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As it turned out, Heisenberg wasn't really all that uncertain about where he was and what time it was, thanks to a business class upgrade coming from New Zealand, so we didn't get to see much of the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle in action.

What Heisenberg, panamaus, and I did have was a couple of hours of good conversation and a few beers apiece in the back corner of the lobby bar of the Los Angeles Airport Hilton. We discussed this place, of course, and also a diverse array of topics ranging from Amtrak to the University of West Florida to the American health care system (or lack thereof) to moving to New Zealand to lowendmac.com.

It was a nice, low-key evening, just the thing to kick off a nice, low-key Thanksgiving for some of us (those of us who weren't flying to Cancún on Thursday, at least). Best of all, we talked long enough that the traffic going back north to the the Valley was surprisingly light, so I got home in near-record time.

Thanks again, Heisenberg, for buying the drinks! It helped with the sting of the king's ransom I had to pay to a man in a little booth somewhere in the bowels of the Hilton's underground parking area.

The original invitation follows...

E2's very own Heisenberg is going to be in Los Angeles overnight as a stopover on his way from New Zealand to somewhere else (probably not here). And thanks to jet lag, he's probably going to be uncertain about what time it is, where he is, and even who he is. So why not have drinks with some fellow noders at his hotel?

Wednesday, November 24, 2004, 7:00 P.M. PST
Los Angeles Airport Hilton, 5711 Century Blvd.

(Main hotel phone: 310-410-4000)

Notes, comments, and more details...

But that's the night before Thanksgiving, and I'm going to be out of town and/or busy with my holiday preparations! I know, I'm sorry, and the other uncertainty is whether or not anyone else is going to be able to show up. But maybe you can take some time off while your pumpkin pie is baking to come say hello. Or maybe you have a Wednesday night red-eye out of LAX and can drop by before your flight. Whatever.

"5711 Century Blvd."? Wanna narrow that down? It's one of the myriad of high-rise hotels on Century Boulevard, the east-west street which leads into LAX. Specifically, it's west of the 405 and east of Sepulveda, between Airport Avenue and Aviation Boulevard (they really put some thought into those two street names, didn't they?). The only public transportation option I'm aware of is the Green Line to Aviation Boulevard, then the shuttle bus to the airport, and then use the Hilton courtesy van (see below).

Hey, I do have one of those red-eye flights, so I'm going to be at the airport anyway! The Hilton has courtesy shuttle vans that should be operating continuously, picking up on the lower level of each terminal from the "island" (see the overhead signs to make sure you're in the specific area where hotel vans are allowed to pick up). It should be less than a 10-minute ride, but night-before-Thanksgiving traffic might extend that.

Since it's a fairly big hotel, how about a more specific meeting place? The lobby bar, which is called Landings (get it?). They serve appetizers in addition to drinks, but you may want to have dinner before the meet unless you're confident you can convince us to move en masse to one of the restaurants.

All right, bottom line: how much cash should I bring? This is a hotel, so figure on the drinks costing twice as much as at your favorite dive bar. Also, be forewarned that they charge handsomely for parking, and I don't think they validate. So if there are enough people coming that we can get carpools together...

So, in conclusion, the guest of honor is going to be jet-lagged and out of it, it's going to be expensive, and I really should stay home to make the cranberry sauce. Sounds awesome. Great, assuming you're not being sarcastic with that "awesome." And I'm actually a supporter of canned cranberry sauce, for the record.

Serene Nodermeet in vulgar surroundings

There I, was, jetlagged and hung-over after a 20 hour journey from the more obscure part of New Zealand’s South Island to Los Angeles, finding myself in the city’s worst airport hotel. I had foolishly agreed to be present at my best friend’s wedding which of all places had to take part in Cancun, Mexico and had to stop over at night in Los Angeles, but used the opportunity to meet some hitherto unknown noders, thanks to Trainman’s organisational skills.

To get myself ready for the nodermeet, I hopped into the thankfully agreeable pool, simmered for twenty minutes in the Jacuzzi and got myself dressed, ready to explore the surroundings of the hotel to get something to eat. Unfortunately I didn’t expect the LAX Hilton to be located in an industrialised, paramilitary area, making the perimeter of Baghdad International Airport positively charming and quaint. After being chatted up three times by various hookers I finally got the message (“City of Angels” my ass!) and returned to my pompous monstrosity of a hotel and got myself an impossibly expensive snack.

Bang on time the imposing figure of trainman materialized out of nowhere, shortly to be followed by Panamaus’s golden locks, flowing like a flock of geese in the wind. Trainman and Panamaus both had to invest a small fortune for valet parking and both had encountered severe hardship by confronting Los Angeles’s Thanksgiving weekend traffic jams, so it was an honour for me to sponsor the drinks (and as they had to drive back they had to be careful anyway, ha!). Together we shared several Sierra Nevadas on tab in a truly hideously monstrosity in crème and gold called bar (although the waitress was interestingly platinum blond with a black skirt slit up to her knickers and some very interesting surgically enhanced features, most prominently her lips. I felt like being on a porno set. All that was missing was her inquiring whether trainman was the plumber) and indulged on everything that noders who never met each other: Dannye’s handsome and rugged good looks, Panamaeuschen’s knack for meeting noders by the bucket load (327 and counting), trainman’s penchant for trains, Baseball, American Football and TV-Guides, the mindless purging of original e2 content, and so on.

Interesting facts were brought out to the light, dusted and polished: George W. Bush is a hapless moron (I could feel definitely a consensus on that one), Americans with no funds commonly go bankrupt after being admitted to hospital, there are ca 150 regional print runs of the TV-Guide every week, the London Booze Monkeys have similar qualities as the Canberra noders although not as good at drinking, Wertperch is a cheeky little monkey, there is only one Canadian baseball team in the Major Leagues, Americans shouldn’t be allowed to vote, oh yes, and one of the three present noders writes a funny little column for lowendmac. The tone was relaxed and after half an hour it seemed we had known each other all our lives.

These two noders just reemphasised the notion for me that everything2 at least at present is still populated by intelligent, genuinely fascinating people who don’t have any qualms to sacrifice an evening (on one of the poor bastard’s few holidays. Who wants to live in a country that gives its workers on average only 2 weeks holiday per year?) to spend it with some weird bloke with a jetlag.

Everything2 is all about community. It’s time the management realises that again.

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