Tuesday, March 30, 2010

serious lust for camera gear, part one

Oh, oh, oh.

Not that I know much about this sort of thing, but today I used a high-end/ high-definition Canon digital camera setup that combines still and motion picture photography in one amazing device. A person could actually use it to shoot a real movie. And you can toggle back and forth between still and motion photography. It was amazing. I personally only tried out the still function, but the high capacity memory means you can shoot real motion pictures, and not just a few seconds worth. And it takes sound, as well.

We were borrowing this camera from the client. I shot some b-roll scouting photos, and RM used it as second camera during the actual shoot.

Wow. Wow wow wowie.

Stay tuned.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

books and books

Yes, I've talked about this here, before. It's worth reasserting.

Overheard at my local Barnes and Noble: a woman saying she would never, ever, under any circumstances, use an electronic book. Ever. Not for all the tea in China or all the bribe money Congress could offer. Not if the fate of Western Civilization hung in the balance.

Apparently there are people who really believe electronic books are evil, an idea usually expressed with a note of panic in their voice; it's as if in picking up anything but a so-called real book they are dooming paper text to extinction.

Why not both? An electronic reading device is more of an affirmation of reading than it is a dismissal of 'real' books.

On a practical note, imagine yourself on your next vacation carrying the slim device shown above on the right, instead of a cumbersome pile of luggage-weights.

* * *

Friday, March 26, 2010

scénariste: coco before chanel

The writer, the director, the publisher, the screenwriter, the costumer, the main character... all women! That's unusual in and of itself. From a personal standpoint, I found Coco Before Chanel a captivating and melancholy film. Truth be known, my throat was tight through nearly the entire evening (and not just from all the on-screen smoking), even when a given scene wouldn't seem to warrant that kind of reaction; apparently it referenced certain thematic elements that hit a nerve with me. Beyond that, it was a completely beautiful film with intelligent writing, wise acting; a story of talent, determination, and longing.

Many people besides me appreciate this film, but it has taken a hold of me for multilayered personal reasons.

It doesn't appear to be released in BluRay format yet, but eventually I'd like to purchase an edition that includes both versions so I can watch it on my monitor as well as in the media room.

Update: I showed it to my friend and houseguest, GV, and she liked it so much she immediately ordered three copies, for herself and two friends.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

mrs. stowe and DL&CS

What is the Dreamland Literary and Cinematic Society?

Let's forget for a moment that this is just another blog, a stopping place in the metaverse visited by a mere handful of sympathetic readers. It has always been my plan to eventually create a kind of Honor Roll. The Society can be thought of, in part, as showcasing a virtual assembly of people I appreciate. It is this facet of DL&CS I will talk about today.

Exceptional people both young and old, men and women, serious and playful, living and non-corporeal, will over time be given special recognition here.

Now and then I will induct people into DL&CS, gifted individuals who I feel should be honored and placed on the member roster. I will not pretend there is any kind of science behind my choices-- they will reflect my personal values and interests.

There are no dues, rituals, exploitations, or obligations; there is no tomfoolery or fine print or hidden agenda. I seek only to recognize, over time, a varied group of people and their special contributions.

Obviously enough, those who have already passed from this earthly realm will never learn they have been named as members. Nor will they give me explicit permission to fuss over them. But because they are such special folks, I'm confident they would understand, and perhaps even approve.

These extraordinary people travel through both time and space with something to share with us.

Who will these Society members be?

For quite some time, I've been mentally assembling a list.

The first person I would like to induct into the Dreamland Literary and Cinematic Society is the author Harriet Beecher Stowe, who I referred to in a recent blog post (a place to write).

A small photo of Mrs. Stowe is also featured in a diorama I designed and installed, by invitation, for the Oakland Museum of California, for a new permanent exhibit in the California History wing.*
My museum diorama was not exclusively about her, it should be noted, but I included her for her role in my life as an inspiring figure.

My beloved "Aunt" Harriet is being given a place in DL&CS for many reasons. Most significantly is for her novel, Uncle Tom's Cabin, a work that had tremendous social/cultural effect on the United States and beyond.

The work is occasionally derided for, among other things, certain perceived patronizing or condescending attitudes, an unfair evaluation that dismisses the context of when it was written and fails to fairly acknowledge the work's tremendous impact. The work played a key role in our history.

