safe and sound in Beijing

 

We had a much less eventful trip to China than we did to Dublin earlier this year. We are safe and sound in China. It is so good to see Elizabeth, Jeremy, and Alex in person after mostly seeing them online for the last year or so.

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I am jet lagged. Eileen wasn’t sleeping great the last two nights before we left. She managed to get a good night’s sleep last night. I skipped exercising on Monday morning before we left. This was good because I wouldn’t have had time since I spent the morning attending to last minute packing details.

But this morning I got up and did some exercising despite the fatigue.

With the help of Elizabeth and Jeremy, I have good access to the internet with all my devices. I was prepared to do without, but that’s not the deal.

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Before leaving I managed to finish two novels, Who Put This Song On? by Morgan Parker and Flieschman is in Trouble by Taffy Brodessor-Akner.

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The Parker book which seems to be directed at teens initially interested me because the teenage character mentions a lot of music she and her friends are listening to. I made lists of music and then made playlists of it on Spotify. Many of the groups and songs she mentioned I recognized. This made more sense to me when I discovered that Parker loosely based the book on her own life. She is about thirty years old, so when she was seventeen many of the groups kids were listening to seem to be groups I know like Weezer, and Radiohead. But there were many groups and songs I didn’t recognize, so it was fun to check them out on Spotify.

Both books were informative to me about how people are using tech. In the Flieschman book, one of the main characters in the divorce (Flieschman) explodes onto the single scene via hook up apps that let participants know who is within a reasonable distance and is ready to have sex.

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This is outside of my experience of course so it’s interesting to read about.

I found myself having a bit of a prudish reaction to the Parker book because the main character, Morgan, who is quite likable in the midst of her ongoing clinical depression and troubles, is also quite flippant about high school sex. Specifically, blowjobs.

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Eileen and I were talking about this. Both of us were not hip to blow jobs in high school However, it occurs to me that my grand daughters would probably know what blow jobs are. I think it’s a bit different now and this novel informed me about this sort of thing. However, I would be very hesitant to pass this teen novel to my grand daughters.

This is a bit new for me. I prefer openness about sex and recall Lenny Bruce’s comment that typifying gay people as cocksuckers was a misnomer since in his opinion it would describe any woman he would want “know.”

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Bruce was (is) a huge influence on me. After my father saw the ficitonalized bio pic starring Dustin Hoffmann he remarked that I made a little more sense to him after that.

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I miss my Dad.

It was fun to give Jeremy and Elizabeth a bunch of books. They read a lot of ebooks since they are easier to obtain than real copies, especially stuff from the states I would imagine.  So I like to think that real books are good gifts for them.

Well, the old guy (me) is tired so I’m going to stop here and work on staying awake all day today (this is the recommended operating procedure for dealing with the drastic time difference).

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