There is someone I have to communicate with regularly for work matters, but he and I always go off on conversational tangents. Last time I talked to him, he was learning calligraphy, and he is always coordinating rescue efforts in the mountains. He lives on an island in the state of Washington. Today he called, and we quickly got off topic talking about French existential literature. He said he knew he wasn’t going to like Camus’ magnum opus The Stranger when the first line was: “Today Mom died,” and I said, “I felt exactly the same way!!” He said he was keeping notes on our conversation, so he read them back to me, and they were something like: a difficult customer, Jean Harlowe, Heart of Darkness by Conrad, and now I can’t even remember the rest but you get the idea. Talking to him always brightens my day, but unfortunately I think he may be retiring soon, and the next person will probably just talk shop.