You were right, I was wrong.

My girl and I had a difference of opinion as to the proper interpretation of Minnesota statute Section 169.06 Subd. 5. (3) (i) (B). It explicitly states that you can turn left from a one-way to another one-way on red. The MN driver’s manual concurs.

Vehicular traffic facing a circular red signal alone must stop at a clearly marked stop line but, if none, before entering the crosswalk on the near side of the intersection or, if none, then before entering the intersection and shall remain standing until a green indication is shown, except as follows: … (B) the driver of a vehicle on a one-way street intersecting another one-way street on which traffic moves to the left shall stop in obedience to a red or stop signal and may then make a left turn into the one-way street, unless an official sign has been erected prohibiting the movement, but shall yield the right-of-way to pedestrians and other traffic lawfully proceeding as directed by the signal at that intersection.

It does not say that you cannot turn left on red from a two-way onto a one-way. I’m thinking that you can, but she says you can’t. I haven’t turned up a definitive answer, so I have officially conceded.

(Which means that I will not make this “illegal” left turn while she’s in the car with me.) (Okay, she got me. Making this turn at all implies that I’ve not conceded. So I pinky swore that I wouldn’t make this left turn ever. Really. Seriously.)

We made a bet, and I lost, so I’m required to post something in which I publicly state that she is the Queen of Minnesota Driving Statutes, and I am her peon.

She is the Queen of Minnesota Driving Statutes, and I am her peon.

So there.

Pretty Good Trip

My trip to Philly was actually pretty good. It was uneventful where it needed to be (i.e., when flying), the work part wasn’t too bad, and I got to see a couple friends.

Me and Mac

My friend Steve the Beave reminded me that it had been 3.5 years since I had last seen him. I didn’t realize it had been that long. I knew I had met his wife before. For several years following graduation, my college friends used to go back to the pub in Windsor that we used to hang out at when we’d all come home for Xmas. And then I stopped going home for Xmas. Man, time flies.

Monday a.m. we had a meet and greet with all the annual meeting roundtable participants and the CEO. Then I went on a tour of their R&D labs. Folks were congregating for lunch, but me being the introvert that I am needed some downtime so I went back to my hotel for lunch. Back to HQ for dress rehearsal. They had a tent set up in the parking lot with a satellite truck parked outside. There was a whole stage inside with lights and microphones and the whole 9. Craziness. But that ran short. Back to the hotel to catch up on some email, and then we had dinner out at a very fancy place. I was wary about that part, but it was fine. Could have done without the corporate communications folks always saying what a great topic that would be to bring up in the discussion, as long as you frame it right, but whatever.

BUT. This place did tableside bananas foster. Which totally made the entire trip worth it. I haven’t had that since me and Emily went to Puerto Rico. That’s my favoritest dessert ever.

Tuesday a.m. was the meeting. The CEO gave his presentation, they showed a short propaganda video, and then we were on. The craziest part of the whole thing is that we’re seated at this (round) table behind a big screen. This screen is the width of the stage, maybe 50 feet, and probably 14 or so feet tall. During the CEO’s presentation, the screen had the company logo flashed up on it. We got seated behind the screen, in the dark, and he came around to sit with his when he was done talking. So they finish playing the video, the announcer makes some announcement I didn’t even hear, and then all of a sudden the screen drops and the lights come up. The lights are super bright and everyone’s blink-blinking. They told us about the screen thing, but I don’t think anyone was really prepared for it. They introduced us all one by one and I tried not to smirk while I knew the camera was on me. I was literally thinking in my head, “Don’t smirk don’t smirk don’t smirk. Neutral. Blank face. Don’t smirk.”

Anyway. I didn’t eat because I was nervous. But I drank a lot of water, so of course the urgent need to go to the bathroom didn’t hit me until right before we had to go on. And I do mean urgent. Fortunately, I got my comment in early and could spend the rest of the discussion trying really hard not to grimace and shift around a lot.

And then just like that we were done. I raced inside to go to the bathroom, went back out to my rental car in the back of the parking lot and changed my clothes in the back seat, then headed into Philly to catch up with Mac. I did not get lost. I did park on the street without change for the meter to avoid having to drive around too much looking for parking and thus getting myself lost and earned myself a parking ticket for it. Oops. At least the car was still there.

Mac took me for gelato and while we were enjoying our gelato she got a text message alerting us to Jerry Falwell’s passing. Could that moment have been any more perfect? I also got a shit ton of Twitters about it. I love modern technology.

Managed to make it back to the airport without incident. The only hitch was that the security set up in Terminal E (and, I imagine, all the other terminals) was just awful. The line was literally about 10 times longer than they had space set up for it, so there were at least 100 people backed up down the hallway, just hanging out next to the moving walkway. Whatever.

