October 16, 2004

Here is an excerpt from an iChat conversation I had yesterday with this man.

FAUSTUS: I want to do something nice for E.S. to celebrate the end of the medicine part of his residency and the start of the psychiatry part. So I decided to arrange for us to go camping. But here’s my question: how do you go camping?
DAVID: I don’t know. Don’t you have to have a tent or something?
FAUSTUS: I just spoke with my brother. He doesn’t know how to go camping either, but he has a friend who does.
DAVID: I think you’re supposed to go to the Catskills.
FAUSTUS: I know you’re supposed to do things in nature.
DAVID: You didn’t say anything about nature.
FAUSTUS: That was the point. E.S. wants us to go to nature. But if I arrange it, I can ensure that any contact with actual nature is minimized. Then we never have to do it again. Whereas if he does it, he’ll want to, you know, use a compass or something.
DAVID: How would you get to nature? Isn’t it far away?
FAUSTUS: I’m looking that up now. Oh, here’s a place that has “tent camping” and a “pick your own” farm nearby.
DAVID: Pick your own takeout Chinese food?
FAUSTUS: Pick your own falafel, maybe.
DAVID: Isn’t nature cold these days?
FAUSTUS: I could wear a sweater.
DAVID: I wore a sweater today. It was stunning.
FAUSTUS: Oooh, what kind?
DAVID: A new wool cardigan with argyle. You should wear the sweater you knit yourself. I’m sure everyone else who’s camping will comment on how it flatters your coloring. It really does.
FAUSTUS: Why, thank you. Oh, here’s one near a lake. But I think E.S. wants us to be in a forest.
DAVID: What on earth would he do in a forest?
FAUSTUS: I think he would walk around and look at trees.
DAVID: Faustus, you’re being ridiculous. No one in his right mind would walk around and look at trees. And if someone REALLY needs to look at trees, he can go to the Barnes and Noble and buy a calendar with pictures on it. I think I saw one with trees once. “Tree a Day” or something.
FAUSTUS: I really think E.S. wants to go look at actual, physical trees. Perhaps he’s been lying to me this whole time. Perhaps he’s not actually a psychiatrist, but a psychiatric patient.
DAVID: That would explain an awful lot.
FAUSTUS: He might even want to touch them.
DAVID: Really! I can’t think of anything less pleasant.
FAUSTUS: I should thank my lucky stars I’m not planning this in summer. He’d probably want us to put bug spray on.
DAVID: True. But I suppose that’s better than the alternative. If a bug touched me, I don’t know what I’d do. I really don’t.

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17 Responses to Here is an excerpt from

  1. Jess says:

    I’m not much for camping, but can anyone be as much of a city boy as either of you two? :)

    Even so, you are (as always) a riot.

  2. Lauren says:

    Camping isn’t so bad.

    But camping for me consisted of four teenage girls singing through every musical they knew the words to and stuffing their faces with ice cream because they were in nature and there was no one to Judge Them. So that may not count.

  3. martin says:

    It is perhaps fortunate that ES did not want you to take him away for a day to experience the joys of the sport of orienteering!

  4. Sol says:

    Camping isn’t so bad.
    When we go, we sit around a fire and drink. Sure you have tp put up a tent, but drinking by a nice roaring fire is well worth it.
    Did I mention we drink?

  5. Jalal says:

    What is nature? I mean is it really out there? Has anyone SEEN it ?

  6. Convivia says:

    Well, for God’s sake, just be sure to go to a campsite that has toilets. (Preferably flush toilets, but those composting ones will do.)

    Because if you go somewhere that involves squatting in the woods to defecate–or, even worse, if you go to one of those “zero impact” camping sites where you have to put your feces in a plastic bag and take them away with you, just as if you were your own dog–the warm love you have for ES now will slowly congeal into an icy, bitter hatred.

    Also, you’d be surprised how easily the poison-ivy leaves get mixed in with the ones that are Okay For Wiping.

  7. frost says:

    oh, you gays. that’s hysterical.

    I truly thought for a second the conversation would shift totally once the sweater came up.

    “it’s gotten so cold lately, I might have to knit matching mittens.”
    “oh that would be great but make sure it’s a color on the opposite side of the wheel, you want the mittens to compliment, not make you look like one giant outfit.”
    “hm, what color is opposite mocha beige?”
    “I think that’s probably a peacock-tail blue.”
    “oh that reminds me of the time I went to the zoo.”
    “oh?”
    “yes. there were animals there.”
    “weren’t we just talking about those?”

    I love you baby. ;)

  8. Nick says:

    That is perhaps the gayest conversation ever. Followed closely by my friends and I arguing – violently – about who would be “Blanche” if our lives were an episode of the Golden Girls.

  9. PeeWee says:

    Surely you are kidding about camping this time of year. Wait until it warms up. I am a Colorado native, you can trust me.

  10. Joe R says:

    Try gay camping.
    Join Sundance (www.sundance.org) and do a weekend (or week) at their Taconic Lodge in Millerton, 100 miles north of the city. There’s heat, plumbing, and comfortable beds inside with trees, mountains, retaurants, and an 8-mile bike trail right outside.

  11. Rev. Phil says:

    Who put the “camp” back into camping?

  12. Oh Dear God… you two are gay, aren’t you?!?!

  13. michelle says:

    Oh come now, there are loads of people camping right here in Manhattan. Haven’t you ever seen Central Park at night?

  14. Mari says:

    You can’t get anywhere without seeing trees over here in Singapore.

  15. Wayne says:

    I’m just like Dave. If a bug touched me, I’d scream like there’s no tomorrow.

  16. Bryan says:

    I just cannot believe that not one person mentioned roasting marshmallows. :)

  17. Auntie Maim says:

    I wholeheartedly agree with your analysis of that vile practice known as “Camping”. Why on EARTH would anyone volunteer for such torture!? Honestly, how vulgar.
    My motto is as follows -
    Nature: Makes a great screensaver! Stay indoors, boys. Think of your complexions!

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