Monday, November 30, 2009

Splash du Jour: Monday

Oprah said she used prayer to help her decide to end her show. She said she stopped praying when she realized she has more money than the guy she's praying to.
-- Conan O'Brien --


Have a great Monday!
*********

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Mom's Rhubarb Pie: A Saturday Poem


Mom’s Rhubarb Pie


Who would think that green dragon wings
in the garden corner, clustered in a coven
could be attached to something so tasty?
Purple stalks hidden by this unruly canopy.
Bite one and consider the artistry needed.
Slicing, sugaring, syrupping, spicing –
A flaky crust must then be conjured, and all
baked into existence.

Tonight, at a whim, I walked into Memories.
Known for their desserts.
At a window seat I sipped a Monte Cristo coffee.
The glimpsed mile-high imposter on display
danced in my head, but I did not take her hand.
Did not order a slice. It would not be as good.
Could not be, as good.

c. Ciprianowords, Inc. 2009

Friday, November 27, 2009

Splash du Jour: Friday

It's the 20th anniversary of the Berlin Wall coming down. Before that, the only way to get from East Germany to West Germany was your dad would have to put you in a balloon.
-- David Letterman --



Have a great Friday!
******

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Exaggeration Well Done

In the area of writerly exaggeration, Daniel Baciagalupo was a born exaggerator!
-- From Chapter 5 of John Irving's, Last Night In Twisted River --
<-- I am reading a terrific book.
My last book was awesome, too [Michael Chabon]... but like, because I spend 9/10ths of my energy and time at work 8 days a week, at the end of it all, I have ZERO time to tell you about these books.

[The above sentence is my idea of an example of writerly exaggeration.]
I love to exaggerate. In my writing, talking, eating -- I just love to employ exaggeration.
I believe that John Irvng does, too. In his writing.
He exaggerates. I contend that he does.
And I am not saying that in a negative sense. He has a control -- such a command of his stories -- he can get away with many moments of exaggeration in a way that I [as a reader] would not allow for another author.
And I think that the reason for this is that when one reads Irving, one makes a friend. And this may be an audacious thing to say, but I think that maybe this is Irving's goal, in writing.
To make friends.
He certainly has made a few. And I am one.
OK.
Enough preamble. What is it that Irving loves to exaggerate, most?
I believe it is this --> feelings.

In the above citation from chapter 5, the character Daniel has enrolled [and excelled] in a course at the legendary Iowa Writer's Workshop. Our narrator [the omniscient Irving]... hovering, god-like, pronounces Daniel "a born exaggerator".
I contend that this is what Irving himself is, as regards his writing.
His technique. His style. His method.
It's exaggerative.
One need go only as far as the next page [in chapter 5] where Daniel's father laments his realization that his son will be leaving for Exeter college [an institution Irving attended]......
Danny would never forget lying in his bedroom later that night, in the Wesley Place apartment, hearing his dad cry and cry -- with Carmella crying, too, as she tried to comfort him. [p.156].
Come on!
Who would cry like that?
You would get tears [yes]...... you may cry for a bit.... [a minute.... two minutes?] but "cry and cry" as in, all night long, as suggested?
My own father cried for only about 3 or 4 minutes when I left Saskatchewan for Ontario, college-bound.

No, I maintain, it is exaggerative.
In other books by Irving, someone will be brushing out their hair in some enclosed cellar, and a guy in the upstairs bedroom is hearing it.
Or, someone is driving a car for the first time, and an observer in [again] an upper level bedroom window watches the car continually drive for what has to be half an hour. Well, where is this bedroom? On the eighteenth floor?
Again... I am not criticizing. I'm just loving it.
It is like I am in love with John Irving and he can do no wrong for me!
And it's always about FEELINGS!

As I read on in the book, Daniel is very much fashioned after the real John Irving I know.
For instance, Daniel has Kurt Vonnegut as his mentor. As did Irving.
I am ready to forgive Daniel all things. As you would, a friend.

I believe there is a very real power, in exaggeration well done.
I think Irving knows this, and does it. Succeeds at it.
In some sort of downright alchemical way that should be patented, he has made me believe him.
He makes me feel I am somewhat diminished if I end up breathing my last breath, without having read his last word.
This is friendship.
It is also -- wonderfully unrealistic.
Unrealistic, though, in a way that makes a reader realize that the most important word of those last five, is this one:
Wonderfully.

******

Splash du Jour: Thursday

Everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.
-- Sylvia Plath --

Have a great Thursday!
*********

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Splash du Jour: Wednesday






There's a new poll out on the sexiest accent. It's the Irish accent.
I thought, "No way! It's not even an accent. They're just drunk."

