Dear Olivia,

I hope I got your name right. I was talking to your Uncle Jason Revill today, who mentioned that your mom had gone into labor about twelve hours prior to his call, which I think was around 11:00 or so this morning. We talked for a few minutes, mostly about your parents and how everyone was on standby to get the word to head to Durham Regional as soon as news of your arrival hit. While I was talking to Jason, the phone rang and he quit talking to me real quick to answer that call. I haven’t heard from him since, so I assume your presence has promoted my old friend to the rank of Uncle.

Assuming this page is around long enough for you to be old enough to Google your name and find it, and by that time we haven’t run out of gas and descended into anarchy or some other such catastrophe that will make the internet nigh-inaccessible, you probably don’t have a clue as to who I am.

Your uncle is my oldest friend, and if you know me at all, it’ll probably be through having seen me while I’m visiting from time to time. So maybe you’ll see me at a family pig pickin’ now and then and have a vague notion of who I am, but as some old friend of the family’s, I doubt you’ll care much or have much interest in who I am. I know when I was younger I didn’t much care about my parents’ old friends, although I’ve found that as you get older and they drink with you and realize they can say a lot more around you, they tend to be pretty cool.

If your parents happen to move to Wilmington (which I doubt, because they both have good jobs and I think are happy where they are) you may know me better. If we lived closer, I’d probably hang out with your parents. I’ve known your dad, Jonathan Revill, since he was about two years old. Jason and I used to mimic Monty Python skits in front of a video camera and your dad would play the female roles by default. Or the Chinese guy. Or the bouzouki player. He was smaller than me back then so Jason and I could make him do things like that. He’s much larger than I am now.

I don’t know your mom, Crystal Revill, very well. I’ve met her just a few times and I went to the wedding, but I always thought she was nice and seemed like a pretty cool chick. When my wife, Amanda, and I used to live in Raleigh, I had the idea that at some point we’d try to get together with your parents every once in a while. They lived in south Durham, not far from Raleigh, back then, but alas we never got around to it.

I love your grandparents, Andy and Margie Revill. Having been friends with Jason since we were five, they’re like another set of parents to me. I know they’re happy you’re here and they’ll probably spoil the hell out of you, as grandparents are given to doing.

Jason said that throughout your mom’s pregnancy he’s referred to you as Baby, just “Baby;” but he said you’ll outgrow that soon enough. When we were talking about what you’d look like, we said that all babies looked like red raisens, so if your Uncle Jay calls you Red Raisen Revill (which I doubt he will), that’s where it came from.

Anyway, I just wanted to welcome you to the world.

We now return to our previously scheduled blogging.

So, my oldest buddy Jason became an uncle today, for any of you who might have missed that. Congratulations to Jonathan and Crystal Revill on the arrival of Olivia Abigail Revill. I assume she arrived today anyway, since, as mentioned before, Crystal had been in labor since last night. My prayers are with the Revill family, that everyone is happy, healthy and doing well.

Work was busy-ish this morning, mostly with phone calls and the like. I had several calls during lunch, which lead to my toasted turkey and cheese sandwich getting a little cold. The calls though, at least one of them, were well worth taking.

My brother, Adam Dotsey, called me this afternoon. He’d forgotten to take the Durham Freeway exit off of I-40 and wanted to know a certain backroad to Rougemont. Unfortuantely, the way he wanted was actually off of I-85 (which merges with I-40 from around Hillsboro to Greensboro) and that was way out of his way. I ended up helping him find 15-501 from Chapel Hill using the infamous Greenie Weenie as a site reference. If you’re from Durham and know the area where South Square Mall used to be, you know what I’m talking about. Adam and his girlfriend, Renee Sikes, were in Durham to go to the wedding of April Rota, a high school friend of Adam’s.

They had invited us to go to a play at Thalian Hall that was last night, by the way. Peter Pan, I believe. I’d have gone, but Amanda and I have both been tired from work lately and (she, in particular, has been going in early a lot this week) and didn’t want to spent $20 per ticket to boot. I would like to go see something at Thalian Hall at some point though.

