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June 02, 2006

Bad News, Good News, Appalling News

Let's go with the bad news first: Whatever the con crud is that I've caught has well and truly kicked my ass; I slept until 11am today and my big plan for the rest of the day is to crawl into bed again as soon as I am able. Unfortunately this conflicts with what were my other plans for the day, which were to hop into my car, drive to Chicago, and see members of the University of Chicago Class of 1991 for our 15th reunion. But as I just wrote to a couple of dear friends of mine, I'm not in a condition to drive, and also, I don't think that the thing I want to do with people I have not seen in 15 years is infect them all.

So for today, at least, I am staying home and recuperating. If I'm feeling better tomorrow, I'll make the drive to Chicago. So here's hoping I feel better, because there are a lot of classmates I've been looking forward to seeing. I kind of feel like a schmuck for missing things tonight, but inasmuch as I'd be standing there wobbling slightly with a deathly look on my face while everyone else is having fun, I don't know that folks would be missing much. Anyway. For those U of C folks who were hoping to see me: Unbelievably sorry. Maybe tomorrow.

Good news: My wayward cell phone, lost at Wiscon, has been found and is being shipped back to me as we speak. I plan on giving the cell phone a stern talking to.

Appalling news: My pal Gwenda Bond has done as she's threatened to do for the last week or so and sent along the really revealing shot of me doing my striptease at the Wiscon karaoke party. Naturally, I had to post it here. To keep people from unintentionally viewing the horror that is me without my shirt, I've made the image a pop-up picture. Click this link at your own peril. Is the picture safe for work? Well, if you mean "the only thing you'll see is an out-of-shape 30-something making an ass of himself without a top," then, yes, it's safe for work. If you mean "you'll be disciplined when your screams of 'My eyes! MY EYES!' reverberate throughout the office," then, well, no. It's not work safe in the slightest.

Posted by john at June 2, 2006 12:23 PM

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Gwenda | June 2, 2006 01:06 PM

I really will not be surprised if I am awarded either (or both) a MacArthur Genius Grant and a Nobel Peace Prize just for _taking_ that photograph.

John Klima | June 2, 2006 01:09 PM

You are a brave, brave man. Note to self: keep eye on Gwenda while at conventions. Second note to self: keep clothes on.

John Klima

cherie priest | June 2, 2006 01:15 PM

Oh god I can't believe I missed that!

John Scalzi | June 2, 2006 01:22 PM

Well, Cherie, thanks to the miracle of digital photography, you can relive it as if you were there!

mythago | June 2, 2006 01:36 PM

John, if this doesn't get better real soon, go see a doctor. Four of us came down with Creeping Crud and three needed antibiotics to kick it (one developed pneumonia as a result).

Steve Eley | June 2, 2006 01:42 PM

Have you considered the conspiracy angle? Perhaps one of your old classmates saw that picture days ago, and arranged to have you infected to eliminate any risk that you'd do the same thing at the reunion.

They probably stole your cellphone, too, as a backup plan. They implanted a chip in it so that if you came any closer to Chicago this weekend, a powerful electromagnetic burst would short out your car stereo and render it capable of playing only Cat Stevens, with no off switch. You'd be forced to drive home in desperation.

I hope you feel better soon!

Douglas | June 2, 2006 02:28 PM

"I plan on giving the cell phone a stern talking to."

Was this meant to be funny on one level or two? Trying to discern just how subtle you can be.

John Scalzi | June 2, 2006 02:31 PM

Well, Douglas, I'm deperately sick at the moment. Any subtlety I manage today is purely unintentional, believe me.

Anne C. | June 2, 2006 02:31 PM

Digital Camera: $150
Embarassing picture as blackmail fodder: $100,000
Blackmail threat eliminated by Internet posting: Priceless

As usual, you look like you're having a heck of a lot of fun in your picture.
Thank you, Gwenda, for capturing that moment. :)

Tripp | June 2, 2006 02:43 PM

First Life Lesson, learned in college - Never attend a party where they have a camera.

Second Life Lesson learned in business - Never put negative things in writing.

Third Life Lesson learned later in business - eMail is writing.

I'm curious though - most writers I know are introverts. Since we can rule out the effect of ETOH I'm thinking you are exceptional.

John Scalzi | June 2, 2006 03:24 PM

I don't know that writers are all introverts -- many are, but at least a significant minority are not -- but what is true, I think, is that writers need a lot of alone time, not just to write but just to be by themselves. This certainly gives the practical impression of being introverts.

Becky Maines | June 2, 2006 03:34 PM

Didn't realize you were U of C. I'm class of '90.

Didn't realize you had a day job as a stripper, either. See what a liberal education can do for a person.

John Scalzi | June 2, 2006 03:39 PM

All hail liberal education.

It's not so much of a day job as an occasional hobby, for which I am grateful.

Nicole J. LeBoeuf-Little | June 2, 2006 03:45 PM

Wiscon has Karaoke? How come none of the cons I go to have Karaoke? And if they do why don't I know about it? Dude.

Tripp | June 2, 2006 04:32 PM

It's not so much of a day job as an occasional hobby, for which I am grateful.

As are the rest of us.

Ba dum dump!

C'mon man, you know you threw that softball up to the plate.

Harry Connolly | June 2, 2006 05:01 PM

I love how you found the hot spot to dance in. Way to exploit the lime light.

You should send this picture to your hate mailer. Sign it "All my love, John."

Anonymous | June 2, 2006 05:34 PM

This is the "I'm amoung my people" bravado. It's amazing how much outgoingness folks pick up when they feel at home amoung their own kind.

wil | June 2, 2006 08:44 PM

The really sad thing about you stripping in front of your peers at WisCon -- you don't even drink!

Smurf | June 2, 2006 11:51 PM

You should send some huge sumo wrestler to Chicago to see how far he can get in his "speech" before someone looks at the author photo of OMW and does the ol' 2+2.

I can send you the guy I referenced in the Bigot article, but it could ugly quick.

Wan Zafran | June 3, 2006 09:49 AM

Mr. Scalzi, were you drunk, or semi-drunk, at the time? Just wondering. Because that's a nice imaginary bike you're riding, heh.

John Scalzi | June 3, 2006 10:24 AM

I don't drink, Wan. I am totally sober there.

Kristin | June 3, 2006 11:33 PM

Thank you again for providing such a wonderful distraction from my singing during that song.

Wan Zafran | June 4, 2006 12:56 PM

You don't drink too? Howdy, pard'ner!

Bruce Arthurs | June 4, 2006 02:59 PM

Actually, with some body-toning work, and pumping some iron to build up arms and shoulders, you could get a pretty decent Bruce Willis type effect going.

Harry Connolly | June 4, 2006 04:18 PM

... you could get a pretty decent Bruce Willis type effect going.

Now you know what to spend that 2.5k of fun money on.

Peg Duthie (nee Lin) | June 5, 2006 05:21 PM

Bummer -- hope you're feeling better now. It was indeed fun, and there were folks still chatting long past the official 11 p.m. end of dinner. (Me, I turned into a pumpkin before midnight, but apparently the hardier souls migrated to another bar after 1 a.m. for mango daquiris and yet more conversation.)

I should also note that five minutes back in the orbit of other Blackfriars was enough to confirm I am still not an extrovert, I merely impersonate one on occasion. Still, it was grand to see everyone: if our class is at all representative, we geeks age rather well.

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