In Which I Discover The Inexorable Tension Between Fame and Social Dysfunction Whilst In Line In Starbucks
I suppose it was bound to happen sooner or later.
I was standing in line at the Starbucks in my building. A young woman was standing in line in front of me reading something on her iPhone. I do not know her, but have seen her in line before, and have exchanged minimal social pleasantries such as nodding, smiling, and refraining from brandishing weapons or showing incisors. As we stood there, the young woman started laughing. She looked back at me with that about-to-engage-me-in-human-interaction-even-though-I-am-clearly-waiting-in-line-for-my-goddam-coffee expression. I assumed my best I-really-don't-want-to-know-but-you're-going-to-tell-me-anyway-aren't-you noncommittal smile.
That's when she said "have you ever read this blog Popehat?"
I looked down at her phone, and saw that she was, in fact, browsing a familiar-looking page.
"….yes," I allowed, considering how to handle this.
"I found it by reading The Bloggess. It's great today. Do you like it?" [Note: Hyperlink not in actual verbal exchange.]
"Only some days," I replied quite truthfully.
Apparently there was something off about my affect, because she frowned. "I think the guy who writes it is a lawyer here in Los Angeles."
"Really?" I said.
"Actually I hear he's kind of a dick," I said.
Now, in my defense, I was trying to work out in my head how I was going to follow that up with a big reveal. Was it going to be an I am Sparticus! type of thing, or an Abed-from-Community-doing-Batman I'm Batman type of thing, or a contrived self-deprecating type of thing? That sort of decision is not to be made lightly. But before I could decide, taken aback from my ironic self-abuse, she turned around, took a long step forward, and stopped talking to me.
I'm starting to think that even if writing ever makes me famous, my social interactions are going to continue to be strictly a one-day-at-a-time sort of thing.
Last 5 posts by Ken White
- Follow-Up: U.C. Berkeley Chancellor Nicholas Dirks Gets Free Speech Right This Time - September 12th, 2014
- The Quality of Mercy Is Not Strained, But It May Have A Litmus Test - September 11th, 2014
- [Rerun from 2011] Ten Things I Want My Kids To Learn From 9/11 - September 11th, 2014
- Yale Might Want To Look Into Some Sort of Basic Civic Literacy Course - September 10th, 2014
- U.C. Berkeley Chancellor Nicholas Dirks Gets Free Speech Very Wrong - September 6th, 2014