Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Dear Mr. Moron

Thanks for the confirmation that I'm not being rude by refusing to play with my friend's invitation toys. I checked the site today (day after the RSVP deadline), and seven people still haven't responded at all, including three of her closest friends. I don't think I'm alone in my distaste for e-vitations. Hmmmph.

Volunteering at Obama's headquarters yesterday was great! I spent about three hours doing data entry, which is something I can do with one hand tied behind my back and half asleep. Very easy. Figuring out how the database worked took about five minutes, and then the only difficult task was deciphering handwriting on sign-up sheets. People, if you go to the trouble of entering your name, address, and contact info on a sign-up sheet, for God's sake, write legibly! Some poor unpaid (or underpaid) schlub has to interpret your chicken scratches. If your name is "Joan Mason" and you casually scribble it on an sign-up sheet, don't bitch about getting mail addressed to "Mr. John Moron."

I have to admit that I was a little nervous driving down there yesterday, going into a new situation with people I don't know and all. Of course, everyone was friendly, so there was no need for my attack of nerves. I just realized something about myself. (Wooo, an epiphany!) I was painfully shy in elementary school, even through junior high, but I got over it in high school and became somewhat outgoing. I think I started turning shy again when Daniel was a baby, and I'm still having trouble with it. If you met me, I don't think you'd notice; I'm not as visibly awkward as I was as a child. I introduce myself and initiate conversations and, in general, act like a real live grown-up. It's more an internal shyness--agonizing over whether I'm looking, sounding, or behaving like a dork and worrying about what people think of me. Sometimes I wonder whether my inner 13-year-old will ever grow up.

The headquarters are near the courthouse and historic district of downtown Lafayette, which is quaint and pretty but rather eerily deserted. When Kevin and I went there Saturday to register to vote, we decided to walk around the historic district because the weather was gorgeous. We found several antique stores and even an honest-to-goodness soda fountain in McCord Candies, but I didn't see the kinds of crowds I'd expected--just a few other people like us wandering around. Even yesterday, on an weekday, I didn't see many people around.

Celeste, would you believe I haven't seen a single redbud blooming yet? This year is the latest arrival of spring I can remember. I'm just now starting to see a few daffodils and tulips, but most of the trees still look pitifully bare. I'm itching to start gardening, too. Oh, would you e-mail me sometime? (My Gmail address is over there to the left.) I'd love to ask you about the Parthenon and any other Lafayette/Purdue places you can recommend. Go Boilermakers!

You would have been 54 today, Leslie. I think about you on this day every year--and many, many others days of the year, too.