Another way to admire this woman is to acknowledge her focus and productivity as a writer, and her considerable skill as a literary artist.

Parenthetically, I'm pleased to be in the same family tree as Mrs. Stowe, on my mother's side of my family. But I know I would be honoring her here even without the family connection.


Inducted into the Dreamland Literary and Cinematic Society on this day, 23 March, 2010.

Respectfully submitted,

Brenda Cox Giguere

*The Oakland Museum of California will reopen on May 1 of this year after extensive refurbishing and redesign.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

sunflowers on a starry night

A worn-looking man sits disconsolately at a café table on a quiet cobblestone street. Behind him is a dazzling starry sky, but the man is peering down into his coffee cup. His reverie is interrupted by the arrival of a man in a dark suit with a dark turtleneck and expensive-looking eyewear. His hair is in a sleek ponytail, and he is sporting a cultivated and near-perfect two-day beard growth. Even in the near-dark, his teeth are gleaming white.

MAN: Excuse me… is your name Vincent? Vincent Van Gogh?

VINCENT: Yes… yes it is. Who are you?

MAN: Name’s Metro… Mark Metro, of Metro Marketing. (extends hand) Can I buy you another coffee, Vincent?

VINCENT: Uh… no. No, I’m fine. Do I know you?

METRO: No, Vincent. But I’m hoping in the next few minutes that will change. (Pauses, looks at chair next to Vincent, then seats himself) What would you say if I told you I have secrets to success… secrets that could turn things around for you? That today could be a new beginning for you? Well, I’m here to tell you, it’s no dream!

VINCENT: Well, I wouldn’t mind selling some paintings, actually. And it gets old trying to explain my vision to people when it’s right in front of them to see. But I’m not sure…

METRO: Exactly! Of course you wouldn’t mind selling paintings! What artist wouldn’t? Listen, I’ve been checking around. I know the market… it’s my job to know the market. It’s your job to paint, right? But not just any old painting you feel like. There’s something terribly self-indulgent about that, if you’ll pardon my saying so! How can you possibly succeed if you just take shots in the dark like that?

VINCENT: Well, I was hoping a few more people could learn to appreciate what I’m doing, and then success would follow. I’m actually sort of surprised at the blank looks I get sometimes. It can be pretty depressing. But every now and then, somebody astute says, “Hey, I see exactly what you’re doing here, and it’s exciting, intelligent work… thank you for painting it; keep the faith, man.” Then I’m reminded of what I must believe is true… that there really is something to what I’m doing.

METRO: I see.

VINCENT: Of course, those people are other artists, and usually have even less money than I do.

METRO: (makes clucking sounds and shakes his head) Vincent, Vincent… why make the public work that hard? Why suffer for your sanity? A picture is worth a thousand words, so let’s talk about your last painting, shall we? Then you’ll know what I’m talking about.

VINCENT: Sunflowers? What about it?

METRO: Here’s what my research tells me about sunflowers. Sunflowers… well, they’re just not cutting it. People don’t want to see a picture of something that grows next to a barn. They want something better. They want some glamour hanging over their sofas.

VINCENT: (looks puzzled)

METRO: I’ve got one word for you, Vincent: Roses. Big, beautiful roses in an attractive vase. It works for Hallmark, it can work for you. Of course, you have some leeway with the colors, but if you’d like to further refine your efforts, we’ve done studies on the five most popular colors, broken down by demographics. Warm-up on your coffee, Vincent? (Metro gestures for a waiter, then points to Vincent’s cup, then himself). One fellow I represent, he’s got the dewdrop-on-the-petal thing really working for him. I forget his name right now, but you’ve seen his stuff.

VINCENT: Look, Metro, I don’t have anything against roses. If a patron hired me, I’d probably do some roses for him. But why would somebody look at my work and want roses, when the whole blooming point is that it’s sunflowers… done my way? Don’t you detect any irony here?

METRO: Vincent, there’s no point in being a martyr. Do you want to die without selling anything? What do you think is going to happen? Best-case scenario… a hundred years rolls by, and your sunflower canvas goes up for auction, maybe tastes have changed, maybe somebody thinks you were a genius. So what? Are they going to tap on your casket and toss you a percentage? Give you an award? Maybe somebody will write a song about you. How many potatoes does that put on your table?

