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2004-03-23 | 2:55 p.m.

Hi, I'm back. Duff says he's pretty sure it's cured. The computer. Because he replaced the network card. We don't have a network, but we have a network card. He reinstalled the operating system, too. Got me a newer version of Office. A little of this, a little of that. I just ran ICQ and got a runtime error. Would I like to debug?

Over the weekend we went to a wedding reception with six hundred other people. Everything that was said was said into a microphone in Vietnamese, Chinese, and English. Maybe the English was just for our table. As the lavishly laced hostess directed us to the table, she glanced at the menu card and trilled, "You'll find your co-workers already seated there."

There was nothing to do at this party but eat, and the menu seemed to have been drawn up with a nod to the endangered species list. Having now eaten it, I cannot fathom the demand for shark-fin soup, when the shark fin itself is tasteless. I didn't even realize it was shark fin I was leaving at the bottom of my bowl in favor of tastier bits. I just assumed it was one of those mystery vegetables that are always turning up in Chinese food.

I'm not finished but I have to go. I wanted to post something so you'd know I still care.

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