Late Night Buffalo Wings
November 13, 2000
Preface - well, it's kind of hard to write about your fun filled adventures if you don't have any. And really, I'm fine, so feel free to ignore this self-indulgent whining garbage, there's something resembling a texty text after a long-winded "introduction" down there somewhere.
Hi, remember me?
In high school my friend Kris used to say that all the time exactly like in this one Encyclopedia Britannica commercial.
I guess you had to be there, but you weren't.
Anyway. Hi. Remember me? I used to write things here.
You, faithful texty text reader, may be wondering why there has been such a distinct lack of texty text goodness recently.
You see, I must've taken a wrong turn at Albuquerque.
Remember how when Bugs Bunny would pop out in the middle of a bullfight, and he would always say that, and then wacky cartoon hijinks would follow, and he'd make the bull like a fool?
This is a lot like that, except without the wacky cartoon hijinks, and the bull just mauls me repeatedly.
My life is increasingly turning into a blur.
Hours blur into days. Days blur into weeks. Weeks blur into months until I completely lose all sense of time and purpose.
Let's just say I'm a little disillusioned with my education. Well, and life, but let's focus on education, it'll be slightly less depressing.
I have motivation issues.
And it's not as though I'm doing particularly poorly in my classes, I'm doing fine. Or that I really hate my classes, because I don't. I just don't care about them. Well I care that I pass, but beyond that, nothing.
There's no intellectual excitement. There's no spark. There's no connection to other students. I feel like I'm missing out on the fundamentals of academia.
"Getting an education" has been replaced by "get the damned diploma and get out of here." I never thought that would be my mindset in college.
I'm taking Latin this year. I had always wanted to take Latin when I was a kid but never had the opportunity. And I thought maybe it would make me feel more like a student at a real university. A small class, a professor that knows my name, interactions with other people instead of just typing esoteric commands into an emacs buffer, all things that I miss out on when I take one of the classes for my major.
It's the only class I attend religiously.
Anyway, my academic disinterest is my own fault. Nobody is forcing me to be a computer science major, and really, there's no other major I'd rather be doing, computer science is the subject that I really care passionately about and I know I'd hate other schools and majors more, and I have plenty of time in my schedule where I should be taking other classes out of pure interest but instead I take light course loads so I can sit around and play Dreamcast games and write web applications that never launch.
As usual, I blame myself, for both the situation and nigh incomprehensible run-on sentences.
Oh, also, there's that nagging feeling that I'm going to spend the rest of my life alone.
But I've been dealing with that for years.
Anyway, I'm twenty, I shouldn't be worrying about that. Much more sensible to worry about how I didn't have a date this weekend.
Or have one for next weekend.
Or any weekend in the foreseeable future.
No, wait, I mean, focus on just next weekend. Yes, take it one weekend at a time. Definitely should be more concerned that I don't have a date for this weekend, rather than nagging feelings that I'm going to spent the rest of my sad little life alone.
Well, not really alone, there's always my Dreamcast. Can't forget about the Sega Dreamcast. Sega hardware loves me.
Oh, and you, you lovely texty text reader. You love me, right? And you'd want to date me, right? (That was rhetorical, don't respond and say "no, actually, as a rule, I avoid dating Sega playing smart ass geeks with self-esteem issues who spend too much time writing stupid crap for the web," because I really don't need that right now.)
Wait, never mind, I don't want to "date" anyway, I can't deal with that. I take it all back.
The point is I need to start taking control of my life. In baby steps.
Oh, by the way, that was the introduction, here's the actual texty text.
I need to work on transitions, I know.
So, it's 9:30 pm, Sunday night, and I'm starving. Why am I starving? Because I was too busy playing Sega to actually bother to eat. I mean, umm, I was doing lots of homework too. Yeah. Work. For classes.
I know, I think to myself, I'll make the quick walk over to the conveniently located surrounding college town, since I am in college, and then I will go to my favorite hangout. There, I can eat, drink, do my Latin homework, and be merry.
Oh, wait, I go to Stanford, I'm surrounded by the overpriced student-hostile yuppie hell that is Palo Alto, and it's a far cry from being a conveniently located walk away. Also, I have no hangout there, let alone a favorite one.
Drats. Foiled again!