VINCENT: I know you’re trying to help, but what you’re saying is pointless to me. It’s every bit as important how I sell my work as whether or not I sell it. I need to find people who can see it, because I think I’m onto something. Sure, maybe there's room for me to perfect things, but… but nothing truly wonderful can come of giving up. No hard feelings, OK?

METRO: (Shrugs) Hey, it’s your choice, man. Let me get your coffee. You know, just between you and me, there really is something about that sunflower painting. It doesn’t make any sense to me, but… oh, forget it. (Stands up, tosses coins onto the café table). Wow; quite a sky tonight. Just look at those stars. Amazing. I bet a sky like that would look pretty incredible in your style. You know… different. But it might be kind of cool.

VINCENT: (Peers at sky in silence a moment). Thanks. Thanks for the coffee.

* * *

morning fog

Saturday, March 20, 2010

tomorrow's tea

Tomorrow morning I'll be meeting a longtime online friend for tea. It was her idea, and I have to admit despite the "High Tea and Whimsy" theme I've chosen for this month at my doll group, it would never have occurred to me to actually go somewhere and have tea.

The only times I've been to a tea service that I can recall have been on the cruises my husband and I took, and many years ago in Boston, which I can hardly remember.

Today I stopped by the Tea-Upon-Chatsworth tea room in Point Loma to see it for myself and make reservations. It looks lovely. They even give classes on etiquette, if you can imagine that in this day and age.

late night again

Friday, March 19, 2010

creative license

Remind me to tell you the true story of the personalized license plate that was, for a brief and shining moment, mine... until cruel Fate snatched it out of my hand, leaving me nothing but bittersweet memories and a dream of what Might Have Been.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

a place to write

This special fantasy place- this place to write- has more than one version in my imagination. Let's call them VR, VU, and VS. VS is suburban, and where I now live actually comes close to being my ideal writer's setup within a suburban setting. Of course, I realize I'm fortunate to have my very own space, but it's more than that; it's gratifying that sometimes after years of creative planning and working towards a dream, idiosyncratic interior design goals- like mine- really can be reached.

It's not entirely perfect in that I occasionally share my computer, and am subject to some interruption by spouse and cat. But after decades of less than ideal setups, my little home office is appealing and useful and filled with things I love: two computer monitors, a small daybed made glamorous with an array of throw pillows, shelves filled with books both useful and collectible, personal ephemera in various little displays and dioramas, a small microwave, a coffeemaker, a space heater, a fan, attractive lighting, and an electronic keyboard right behind me on a second (glass) desk... a gift of music from my thoughtful husband.

Like the rest of the house, I clean this area myself. Although it's not a big room, there's a lot here to curate (dust), but at least everything is finally just the way I like it after years of tweaking. And at night, as it is now, any daytime problems with this writing space largely disappear.

The rural fantasy version of a place to write, VR, is modelled loosely on an actual single-room writer's retreat I saw in Northern California several years ago: a separate narrow building far from the main house, tucked away behind trees and accessible via an unpaved road; it had one long wall with a great deal of glass, revealing a couple of unmatched Alan Brady Show writer-style sofas dotted with various pillows and afghans, great towering and toppling stacks of resource materials, the entire space filled with funky accoutrements, vintage movie posters, flea-market furnishings, and personal ephemera. There's a small refridgerator, a hotplate, and all the appropriate provisions. With La Boheme on the stereo (and no barking neighborhood dog), surely great things can happen in a space like this.

The urban version, VU, varies somewhat and is a kind of composite. I've tried a few times to recreate it in the virtual world of Second Life, and the closest was a brick loft space in an exceptionally realistic art sim called Cetus, now gone. Of course, you can't actually be a writer in Second Life inasmuch as you're not really there; you can merely play at the idea of being one.

Or can you? When I had my virtual loft there, on a few occasions I would park my avatar at my virtual desk and then switch back to RL (real life) and do some real writing. It sounds strange to say this, I know, but knowing my virtual self was in that loft added an interesting psychological nuance to the writing session.

