On the way from the hotel to the restaurant for supper tonight, Tim took Josh and I on a short walking tour of what I called "art bars" - two very cool bars/clubs that were one part bar, one part art gallery. Very interesting stuff.
Then, to Osha (a Thai restaurant, coincidentally themed inside with elephants everywhere) for supper with the Pachydermers. I'd been crashing since about 10am, after working with Josh to stem the flow of negative Whuffie created by some miscommunication. (we got the Pachyderm authoring app up and running after an intense round of forensic analysis to find out wtf happened - then got to deal with a different but recurring problem, as described in the previous post)
At this point, I was so tired that I don't think I could have successfully rubbed two neurons together to save my life. And everyone begins animatedly talking about the latest books they've read (I haven't had any time to read fiction - or non-fiction, for that matter), or books they read as kids (I can hardly remember anything that long ago, nevermind what books I read), etc... I slowly withdrew into the corner of the table, nodding and following maybe 10% of the conversations as they swirled around me. The few comments I'm able to make are totally superficial, or seem to disappear into the background noise of the restaurant. I'm not contributing at all to the conversation, and am having trouble keeping up as a simple lurker, feeling decidedly provincial. And extremely uncultured. Not quite bumpkinesque, but I can see it from here. Truly humbling.
The saving grace is that these are all Truly Nice People. It's nothing they're doing - I'm just coming up short today. The irony is that once I get back to my quiet room at the hotel, and sitting in front of a keyboard, I'm almost able to maintain a stream of thought, and to construct something that appears like a coherent sentence.
OK. Now to crash, and hopefully sleep. Perhaps I'll feel less braindead after more than 3 hours of sleep...