Friday, February 29, 2008

More falling down & trip to the ER happened during the night, runs in the family, I guess. At least nobody's mobility is seriously impaired this time. Broken rib, pneumothorax, poor Patrick.

Sweepea's back on filling out the bills of indictment today, pity the poor souls. Planning to leave work early, go hang with son & brother, been asked to bring Buffy. Can do.

Wishing I could wake up more fully.
So cold my teeth hurt.

Tired, making me boring, being tired. Sorry. Not really any good excuse for making things more boring, water to the well, coals to Newcastle.

Managed to work in everything I had planned apart from the jigsaw puzzling, can't do everything.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Got home for lunch with raging headache, warmed up some ginger cake I'd forgotten I had in the fridge & had it with some ice cream kindly provided by the elderly, also reheated some coffee. Feeling a bit better.

All sorts of exciting plans for later involving being taken out to dinner, playing Singstar games, etc. Will maybe also get in some jigsaw puzzling & hugs. All seems pretty attractive.

Should be walking dog, waiting for headache to diminish further before exposing myself to cold.
Frittered away time before work sipping coffee & chit chatting on the Internets, pretty great, continued nonpayment of promised bonus for work demanded over the holiday season make me think I should be doing that still. Suppose I could just take the 150 hours or so of comp time they owe me.

Anyway, it's an unnecessary irritation, wonder how people get so stupid, maybe something in the water?

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Just back from nice dinner with sweetie & some of her male relatives, they've gone to look into dog's welfare and unrelated drip, been tending to my own dog's requirements.

Leaving shortly to meet them at neat thing Neil is doing in Turner's. Nice people doing neat things.
Spent lunch break testing video projector I received for my birthday, thanks, Mom. Seems to work well, now just need to figure out where I can actually use it.

Endlessly hectic work day today, but feeling somewhat better otherwise. Also, I got a bunch done, not that I much care lately.
File under things I learned from the spam filter:

"March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month"

Something to keep in mind.
Got my new driver's license, same as the old driver's license.

Having some chips and dip.
Had evening plans, apparently those were cancelled, though no one thought to mention it to me. Decided to go to sleep instead, slept for a long time, feel rested. Ditched & rested.

Coffee's brewing, preparing myself for wet, depressing world.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Just back from walking the dog over thin, wet snow through heavy rain. Cold, wet, banged my knee on a piece of furniture, it hurts.

That people tend to hearken more to the anxious voices in their heads than to what others are actually saying, to take specific criticisms as general rejection in order to avoid addressing the specific issues, to divert and misdirect conversation with futile, self-defeating defensive posturing, I know all this better than most, I think, it all makes me tired and a bit nauseated.

Feeling tired and a bit nauseated.
Apparently being a team player means shutting up & doing as you're told. Get enough of that at work, thanks.

Feeling pretty profoundly irritated, rushing around doing work, feeling irritated. Giant heavy lifting task is off, anyway.
Minor ice event on for this afternoon, Peretz is excited for it, me, not so much.

May or may not do a bunch of heavy lifting at work today, may or may not do me a world of good.

Could really use a vacation.
Painfully tired, amazed I made it home, dog walk needs to wait until morning, genuinely don't think it'd be safe. Not sure how I got quite this tired, been feeling quite upset on and off today, maybe it's to do with that, it's pretty tiresome, certainly.

Jigsaw puzzling was quite fun.

Quite quite quite.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Got back a little while ago from pretty extensive IT consultation, left me feeling a bit addled, was going to have some soda pop to try & get myself together for drive to Greenfield for fancy sandwiches & jigsaw puzzling, decided coffee would be more likely to work, having some now.

While doing consulting, got call from work, something I could've been asked about months ago, blech.

A lot of melting going on today, actually getting a bit excited for spring.
Took a walk to town, did a little banking, got a burrito, visited a little with Tim.

Came home, T's mom brought me birthday treats, took the dog for a walk in the woods.

Next, in best narcissistic sicko fashion, I'm off to help make computers that route food to hungry children go.