From time to time I check to see if real-life lofts are by some miracle affordable, but except for inaccessibly far away (or far too tiny), they never are. But it's still a great fantasy. This type of loft space more often ends up as a backdrop for my designer fantasies rather than my writing ones, but the two pursuits could definitely be combined. I wonder, sometimes, where Harriet Beecher Stowe did her writing. She probably didn't waste as much time as I do thinking about optimal writing environments, and simply sat at her desk and got down to the urgent business of writing.

* * *

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

remembering old dreams

Lucid Dream Notes, January 11, 1995
Results of touch test in context of dream narrative


I went to bed before eleven; I was very tired from an unusually long and hard work schedule, and hadn't had much sleep the night before. But I was adamant that despite these problems, as well as a toothache from a temporary crown, I would have a lucid dream. I listened to S's voice on the lucid dream induction tape, but as I was wound up in addition to being tired, I listened to it three times before I even felt sleepy.

A sleep onset-type lucid dream seemed more likely under these conditions, as opposed to a late morning one, and that's exactly what happened. I managed at last to fall asleep around midnight.
Within the hour I had two lucid dreams separated by a non-lucid period. The overall length resulted in my losing some of the narrative details of the non-lucid part, but the lucid parts remain clear in my memory.

Dream Account:

Vivid Visual Lucidity; Sleep Onset Interior; Careful LD Experiments
Dream goal: to become lucid and conduct an arm touch test (pinch, brush, press)

Not long after falling asleep, it seemed, I was delighted to find myself lucid.

Before my dream-environment fully manifested, I examined very realistic video-type closeup images of colorful vintage jewelry, like those I collect in waking life. To test my lucidity, I even replayed the image (although the appearance of the objects had shifted slightly). One carved necklace was especially interesting, unlike anything I've seen.

After this, I found myself in a simple, well-detailed interior setting; the mood, look and feel of this dream was similar to many other of my sleep onset or 1st cycle lucid dreams over the years.

My sister was around somewhere, but this was more of a concept or implied knowledge until later in the dream, when I interacted with her. There may have been other characters, but I sought to ignore them to help maintain my lucidity.

I remembered and gave eye signals according to that night's waking decision (this time, eight fast movements, left to right), and proceeded with the touch experiment.

First I pinched my left forearm, and was surprised to find there was nothing but the faintest suggestion of physical contact at all. Next, I lightly brushed my fingers over the hairs of my arm, and this time the sensation was extremely realistic, almost a heightened sensation. Then I did the press test; this was faintly realistic, but far less so than waking life. This was a great test; I was pleased that I had successfully carried out my planned activities, and found the results interesting.

I followed this by asking my sister in the dream to tell me what a table was; she responded by saying, "You and your dumb experiments."

I then did some indoor floating and flying, and wanted to practice driving a clutch, but could only manage the accurate movements of feet and hands while seated in an invisible car.

I was always fully lucid throughout these experiences, but the room was dark, and the details of the environment were not the most fabulous I'd ever experienced.

Some non-lucid activity followed, and then some more lucidity of my walking around and looking at things.

end of entry

Closing notes:

My early evening lucid dreams are somtimes more everyday in their look, usually interior, but often last longer than my late morning ones. I was thinking about this even as I was dreaming. Then I woke up, and recorded my experiences in my bedside journal.

* * *

January 14, 1998
My old bedroom
Lucid Dream, sleep onset


Sleep onset lucidity, sudden “snapping in” of lucidity, dream of my mother, experimentation, artwork, stability, touch sensations.

Final dream about Scottish wedding might have been telepathic, as it was dramatically similar to an account of a real event described to T. by a work associate. She volunteered the story before I told her anything about the dream.

Dream Account:

Music Show ends; Fire in Distance; Deciding Not to Steal; Pathetic Philosophy; Neck Tattoos

There’s a song and dance bit, amateur, with some women. One, a blonde, can’t sing and dance too well, but is gorgeous. The show ends, and suddenly I look in the distance and I see it’s a fire. Closer, I see it’s a Clinique makeup counter [in a kind of window area, as I now recall]. People are stealing things. I have a tube of mascara in my hand now [I don’t know how it got there, and I would never steal in waking life]. I palm it for a moment and start to put it in my pocket. Then I decide to put it back, even though I know it’s expensive mascara.

[A white] man greets a black man whom he knows with a series of cynical questions, ending with, “How’s the kids being raised; black or white?” The black man and I share a “can you believe how pathetic this is?” look.

