all were! perhaps that's one of the requirements to be a successful weblog writer. i wonder if it's going to weird tomorrow when everyone writes about their experience from tonight, like some sort of multidimensional rashomon, where a single event can have multiple interpretations and narratives.