Wait, I know... I'll hop into my car and drive to the relatively conveniently located Palo Alto and find a suitable eating establishment, one where I can eat overpriced food surrounded by overpaid tech sector drones complaining about the stock market, drink overpriced coffee, do my Latin homework, and be miserable, but at least not hungry.
No, wait, I don't have a car.
But, but, there's Late Night at Stern! Glorious greasy-delight-filled Late Night!
Late Night is a wonderful, wonderful invention of Stanford Dining Services, where they serve fat filled greasy delights in the dining hall from 9pm to 2am Sunday through Thursday nights.
Then I remember my strict anti-Stern policy.
Nope, can't go to Stern, there's that miniscule chance I might run into my ex-girlfriend who lives there.
But that's ok, because I can just go to Late Night at Lagunita, my old freshman year stomping grounds. Yeah. I love Lag, great.
Sure, it's twice as far away, and it's so cold outside I can see my breath...
This is ridiculous. I'll go to Stern.
But, but... Stern just reopened their dining hall, and I don't even know if Late Night there is open, and umm, Stern is... umm... bad...
"You idiot! That's completely ridiculous! You're making up stupid excuses," the opposing voice of reason says to me in my increasingly tiring inner monologue.
Yes. I am. Good point, voice of reason!
So, I'm walking to Lag, and I run into my pal Trevor.
"You finally decided to move back into the dorms?" Trevor had been living off campus for weeks before finally moving back in.
"Yeah, I'm in a triple in Ujamma."
"So, it sucks."
"No, it's not so bad, I like Uj.."
"So, it sucks."
"Well, I mean, I'm in a triple, but other than that, it's not so bad."
"So, it sucks."
And you wonder why I have trouble making and keeping friends.
"Anyway, I'm on my way over to Lag for Late Night."
"Actually, there's some weird fundraiser thing going on there, I'm not sure if Late Night is even open."
My fragile little world is crashing down.
"Well, I don't know, it's just that there were all these old people in tuxes leaving the dining hall, some fundraiser thing."
"Who the hell has a fundraiser in a Stanford dining hall on Sunday night?"
But since I'm almost there, might as well walk there. And verify that it's closed.
And that I'm defeated.
I need to start eating more peanut butter sandwiches to remind me of my Charlie Browness. When I was a kid I used to have peanut butter sandwiches for lunch every day.
Outside of the Lag dining hall there's dozens, no hundreds really, thousands even, of old people in formal wear.
Dammit! Dammit! Dammit! Dammit!
I lose. Another loss for Adam "loser" Mathes.
This sort of thing could only happen to me.
So I sit down on a bunch, and take out my notebook, and begin to write. It's a lot like this lovely little texty text you're currently reading, except that it says "fuck" and "fucking" a lot more, and instead of painfully long run-on sentences there are ambiguously short fragments of sentences.
Then, as I'm frantically scribbling out "fucking shit i'm a fucking idiot all i fucking want are some fucking buffalo fucking wings" I notice two people walk by me. Both are carrying styrofoam containers of greasy delights.
Greasy, Late Night delights.
I quickly shove my notebook back into my bag, dart through a group of old people, and make my way to the dining hall entrance the two greasy-delight carrying people came out of.
Of course, it's locked.
Dammit. I can't win, my life really is a series of losses.
As I'm wallowing in unjustified self-pity, I look through the locked door to see that on the other side, the door is propped open.
Yes! Greasy delights at last!
And within minutes, I am waiting impatiently for a fry cook to finish my buffalo wings.
I take my buffalo wings, and find a nice table, in the middle of nowhere to avoid any possibility of human contact, and plop down my wings, Latin textbook and notebook, and my cherry coke.
I pick up one of the greasy, disgusting buffalo wings.
I stare at it for a bit.
So why am I so eager to accept and look for defeat? Here I am, with a beautiful little buffalo wing, in a well lit, quite place, where I can eat and drink and study Latin and pretend I'm merry.
The buffalo wing stares back blankly.
And then I bite into it.
So I'm taking control of my life, one bite of greasy, fatty food at at a time.
Well, no, not really. Not at all, actually, but that seems to make for a more fitting end to the story than, "I proceeded to eat massive quantities of greasy food while translating Latin," and I'm always thinking about you, loyal texty text reader, it's all about you, and carefully creating the best texty text, for you, because again, it's all about you.
Except for the times it's about me, which, admittedly, is most of the time.
copyright 2000 adam mathes