Does place still matter? It seems so, in spite of all the trends toward living the virtual life.

After all, at the Circle K convenience store at FM 2818 and Longmire, my bouffant's lack of loft still means something. There is subtle textuality to wild hair, and the clerks read me like they would Proust -- through a bombsight.

So eventually I broke my physical ties with the CSDL, with College Station, Texas, and with neighbor Jim Bob. Flew the coop, as we might say in Poultry Science. I'm back in the over-amped Silicon Valley, having traded chicken fried chicken for Fry's Electronics, black labs for HP Labs, Green Acres for summer's brown hills.

Better or worse?
click. click. Now.
Better or worse?

That's what the optometrist always asks.

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