Alcohol and Hearing Impairment

At a uber-nerdfest early last week in San Francisco…  i tried to be good.  i really tried.  Healthy food, avoidance of cookies, and an hour a day in the hotel gym, doing my physical therapy and getting some exercise.  This was going just fine until somewhere around 9pm on Tuesday evening*.

Simultaneous text message, voice mail and e-mail from colleagues at the same meeting:

text:  Bottle of scotch and Stephen Hawking.  Hotel Atrium.

voicemail:  daisyfae – get yer ass to the atrium.  we’re introverts.  we need someone lively down here…

e-mail:  come on down.  we need you.  too much scotch for us rookies.

The voicemailer called back a few minutes later – and begged me in just the right tone.  i whined back – “but i’m in my workout gear.  do i have to get dressed?”.  

“We’re geeks.  No one will even notice…”

And so it happened.  At 9 pm, i arrived for a ‘quick one’.  And so it also happened that i found myself leaving the lobby at 3 am.  After perhaps more than one.  Being staunchly devoted to my craft, i had to be up and at the “Speakers Breakfast” at 7 am.  Which meant showing up, with no shower, and looking a little bit crunchy around the edges.  But i did it…

Retreating back to my room for a powersnooze at 8 am, i was determined to be ready for the afternoon session.  Which i was co-chairing…

Turns out?  i may have discovered an after effect of alcohol that requires further study.  From my notes that afternoon:

Did he say “Pedophiles”?  Oh.  “Pentaflops…”  As in “It can be expected that we’ll see multiple pedophiles in 2009…”

If i didn’t know better, i could have sworn he just said “condom dots”.  As in “condom dot sensitization as measured through pump probe spectroscopy”.  Must be the Indian accent?  He said “quantum dots”…

“Does size matter – at the nanometer scale?” – oh, honey, if we’re talkin’ nanometers, believe me  – it’s WELL BELOW the point that matters… the word for the day is “sub-threshold”, sugarbuns…

Hypothesis:  Being mildly hung over during a technical meeting creates catastrophic impairment on both human hearing, and mental focus.

stephen hawking is a chumpass bitch...

stephen hawking is a chumpass bitch...

* i did 24 hours or so of “non-debauchery”.  that’s a start…

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17 thoughts on “Alcohol and Hearing Impairment

  1. I believe it was Douglas Adams and John Lloyd who provided us with the precise word for your condition:
    duntish (adj.) mentally incapacitated by a severe hangover
    (from The Meaning of Liff)

  2. silverstar – you’d have a good time with this posse… but – in general – no cameras allowed. what goes on a business trip? stays on a business trip…

    sledpress – Ahhh… Stephen…. on a previous outing, where the scotch whiskey was involved, i mentioned that i frequently become smitten with brilliant men. and that, in fact, i wanted to have Stephen Hawking’s lovechild. They’ve not forgotten this…

    ginny – i wasn’t really drunk. only four drinks. or so. over six hours? that’s not really that bad… it was the lack of sleep that kicked my ass – damn, i’m getting o.l.d.

    rob – gotta take notes. when chairing a session, it’s always your responsibility to ask the speaker a question, if no one in the audience cared, paid attention, stayed awake has questions. i HAD to take notes to make sure i was following…

    jimmy – i generally only drink when i travel. or on special occasions. which means when i’m hanging out with friends… or if the day ends in “y”…

    kyknoord – always the fountain of knowledge, i knew i could count on you for clarification. i think “duntish” also works as the name of one of the lesser breakfast pastries…

    unbearable banishment – there was a glimmer, somewhere far, far in the back of my head, that said “if these guys are yawners tonight, i could be asleep by 1030”. but they were big fun, up for goofy-assed farting around (we got scolded by the hotel staff no less than four times for noise problems…), and i had a blast…

  3. You have to imbibe to hear stuff like that? My mind does that to me when I’m SOBER! And then it starts to turn into limericks – – –

    A Lab Tech was feeling quite dunt-
    ish, seeking a Bucky-ball runt.
    The smallest she got
    A Nano was not,
    Yet still seemed to work in a shunt

    – – – which often make no sense at all!

  4. I can’t believe you got up that early in the morning after being out till 3. That would have been okay for my younger self, but now that schedule would kill me!

    I hear crazy stuff like that all the time, or words I can make into crazy stuff. I don’t even need to be liquored up for it. It’s the wordsmith in me on overdrive.

  5. stephanie – i did well, but the hero of the night? the guy who left the lobby at 3am, and had to be up to head to the airport at 4am. He stayed up, made his flight – and was bit ‘giddy’ still when the shuttle arrived to take him to the airport…

    uncle keith – probably not. you could certainly win “miss congeniality”, though. just for your recreational blasphemy skills, if nothing else…

    archie – and the winner for “Best Use of The Words ‘bucky balls’ in a Limerick, go to… ummm… make that ONLY use of the words “bucky balls” in a limerick… nicely done. you’re hired.

    sledpress – i’ve always been a suckerl, had a weakness for a man with a guitar and a drink in his hand… and a brain that works overtime… i could hook a sistah up. can’t swing stephen hawking’s cat around these parts without pinging engineer meat…

    fragrant liar – i used to be able to hang like that for a 5 day conference. now? once a week – and it kicks my ass into the next week. but i’ve learned to only do it when the posse is big fun. don’t waste sleep on dorks and lecherous doofi…

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