-- Craig Ferguson --


Have a great Wednesday!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Splash du Jour: Monday

When a child asks you something, answer him, for goodness' sake. But don't make a production of it. Children are children, but they can spot an evasion quicker than adults, and evasion simply muddles 'em.
-- Atticus, in Harper Lee's To Kill A Mockingbird --


Have a great Monday!


Sunday, November 22, 2009

There is Hope!









I am not an optimist, generally.
Nor that great when it comes to grammar, as the above sentence proves, ending as it does, in one of those "ly" words.
But really, I am a pessimist.
Not only this -- I am extremely paranoid.
From time to time, I find myself actually thinking about the devastation a meteorite could cause.
A METERORITE, for God's sake!
It could be very damaging to us here on Earth, a planet which -- when you really get down to it, is itself a sort of meterorite, albeit somewhat controlled in its frenetic circuit, by the gravitational pull of the sun.
But what if the sun went out?
See?
See how bad I am?

The purpose of this blog-posting though is to declare -- THERE IS HOPE!
Maybe not for me, necessarily. <-- There I go again. I spent a large part of my elementary school years writing lines on the blackboard after class...
But for you.
There is hope.
Read Eckhart Tolle's book The Power of Now. After that, read his A New Earth.
I read them both and want to read them again. At a recent used book sale I bought two EXTRA copies of the former book -- to give to other people I have not met yet.
I just think his entire premise is so healthy -- if a person could really grasp it.
Yesterday is past. And tomorrow may not even be.
Neither of those facts should diminish what we have -- NOW!
I have known only one person that truly lives the Tolle-way!
But as Eckhart Himself has said, "The way is narrow, and few there be that find it."
No.
Actually, that was another great teacher that said that.
Gotta go. I've got some newly assigned lines to write out on the blackboard....

********

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Worsted: A Saturday Poem










Worsted


Yes. Nice try. And I was born last night in a barn!
He lifts the two end tiles -- The word means yarn,
she pleads, slapping them back. Having none of it,
he grabs her wrists, saying, Where is the fun of it
if you keep inventing stuff like this? She pouts,
reaching for the dictionary. Listen, he shouts,
If you think I'm conceding six points for your 'd'
landing on the triple letter score, you're crazy!

He turns away as she holds the page up to his eyes.
Be happy with your five letters. Do you realize
you've won the last two games? Leaving the book
open on the table, she allows him this second look.
But he folds the board. And as the tiles clatter
so does her heart, in as many pieces, shatter.
She runs away, and the bedroom door is slammed,
as worsted stares back at him. Well, I'll be damned.

c. Ciprianowords, Inc. 2009

Friday, November 20, 2009

5 Weirdnesses...

........ about me!

OK, today at work, it was a little slow at work, really -- I was all alone all day in a huge warehouse and it was weird because as soon as I got to work and disengaged the alarm, I realized I had forgotten my watch at home.
I NEVER do that!
I cannot live without knowing what time it is ALL THE TIME!
So, I was sort of disoriented all day, and I was feeling weird.
Then I started thinking about how generally weird I really am.
Here are 5 Weird Things About Me --

1) I sometimes drink the hot-dog water. You know when you boil wieners? Well sometimes, when the stuff cools off a bit..... I know. I should not have admitted this in any sort of public forum, huh? The guy drinks tepid pork-cylinder effluent. Yep! That's totally normal.

2) This is going to be very anti-Western-hemisphere of a thing to say, but I don't really enjoy watching TV. Plus, I have never bought a single television set in my life.... yet I have always HAD one. Different ones, like.

3) I steal other people's TV's. No, just kidding. Third weird thing about me -- when I was a kid I literally believed that gravy was something that grew in the garden, along with the potatoes. And not only this, I also believed that the spuds came out of the ground in some kind of pre-mashed format. With gravy... sort of on the side. When my parents enlightened me as to the real state of things, I was profoundly devastated.

4) I've carried the same wallet with me, everywhere I go, since 1983. That calculates to 26 years. In fact, our anniversary is coming soon. This is not even the weird thing.
The weird thing is that when I contemplate getting a new one, I get sort of nervous.