If you look closely at my skin, you can see the pure evil emanating. Don't see it? Look closer.
Fell asleep watching television, woke early, fell out of bed, actually, some b version of The Three Musketeers was on.

Decided morning of first full day of being 37 demanded taking a walk by myself, bright morning sun, observing the light on the snow, people. Watched a young man in yellow, his postural repertoire apparently a derivative of the work of Mark Wahlberg, walk across a parking lot and get into his car. Walked away thinking about movies and the real world.

Watching The Godfather.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Hippity hop.

Fun day, busy day, better birthday weekend than I would have thought to ask for, pretty great.

New Paltz nostalgia trip, got some really beautiful Italian cold cuts, after that, Japanese shopping excursion, stationary, weird candies, etc.

Fun time sorting though acquisitions, eating subtle & complex cold cut sandwich with saffron aioli, etc., etc.

Pretty beat, but cheerful, alert.
Socks are working out well, could use some more coffee.

Really a lovely day, sun shining over my shoulder.
Bar rock band proving unbearable, spent some time observing slightly more bearable bar jazz. Interesting fashion choices.

Woke to box of birthday surprises, lots of pretty great stuff, excited for nice new socks. Going to try a pair.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

FDR homestead lovely in its excessiveness, a lot of clutter, a lot of photographs, my sort of thing even aside from a vague inherited fondness for the man, sweet young thing went back & forth between kid in candy store and worn down by the endlessness of it, to be expected, liked watching her gleeful moments. Got some nice stuff from the gift shop, 1000 piece US Presidents jigsaw I'm quite looking forward to assembling, etc.

Dinner at oldest operating inn in the US was somewhat unremarkable but tasty & filling, nice rare local duck, come for the weekend, stay for the slicing into tasty tidbits, quack!

Resting at inn now, playing with Internet, uploading the many photos I took, listening to 'Peace Train'. Come on, come on, come on.

Maybe bar rock down the street later.
Roads appear to have been cleared nicely, hopefully that proves true all the way to Hyde Park.

Dog's walked, clothes packed, need to toss electronics in bag, desnow car, then we're off.

Contrast between this birthday and last quite something, has me reflecting on time, what else is new?

Friday, February 22, 2008

Made some Polish peasant cuisine, feel nicely sated.

Drinking a Belgian ale, scifi TV continues, sweet young thing has returned upstairs to her project.

At dinner was gifted a small FDR jigsaw puzzle, may look into the mystery of the man in a moment.
Sweet young thing made her way her safely through the storm, brought raspberry upside down cake, quite something.

She's upstairs crafting birthday surprise while I lie on couch watching bad scifi television, things are going well.
Just took a pretty good spill of the pully dog on snow over sheet ice variety, enough snow down to break my fall, so no real damage, didn't even hurt much, better than this morning, actually, when I recovered from similar slip with a minor groin muscle pull. Snow is extremely beautiful, all worth it, for me, anyway. Chilly fingers, landlord is outside snowblowing, growl, growl.

Hoping sweetie gets down here safely, bit harrowing out.
Out of work early, just cleaned up what I sincerely hope was the last residue of Peretz's episode of gastroenteritis, tossed a load of laundry in the wash. Having some coffee, then it's on to kitchen cleanup, dog walk, snowy walk to town for makings of dinner.

Coming off a fairly intense period of work, things like household chores still seem a relative delight.

Avidly looking forward to weekend when really it's already begun, wheeeeeeeee, here we go,
Snow's started, we're supposed to get a bunch. Watching the flakes fall out the window, slow, sparse. Heavy later, they say.

Enjoy the weather.

Cold feet, waiting for coffee to brew.
Home again, just me, the pup & the myriad darknesses, inner, outer, etc.

Cozy, to use another word.

Had some English peppermints, got me thinking of other herbal candy possibilities, tarragon gumdrops, should make those.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

peretz with bread, originally uploaded by peretzpup.

T demands, I comply. Anyway, it's a pretty great picture, I think.

Seems taco nights come fast & furious in this the torrid zone. My kind of place.

