We went across the street to the Audubon Tavern for hamburgers and Barqs, and I got to bed at 11 PM. During the night I heard a gunshot ring out, then a din of voices, then the sounds of sirens. I don’t know what it was about. But maybe this isn’t unusual in New Orleans.
Why did I have to be scared? The worst they could do was fire me, and while that would be awful, I also knew I could go to the media, who’d have a field day with this: “College Prof Fired On Account Of Love.” Sure enough, as I got home, the phone was ringing away.
Blair apologized for being a space cadet because he’d gotten drunk the night before and was then left alone while “this really luscious cool guy” he’s been hanging out with slept with Blair’s own friend, a girl.
In Surfside, I walked over to Danny’s for an early dinner. Who should sit down next to me at the counter but Isaac Bashevis Singer and his wife Alma. He looked very frail, and one of his shirt buttons was undone. I couldn’t figure out what to say to him and finally decided to let the man eat his matzo ball soup in peace.
On Friday night, Teresa went out to a bar with Judy and Juliana. She started talking to this guy, who asked her out for coffee and said he’d take her home. The guy was an amiable loser: “He didn’t even know what gentrification meant.” But what really bothered Teresa was that neither of her friends called afterwards to find out if she was all right.
Susan felt Sean was cruel to have disappeared and left me no way to contact him in the first place, and that he compounded his cruelty last night on WFLA by calling me with 50,000 people listening in on the radio, giving me no way to respond to him personally or to find out where I can reach him.
Off the air, the Sacramento interviewer asked me if I was getting “burned out,” and I said I wasn’t. But I can see how it happens. It’s hard when people expect you to be funny all the time. It’s work being a celebrity, and constantly having to be “on” is annoying.
Technology is amazing. But the new information-based society will not be any better than the old industrial society; it will just be different, and a lot of people are going to be confused, uprooted and badly hurt.
Thank God I won the straw ballot for President, avoiding an embarrassing defeat in my hometown. “How do you feel now, Richard?” said the Channel 4 reporter as the camera zoomed in on me and I tried to keep from cracking up.
Will I ever forget him? No, but I have forgiven him, if there was ever anything to forgive. I’m glad that if someone had to get hurt, it was I and not him because I’m so much better prepared to deal with hurt than Sean is. Of course, I don’t really know if I hurt him, do I?