5) My skin has some sort of amazing aversion to drying out. My brother's hands are life-threateningly dried and chapped always, and he does not even do the intense physical work that I do on a daily basis. Everyone I work with wears gloves at all times, and their hands still get dried out because of the nature of the material we are handling. Yet mine? I wear no gloves, and have never had a problem. Go figure. Last Sunday I was speaking with three of my friends, we were having coffee, and all three of them [we are all "roughly" the same age] were complaining of horridly horrific problems with dry skin. Chafing..... and all manner of other profanity. I was like, "What the hell are you guys talking about?"

Hmmmm...... maybe it's a side-effect of all that hot-dog water in my system?

*********

Splash du Jour: Friday








If we had a keen vision and feeling for all ordinary human life, it would be like hearing the grass grow and the squirrel's heart beat, and we should die of that roar which lies on the other side of silence. As it is, the quickest of us walk about well wadded with stupidity.

-- George Eliot, in Middlemarch --


Have a great Friday!
*******

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Splash du Jour: Thursday

Please don't retouch my wrinkles. It took me so long to earn them.
-- Anna Magnani --


Have a great Thursday!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Fictional Metabolism: Seconds, Anyone?

Curiously enough, one cannot read a book: one can only reread it. A good reader, a major reader, an active and creative reader is a rereader.
-- Vladimir Nabokov, in Strong Opinions --

I wonder if I am a very good reader.
Admittedly, there have to be way worse ones. Readers than me. Oh, hell yeah.
I mean, I do give it a good try, I think. I try to thoughtfully read.

But if ol' Vladimir's words, above, are even half as ex cathedra as they seem -- yeah, I am a poor reader.
I just read and move on. Read and move on. Read and move on.
I have much the same approach to eating, I guess.
My relationship with food is not at all about lengthy contemplation. It's morseo about, "Hey, that plate was full a minute ago!"
And not only this. I'm not talking about SPEED!
I'm moreso, after reading [and rereading] the Nabokov quote, thinking about my entire thought process.
My thoughts.
I eat a great meal, and my mind is already on the next platter of grub!

I read a great book and........ well, you get the picture, right?
About "food" I am no connoisseur.
At least with books, I can take some comfort in feeling that I am somewhat selective in what I ingest.
But, I seldom reread.
Am I a good reader? A major reader? An active and creative reader?


<-- In her [very] recently released book, Changing My Mind: Occasional Essays, novelist Zadie Smith says, "The novels we know best have an architecture. Not only a door going in and another leading out, but rooms, hallways, stairs, little gardens front and back, trapdoors, hidden passageways, etc. It's a fortunate rereader who knows half a dozen novels this way in their lifetime."
Again, a provocative statement. To follow through with my food analogy, hmmm... I consider the following:
What if I did not [pardon me] umm........ DIGEST all the food I ate?
Just kept on cramming it in to my haggis-holder there!
Believe me, it's a lot of grub! On a daily basis.
I'd probably explode.
I don't joke around about two things:
Food and Books.
It seems to me that both of these incredibly astute authors are suggesting here that rereading is the elan vital of the truly literate reader.
With Zadie Smith's statement I would seriously have to ask myself..... "Which novels have I read and reread?"
I know that the novel that launched me into a life of literature-appreciation was Thomas Hardy's Tess of the D'Urbervilles.
Did I reread it? Yes.
And my favorite novel? Anna Karenina.
Did I reread it? Yes.
But most of the books I read?
No.
I read. I move on. I DEVOUR! I devour another. I'm gluttonous.

If I were to address Zadie and/or Vladimir 100% honestly, I would say that for me, personally, the novel I have reread the most -- the novel that probably defines my interests the most, the novel, the architecture of which,l I am most familiar -- is C.S. Lewis's wonderful 1956 book, Till We Have Faces.
I have read it at least four or five times, and I know I will read it again.
It is the myth of Cupid and Psyche, retold.
An amazing book about the distinction between pure and profane love.

Interestingly enough, C.S. Lewis himself was a man who also valued the art of rereading.
In 1947, he said, "An unliterary man may be defined as one who reads books once only... The re-reader is looking not for actual surprises (which can come only once) but for a certain surprisingness. The point has often been misunderstood... In the only sense that matters the surprise works as well the twentieth time as the first. It is the quality of unexpectedness, not the fact that delights us. It is even better the second time... in literature. We do not enjoy a story fully at the first reading. Not till the curiosity, the sheer narrative lust, has been given its sop and laid asleep, are we at leisure to savour the real beauties. Till then, it is like wasting great wine on a ravenous natural thirst which merely wants cold wetness. The children understand this well when they ask for the same story over and over again, and in the same words. They want to have again the 'surprise' of discovering that what seemed like Little-Red-Riding-Hood's grandmother is really the wolf. It is better when you know it is coming: free from the shock of actual surprise you can attend better to the intrinsic surprisingness of the peripeteia."

