Thursday, May 11, 2006

(washington, dc) seek-and-hide

I got off the train and the line at the taxi stand seemed like it was going to take a half hour, so I just asked somebody "Which way is the White House?" and started walking, because the conference is at a hotel right by it. The walk ended up being longer than expected, even after my accelerated pace to keep within casual eavesdropping distance of a woman on a cel phone who said as she was passing me, "Hey, I dated a guy and his father, so that's just as weird." (Turns out, the conversation had no other great utterances to report, and was mostly focused on the woman trying to convince her friend to leave her boyfriend And Leave Colorado Too, with an emphasis that made leaving the mountains sound at least as important as leaving the man.)

Anyway, I arrived here too late to pick up the badge the program says I need to go to conference events (I can pick it up tomorrow morning). Given that some people here do know me, I am confident that I would have been allowed into the opening dinner this evening, but I would have been late and who knows where I might have been seated and it could have been awkward and perhaps everyone at the conference would have stopped to gasp in horror at my tardiness and my unsightliness more generally, etc., etc., and so I ended up just spending the evening squirreled away in my room with room service. As has become commonplace for me at conferences, I amaze myself with just how pathologically shy I am. (All that said, I do love room service.)

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

For some time now, I've realized that academics are the 'jet set' of the day -- without the glamour. All those hotel rooms MUST be kept filled. Room service! Pools. But somehow something is lacking.

jeremy said...

Don't expect me to argue against the thesis that academics are overpampered. My father put meat in cans for a living, giving up his hearing in the process, for way less than what I make. And I'm sure he's never had room service.

(Although, note: I'll pay for the room service out of pocket, so you shouldn't think I'm charging it to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.)

A+ said...

Oh man, do I love room service. In fact, I love everything that has to do with staying in a hotel. That'll give me something to look forward to, when I'm a real academic. I'll congratulate myself by staying in a hotel and ordering a 6-dollar bagel. And I'll super-tip the staff.

Anonymous said...

shyness is a state of mind, my friend...get it over it. ;-)

jeremy said...

Thanks for explaining that, Anon 2:20am. I was under the impression that shyness was some kind of vitamin deficiency, like ricketts.

Anonymous said...

Well, JF may not be shy. He may be aware that all those people WOULD focus their attention on him and make those very judgments. OR they may also focus on him, thinking:

Why can't I enter late, with all that aplomb -- looking so devil-may-care disheveled?? THAT's how I want to be. Oh, to go over there and let him know! Do I dare?