Oh man, if this was not the weekend for Interesting Crap Rolling Down Hill, I do not know what was.
My desktop computer is fried. So fried they can't even spin up the hard drive. (Like an FTL drive, but not as cool) When I tried to call back about it I ended up conversing with a very rude woman who had me on hold forever before telling me I couldn't talk to anyone until Monday about my machine. So I wont know until today at some point if I can reclaim all of the music, photographs, fiction works and art projects that are not backed up anywhere else.There will be hell to pay for the people in charge of maintenance in my development if it can't be recovered, as it was one of the repeated and frequent power surges that ate the machine. In a development only 7 years old, losing power every time the wind blows a little bit is pretty much unacceptable.
I went to my brother's house to celebrate my niece's 1st birthday. I waded among a bunch of people I don't know, and who didn't give a crap that I existed beyond the fact that I was connected genetically to my brother and his SIL. I believe the majority of the guests were my SIL's, most definitely more of her family was present than not. I spent a great deal of time wondering why on EARTH anybody would invite that many people to something so trivial as a first birthday - a birthday the child will not remember - and eventually came to the conclusion that it was just a chance to have a celebration and get as many people together as possible.
I am not by any stretch of the imagination a social person. I enjoy the company of the few over the company of many, and prefer those few to be relatively intelligent. A giant gaggle of people all talking at once has just never seemed desirable to me. But I got to see all of my family, including my extended family acquired by marriage or viking raid, and for the most part it was fun to see them. We enjoyed Guitar Hero on my brother's new PS3, listened to folks play real guitar, took a walk up the street for a bit, and sat and chatted with many, many folks. Bob and I both really enjoyed ourselves during our time there in spite of the chaos and noise.
It's interesting that the few down moments came primarily from my own family. The first and foremost was when i was sitting talking with my brother... enjoying myself immensely, actually, and getting to finally talk to him. Then, in a moment of drunken enlightenment, he turns to me and begins to berate me for not coming up to his house until that day.
I find it amusing that the people in my family (and sometimes my friends) think that when I finally get it together in my life to come see them, the best way to emphasize that they would like it to occur more often is to sit there and bitch at me about it. Boggles the mind, actually.
The fact that he later confessed to having 5 beers in his system before opening his mouth gives him some leeway in my mind. But when I later attempted to talk to him about a time we could come back up, since he'd made it clear staying connected was important, he actually stopped talking and wandered off. So...really, it doesn't make me feel THAT welcome. Or that in reality it's that important. Maybe he was too drunk to realize what was going on. The fact that it is not surprising he was toasty says a lot for his typical social gathering, as well.
My mom gave me some crud about contemplating buying a house with a guy I'm not married to, which, given that I've been in a house with a man I WAS married to and got even more royally screwed over, seems somewhat trivial. And a cousin teased me about not popping out tiny bundles of cellular activity that share 50% of my genome. All in all, a typical family gathering of people who seem to have issues with how I make my decisions, which is utterly unsurprising or even original 3 decades in to this life. Ah well, enough of that. A good time was had mostly overall.
After that Bob and I ventured forth to go have dinner with my father, seeing as the individuals at my brother's house weren't leaving, making it really difficult to have one on one time with my bro, SIL or niece.
(I still have no idea if they opened my gift or not, haven't heard a word about it.)
We showed off V*ger, our cute little netbook that's going with us to Japan, and Dad fell in love with it. We'll be snagging him one later when we go to pick up my finished PC.
We then made our way to McGrath's where we talked about such various and diverse topics as the proper way to prepare one's self for a Japanese bath (and that being the reason why I won't be going in to one this time) to my younger step brother encountering a teacher showing him "man movies".... for which he was fired.
It was somewhat unusual. Food was good, company was great.
We were pulling in to the parking lot to pick up the step from his job when he called us and said they were closing where he worked.
Bummer, we thought, as we'd pondered maybe getting dessert there before heading back home. So we snuck in, as the owner was my father's wife's brother (I refuse to call her step-mom, it doesn't describe the relationship appropriately).
We were all somewhat sad, as there are so many small local shops going out of business thanks to the economic bushmilling currently.
So as we stand there, observing what is actually a really nice restaurant, her brother walks up and tells us the following story:
He had a friend that's a well-known local radio DJ. In fact, I knew the man from his days with my father in the boyscout troop. He's a nice guy, and obviously enjoys a meal.
This radio DJ came to the restaurant's owner and told him that he'd been getting ready for bed and wasn't asleep yet when the lord Jesus showed up in his bedroom in holy blazing glory and told the him to go to this owner and say not to wait, but to close the restaurant now.
Then the restaurant owner proclaimed how Jesus was lord and savior, Jesus was king, and that god's will was deep and unknowable. Oh, and that he was closing the restaurant tonight in response to it, even though he'd pondered waiting until June to be sure. It was god's will and he was going to follow it, alleluia, amen, thank you Jesus for answering his prayers about this...
But it wasn't in the Southern, soulful fashion. It was in the Northern, reserved, devout-Catholic fashion that only a Yankee can produce, seemingingly with great fervor but not raising one's voice a whit.
I actually watched my bf's face wipe clean of any expression whatsoever. None. I think, for one brief second, in response to the complete strangeness of this story on top of what was already a weird day, his brain actually rebooted itself and left him standing there without any processing ability.
I myself was probably staring. There was simply nothing I could say in that moment that would have been of any help. The man didn't need comforting because, alleluia, it was god's will he close the place and he was comfortable with that. And his sister was right there agreeing with him, so he didn't need a fan club.
Instead, I opted to exchange Significant Glances with the bf, who finally came back around after a few moments and rejoined us.
There is simply nothing to say when someone happily tells you that they closed their restaurant because a radio DJ said Jesus told them to. Nada.
Well... at least nothing to their face. Bob later admitted to me that he was thinking the same thing I was. Which was a highly doubtful and emphatic exclamation of the expletive type.
After that, and me being temporarily mad at Spectral Jesus for ruining my dessert plans, we regrouped in the parking lot, gave hugs, and parted ways.
We stopped for an ice cream sundae at Friendly's before hitting the highway. And thankfully, that was the end of the Odd Day.
We occasionally look at each other and throw out "Sweetie, I have to do (insert random thing). Jesus told me." It makes for an excellent inside joke.
"I have to eat these cookies. Jesus told me."
"Well then, let's not go against Jesus."
Saw the Watchmen as well, but that deserves its own little post so I will not run up the details here.
My PC, which was dead, is now reborn. I have a shiny new hard drive awaiting an OS and an old hard drive awaiting some data recovery solutions. I'm praying that they can get most of it off of there, since I have photos and artwork that aren't anywhere else. Not to mention a few dozen gigs worth of music and all of my fiction. I would QQ very much to lose all of that. We'll see what comes of it now that I have it back in my possession. I'm almost giddy with the thought of getting to reinstall the OS. But putting everything else back on it from before? Not so much. Meh.
It is most certainly the weirdest weekend I've experienced in a while.