Narrative lust. I like that.
The whole quotation makes perfect sense.
Everything right up until that last word, written in Klingon.

I personally own FIVE separate copies of Till We Have Faces.
Hey!
No one keeps just one frozen hamburger in the freezer!

*********

Splash du Jour: Wednesday

Well folks, it's happened again. This time at Heathrow Airport. A pilot was pulled off a United Airlines jet before take-off because he was drunk. Why is this happening? Here's how drunk the guy was. He was pulled off a United jet, but he was a Delta pilot. That's a bad sign.
-- Jay Leno --


Have a great Wednesday!
*********

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Splash du Jour: Tuesday

First lady Michelle Obama was on Sesame Street today showing children how to plant their own healthy vegetable gardens. Then the kids said, "Forget the vegetables," and they barbecued Big Bird.
-- Conan O'Brien --


Have a great Tuesday!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Splash du Jour: Monday

There’s always been this hunger for fantasy. The world has always been awful, the world’s always sucked, mostly because of the things people do to one another. All you have to do is read the Bible. Just read Job. . . A mind is blown when something you always feared but knew to be impossible turns out to be true; when the world turns out far vaster, far more marvelous or malevolent than you ever dreamed; when you get proof that everything is connected to everything else, that everything you know is wrong, that you are both the center of the universe and a tiny speck sailing off its nethermost edge.
-- Micahel Chabon --


Have a great Monday!
********

Saturday, November 14, 2009

A Piece of Sunset: A Saturday Poem


A Piece of Sunset


There you are, washing the egg-flipper.
No. Not somewhere else, but right here,
same world I inhabit. Same walls.
Same bills. Same toilets. Same children.

A few strands of your hair fall forward.
Others remain tied. Rinsed forks clatter
like castanets, defying anything domestic.
Strutting a fandango -- you aren't here.

I lean in closer to hear you humming,
nearly falling in the sand at your feet. I know
that song goddammit -- a piece of sunset
made you squint. And I remembered.

c. Ciprianowords, Inc. 2009

Thursday, November 12, 2009

My Discovery --

It is always exhilarating to "discover" an author one has not read before.
I've mentioned this concept of "discovery" before, in my bloggations.
The author was doing perfectly fine long before I came along to "discover" him or her.
By discovery though, I guess I mean -- you know how there are certain books that you have seen time and again, and something about the book has intrigued you, but you just never picked it up?
Well, I finally "discovered" Michael Chabon.
Have wanted to read this book, The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay for a long while now.
And recently I snagged this book for next-to-nothing at a used book sale.
In one morning [I priced it all out] I managed to nab almost a half-a-thousand dollars worth of books......... for $57.00.
Gotta love those used book sales!

I am only one-sixth into Chabon's world here, but I think I am involved enough in the story to say this thing is going to be a dandy worthwhile adventure. Tonight at my local Starbucks, certain portions of the novel had me spewing coffee through several of my facial orifices.

It's New York, in 1939.
Two Jewish yoots [<-- as Joe Pecci might say]... Joe Kavalier and Sammy Clay, are trying to come up with an innovative new comic book character. Something to top this upstart Superman fellow, who has every kid in America hurling their hard-earned dimes at whoever will provide them with the latest installment.
[Apparently, at this early stage in his career, Superman did not yet fly, he just jumped real good. His initial reaction to free-basing kryptonite, perhaps?]
Anyhoo, Joe and Sammy are fledgling artists with a few connections to the publishing world, and they have a deadline. They must come up with a plausible, yet incredible new superhero...
They laughed. Joe stopped laughing.
"I think we have to be serious," he said.
"You're right. The Lion. I don't know. Lions are lazy. How about the Tiger. Tigerman. No, no. Tigers are killers. Shit. Let's see."
[They go through a panoply of potential animal-based super heroes, even Mandrill-Man -- "with his multicolored wonder ass that he used to bedazzle opponents."]
You can hear the synapses firing, as they walk down 25th Street -- you can smell the brain cells burning --
"He turns into ice. He makes the ice everywhere."
"Crushed or cubes?"
"Not good?"
Sammy shook his head. "Ice," he said. "I don't see a lot of stories in ice."
"He turns into electricity?" Joe tried. "He turns into acid?"
"He turns into gravy. He turns into an enormous hat. Look, stop. Stop. Just stop."
[They stop]
It dawns on Sammy [he is the brains of this dynamic duo...] it dawns on him that, when it comes to super hero creation, the "why" is more important than the "what".
[They resume walking...]
"How? is not the question. What? is not the question," Sammy said.
"The question is why."
The question is why."
"Why," Joe repeated.
"Why is he doing it?"
"Doing what?"
"Dressing up like a monkey or an ice cube or a can of fucking corn."