Tried to share the wonders of mochi as well, oh, well. Oh, well.

Seems prophets are never understood in their own time.

Plans for later include plans for later, hoping snow tomorrow doesn't make for unsafe travel conditions.
Found an extra house key, one less thing to do, anyway. Was going to take dog out, but am now waiting for arrival of dog sitter to instruct in ways of walking the Peretz, it's an art.

Itchy nose, achy feet, wondering if I'll ever be shut of cold symptoms.

Cough, cough, sniffle, sniffle, ache, ache, sleepy, sleepy.
Here at work, we have a network switch, used by about ten reporters, which is, at the moment, unavoidably, in a construction area. I've put a big metal cover over it that says 'Do not move or unplug,' etc. Anyway, apparently literacy isn't a requirement for construction work. Moved & unplugged four or five times so far, cover keeps getting removed & the switch gets coated in dust, etc., etc.

Feeling pretty fed up.

In other news, initial weekend dog care plans fell through, have made alternate plans, should stock house with snacks to make time spent with Peretz more attractive, maybe a trip to Trader Joe's later. Also need to get a spare key made as the ones I have have all gone missing, have not been returned by spiteful, inconsiderate people, etc., etc.

It's an aggravation universe.

On the upside, workweek's almost done, fun plans with sweetie, etc., etc.

Etc., etc., etc.
Discovered this morning that I had left two brand new pairs of pants lying on my bedroom floor in a duffle bag since last summer.

To say that this is unlike me is an understatement would be a bit of an understatement.

Was one rough fucking year, glad it's done.

Wearing a pair of nice new pants, thanks, me.
Missed most of the eclipse, napping. Sort of a shame, but could use more napping, been pretty beat lately.

Car failed emissions, will need to get that fixed at some point, no rush.

Horrible dull ache in largest joint of right big toe, limping about, drinking coffee.

Dog's lying halfway in a sunny spot, experimenting with new power sources.


Feeling a bit grim lately, impending birthday, I imagine, silly of me, this one should be really nice, it's just the last one sucked pretty hard, irrational, that's me.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Went & tried the Four Leaf Clover in Bernardston, good stuff, lovely pie, sadly out of Reubens, will return to try these & further varieties of pie at a later time.

Lunar eclipse is underway, under covers with puppy & kitty & c.
Dropped car by inspection station, limped my cold way back to work, hope it passes, ick.

Also got around to renewing my driver's license via web, now it's just taxes & financial paperwork I'm neglecting, huzzah!

Plus I should really get a new timing belt.

La la la, la lala lala.
Walking Peretz through the Webs lot this morning, came across Holy Smokes in its new, truck-pulled form, photographer from the paper was there taking photographs, I took some too:




Risen from the ashes, reduced and mobile, a lot of that going around.

After that, despite best efforts, was nearly knocked flat on my back on ice by sweet, tuggy dog.

Halfway out of extreme black mood I found myself suddenly in yesterday evening, lingering effects of prolonged emotional abuse are a big drag for everybody, sorry about that, the way of Samsara, snapping turtles all the way down.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Went & installed phone in nice old lady's bedroom, installed scanner, reconfigured a user account, installed various software, diagnosed printer problem, heard all about all sorts of things, was asked about change at the paper, got a tub of ice cream & some cash for my trouble.

Eating some bread and cheese, going to head up to Greenfield in a bit with laptop & merry tidings & c.

Peretz wants bread and cheese, out, etc.
Just went to get my car inspected, inspection computer was down, apparently, tech from state had been in, fixed it, still not working, where's the information professionalism?

After the debacle, went & had some golompkis, got a loaf of bread.
Have made birthday weekend Hudson Valley getaway reservations & arrangements, promises to be a blast. Merry, merry.

Despite high efficiency at festive reservation making, work efficiency is at a bit of a low ebb. Oh well, never let a person take any time off & see what you get, fuckers.

Kidding, kidding, they're swell folks.
Overslept, it's pretty great, been needing sleep.

