Friday: snarkyman's bachelor party. This was a hoot -- a distinctly geek-centric party, designed and run by siderea.
First stop was Blue Man Group, which I hadn't had a chance to see before. It's an odd combination of deep silly fun with serious statements about society -- comedy that makes you think a bit. Our seats were less than optimal (far right corner of the balcony), but once the show got going I largely forgot about that.
The show takes great joy in tweaking the audience, and starts out by embarassing randomly-chosen audience members. At least, I think it's random: the first two chosen turned out to be siderea and snarkyman. There are LED text crawlers up on the stage, and it began showing, "We'd like to welcome [siderea] to our show. [siderea] has just won the Pulitzer Prize. Let's all congratulate her. Ready, go. Congratulations on winning the Pulitzer Prize, [siderea]!" The audience dutifully went along with it, and starting getting really warmed up with snarkyman winning the Nobel Prize for decoding the human genome. That was it for us being targeted, although the guy sitting right behind us was used as the human paintbrush later in the show. (Hang him by his ankles, cover him with blue paint, and throw him at a canvas.)
Overall, it was well worth seeing, and a fine choice for a geek outing. I'll have to go again with msmemory sometime.
After that, we headed over to GameOn!, a LAN gaming center some blocks away. siderea had reserved the place for the night. Dinner consisted of sushi brought in, and a wide selection of good beer. (siderea was choosing somewhat randomly, but made good guesses: she even wound up with a bottle of Ommegang, a Belgian Ale I'm fond of.)
Post-sushi, we started gaming, and I realized the danger of the LAN center with a geek crowd: it was way too easy for the guys to get wrapped up in solitary games and not interact. So I set up a server for Unreal Tournament 2004, and siderea and I encouraged the rest to join us in an extended deathmatch. That was more fun than I'd expected, actually: everyone was at a reasonably similar level of incompetence, so we had a good time fragging each other. We tried a few other games, but none really gelled aside from that.
I was the first one to leave. The party nominally ran until the next morning, wandering down to May Morning at the Charles, but my health made that an unwise idea. So I made a run for the train, catching the T shortly before 1am.
Saturday: Quiet day. msmemory and I got in a delayed date (since I had been busy Friday), down at the Watch City Brewery. That's become our default restaurant lately: the food and beer are both consistently good, it can usually seat us promptly, and the specials give it a pretty interesting rotating menu.
After the date, we wandered over to Wadsworth House for their Uno de Mayo party (Cinco de Mayo being Wednesday, not an ideal party night). We stayed for a couple of hours -- I wound up spending at least an hour tech-geeking with learnedax and Dan Abraham (who may or may not be around here somewhere), while the former fried up sopapillas. (Which turned out to be fried puffed dough, which you would fill with honey and munch.) I ate way too many of these, and too much food in general: I need to restrain my tendency to have a bit of everything, or at least to redefine "a bit" as just a forkful. Good party, though. We took off a bit before midnight: msmemory and I were both a bit tired, and fading early.
Sunday: May Day. Characteristically, msmemory and I got a late start -- I had grand ambitions of getting there by 11am, but actually managed more like 1pm.
The main activity of the afternoon was learning trichinopoly from Guindormr. He's been doing this for well over a year now, and it's been looking like great fun: weaving copper or silver wire to make reasonably authentic Norse jewelry. After promising for months that he'd teach a class, he finally sat several of us (me, umbran and asdr83) down and showed us how it's done. It turns out to be almost preposterously easy, and as he pointed out, it's great handwork to do during Court. I spent much of the rest of the afternoon working on that, and drawing much attention. I think he's going to need to teach more classes.
The high point of the day was taking ladysprite as an apprentice. She's been effectively my student for some months now, and we decided to formalize the relationship. I'm not sure which of us was more nervous, her for being unaccustomedly in court, or me trying to remember the ceremony that I'd sketched in my head but never written down. We survived, anyway. We went first (there were three apprentices and a yeoman taken -- exceptionally full court), because our ceremony was much simpler than the ones that Morwenna and new_man were doing; I figured it was best to let the fancier stuff go later.
Following court was a better-than-average I Sebastiani performance (consistently funny, with everyone in character and no draggy bits, plus really excellent intermezzi by shprintzah). The event ended at that point: they'd originally been planning on a potluck supper and dancing, but the dance crowd decided that the chances of getting an acceptable turnout for the dancing that late on a Sunday were poor, and we'd rather not have the dancing if it was going to be pathetic. So a bunch of us (ringled by tpau, natch) trooped off to Asian Grill for sushi and schmoozing. msmemory wasn't able to see the I Sebastiani performance due to an Eastern Star rehearsal, but joined us at the sushi later.
Monday: Great Council. We practically set a speed record: turnout among the officers was fairly pathetic, and there wasn't much to discuss. It actually worries me just a smidgeon: while I can understand folks not bothering to show up for a Council meeting that has little agenda, I'm concerned that folks may get out of the habit, and Council *is* an important part of how the Barony communicates. I may start encouraging more people to show up. (At the least, I'm going to make more of an effort to be consistent than I've been doing myself in recent months.)
Tuesday: Accademia della Danza. In retrospect, this must have been the week that Phelan was planning to be out -- I recall that he had told me that that would be happening at some point, but didn't remember which week. (The reason I always ask people to remind me about such things closer in is that I'm *terrible* about remembering them.) Anyway, around 8pm we decided that he wasn't going to show, so I started things up.
We had a fun time finishing our reconstruction of Furioso (Phelan hadn't been intending to reconstruct it, but Guindormr specifically requested it). We compared an existing reconstruction of the hey figure with the text; ladysprite was insistent that it didn't match a literal reading of the text, so we tried taking the text literally. Somewhat to my surprise (having spent an hour arguing about the timing two weeks ago), if you take the text right at its word and proceed at a comfortable speed, things actually work perfectly fine, and the result is actually much simpler than the reconstruction we'd learned. We finished up the rest of the dance, all of which seem pretty straightforward. Very pleasant little dance: we'll have to play with it more.
Wednesday: Dance practice. Small and kinda tired like Council. It's just something in the air this week: no one has any energy. OTOH, pretty much everyone actually dancing was fairly experienced, so Mara worked through Lo Spagnoletto, which we'd started a few weeks ago. Turns out to be preposterously easy, once you get the chorus into your feet. (And I find the chorus a lot of fun, now that I've got the hang of it.) Ciana and I came a little too close to debating the timing with Mara on the dance floor -- I'm going to have to watch that our Accademia habits don't start bleeding over into Dance Practice too much. Afterward, sat around schmoozing until a tad too late with learnedax, tpau, oakleaf_mirror and Christian: the subject of Cerebus came up, and we got into a long discussion of which parts are actually worth reading. Sigh: given how good the first half of Cerebus was, it's really a pity that the second half is so turgid.
Thursday: Quiet evening at home. (Yay!) I'm blowing off a Masonic Officers dinner -- I desperately need the downtime. I've already told them to put me in whichever chair (except the East) that they need me in next year, as always.
Friday: Date with msmemory.
Saturday: snarkyman and cosmicgarden's wedding in the morning; dinner with Arval (who we haven't seen in ages) in the evening. In the middle, we may or may not hit Boredom War for a little while.
Sunday: The Serving and Carving class, if we have the energy for it.
Monday: Hammatt Ocean Lodge. It's Member Appreciation Night, with 50-year medals and the like; I assume it's a visitation by the District Deputy. Which means lots of people there, but very little for me to do.