Right about then an impressive display of nostril-forced Grande Americano created an eerie mist around me and my table.
I felt it was time to mop things up and move on. Time to come home here and write about this wonderful book that has already proven to be worth more than it's full price, never mind the two measly dollars I doled out for it.

Hmmmm.... if I were a Super Hero -- what would my special power be?
Super-Miser!
Unwilling to pay anything more than 1/10th of the bar-coded price!
IN A SINGLE BOUND!

*******

Splash du Jour: Thursday

If any ambitious man have a fancy to revolutionize, at one effort, the universal world of human thought, human opinion, and human sentiment, the opportunity is his own -- the road to immortal renown lies straight, open, unencumbered before him.
All that he has to do is write and publish a very little book. Its title should be simple -- a few plain words -- "My Heart Laid Bare." But this little book must be true to its title. No man dare write it. No man could write it, even if he dared. The paper would shrivel and blaze at every touch of the fiery pen.

-- Edgar Allen Poe, 1848 --


Have a great Thursday!
*******

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Splash du Jour: Wednesday

Everyone's talking about the election results in Maine. They voted for medical marijuana, but against gay marriage. I think voters were worried that guys would get so high they'd accidentally marry each other.
-- Craig Ferguson --


Have a great Wednesday!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Splash du Jour: Tuesday

It's what you read when you don't have to that determines what you will be when you can't help it.
-- Oscar Wilde --


Have a great Tuesday!

Monday, November 09, 2009

Splash du Jour: Monday

Al Gore, winner of the Nobel Prize, is on the show. I wish he were here last night. I could have used the help. During the show, the climate went from bad to worse.
-- David Letterman --



Have a great Monday!
*******

Sunday, November 08, 2009

This Is It / Creation of an MJ Fan

Truthfully, I have never really been a fan of Michael Jackson.
Until last night.
I went to see this movie.
Now I want ALL of his music on my iTunes!
If "This Is It" is playing anywhere near you, go see it.
Seriously. It is incredible.
You will see a side of Michael Jackson you did not know existed.
And if, unlike me, you already knew it existed -- well
you probably saw This Is It on opening night.

Last night convinced me, he truly was The King of Pop.
Not was.
IS.
******

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Aunt Elsie: A Saturday Poem


Aunt Elsie


Not just the clanging of the dinner bell.
Difficult as this is to forget. Or her shrill call.
The walk-in-and-wander food pantry.
None of this brings her back as clearly to me as that
squint she had, sun or no. Nothing to do with light.

That narrowing of the eyes meant laughter, sadness,
punishment, linoleum repairs, change the channel,
chicken heads to be cut off, storm tomorrow, I had too
many children, or most of all, most of all -- open
yours as much as you can, while you can.

c. Ciprianowords, Inc. 2009

Friday, November 06, 2009

Problems With Vibrato

I've been sick all day.
I think I am coming down with the H1N1 swine-thing, actually.
My first hint was that my nostrils all of a sudden are sort of upturned.
Very Kevin Bacon-ish.
But still, between sneezing and puking I have had occasion to do some of my near-useless musing about things that no other human beings think about, ever.
I happened to hear Ella Fitzgerald singing a Christmas song.
'Tis the season!
I forget the song, honestly -- what completely intrigued me though, was the vibrato at the end of every line.
What kind of medical problem is this?

Now, let's face it, Ella can [could] sing, I'm not disputing that. I'll never forget this one interview with Amanda Marshall [and I somewhat worship Amanda] where she cited Ella as her absolute vocal mentor and idol.
I think that part of Ella Fitzgerald's fame has to do with the youthfulness of her voice.
It never ever got old.
But the vibrato!
It makes my eyelids flutter.

And today, for the first time ever, I asked my favorite question -- WHY -- and directed it at the phenomenon of vibrato.
Not only why do singers do it. But why do we WANT them to do it?
Because we must want it, right? Or else they wouldn't do it.
What I mean is, statistically speaking, we must LIKE vibrato.

Well, I just want to go on record here and say that I myself do not like it.
I find it highly superfluous. This is not a natural throatal reaction to the action of singing.
It is contrived.
It is -- I don't know, just one of those human things that have evolved God-knows-why!