It’s still amazing to me that South Square isn’t there anymore. They built Southpoint, which was too close to South Square, so they tore down the old mall and I think there’s a Super Target and some other stuff there now. To me, going South Square was almost a special ocasion. It was a bit further away than Northgate Mall and it had two levels. It was also bigger and had a Toys R Us very nearby.

And thinking of the Greenie Weenie reminds me of a time me and some friends, I think it was Chris Reeves and Todd Buker, got hopped up on chocolate malts (what renegades we were) in high school and drove around Durham just acting dumb. At one point we stopped at the Greenie Weenie, and, having never been there before, decided to go to the top of it. The elevator opened to a very fancy restaurant. We looked out, the host looked at us, we let the elevator door close back and we headed back downstairs. I think some security guard said something to us (like “hi” and not like “What the hell are you kids doing here?”) and that was it. That was my adventure in the Greenie Weenie.

Amanda and I were invited to go out to Mayfaire tonight by our friend, Kristen Barriner. We plan on making that a regular Friday night happening, but tonight we planned on doing some painting. We got off to a slow start, as neither of us wanted to get moving. After I went out and got some Subway for dinner though, I think we were a little more energized. We decided to go ahead and do the back guest room (although we had to move a bunch of stuff out of it first since it has been out junk room since we moved in, and it took us a while to put things away or throw them into new piles in other rooms), henceforth probably known as the Orange room, because it’s now orange, or possibly as Michael’s room, since it may be the one my brother-in-law, Michael Mercer moves into when he moves down here to Wilmington in August.

Personally, despite the furniture that doesn’t really suit him, I’d take the Green Grandma room. It’s bigger, has a better closet and there’s a window looking out to the porch. The only downside is that it’s pre-decorated and the bedroom suit won’t fit into the other room. One day the Orange room will probably become the Baby’s room. If we end up having three kids, say, two boys and one girl, we’ll put the girl in the Orange room (which will probably not be orange at that point) and the two boys in the Green Grandma room. If we have two kids, I guess the oldest kid gets the Green Grandma room and if we’re here long enough for that one to go off to college, the younger kid can move in there when the older one goes off to the dorms.

Anyway, we painted the room orange. Amanda was afriad that it might be a brighter shade than we anticipated, but I think it’ll darken up nicely once it’s dried. We had more mishaps tonight with the paint than we have previously. I dripped twice and Amanda dripped a number of times, most of them in the first few minutes. Of course, I’m blaming my drips on her, because they usually happened after she asked me to do something moments after I refreshed my roller but before I applied it to the orange-to-be wall. That’s my story anyway.

Oddly, I had Toby Keith’s Who’s That Man in my head tonight. For those who don’t know, it’s about a man who goes past his old home where his wife and kids (and dog) are now living with another man.  He also planted that tree out by the fence not long after they moved in.  Maybe it’s because I was in an irritating mood and was probably annoyng the piss out of Amanda. All in good fun, to me anyway.

Actually, that song creeps into my head often for some reason, and has for years. As far as associations go, it takes me back to a time in high school not long after I had bought nearly the entire run of the comic book series The New Mutants (for a quarter each!). I’d sit up in my room and read those while listening to the stereo (and I listened to a bit of country back then) and sometimes eating raw Kool Aid. I wish I could put into words the nostalgia thinking about that brings me. Good times.

In the “News That May Change Fundamental Things About Our Lives” category, a vaccine was approved by the FDA yesterday that prevents cervical cancer and a battery has been invented that is virtually infinitely rechargeable (hundreds of thousands of times anyway) and recharges in minutes, as opposed to hours. It uses nanotubes. The big impact could be not only on things like hearing aids, cell phones, laptops and the like, but it could have a huge impact on cleaner-running cars. So, a cervical cancer vaccine and an infinitely rechargeable battery that recharges in minutes. Maybe the world’s not so bleak.

In the news news, It turned out that Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was actually alive when he was found after the bombings. He muttered a few words and tried to roll off his stretcher and died shortly thereafter.

So, I’m still thinking about starting to write in the third person just to make sure I can get my name in my writing more for search engine indexing. Until I decide on that, though, I think I’ll start signing off. Maybe I’ll go retroactively sign off on a bunch of my older entries as well.

Zach Dotsey