Thursday, August 06, 2009

Party of the century (2009 version)

The birthday boy and Rachel get ready to party, but don't seem to have much of an idea how to get started.

Mark and Dan are definitely up to the task of having a party.

Tom explains his theory on how to have a party to a rapt audience consisting of Nancy, while Elaine and Hannah discuss whether they've heard this theory before.

Maria and Sandy wonder if the people at the other table are having a better time, then realize any table lacking their presence cannot possibly be the better table.

Kandace and David decide to be good sports about having worn the same outfit to a dinner party.

Tony and Rachel are still not up to speed. Rachel is thinking about her missed flight connections to Italy, despite the attractiveness of West Sacramento.

Parties break out spontaneously in Erik's presence, so he's not worried that the evening might turn out to be a bust.

Brandon and Eric show Brian how to say grace before a meal, forcing Brian to demonstrate how patient he can be.

Eric explains to Brandon that the right prescription medication can save even one of Tony's dinner parties.

Tim and Maria put on their party faces. It's not a problem. They always look like this.

Ted epitomizes unrestrained glee, showing the other dinner guests how to have a good time.

Rachel is beginning to get the idea. Not much progress in Tony's case, though.

Sherman tells David he didn't know everyone was supposed to wear paisley and David decides to humor him. The camera catches the elusive Joan in the background.

Tony realizes it was a close call that he didn't wear his own La Ganga T-shirt that evening.

James and Melissa await the emergence of Erik's world-famous party-boy persona.

Erik may be ensnared in the damping effects of an anti-party field. If only the generator could be identified!

Elon keeps a watchful eye on the proceedings. Joan is nearly (but not quite!) photographed.

James and Melissa are beginning to wonder if the people at the other table are having a better time.

Elon checks whether there's room at the table between Jim and Rob.

Tony appears to be pretending to be embarrassed at some joke or supposedly witty remark he just made. It's always just pretense, of course. Erik identifies the reason his effervescence is less fizzy than usual.

The entertainment portion of the evening begins with the ritual passing of birthday cards around the tables. Rob, Brandon, Eric, and Brian partake of the hilarity.

Eric helps Brian out by explaining the punchlines on the exceedingly sophisticated birthday cards. Brian exudes gratitude—and patience.

David mugs for the camera while Sherman and Kandace check out birthday cards.

Rachel explains to a doubtful Elaine and Nancy that she can get two meals out of the leftovers from one dinner party.

Sherman and Hannah ask Elaine if she would like to pose with them.

Elaine says "yes"!

Ted gets to pretend that he's in this line-up. It's the high point of the evening for him.

Elon begins to round up people to herd them out of the room.

It turns out that Eileen was there all along, almost as elusive as Joan.

Elon checks under the tables for missing guests.

That's all, folks!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Back on the bench

The Back Bench has been idle, one of those “abandoned” blogs that outnumber the ones actually being updated. I hope I'm back now. The past year was swallowed up in hectic accreditation activity at school, but things are opening up this summer. And I have something to post, too, since the San Francisco Chronicle saw fit to print my letter to the editor on June 16.

Growing nut cases

Thank you for running Signe Wilkinson's editorial cartoon (June 13) depicting the lone nut-cases sprouting from the tree of U.S. hate groups.

If, however, she hadn't chosen such a close-up, we could have seen Rush Limbaugh watering the tree while Glenn Beck spreads manure to fertilize it. Or perhaps Rush spreads the fertilizer while Glenn waters it with his tears. Same difference.