i was finally able to play with the video splitter at work, controlled by a serial port xtra within director, alternating between a canned mpeg feed and a live video feed from a CCD camera. the best part was i had no idea how to do it, but just tinkered around with it until it worked, so now i feel like i own this setup. as soon as i got to the office this morning, i went right back out to radio shack to get a BNC to RCA adapter and a strand of audio/video cable. i ate my leftover pan fried noodles for lunch (remind me never to do that again, leftover pan fried tastes rubbery).
i went back out around 3pm to central square, where i thought there used to be a thrift store but apparently it's no longer there. so i went to pearl art supplies instead, looking for materials to create my squid diorama for the holiday card. i didn't buy anything, just wrote down some prices for colored sand, foam and felt fabrics, pipe cleaners, and other materials i might want to use in my design. i went across the street to the new art store, but it was mostly paint stuff. by the time i came back to the office, it was already getting dark as a stream of people got off at south station to take the commuter train home.
after work, i made my way down to kendall square, to meet julie, to go see a free screening of a documentary about tupperware at MIT, sponsored by some boston society of women filmmakers and the MIT women's studies department (didn't even realize they had one). we got there early, there were some band kids rehearsing in the room we'd be watching the movie in, so we waited out in the hallway, looking at the flyers posted on a bulletin board.
we were actually the first people in the screening room, and met the filmmaker (laurie kahn-leavitt) who made this documentary. i had heard about this documentary from my weekly boston cult films mailing list. it drew a large crowd, about 60-80 people, mostly women, some were professionals in the business, others looked like students, and there seemed to be a lot of women with that very classic lesbian look. i bumped into sarah and molly (former coworker, current client, respectively) by pure coincidence.
the story of tupperware is a very interesting one. it started in the 1950's, a man by the name of earl tupper (sound familiar) invented these plastic contianers with the seal-tight lid which he called tupperware. it wasn't anything special until brownie wiser, a divorced mother with only an 8th grade education, started organizing these events called tupperware parties which she used to sell tupperware to friends and families. it was so successful that it caught the attention of earl, who made her the president of sales and marketing. soon, with her natural sense for business, brownie spread the tupperware party system throughout the nation, mostly through housewives and the "women's network," holding these spectacular annual themed jubilees, where top sellers would fly down to tupperware headquarter down in florida for a party and to be rewarded with prizes like minks and brand new kitchen appliances.
after the movie, laurie kahn-leavitt took questions, and the Q&A session was just as interesting as the film. there was only so much that could fit into an hour documentary, a lot of very funny stories had to be left out.
julie and i left, wandering the corridors of MIT looking for a woman's bathroom. i haven't been in MIT in a while, i forgot how the place is such a maze, and kind of surprised about the lack of security, and wonder if any crimes ever occur within these empty hallways. we saw a 3D conic section display (various models of hyperbola and cones and other shapes) and a machine that stacked bubbles into hexagonical packets. eventually we did find a bathroom after a lengthy search. through the building there was the distinctive smell of lab chemicals, like the scent of bunsen burners.
we decided to walk to central square for dinner instead of taking the t from kendall square. every day a little bit more sidewalk is revealed, but there are still walls of snow. the snow now is at a stage where it's starting to melt so it's wet, which makes for great snowball snow but they become as hard as rocks, which is dangerous. the snow is also showing signs of city pollution, started to become coated in a film of black dirt. we made it to central square, but found no place to our liking, so we kept on walking to harvard square, where we decided to try tanjore (10 eliot street, close at 11pm), an indian place julie's visited before. she went with the lamb korma, i had the rojan joss (lamb with some indian spices). after we finished eating, julie paid with her credit card, but when the waiter came back with the credit slip, he gave it to me. though we had 15 minutes before they closed, they told us they were closing (read: get out!) and while we put on our jackets, they flipped open the bright lights. good food, bad service (at least when it comes to closing time, we still tipped 20+% though).
i took the subway outbound with julie, getting off at the next stop in porter square, saving me 5 more minutes of travel time had i just walked from harvard square.