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One week there was a big computer convention in San Francisco. I was to present a couple of key papers at the convention and I was really psyched up to visit San Francisco and sample the ambiance, the gourmet food, the sophistication and the kind of girls that dance in the bars up in North Beach. (Not necessarily in that order.)
I flew up to San Francisco, took a bus from the airport to downtown and then a cab to my hotel. I got checked into a room and then visited some of the hospitality suites that major players in the industry offer for guys that they maybe want to hire.
Now, I’m a heavy hitter in the Internet computer business. As such, I was welcome in the hospitality suites. Unfortunately, my company had sent along with me a sort of party pooper, to make damn sure that none of the other Internet players got a chance to maybe make an employment offer to me.
Thus I wound up going to supper with several other key personnel Internet guys and their party poopers. We wound up in a hole in the wall looking place that had great food, as advertised in some underground gourmet blogs. We ate and drank and all was well. (The place tried for continental flair. Many of the dishes were either German or French. However, there was an American language translation and also a description of what at least the main ingredients were. Unlike what I had been told, back in school, there were provisions made for the nouveau riche.)
After supper, we started back to the hotel, walking through a really crummy area. It started to really rain. So, we ducked into a scummy little strip bar, where the girls took it all off. In some cases, the call was, “Put it back on!” But, if the show wasn’t all that much, at least we were out of the rain.
The fourth girl to dance was Cari Smith, my ex Markettown dream girl. Cari still had the face, although it was a bit haggard. She also had some tattoos and at least ten extra pounds. At the end of her dance, she apparently was rented by one of the patrons for a back room visit.
The rain had stopped, we had drunk our two drink minimum and so we got up and walked back to the hotel.
I laid awake for a while that night, thinking about the terrible descent of Cari Smith. How had a girl like Cari wound up dancing nude in a dive like the one that I found her in? I then realized that I didn’t really want to know the answer to my question.
During the days, I presented my papers at the convention and they seemed to be well accepted.
Nights, several of the younger people toured North Beach. It was fun and the girls looked a lot better than the girls in the dive where Cari danced. However, I couldn’t seem to get Cari off my mind.
Even when I was work-study back in school, I continued to work out and keep in some kind of shape. The hotel where I was staying has a gym and I worked out after the meetings and before North Beach. The last night, I suddenly realized why I couldn’t get Cari off my mind. Back in Markettown, Cari had a younger sister, Janice. Janice was two years younger than Cari, but she looked like an identical twin. Janice was also very intelligent. Janice should be just about graduating from high school.
When I get back from San Francisco, I check with the high school back in Markettown. I find that Janice had graduated a year early, with really good grades and she’s now attending college in the big city where I work. I check out the college where Janice is now going to school.
I work late, through the week and then take off a little early on Friday to try to meet Janice. Of course Janice won’t recognize me, so I’ll have to introduce myself and hope that she remembers me.
Janice walks down a walkway, between college buildings and I’m about to introduce myself when Janice says, “If it isn’t Badass Jim Bord. What brings you to this school?”
I’m shocked that Janice remembers me, but I say, “You do. I saw your sister, Cari, when I was on a business trip.”

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