There’s a woman nearby with elaborate tattoos on her neck. I wonder how she’ll feel someday about them. I wonder if some people, having heard tattoos are removable, figure it’s no big deal. The woman has blonde hair and is very tough-looking.

* * *

I’m not sure if this next section is the same date or a later date, as it is not marked. It is separated by a single line from the previous entry.

Talking With Mama about Heaven; Experiment in Egyptian Writing; Scottish Wedding; Young Daddy (Sleep Onset LD)

Dream Account:

Visuals extremely real and bright! It snapped in suddenly. I am in the kitchen with Daddy. He speaks to Mama. I know immediately she is really dead. I turn and see “her”.

“You know, you need to get back up to heaven, but I need a BIG hug first!” I told her. We hug, and then she tells me quite clearly about a book with hats in it, something about some Jewish people. I listen with a kind of panicked feeling as I know, despite how clear her words are coming out, I will have no way of remembering it all.

Then I’m in the living room. I decide to do an experiment. I pick up a beautiful illustration, historical fashion (Egyptian) on heavy parchment. I study it carefully [it is quite lovely and detailed] and it does NOT change as long as I keep it moving. I wonder a minute, as I do this, about the rods and cones of the eye. What if they differed in more than what they respond to? What if they were somehow involved in the event of mental visualization during dreaming? I was quite convinced during this dream that I was onto something [despite how silly it now seems]. Finally I looked completely away from the illustration, and when I returned my gaze it had changed completely. Then I began touching things: a stucco wall [like Paul’s first lucid dream]; some glass in a kind of kitchen (no longer like Mama and Daddy’s house).

Then I’m in the living room. Terry is there. There are lots of people out in front of the house, and then I am outside, too. There are bridesmaids in red tartan full skirts and black velvet jackets. I think how nice it looks.

Oh! I almost forgot. Daddy in the living room, younger, thinner, with more hair. I note this [still lucid].

end of entry

Closing notes:

There may be a relationship between this image in the dream, and a conversation I had with Scott G. about getting older. He had shown me a picture of himself when he was quite a bit younger and better looking, and he was chagrined about it.

Is there a pun on “Scott” in the Scottish wedding party?

Or was the dream telepathic, as Terry—unprovoked in any way—told me shortly thereafter about a friend going to a wedding in Scotland, where the bridesmaids wore plaid!

Nocturne in E flat major, Chopin

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

but not in our own mirrors

We know elegance,

but not in our own mirrors.

Gone for all time?

* * *

Monday, March 15, 2010

moving media and mixing music

This is a note to myself.

Why don't I have a digital video camera? Why haven't I shot any motion imagery since high school? Why haven't I looked into this? Not that I should be doing it now when I have two big writing projects to finish, but what has kept me from pursuing this basic creative activity?

Both my Canon SLR and little consumer Nikon can take short bursts of motion, I think up to 15 seconds or so. Edited together, this could be a web piece. Of course, one of the skills I need to gain is how to upload raw tracks of music to my computer and mix them together into sound files for uploading to websites. Then I'd really have something. My Yamaha keyboard has fabulous sound and hundreds of voices, with great tools and features, but I need to get the right software for uploading and mixing. I'm sufficiently competent at creating music if I do it a track at a time. RM tells me I need a Mac to do this properly, but is that really true?

Well, why haven't I looked into this?

Sunday, March 14, 2010

tim's alice artistry

Viewed it today; will view it again; will review it here. Always amenable to alternate Alices.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

writing things down

Every year I wonder what it might be like to keep better records, everything from notes on wine tasting to how many applications I can get out of a tube of mascara. Well, maybe not the latter, but I am intrigued by the idea of notes, journals, diaries, and records. Much of that kind of thing would be nonsense and a waste of time, of course, but there does seem to be some potential value and satisfaction in making notes about some things. Titles of books and films, for instance.

In looking over what records I have managed to keep, it's interesting to observe just what is of interest years later. Often, it's not what I would have imagined. When I look through school reports, diaries, and ephemera, even photographs, I'm often drawn to what isn't there.

Writing about how upset I was with a fellow high school classmate has some interest decades later, and writing about it at the time probably had some therapeutic value, but I find myself curious about other matters. What did I keep in my nightstand? Who waited on me at the grocery store? What cars did my neighbors drive, and what did my parents talk to each other about during dinner?

