Sunday, August 08, 2004


Wacky Distant Relatives

So I’m at the rehearsal for this wedding, and this guy comes in. I must be honest here. I thought he was a homeless guy or something. He was all bedraggled and everything, scraggly beard coming in, all that good stuff. But he just walks right in, saying hi, giving Mrs. G a hug. I did not know what to think. But it turns out, this is another of Mrs. G’s brothers. He was in the middle of a vacation of his own, and had just spent a week camping with two of his boys, and came by the rehearsal as soon as he got to town.

Well they sent him and the boys off to shower, shave, all that good stuff. We meet up back at the dinner. So we get a chance to chat with Uncle Tech. He was in the military, and now he is retired from that but still doing satellite work for them in a civilian capacity. He is sort of quirky, like the Absent-Minded Professor type. His namesake son, UT2, is sort of what you’d get if Einstein and Mozart had a kid together. He’s finishing a Master’s in computer science ahead of schedule and trying to decide what he wants to do his dissertation on for his Ph.D. Plus he walks over to the piano and starts playing classical style music for maybe an hour. Now I am no expert, but someone else was telling me he was just inventing it as he went along. I don’t know if that’s true, but he wasn’t using any sheet music. To me, playing classical piano for an hour without sheet music is pretty impressive, even just as a feat of memory. Most of the orchestras I see on TV use sheet music, so he must be good. I didn’t recognize what he was playing, but it sounded great, and if he told me later it was something by some famous composer, I would have believed him. To summarize, he played something that sounded as good as stuff written by major composers for an hour. With no sheet music. And he may very well have been making it up as he went along. So he’s a scientisty, music type guy, who is even more socially inept than I am.

The other son, Landon, I didn’t get to know very well. It seemed like he was either swimming or eating ice cream the whole time. But he’s young and skinny and a growing teenage boy, so he can get away with it. I only had a bowl with two small scoops, because I’m old and not skinny and can’t get away with anything.
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