I really feel like blogging, but I don't really have anything very important to talk about right now. So here are a few random things:
1. The Lingos. The Manhattan stake singles have a wonderful traditional film festival every year, named after that classic Mormon movie, Johnny Lingo. Anyone who wishes to may submit a 3-5 minute movie, about anything at all. Then, one winter's night (the determination of which is still a mystery to me--they never really announce stake activities here--they just come along through hearsay and the grapevine) in a typical combination of chaos and brilliance, the films are shown, judged, and given awards. Last night was my second Lingos, and I must say I enjoyed it thoroughly. With LDS amateur short films you never really know what you're going to get, but there were fortunately no super-awkward, sacreligious, or distasteful movies this year. There was one short about baptism which was really minimal, and I have to admit that I was on the edge of my seat, anticipating something in poor taste and just hoping it wouldn't be too bad, but the movie turned out to be so innocent and even joyful, that I ended up feeling bad for thinking that it would be bad. The rest of the movies were a very good combination of TV show spoofs, a western, a crazy Santa, a haunted school, and some very funny commentary on current social and economic issues. This is Manhattan, and there are some really talented amateur filmmakers among us. But the biggest surprise? The activity started only 20 minutes late!
2. Happy St. Nicholas Day! I'm just glad we don't celebrate this holiday like they used to do in some countries. The legend of St. Nicholas is that he was a kind man who anonymously donated three bags of gold to a man so his daughters could have dowries and thus marry. So in parts of Eastern Europe, the little children would leave their shoes out the night before St. Nicholas' Day and he would supposedly come along and fill them with treats. But if they were bad, St. Nich's henchmen would come beat the children. I'm not making this up--you can go look at Wikipedia if you don't believe me. I'm suddenly wondering if the reason I'm not married yet is because I have no dowry. Maybe I should have left my shoe out last night?
3. At the Lingos last night I ran into a kid who I babysat one time when I was 17. He's all grown up now and friends with my friends, which is kind of wierd! But all I can think about is how when I was 17 his dad had so many speeding tickets that he hired me to drive him to work in the morning (this counts among one of the more unusual jobs I've had during my long career) and I totaled his car. Each day, depending on how late he was running, we would drive to a different train station so that he could commute into Boston. This particular morning (foggy, 5:30 a.m.) we were headed to a station I'd never been to before, and when I turned left to enter the station parking lot, I drove right into the path of an oncoming SUV. The accident happened right in front of the local police station, and you know how Massachusetts cops are. Nobody died, so we were lucky, but I had never been in a wreck before and was crying in the arms of the policeman, telling him "It was all my fault!" as my late-for-work employer ran away to catch his train. This was before cell phones, so my dad was very surprised to see me arrive home a little while later in a busted car (it could still move, thank goodness!) with flat tires and bumper dragging. I collapsed on the couch and didn't drive again for at least a week.
4. Actually, I think I've run out of things to talk about now.
P.S. Last night on the way to the Lingos I saw 4 skinny guys in Santa suits skateboarding down Central Park West. It's that time of year!