I was going for a little aliteration with the title, see? (That sentence actually has some aliteration in it too.)

Kristen Barriner stopped by this morning to drop a few things off for dinner. I was expecting her by about 8:30, and when she wasn’t there by then I called her to tell her I was about to jump in the shower and to just let herself in. (To the house, not the shower.) She said when the phone rang she had just been reaching for it to call me and tell me she was a few minutes behind, so I waited a couple more minutes for her anyway.

I met with Tim Henrich today at the Bear Rock Cafe at Independence Mall. We were going over a few of the projects that we had both managed to discuss how to split them. Amanda called while I was there, and when I told her I was at the Bear Rock Cafe, she told me she and the people from her office had just eaten lunch there, so we were probably both there at the same time and didn’t even know it. That’s somehow cosmicly crazy.

So the biggest news of the day is that we gained a second housemate. Amanda’s brother (that would be my brother-in-law), Michael Mercer, moved most of his stuff in today. He’ll be staying with us for an unspecified amount of time while he’s going to UNCW. He got here just a minute or two before 5:00, so I finished up something I was working on and helped him carry his stuff in from the car. He spent most of the early evening settling in and such.

A little before 7:00 my knee was really bothering me, so Amanda suggested I go to the store and pick up a heating pad (along with some dish soap and milk). Michael tagged along, and while there we bumped into Kim Ayars, who is sort of a part of our small group (which was just about to meet). We talked for a few minutes and she told me that today was the 10th anniversary for her and her husband Paul Ayars. It’s not their 10th wedding anniversary, but the 10th anniversary of when they started dating. If I remember correctly they haven’t been married much longer than Amanda and I. She also mentioned that Paul wasn’t feeling well, that she thought he was working really hard and such. I asked her if they were ever coming back to the group and pointed out that the lesson we were planning on doing tonight was supposed to be lead by them. I wasn’t a dick about it, but I think I let her know that we were skeptical about them ever joining the group again. She said they planned to, or something, but that they were also looking to maybe join another group or expand the one we’ve got to include couples that aren’t so much alike. All the couples now have been together for about the same amount of time, are all pretty close in age and have zero kids between the eight of us.

Michael and I had trouble finding the heating pad, but Lowes wasn’t busy and the girl at the checkout went to help us find it. It was very nice of her. In fact, she couldn’t find it either, so she asked someone else to help. I ended up getting some Icy-Hot.

When Michael and I got back to the house everyone else was already there. Kristen had already pulled up as Michael and I were leaving, but Ben and Jessica Lambeth had arrived. I put the Icy-Hot (which wasn’t so much a heating pad as it was a heating sleeve) over my knee and upper thigh. It smelled funny, but it helped the pain.

We had spaghetti and salad for dinner. Michael and Renee Sikes, our other housemate, joined us for dinner. We had a little discussion about the lesson for the week, but mostly we ate and conversed and had a nice time together, which is important too.

After everybody left I removed a bunch of the advertising crap that is put on new computers for Renee. She got a new, small laptop during the tax free weekend. That was pretty much it for the night, although I did show Rome: Total War to Michael. I’d like to get him into real time strategy games so I’ll have someone to play them with, but I think I started him out with too complicated a game. I need to start him with Age of Empires or Starcraft or something like that.

Zach Dotsey