Justin's Links

about - RSS - donate - search:

Tuesday, 16 September - link

a weakling with an indulgent mind

It flashed in my mind - this might be my worst nightmare, as I dropped my left contact lens on the well-trod floor of the men's room at Los Angeles airport.

But I am a weakling with an indulgent mind, not like my French friend who spent four hours in immigration detention since he was born in North Africa. The computer surrogate immigration official demanded his credit card number, as part of their record keeping. They keep all the bits of information about you in a file, he said, nothing to worry about unless you plan on doing wrong.

My friend's strength of character was reflected in his retained humor and penchant for waxing philosophical in spite of his rude entry into Les Etats-Unis. He was happy to talk about Philip K. Dick's distopian visions that presaged the tangible pessimism that many bring to face biometrics; the convenience of machine tracking all movements of goods and bodies. "Some day we will all be born with a single phone number we carry for all our lives," he recounted the 70s-era phone company utopia with Dickian dis-wonderment. Most people would happily make the choice to be barcoded, I observed, for the sake of shorter lines.

I was driving him down Sunset Boulevard in a blue Ford pickup, because it was the car they could deliver quickest this morning at LAX Budget rent-a-car. It was still early then; the avocado-tomato burrito in my bag was only one quarter eaten. One of my favorite foods where I live are the breakfast burritos near gate 7 at Oakland airport. Today I wondered if that means I travel too much.

Typically I buy a single avocado-tomato burrito before a pre-9am flight, and then eat eighths or quarter bits until I find a foodsource in my destination. This sustained me for most of a day during my recent trip to Oregon, for example, where the sensual taste of mingling cheese and avocado sustained me in a neighborhood still celebrating access to microwaved burgers.

Today the only burrito bite I had in Los Angeles was in Mimi Ito's office at USC. She was characteristically patient and brilliant, sharing her recent research into communications in realms of relationships and technology. I showed up to help move Chanpon to a new server; ChrisW agreed that WestHost looked formidable so we chose them.

I made it home with help from Richard D. James. My French friend I last saw at Le Petit Four in the company of his countrymen, most of them having ordered some kind of red meat to be served rare. I wondered, will I ever wear that contact lens again? No doubt.

Posted on 16 September 2003 : 00:04 (TrackBack)
Read Comments

February 2005 - comments are closed on Links.net. Thanks.

email a link to this page

Email this entry to:

Your email address:

Message (optional):

Justin's Links, by Justin Hall.