New year

I was here in Boston for Christmas, nothing too exciting there, but then headed home for New Years’ by way of NYC (to see VNV Nation live, what else?), where J.R. was spending the break. Up bright and early (yeah yeah, shaddap) to catch the Chinatown-to-Chinatown wormhole bus, then we spent the entire day prowling around the city. A day filled with Dim Sum, and artsy-crafty things, the sights and sounds, Times Square (the infamous ball being slowly hoisted into position as we watched), a sheet music library several times the size of my hometown’s everything-under-the-sun library, and Yuka, The Best Damn Sushi Ever. (All right, my first officially, but it was damn good. Quoth J: “You’ve lost your eel virginity!”) And of course, VNV, which was amazing in and of itself. And packed, as in one-degree-of-freedom packed. (The opener, CodeR23, was amusing itself because it consisted of two guys standing around essentially motionless on-stage with headphones on and Powerbooks opened in front of them, one playing a DVD to the projectors and the other playing music…maybe a realtime softsynth, maybe MP3s? “Dood, it’s Kraftwerk, like, totally.”)

After that (heh…whaddya mean after that? Didn’t go immediately home and come in for a hard landing on a soft bed?), we were still pumped and didn’t feel like calling it a night just yet, so…. sneaking into Columbia Univ.! J gave me the mini grand tour of the campus, then defied the Ft. Knox-like security (down a concrete stairwell of sorts, through an unlocked fence gate, to a door left propped open by a prehistoric PC power supply) to navigate the interior. Interior meaning the network of tunnels underneath the entire campus, hehhe. So anyway, we’re on safari through the huge bits of machinery and pipework that make up the campus’ seamy underbelly, and I stop for a minute to get a (bad, in-the-dark, dispose-o-cam) picture. Good thing too, because we round the corner and there’s some random guy also walking around down here. (If not for the photographic delay, we’d have rounded the corner and practically bumped right into the dude.) Anyway, he turns around and sees us, and since we have no clue who this dude is or what he’s doing down here at 3 in the morning (Random bum? Campus security? Serial tunneller-molester?) we made like a spellchecker and got the F out of Dodge. Scrambled through a few twists and turns, and ended up in a stairwell that dead-ended into a locked door. Umm….great. Fuckeder than a cheerleader on prom night. So we’re listening for the sounds of the scary dude coming up after us, or calling the cops, etc., but all I could hear was the thud-thud-thud noise of my heart trying to climb my throat. After maybe 10 minutes of not hearing another sound or being hauled out in cuffs, we work our way back down to the tunnels proper. Get only a little way, and hear the unmistakable jingle of not-alone-ness again. This time, find a different way out (which actually leads back out), popping up by an elevator which we scramble into and head for an arbitrarily vacant floor, then exit the building in as nonchalant a manner as possible. Tried to get out onto the roof in another building, but nothing doing (what, actual security? What-EVER!). All right, we’ve got to do this again.

Onward to Chicago! Party, party, and party more. At my house. At Nando’s house. And most importantly, at the cabin, with D*/T*/F*/K*. Dead of winter, hot tup hot, a frozen lake, food, drink, 30 gigs of deafeningly loud music, and no neighbors for at least 1/4 mile in any direction. I think we did some damage.

Little Girl: But which cookie will you eat first?
Cookie Monster: Me thinks you have misconception of the cookie eating process.


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