Made it back home in plenty of time to hang out with my girl a bit. *grin* It’s entirely possible that I wouldn’t have seen her for the length of time that I was gone had I still been in town, but it’s different when you’re out of town and you can’t see each other, ya know?

Anyway. Good trip. Just the right pace of stuff to do and getting where I needed to be. All paid for by work.

The Concert Scoop

Since this is my first year with the Twin Cities Women’s Choir, this is my first time doing the spring concert. The winter concert is one of those deals where you sit and we stand and you listen to us sing. The spring concert is a bit more fun. Folks sit at tables and we serve desserts and coffee and whatnot. Literally, we serve them. We head off stage at intermission, pass right through the kitchen, and come back out again with plates and carafes.

We had a folk theme going for this show. Folks songs from different cultures. A bluegrass band which I was skeptical about but which worked out fantastically. (We’re talking folks you’ve heard on NPR. Folks that you have Heard Of if you’re into folk music at all. At least local folk music.) And then there were a few songs from the 10th Anniversary CD as well.

This is our big fundraising concert. There’s a silent auction and we collect donations for two memorial funds. One helps pay for our music. The other is for commissioning songs.

So anyway. Friday night is the night to get the jitters out, but I think both nights went pretty well. The audience seemed to be a bit more into it on Saturday. Some songs we did better on Friday. Some we did better on Saturday. Folks were nervous about remembering the words to the Czech songs, but it all came out just fine. I wasn’t really nervous at all, surprisingly.

And I looked pretty damn good. I wore a skirt, people. Seriously. I was hot. Literally and figuratively, actually. It was warm in there, standing under the lights. (I didn’t get a picture of myself, before anybody asks.)

The 2s (Alto II and Soprano II) had clean up duty on Friday night, so we had to clear the tables and wash all the dishes. The 1s (Alto I and Soprano I) got stuck with Saturday night clean up. We (Alto 2s and friends) headed to a house nearby to party. By the time folks finally all got over there and the singing started (because we hadn’t done enough of that over the last four days), I was totally pooped. It was a fine time sitting around the fire, but it was a tad chilly and I wasn’t quite bundled up enough.

A couple of my co-workers were going to come on Friday night but couldn’t make it on account of a family emergency. Unfortunate. But their tickets ended up going to Ann Bancroft, so I guess it worked out. Good thing, because we dedicated a song to her. Word is she cried through the whole thing. The song, not the whole show. Our director announced that bit of news right before we sang the song on Saturday night, and it choked me up a little. I really like that song, though, so it’s cool. Can’t wait to get the CD recording.

So that’s the climax of our spring season. We’ll have rehearsal on Wednesday in which we debrief the concert and practice a few songs for next Sunday when we’ll do some Mother’s Day stuff. Then we’re done for the summer, save the Twins game in June that we’re doing the national anthem for. Time to relax.

Public Service Announcement

Compared to my first couple years of blogging, I’ve clearly slacked way off in quantity of posts. Because, you know, I’m out doing stuff instead of sitting at home all the time. And I’m just not a writer who can crank out quality stuff like that.

I also don’t share as much as I used to. Maybe because I have more things that I consider sacred now. And there’s a lot of inane shit that I figure y’all don’t care about. Filter that mental diarrhea, whatnot. If I’m going to reveal my innermost, I prefer to do it in a way that might be helpful and constructive, not purely cathartic. I have my therapist for cathartic.

I hate the idea of feeling like I have to self-censor because of how someone out there might take whatever they read. It’s probably really silly, especially for as long as I’ve been blogging, to hold onto a sense of anonymity. I still kind of do, but I think it’s fair to say that, in what I have chosen to reveal, I’ve been pretty authentic here.

The problem is that the more you know about who I am, the more you know who the people around me are. Nine times out of ten, when I self-censor, it’s to protect the people around me that I mention here. That’s the part that’s bothering me right now.

This blog and the Twitters and myspace and all that stuff is here for good, not for evil. Come here to read about me. Take what I say at face value. Don’t expect a whole lot more. Don’t try to extrapolate and interpret and figure shit all out. You’re just going to drive yourself nuts.

I have been that person. I know. I totally get it. I can empathize completely. But it’s an exercise in futility. I know it’s damn near impossible not to do it. You might not believe me because — hey! — I didn’t talk about it here when I was going through it. Trying to protect folks around me.

On the flip side, it’s hard to resist the urge to fuck with people. It really is. But ultimately I have far more important things to worry about. I don’t feel threatened (yet). Just annoyed. I’ve resisted posting on this topic for a while. I’ve already said far too much.

Also, it’s late and I’m tired and I’m losing my train of thought. Here’s my point. This space is mine. It’s all about me. You should know that when you click through. If you have beef with me, fine. I’ll deal with it if it’s legitimate and not just misdirected anger. Otherwise, handle your business and leave me out of it.