Friday, August 23, 2002

August 23, 2002: OK, it's official. Any way you look at it, I'm retired. Yesterday was the last day of the summer semester, and registration for the fall begins on Monday. I was employed through the end of the summer. So now it's over. After going to school every fall since 1947, I'll be staying at home on Monday. As the '60s saying went, today is the first day of the rest of my life.

So how am I spending it? Other than writing this, I went to the grocery store (seedless watermelon, Olathe sweet corn, lettuce, green beans, potatoes, balsamic vinegar, raspberries, blueberries, mushrooms, peanuts, Pepsi One). And later on Judy and I will be going to see My Big Fat Greek Wedding. Her choice, not mine. I'd probably pick something with explosions. But who's to say there won't be an explosion in this one? We can only hope.

Actually, I won't be staying at home on Monday. The group I occasionally pick and sing with, called The G-Strings, or sometimes Bill Benton Bill Benton, will be performing Wednesday at the college's in-service workshop. I've been made an emeritus member of the group, so maybe I'll practice with them on Monday afternoon.

Wednesday, August 21, 2002

August 21, 2002: I went in to try to get a little more done in the way of office cleaning, and my phone wasn't working. I figured this was the final push out the door: first they move your mailbox over to the Old Guy's side of the room, and then they cut off your phone. But, as it turned out, the whole phone system at the college was kaput. Considering that students are trying to enroll and that the college has telephone registration, this is about the worst possible time for something like that to happen. I was glad to know, however, that they hadn't cut off my phone.

This is lawn-mowing day. You already know what I think about that.

Tuesday, August 20, 2002

August 20, 2002: When I went to the college mail room this morning, I discovered that my mailbox had been moved from the regular faculty line-up to the Old Guy's area. It must be that my retirement is official. I still haven't finished cleaning out the office, though. That may take a while.

While I was in the office, I fired up the computer and wrote a note to "All Personnel," wishing them a fond farewell. I'll still be around a lot, but it was time to get that done.

Then I went to the bank. There were six or seven people waiting in the tellers' lines. You have to wonder why only two tellers were on duty, but then this is the bank that advertises "12 Drive-Thru Banking Lanes!" And they have them, all right. However, there are usually between four and eight of them open. I've never seen all 12 open, and I've been banking there since 1983. Anyway, I waited in the line for about ten minutes before I decided that the bank was as bad as the post office. I went outside and went to the drive-through, which was practically deserted. Should have gone there in the first place.

Monday, August 19, 2002

August 19, 2002: We're back from Austin and the Armadillocon. Good convention, even if Joe Lansdale tried to humiliate me in his toastmaster speech. He didn't bother me at all, but he might have succeeded with Martha Wells. It was all pretty hilarious. He also did a well-attended reading that was very funny. I was on four panels, bought some books (including a 1972 Buddy Holly bio), and hung out some. James Reasoner, Scott Cupp, and Willie Siros were there, too, so there were plenty of people to talk to. We went to my sister's house on Sunday night, and she cooked lasagna for us (and Allen and her son Scott and his wife, Norma). Had a nice visit there, as well. We drove back through Houston today and picked up my car at Angela's townhouse. Her car is fixed now, thank goodness.