Sunday, December 17, 2006

Don't Let the Paperwork Grind You Down

I'm in Ohio once again, having come back from the field at the end of the workday, and I've got more forms, files, and phone calls to work through tonight, lest they pile up and give me twice as much to do tomorrow night. Even so, I did manage to take a short trip back to see Athens in all its now-deserted familiarity. O'Hooley's is now a brew pub -- the bearded brewmaster is probably 25, and makes a remarkably good porter, and a very tasty stout.

Half the stores there are different, and I was struck that I couldn't remember what a lot of them used to be. The old Woolworth's building looks like it's been through a few further incarnations, and is now once again closed. My old slavemaster Burger King is gone. School Kids is gone. Casa Nuevo is still around, although one of my crew members, an OU student, mentioned that it's been through some changes. The short walk along Court Street was strangely affecting, and the sense of conflict between distance of time and proximity of place was pervasive. Same Taco Bell in a very different world. Gone is the Athens of Heather and Josh, here is the Athens of brief escape from thirty-something job responsibilities. Not that Burger King and Subway weren't obstacles to my leisure. Urban Bosche, more like.

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