Amazing Race
TARcon 5: Twenty Things

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Open Bars and Big TVs

Drew remembers me, or so it appears, which is surprising, because that was two years ago, for ten minutes. We say hi, check in, and when Derek walks up, Drew sort of gives him a, "This is...see...and she..." and then he's off in a conversation, so Derek and I talk for a minute or two about my hanging out with SisterS and reassuring her she wasn't seeing things. And then Derek sees my name tag. "Oh, you're the famous -- I didn't realize. I would have, I don't know, bowed or something."

It is that kind of thing to which I never, ever know what to say. I've blacked out whatever I said, because I guarantee you, it was something stupid. ["I feel that. Someone did bow to me, and I sincerely thought he was choking on an ice cube or something." -- Sars]

Seventeen

Cameras click all night long. Flashes that go off, flashes that don't go off, flashes that I'm warned will go off twice. It absolutely never stops striking me as utterly hilarious that anyone wants a picture of me. Because...I'm a writer. On the internet. Who needs my picture? It's not a problem, I just...I am always surprised.

At one point, it actually appears that I am going through a stretch of causing cameras all over the party not to work the way they're supposed to. I try not to develop a complex over the possibility that I am becoming a walking punch line, so horrifying that I am stopping cameras from working. "It's me," I say through a gritted smile several times. "All of a sudden, cameras do not work in my presence."

When the pictures begin to appear after the party, I think I look weird in many of them. As usual. Too pinchy, too pasty, too what-am-I-doing-with-my-face-in-that-picture. But, as always, there are some in which I manage to look pretty happy.

Eighteen

Mirna comes over very late in the evening, when I'm collapsed on a chair by the bar, sitting at a little table. She slides in from the other side and introduces herself. Now this one does know who I am. And unsurprisingly, she is unerringly polite. I think I thank her for coming to the party, probably, ask her if she's having a good time...I mean, what do you say, really?

Someone comes over at one point and pushes onto the table in front of me a piece of chocolate cake. When I look at it more carefully, I realize that it has a picture of Phil on it. Why is someone giving me a cake with a picture of Phil on it? Am I losing my mind, possibly? It is getting late, after all. I push it over on the table between Mirna and me. "Here," I say. "We will bond over the greatest thing we have in common: our love of Phil." (This really happened.) "You know," she says, "I didn't even know about my love of Phil until I watched the show." Heh.

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Amazing Race

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