February 5, 1998 (#21), (and before ...)

I come to you from afar. How afar depends on your own personal location. In fact, for some of you I may be quite a bit too close. Don't worry, I'm not hard to spot, you'll have time to run.

I'm "tally-ho"-ing it up a bit in Ye olde England, on my way to my dear old continent. (Have we spoken about the odd similarity between continent and incontinent - isn't life just full of strange coincidences? Yet, isn't that also a bit redundant, as in, all coincidences are strange. Well, now that I've stated that, I retract. Some coincidences are not strange at all. In fact, some coincidences are awfully tedious. Robert Dornan is a very tedious coincidence. Alfonse D'Amato, another. So let me revise my theorem to say that Non-political coincidences are strange. We'll explore this all much later.)

I shan't tell you anything about the dear United Kingdom since I am sure you all know enough already. Home to THE Queen (I didn't see her and I didn't ask to either.), I thought it best to keep a low profile - you know, Mirror Mirror on the wall and all that. I really didn't see the point in starting an international incident. Lucky for me, I despise shiny red apples.

How to recount all my travails since last we spoke. Nothing overly burdensome. Travels hither and yon. A trip back to see my wonderfully preserved parents. Can I tell you what love my family shares? Can I express the deep feelings we have for another - we would kill each for the other if need be - if only somebody would shut up long enough. My sweet Nietzches, I am considered by some to be a bit quiet and reserved. Not so. I merely am conserving my strenght and weaponry for that unpredictable moment where the telephone will jingle and I'll hear the phrase - "This is your beautiful sister calling." Well, darling Talleyrands, I have more than one sister and I also consider myself to be not unattractive - at least in spirit. So you can see this create quite a dilemna. Luckily Abattoir usually answers the phone and although not strong on English, he has mastered speech recognition. Saves me a bundle in flowers every year, the dear, he is worth every penny.

More recently, I managed to squeak away to Seattle to visit Mr. Bill's father. I suspect he had no idea that I was there to see him. Once again, family duty. One of my siblings, also beautiful, happens to work with the senior Mr. Gates and this, among other tidbits, happened to be a dinner honoring his retirement. How grand. I will say that the senior Mr. Gates seemed to posess all the charm that his progeny may lack. I don't know. I've never met him/them. Selfish of Mr. Gates Sr. to withhold from his children the gift of making people feel comfortable.

Other than that the evening was mostly yackety yak about stocks, yackety yak about bankruptcyk, yackety yak about Monica Lewinsky. As I was completely surrounded by young Republicans, I grasped the only survival tactic I had left - smile and nod and pretend your years have given you a contemplative wisdom. Meanwhile drink everything you can get your hands on and eventually you'll either end up with a splitting headache or you'll embarass yourself in some way and then be able to flee in tears.

I saw my dear sweet tortured sibling from across the table, watching my facial expressions with apprehension. I'm sorry to report that I completely behaved myself. Dears, you have to choose your battles. I was outnumbered. In fact, I suspect I may have been the only person of my kind in the room. Tragique.

I'm hoping to be back by the end of the week, toasting my tootsies in front of a fire, thinking lovely thoughts about all of you. I haven't had a moment to say it, but I hope that you all are having a wonderful New Year - it would be silly not to.

Until I stop thinking,