I had the strangest afternoon yesterday. I went and picked up Julia at school and brought her back to the U. My plan was to attend the retirement party of an honored colleague, Phil. The first strange thing was hanging out for fifteen minutes or so with my 13 year old Daughter at the University cafeteria …
… Of course, I ‘ve hung out with her on campus before, but not recently, and not so much post/mid prepubescently. This was strange because it was actually easy to imagine her there as a frosh in some far away college in a few years from now…. (shudder).
So then I went up to the party, and on the way there I ran into a colleague who was involved in organizing said party, who in turn was walking along with her arm around Goldie the Gopher, the University of Minnesota Mascot. They were walking in the general direction of the party, and kinda staggering. At first I thought they had gotten drunk or something, but then I realized that Goldie was blind. Goldie needed guidance with every step, and when Goldie’s helper would get distracted by something, Goldie would promptly run into the nearest post or wall. Thump.
That made me laugh.
Now, I should point out that I’m sure Goldie is not habitually blind or blind from birth, or Goldie would not have had so much trouble just walking a straight line. I’m pretty sure this was a condition that had just developed. Maybe Golide had been maced or something.
Anyway, as they walked along, they took a sudden left turn into the Ladies. Which is why I think Goldie is a girl.
Anyway, along the way, while staggering up the stairs, Goldie and her helper ran into Terry, Tim, and me. The three of us were just finishing up a conversation about how to solve this big technological problem (Terry is a perl programmer) while we stood on the stairwell, when Goldie stumbled into us. As deftly as could be, Terry grabbed Goldie, told me to stand on the other side, and Tim who happened to have his camera with him for some reason snapped this picture.
Goldie looks like she is looking straight into the camera, but really, she has no idea what is in front of her, where she came from or where she is going.
Anyhow, the party was great.
So I left the party and went and fetched Julia who was hanging around with a bunch of college kids watching Judge Judy or something in a lounge. We headed off campus, but things stayed strange.
On the way out of the parking lot we saw two Bernese Mountain Dogs that happened to look exactly like miniature Saint Bernards. Then we had one of those bizarre experiences where everyone we saw on the street for the next block had something funny about them, something funny about how they looked or something strange about the way they were acting.
(I resisted the temptation to to say “Wow…. Flashback city..”)
Anyway, then the strange people went away and everybody had a cow after that.
Really. Everyone. Had a cow:
That is a small sampling of the cows. It took a moment to get the camera out…
Then we went home and everything was normal again.