First, we found out a few weeks ago that one of our favorite fantasy/sci-fi authors, Brandon Sanderson, was going to be doing a book signing in Houston on Friday for the release of his latest book, Steelheart. Awesome serendipity that it happened to be the same week as my birthday. We went earlier in the week to pick up the book and get our line number, but we were a tad late to the event itself (you know, had to put the kid down for the babysitter) so we were way in the back. But with enough zoom on our camera, this was our view:
Brandon Sanderson himself!
Anyway, we listened to him talk about his current projects, and he read a couple of excerpts from a few books, and that was all fun and exciting, but the best part of the evening? Hands down, it was the other people there. I mean, we are talking serious nerd fest. And really, nerds are the nicest people in the world, because they were all super chatty and friendly (maybe they just felt like this was a safe place). We met some serious gamer types (Sanderson has worked on a few video games), and chatted with some hardcore fans who follow all the forums (we learned some very interesting tidbits about world-jumping and a certain character who shows up in every book, and now we feel like we are part of the inner-circle), and there were a few hipster types too. I didn't feel like it was completely my scene, but my husband confessed that there was only a shred of pride and social awareness that kept him from being completely one with these people. Anyway, after waiting in a super long line, we finally met the man himself:
The conversation was short. It went something like this:
Us: "Hey! We've been reading your stuff since our BYU days, and we love you!"
But he was still super nice, signed our huge stack of books, and made our night. Now I just need to read the book (and actually, I need to read The Rithmatist too, Sanderson just pumps them out too fast for me to keep up).
To complete the theme of our fantasy-nerd-book date, we ate dinner at this place:
I love this little restaurant so much. We discovered it last summer, and it's this little gem of nerdy decor mixed with awesome food (if you ever come to Houston, this is absolutely the first place I would recommend). They decorate with all sorts of Lord of the Rings stuff (not just movie posters, we're talking vintage Hobbit collectible figurines and such), and the place attracts the kind of clientele you'd meet at a Sanderson book signing, so it was obviously the most perfect place for our dinner. Plus, they put literally an ENTIRE avocado on their avocado burgers, and any place that doesn't skimp on their avocados will have my loyalty forever.
There is a burger underneath that pile of avocado.
You guys, should I be ashamed to say that this was one of our best dates ever? Or that this is what I would choose to do to celebrate my birthday? Probably, but also, no. Because it was so much fun, and sometimes, you just got to let your inner nerd out.