Need to catch up on paperwork.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Trudging through the wet snowy world with Peretz, strangely warm for February.

Tried to get folks to read 'The Burrow', see the sense in it, every hidey hole a trap, every escape route a way for the predators to get in

Em told me she'd listen to 'Fox in the Snow' & think of me, apt enough, I suppose, strange the states people get themselves into, get themselves thinking holing up with a cold, hungry fox for winter a bright idea.

Poor dumb bunnies.
Thinking in the shower:

Civilization, progress, all sounds very nice until you crack a book or two and see that by and large they come down to ever greater concentration of power in the hands of those that want it, small minded, vicious; and a long trail of bodies, generally brown. Not surprising people turn reactionary, cure worse than the disease.

Still a disease, look forward, look back, chamber of horrors. Gets me thinking about sidesteps, flips, bags of tricks.

Well-intentioned folks rushing back & forth, patching the holes in the world. They're blocking the escape routes.
Sometimes I find my own coldness & cruelty a bit much, but the plain fact is, people who choose to fuck about with poets get exactly what they deserve, the only justice in this world poetic through & through.

This morning, it's just me, the dog, hot coffee & all the pretty figures, all over the walls, all over the pale sunlight trickling through the windows, everything something it's not, other than itself, inside itself, other.

There's nothing abstract about abstract things considered in their abstraction, more solid than most, cozy cold comfort.

Pottering about my secret temple, forming forms, bibbity bobbity boo. Ooh, baby ghost, scary, friendly.

Should really shower, walk dog, crash down to the real world, keep on crashing through. Comfy in my pod, watching the pretty blinking lights.
Can't seem to shake lingering effects of cold, stuffy head, cough, bleh. Sleepy all the time.

Maybe more coffee will help.

Thinking about things I want to get done, there are a bunch, need to get over the sleepy thing, get to it.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Funny to keep learning that most people don't actually care about anything outside their own heads, it's a hard lesson, getting it bit by bit.

Strange alien creatures stalk the land, destroying everything in their path, meanwhile, people sit at home, sweating the small stuff.

Have done extensive work, correspondence, etc., drank a lot of coffee, ate pie. still not quite awake.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Buffy marathon continues. Sleepy sleepy sleepy.

Having more coffee.
Lovely evening last, made little Italian subs, had a beer, went to see pop music. Slow morning this morning with Adams donuts & coffee, dog drama. Has gotten cold again, last night there were biting winds.

Plans for later include recovering debit card from Chinese restaurant, fish 'n' chips, dropping Patrick at the train for trip to beautiful Syracuse.

'I' key is sticking, argh.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Thinking about a question I was asked at my lecture, I forget the exact phrasing, but I parsed it as 'Do you think that there is a univeralizable metonymic relationship between Massachusetts and the United States generally?' I said that I didn't know and, moving well into grotesque bullshittery, that I thought perhaps there was, but that it was likely unknowable. I think it's a question that deserves to be taken more seriously than I took it. Implicit in all this, of course, was the idea that the photographs I'd been taking of Massachusetts were a metonym for Massachusetts as a whole. This isn't anything it would ever have occurred to me to think, too much of my own preoccupations and idiosyncrasies in the selection of images to think they might serve as a useful representation of much of anything for people generally. Maybe I'm all wrong about that, I don't know.

It's funny, because I think people see me as arrogating the authority to make statements of general significance quite often and it's really nothing I think of myself as doing, I have some pretty detailed thoughts about things, but again they're very idiosyncratic for the most part, a lot of trips down funny byways, don't generally think they're of much importance or use to anyone but me, if that. I suppose by saying anything about them at all, I'm suggesting that they are- oh, well, wish people wouldn't take things I say that way, wish in one hand & shit in the other, right?

How I would like people to take things I say is a big question. I guess I wish there was more surprise and delight involved. Feel that way about a lot of things.
Got out of walk early, took a walk into town. Was going to get a haircut, too busy at the barbershop, got some pizza slices instead, looked at lovely kitchen cart at kitchen store, checked out the new affordable art shop in town, lots of nice stuff, too little of the unexpected, only to be expected, I suppose. Heard about police harassment and malicious prosecution, lovely stuff, fuck, sometimes it's hard to keep the bile down & a smile on the old kisser.

