I've avoided Las Vegas all my life. I'm afraid of it. Afraid of the smoke and the greed and the lust.
And afraid I'd love it.
I'm going there for the first time today.
Fortunately, I'm going for a board meeting and will be busy the entire time.
Tonight, I'll go out with fellow board members for dinner. Two of those board members are my brothers-in-law. It's a board meeting of the family business in which I'm a partner -- a business that just laid off eight employees. A business that is going through the same tough times as most other businesses.
Aside from my brothers-in-law and me, the other board members hail from Atlanta and Los Angeles, so we occasionally meet in those cities, or other cities that are easy to fly into. This meeting was to have been a kind of board meeting/family funfest in Palm Springs, but the economy dimmed our appetite for fun, not to mention spending money.
I'll have been gazing at spreadsheets all day Monday; Tuesday will be devoted to Hebrew and to the giants of Medieval Jewish exegesis.
Oh, and to watching the inauguration.
This kind of world-hopping seems strangely appropriate on the eve of the inauguration of our first African American president. A guy who moved between academia and organizing, and moves now from speechifying to statecraft.
Wednesday I'll return to life as I once knew it: drink coffee. Read the paper. Go to work.
I'll also practice saying: "President Barack Obama."