February 20th, 2006


Gigantic Mall

Did you know that there's a mall from Back Bay Station all the way down to the Copley Square Sheraton? Seriously. You could live inside the hotel there and never have to go outside: it's an incredible amount of ritzy-mallspace that I never knew existed. It just keeps going and going and going. It's no mall of America, for square footage, i'm sure, but it's *long* because it's not got all the side stuff -- and it has two hotels in it! It's craziness.

Met Charles Stross, Hugo-Award winning author last night. He and Jess had a wonderful time talking, and I even got a few words in edgewise at one point or another. Got him to sign a copy of his book for me.

Have laid in bed all morning: kids are with Jay for an extra couple days because they have vaccation this week, and I'm getting all the relaxation in I can. Will be venturing out on the E-line later today, a first for me: I have only taken the green line in the opposite direction from Park, but my computer is just off the Longwood Medical Area stop.

I'm still amazed that you can be inside so much mall. Heck, now that I think about it, you could even go to Filene's Basement without ever stepping outside: just go under the Dartmouth Street Underpass to the Back Bay Station, get off in DTX, and go to Filene's.

That's so weird.


There was a party thing tonight with some peopley things that Jess knows. There was supposed to be board games. Instead it turned into just hanging out and shit. One of the people who was supposed to come was last in varijous parts of Boston for an hour plus -- after they passed the BU bridge. We were only in Brighton.

Anyway, hung out with people, told lots of stories to people who haven't heard them yet, didn't get glared at too much, although I think that I had the fewest number of majors in the room, given that there were people there who had as many as 3 majors.

I was trying to explain to Jessica why hanging out with these people felt different than most of the people we hang out with. The closest approximation I could come up with is that these were not the kind of people who feel the need to constantly be explaining some new theorom of computing or something. I originally said "not a polyglot", but given that one of them was a triple-major, I'm pretty sure these were no one-topic wonders. However, instead of the stunning achievements they've accomplished or some world-saving discussion, we discussed how you're supposed to treat books and how they kept their bookshelves seperated.

Many of the people I'm around are so stunningly brilliant in their field that it becomes a major topic of conversation whenever they're around. (I have the same problem, but for different reasons: I just can't shut up about what I'm interested in.) This results in large sweeping discussions at way too high of a level for me to follow along most of the time. A more relaxed setting where the accomplishments don't overshadow everyday life is an important reality check that I haven't gotten in a while.

Even at the chocolataire, where I was around Jo and Sondy, there's the overwhelming feeling of inadequacy in a given field -- doubly frustrating because they're fields I'm so interested in. This was less the case with Jana, but it's not something that everyone present needs to be participating in to make me feel like it's overpowering.

This isn't a bad thing that any of my friends do, and is probably much more so related to the fact that I'm still fighting against the whole "I'm a college dropout and need to prove myself" mentality I have. It was just an interesting relief to not feel totally overwhelmed despite being in the room with such mental giants.