Peretz wants out, lovely day for it.
Trying to see the beauty in endless bloody war, the self-destructive madnesses of friends, garbage scattered on the roadside- it's kind of a lot of work, but I think it's probably best, so many unbeautiful, so many terrifying things, all full of beauty regardless, wanting out, I want to let it out.

Remember some German new left writer, can't remember if it was in Male Fantasies or Critique of Cynical Reason or what, giving Michael Herr a hard time for glorifying combat high in Dispatches, people put on blinkers to stay on point, I guess- fact is, there's much of the glorious and romantic in war, just like in everything else, no use for any motherfucking politics that requires poking the eyes out, I want to see everything, I want you to see everything, too, sorry about that, I've decided it's best.

Kidding, kidding. Do whatever you like, I'll just sit back & relish the pure horror of it, dears.

Thinking about poor, sweet, drunk, dead Peter Laughner. Let's see you do one thing as senselessly cruel as Sylvia Plath.
Sluggish morning head, heart full of strange poetry, cold hands.

A whole bunch of routine stuff I need to get to but haven't, driver's license renewal, car inspection, car tax, income tax, etc.

Maybe a shower will help with the whole waking up thing.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Falling asleep at my desk.

Spent some time trying to figure out new ways to do log management, too sleepy to make much headway with that.

Went on nice pie excursion earlier, wanted a cream pie, none worthy to be had, got an apple raspberry, another nice excursion for nice Chinese planned for later.

Oh, so sleepy.
To clarify:

'Ding, dong, bell, pussy's in the well.

There's a funny little cat
With a tummy nice and fat.
He's won picture fame . . .
Felix is his name.
Has a funny little walk
Whiskers on his chin;
And, no matter where he goes
Or what occurs to him . . .

Felix keeps on walking, keeps on walking still.
With his hands behind him, you will always find him.
Blew him up with dynamite, but him they couldn't kill.
Miles up in the air he flew,
He just murmured "Toodle-oo!"
Landed down in Timbuctoo, and kept on walking still.

Felix kept on walking, kept on walking still.
One day he was collar'd . . . by a whale, and swallowed.
In the tummy of that whale he found himself, but still,
All the same he never frown'd,
He just smiled and then look'd round,
Thought it was the "Underground" and kept on walking still.

Way out on a desert isle,
Felix met a crocodile.
It just gave a cough,
Blew his whiskers off.
Then he walk'd for miles and miles
Till his feet were raw,
Thought he'd have a rest, but then a lion there he saw!

Felix kept on walking, kept on walking still.
Cannibals then caught him, tasty bit they thought him.
Skinned him like a rabbit, he was so "cut up" until
A native's scalp he noticed there,
Stuck it on where he felt bare,
Raised his hat and said "There's hair" and kept on walking still.

Felix kept on walking, kept on walking still.
By a train at Dover, had his tail run over,
On the rail he left his tail, it gave the folks a thrill,
Still for that, he didn't care.
Though he had no rudder there,
Wagged his "nothing" in the air, and kept on walking still.

He's so full of funny tricks,
Fed some sawdust to the chicks,
Now instead of eggs . . .
They lay table legs.
On poor Auntie's powder puff
"Hair restorer" placed,
Then when he saw Auntie put that Tatcho on her face . . .

Felix kept on walking, kept on walking still.
Now poor Auntie Eva has a full grown "beaver"
On the tiles he went last night, those tabby cats to thrill,
Met a Frenchy cat named Lou,
She said "Do you parley vous?"
He said, "Yes, but not with you," and kept on walking still.

Felix kept on walking, kept on walking still.
Someone tried to drown him, with a brick tied round him.
Shoved him in the rain-tub there, but him they couldn't kill,
Started lapping with his tongue
Till that water all was done
Then he crept out through the "bung" and kept on walking still.

