Yes! I met Dariush yesterday, up at one of the five million Starbucks that seem to have appeared since I moved.
I had to drive Mom’s van, since I have no vehicle and AJ had already “reserved” Dad’s truck. (I discovered later that he hadn’t even used it by the time I got back.) Mom’s van is the size of some countries’ houses. I’m not passing judgment that it’s excessive or something; it suits her needs. I’m just saying it’s big. Driving it is an adventure.
But I arrived uneventfully and headed inside.
There was a guy at the counter who looked a little like the pictures I’ve seen of Dariush, but for some reason I didn’t think his hair was that dark. Still, he was the most likely candidate, so I said, “Are you Dariush?” And he was.
He ordered some eggnog latte thing, I think, and I got a green tea and a cranberry almond bar. We sat at a cute round table and talked shop. He joked about the van being perfect for driving around asking kids if they want candy, and I told him how Mom used to say just that to us when she picked us up anywhere. (My mom is awesome.)
He expressed surprise and dismay that I don’t follow Wildcat sports (blasphemy!).
Upon learning that I’m flying home on Delta, he told me the horrific tale of how Delta lost his luggage twice on his recent trip out West–once on the way out, once on the way back.
I told him about James Brown, and how I’ve been working remotely this week to cover his life, death, and funeral on the station website.
He made some joke about “harder to find than a Lenscrafters at Ray Charles’ house”. (He used another name there that I don’t remember.)
We discussed our Secret Mission, and how I might have a lead. Really, I only have a passing curiosity, but mysteries seem to confound and enrage our dear American Twentysomething ;>
I did not ask him what he’s going to do with his blog when he turns 30, although I have wondered.
Interesting Fact: When I arrived, he introduced me to the barista. Did he already know her, from spending so much time at all the Starbucks in the area? Or did he get to know her before I arrived? Both are possible.
Me, I tend not to become acquantainces/friends with people at the places I frequent. There is a barista at R. Gabriel’s that I know by name, and I think she recognizes me when I go there, but we don’t have conversations. This isn’t snootiness on my part so much as a lack of extraversion/social skills. I’m kind of a control freak, and random encounters tend not to catch me at my best.
We talked about Saddam Hussein’s death, very briefly, and we talked about our Christmases, and I think that was pretty much it. He suggested that I let him know the next time I’m coming to town so we might catch a game, and I said sure. Then we headed off our separate ways down Nicholasville Road.
It was a good visit, and not much different from talking to him on IM, which is always interesting. Some people’s voice translates well from text to IRL, but most of the time there are differences, things you don’t pick up from the text. So maybe Dariush is more in tune with himself than most people. Or maybe I’m getting better at reading people through their written words.
In any case, Dariush is the first blogger I’ve met. I’ve met Internet friends before, but he’s the first I’ve met through blogging and then met in person. Pretty cool. Hopefully I’ll get the chance to meet more blogger friends :)