She was singing away, and I closed my eyes.
Instantly I envisioned a peacock.
Have you ever watched a male peacock when they are really strutting their stuff?
I have.
It's wild.
They fan out that magnificent tail...... they wait a bit, and then, the sort of -- shake it up!
Rattle the feathers. They rattle that thing.
They SHAKE that peacock booty!

It's the equivalent of the vibrato idea.
The peacock throws that tail out there, and then probably.... just at the right moment contracts a peacock-sphincter muscle and it's like.... "OK, my tail was all fanned out but check this out Oh-my-God now it is wicked sh-aaaaa-aaaaa-kkkkk-ing like crazy!"
[The hyphenated stuff, that's the peacock-sphincter tightening up right there.]

It's like Ella Fitzgerald, honest to God.
OK, it's all coming back to me now...... Let It Snow!
"Let it snow let it snow, let it snoowwwwwwowwwwowwoww!"
Yeesh.
A few more verses of that and all my fillings would have popped out.
I guess it all hearkens back to a time when we really had to shake things up to attract a mate?

*******

Splash du Jour: Friday

The thing about a story is that you dream it as you tell it, hoping that others might then dream along with you, and in this way memory and imagination and language combine to make spirits in the head.
-- Tim O'Brien, in The Things They Carried --

Last night I finished this amazing book. An incredibly moving, significant novel.
It is phenomenally good. Click
HERE.

Have a great Friday!
********

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Splash du Jour: Thursday

Every city has a sex and an age which have nothing to do with demography. Rome is feminine. So is Odessa. London is a teenager, an urchin, and, in this, hasn't changed since the time of Dickens. Paris, I believe, is a man in his twenties in love with an older woman.
-- John Berger --


Have a great Thursday!

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Being a Building

So I was walking down the street.
I've walked down this street [Dalhousie Street] perhaps 18 million times.
Give or take a few hundred.
And there is this one building I really like, and I'm not sure why. It is directly across from my own apartment building, where I live.
You know you can walk past a building 18 million times and never once stop to wonder how long it's been there.
But the other day I wondered.
I looked up and saw at the very top of the thing, a date.
1899.
I stopped and stared until I was dizzy.
1899?
That's like PRIOR TO ----- the last century.
My own building where I live, where I am typing this from, was built in the early 1970's.
A mere YOUNGSTER compared to this venerable brown brick building across the park.
This 1899 building WATCHED my building grow up!
But as I stood there and looked up I did some contextualizing.
My spell-checker warns me that this is not a word, but I don't care. I am going to use it anyway, because it is exactly what I am doing. I am contextualizing.

My father was born in 1926. And, while he lived, he loved to tell me stories about his childhood... and so I am standing here on the corner of Dalhousie and Cathcart, looking up, and I'm thinking -- before even one of my father's stories existed, this building was standing here on this corner, being a building.
I think that is so neat.
My father's father was born somewhere in Austria in 1897.
So -- when my paternal grandfather was 2 years old, this building was busy being a building.
The first tenants were all exited about renting the space. Prime real estate. Yonder, where my building now stands -- a crow was perhaps flying right through the very space where I now sit typing by candlelight in my penthouse suite.
[Ooops. Spell-check again. Apparently "penthouse" is some sort of magazine!]
But -- I think you get my drift right?

Thomas Hardy was just then taking pen in hand, to write The Darkling Thrush.
My father's every story was decades distant.
His father was still not proficient with the toilet!
Hell, the toilet itself was not invented yet!
And this building, this one right here.... was...... was --

So I walked across the street, and I touched a few of the lower bricks. Spoke to them.
Proportionally speaking, I spoke to a few of the bricks between the ankle and knee of this building. And I said, "Remember me, building."
And I hugged that building that will be standing, right here, long after I am permanently horizontal.


video

Splash du Jour: Wednesday

When the paws go up to the face, this is exactly how I feel this morning!



Have a great Wednesday!

*********

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Splash du Jour: Tuesday


Sir, more than kisses, letters mingle souls; for, thus friends absent speak.
-- John Donne --


Have a great Tuesday!

Monday, November 02, 2009

Splash du Jour: Monday

There should be a law, I thought. If you support a war, if you think it's worth the price, that's fine, but you have to put your own precious fluids on the line. You have to head for the front and hook up with an infantry unit and help spill the blood. And you have to bring along your wife, or your kids, or your lover. A law, I thought.
-- Tim O'Brien, in The Things They Carried --


Have a great Monday!
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