Kept on walking, kept on walking,
Kept on walking still. Mee-ow!"'

That was 1923, people still haven't gotten it, fuck.
Thinking this morning about Subcomandante Marcos, self-conscious poststructuralism on the world stage, at least off Broadway, it's very strange, wondering when we'll see more of it, could be fun.

Too much of people not taking their own intellectual tendencies seriously, talk a good game, but when it comes down to tacks, they're still in the 18th century, which, as far as society goes, at least, is, frankly, prescientific. And magical thinking = no real magic. Let's make the magic happen. It's a gas, it's a bag of tricks.

We are victims of a politics without wit, victims of ourselves, our own stupid self-obsessed fastidiousness. Less Felix Ung(e/a)r, more Felix the Cat, get me? We're in a fix.

Toe still hurts, coffee surprises and delights as always, Peretz is sleeping on the folded out futon, halfway in a sunny spot, legs extended.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Went & got makings of dinner, seven dollar shoes for Patrick, drove up to Greenfield running through soup prep in my mind, thinking about people who obsess over their ecological footprint while treating others like garbage, should probably make me angry, sometimes it does, but like most stupidity, it mostly makes me sad.

Made it to Greenfield with a splish & a splash, whipped up tasty dinner, ate it, started watching The Taking of Pelham One Two Three, got to the part where Matthau is showing the Japanese around, then realized I really needed to head home to walk Peretz. Drove back listening to 80s Fall, Australians in Europe, etc.

Just back from slogging around in the wet with pup, finally have my boots off, feet up, drinking pale dry ginger ale, would like to watch some TV, but it's Wednesday.
Caught quite a chill walking the pup, going to make soup & cheese toast.
Quite shockingly wet out.

While working today, effete song lyrics have been pouring forth from my mind, forgetting most, but here's a sample:

Carson Fletchley sits in his window and watches the rain- he feels strange.
Stranger yet as he sits on his front step, awaiting deliveries.
Crippled by incest, his startling intellect goes for the next best bet.
Carson Fletchley, Carson Fletchley, Carson Fletchley, oh!
Carson Fletchley, Carson Fletchley, Carson Fletchley, oh!
Carson Fletchley lies dreaming of minarets and thinks of last morning's sex.
Proceeding dialectically, he lies in his reverie, the subtleties of context.
Crippled by incest, his startling intellect goes for the next best bet.
Carson Fletchley, Carson Fletchley, Carson Fletchley, oh!
Carson Fletchley, Carson Fletchley, Carson Fletchley, oh!
Exciting drive to airport in driving snow left me with with an aching neck, little sleep, otherwise unharmed, loved one's sibling recovered undamaged. Found myself fascinated by people's interest in tailgating in the absence of friction, plow truck driver's apparent near total disinterest in plowing.

A little while ago, there were two power flickers, hoping nothing's broken. When they happened, I said 'Oh, fuck.' Sweet young thing said, 'You swore.' I think her ears also turned a little pink, the poor dear. Then she fell right back asleep.

Need to take the dog out into the big slushy mess, feeling resistant.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Lecture I gave a while back, minus the multimedia:

For the longest time, centuries anyway, it seemed to many, or some anyway, but in some ways they were the ones that mattered, the ones that were making things happen everywhere, terrible things, that the image could act as guarantor of the sign, could offer ready money in exchange for the sign's promissory note, as it were. These days, it's still the same with many, others have noted, though, that, really, the image is just another sign among many, about something outside itself in a way which is, at its basis, purely arbitrary. That is to say, for any given picture, that it pictures what it in fact pictures is in no way a matter of necessity.

The pictorial relationship, the relationship of picturing, like so many of our relationships, seems simple enough on its face, but is, secretly, or on closer examination, endlessly problematic. In the case of vision, or photography, which in this respect come down to the same thing, because there is a simple one-to-one mapping between object and retina, film, ccd, there is a very strong temptation to see the imaging relationship as that relationship, as natural, merely mechanical, what have you. It is actually, though, from a certain perspective, anyway, a purely arbitrary matter, that that relationship, that particular mapping, has sense, is seen as a relationship of imaging, and so forth.

