Skin and technology

I'm gradually discovering the best ways to find out what's going on in this here town at any given time - which is, usually, a lot. There are a bunch of little local indie mags and zines of varying quality and circulation that appear to largely focus on entertainment and upcoming events. Easily the best of the bunch seems to be the Ann Arbor Observer and its online counterpart ArborWeb, which has helped me dig up the following two gems for my To Do list:

Ann Arbor Comedy Showcase presents Dustin Diamond. September 30 & October 1. This comic actor is best known from his role as Screech in the various Saved by the Bell movies and sitcoms. His stand-up act features edgy topical and observational comedy. Preceded by 2 opening acts. Alcohol is served; all 8 p.m. Friday shows are nonsmoking shows. old VFW Hall (below Seva restaurant), 314 E. Liberty. $14 reserved seating in advance, $16 general admission at the door. 996-9080.

Comic actor? I don't even have the time or energy to debate whether or not having starred on SBTB even gives one a passing acquaintance with comedy, but "edgy topical and observational comedy"? I almost need to see this one to believe it. Much like:

Ann Arbor Solid Waste Department 10th Anniversary Fall FestivalAll invited to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the city's recycling and trash disposal center with hayrides and tours of the facilities. Also, hands-on kids activities and informational displays. Cider & doughnuts. Materials Recovery Facility, 4120 Platt Rd. Free. 994-2807.

Bring the kids and let them take hay rides around solid waste! And then treat them to donuts! Good Lord. It seems that the universe does not want me taking any writing classes this semester - or, hell, anything remotely interesting. (It does, however, want me to join Curves, which I did today when the first song they played after I walked through the door was a dance-beat-infused version of "Life In A Northern Town." Sometimes, I know when just to obey....) So I'm leaning towards the radical decision not to take any classes this semester. In addition to that book I keep yammering about - which I suppose I'll have to start at some point - I've got a little something up my sleeve to make the most of my time. I'll let you know when/if it pans out.

After a walk across the Diag this afternoon to reach a coffee shop, I observed once again that things have changed drastically since I was a young lass at school. Students today seem to have a lot more skin and a lot more technology. I wonder what, if anything, is missed when you walk across campus yapping on your cell phone or plugged into the isolating bliss of an iPod rather than actually being in your space and noticing things and people around you? Laptops appear to be standard issue. I don't remember if I even had a calculator in college, but that was probably because it was Webster and, hell, what was I going to calculate? How many theater students it took to fill the cast of Into the Woods?

Fashion tends toward the revelatory - shorts are short, shirts barely qualify. Also, the girls are so unbelievably thin and those who aren’t stick out like awkward sore (and large)thumbs. The world is not kind to fat folks and at this time in space, it seems worse than ever. For that (and a number of different reasons) I'm grateful not to be navigating the end of my adolescence on a college campus these days.