My mother-in-law keeps a diary, or more precisely, a daily log. She approaches it in a rote, businesslike manner, like a kind of accounting. If you go to her records, you can find out if it was raining 17 years ago, or what movie they watched after supper. She has no interest in using her diary as a place to vent.

If I could somehow magically go back and create a record of anything, of real interest would be a record of all the film and video projects I've worked on beginning around 1987 and continuing to the present. How hard would it have been to make a quick note somewhere with the name of the client and the location, every time I worked on a job? But I didn't. Partly, this is because I didn't have the vision to see it would someday mean something to me. But it would also have meant creating some kind of easy and compelling record-keeping infrastructure. My mother-in-law has the time and patience to sit each night, pen in hand, and write everything down. She buys a new, blank diary every year. Call me spoiled, but I'm afraid it would take more than that simple media platform for me to go her kind of distance.

Upon reflection, the issue isn't time, and it isn't even necessarily committment as such. They say the best exercise is the one you'll do regularly, and so it is with journalling: the best record-keeping is the one you find easiest and most intuitive, the one that snaps comfortably into place and becomes a smooth, ongoing part of life. Home computers, an array of software, various PDAs, and social media such as this blog you are reading have become incredibly sophisticated. There should be a way for any motivated person to figure out a set of ongoing journalling goals, and stay on top of them, with ease and style.

more to come

Friday, March 12, 2010

high tea & whimsy

high tea & whimsy

This is the theme I've just announced at one of my doll-groups, inviting members to explore it in whatever way suits their fancy: doll costumes, dioramas, photography projects, illustrations, paper dolls, collage, or any related artistic medium, either realistic or fantastical. I've become fascinated of late with the idea of such a gracious and civilized ritual. It also dovetails nicely with the recent release of Tim Burton's Alice film, specifically Lewis Carroll's famous Mad Tea Party scene.

Tea-time appeals to the Anglophile in me. And the dreamland literary and cinematic society lauds such rituals of civilized living.

How will I explore this theme? To start, I think I'll try to find myself a proper tea-set. Or, at least a proper miniature one.

* * *
more to follow

Thursday, March 11, 2010

a novel situation

My goal is to finish a complete first draft of all the remaining chapters of my novel. By May 1 of this year, no less!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

imaginary friends

The blog post is in my head; eventually I'll write it out. I want to reflect a little about online associations and the changing meaning of friendship.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

dreams about loft spaces

Night after night lately, I dream of loft spaces. They are mine to fix up as I please.

My definition of a loft is basically this: one large main room uninterrupted with interior walls.

The best lofts have brick walls.

Sometimes lofts are part of an industrial-type building, a conversion. Often they are set up primarily as a work space but with living space amenities inserted into it in the form of a bed and kitchenette. It makes sense to have a small bathroom on one end, walled off of course, or maybe down some nearby hallway. These details aren't as important as the main idea of one large room.

This is a longtime dream of mine. I'm not sure why. Did I see lofts in movies? Read about them? There's just something about that type of space that seems so marvelous.

Online I found a loft for sale that I got very excited about. The price was a good one-- only 150,000 for a brick loft built in 1950. But it's in Atlanta, and that's not exactly convenient.

Until such time as a loft comes my way, there are books, films, and those recurring dreams.

Monday, March 8, 2010

three decades

30-year anniversary, a night at Rancho Valencia. The author enjoyed three of her favorite things: fresh-squeezed orange juice, a lit fireplace, and the company of her husband.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

talking to people

My father talks to people all the time. I usually don't. I guess in that regard, I'm more like my mother was. You can tell my dad is an extrovert just by looking at this picture.

Apparently this wasn't always the case, however. He says that a group of friends from his young adult years saved him from being a permanently quiet introvert lying on the sofa reading and listening to classical music.

Now, I've written elsewhere about this, so I won't reiterate here, but it's a different matter to be an introvert and to be shy. I'm not shy, I never was shy, and my dad probably wasn't shy, either. But I am a natural introvert. It's my natural state, although I've learned to move past it and can do a reasonable impersonation of someone personable, when the situation requires it.

And when I know we have something in common, I'm not even introverted anymore. Maybe my smiling dad just automatically feels something in common with everyone he meets.

* * *