But this is all, perhaps, a bit abstract, let's focus on particulars for a few moments.

Last winter, around this time, I was being subjected to, or subjecting myself to, what was perhaps the worst experience of my life. Some say that the birth experience is the worst experience, and in my experience, given that this was a sort of birth experience I was undergoing, they're not far wrong.

Anyway, in the aftermath of that, I wasn't up to much. Work, eat, write, play sudoku.

Sudoku is quite a fascinating game, no wonder it's so popular, beautiful in its abstraction, it appears to present a field of pure possibility which is in fact absolutely predetermined, the possibilities an artifact of the limitations of our minds. In addition to this, the fact that endless new puzzles can be churned out at will by computer makes the game, it seems to me, something of an emblem of our time.  Played quite a lot of that, got quite good at it.

That went on through the spring and most of summer, but toward the end of summer, when the various regional fairs began to happen, I got the idea of documenting them extensively with my new digital camera, which I had received as a gift from my parents the previous December.

I found this to be a strangely satisfying activity, the possibilities opened by digital photography, basically limitless shooting, fit in well with the ways my mind and attention move, I began elaborating a space of visual preoccupations while wandering rapidly through the fairs- graphic design, discarded objects, memento mori, the ages of man, representations of animals, actual animals, children's art, local color, branding, trademark violations, the sky and things jutting into it, very small things, etc.

Anyway, once the fairs were done, went right on documenting, seasonal change in my immediate neighborhood, my dog and his moods, kitsch, technology, day trips to the seaside and other places, food preparation, construction, demolition, friends and family, architectural details, burgers, malteds, so many things.

I wrote about all these things and many others besides as well, in a parallel stream, sometimes with direct reference to the other stream, of images, but most often not.  Sometimes I even went so far as to speculate about how one might interpret the two streams in light of each other.

It can be quite tempting, even for one who sees quite clearly that the pictorial relationship is an arbitrary one, to imagine that one might capture reality by ever more elaborate figures, ever tighter nets. In what I was doing there was a great deal of doubling and it was tempting to draw out metaphors from that, between the fairs and after, between one image and the next, between a picture of a deer, the word 'deer' or 'dear', various senses and colors of fall. There were, from a certain point of view, no metaphors at work, everything was purely literal, pedestrian to the point of banality, from another, a limitless number of figures were being traced. Tempting to see a metaphoric relationship between these points of view as well, of course.

As a young adult, I was very preoccupied with the poet Wallace Stevens, an interesting man who spent most of his life not too far south of here, in Hartford, CT., being an insurance executive. While he had a family, he would take trips to Key West alone. Once, he got in a fight with Hemingway there, over a remark Stevens made about Hemingway's sister, Stevens lost, hurt his hand on Hemingway's jaw. Anyway, I was introduced to his poetry by my father reading this one to me, one night, over the dinner table.

Anecdote of the Jar

I placed a jar in Tennessee,
And round it was, upon a hill.
It made the slovenly wilderness
Surround that hill.

The wilderness rose up to it,
And sprawled around, no longer wild.
The jar was round upon the ground
And tall and of a port in air.

It took dominion everywhere.
The jar was gray and bare.
It did not give of bird or bush,
Like nothing else in Tennessee.

There is a certain temptation to see the mind, at least insofar as it is a matter of signs, as something ethereal, something close to death, a sort of killing jar.

In the languages of the European continent, there are many words for butterfly, often fanciful, none of them cognate, mariposa, papillon, farfalle, psyche, Schmetterling to name a few. I find myself often thinking of the doubled images on their wings, abstract, colorful, indistinct with motion as they flit in their multitudes across an open field.

Concepts divide the world into what is and what is not something. Our conceptual fields so often seem killing fields, catching the world in their nets, dipping it in fixative, mounting it on a sheet with a pin.

I would like to at least suggest that there are other ways of looking at this.

In this time we're living through, our time, there is an ever diminishing interval between conception and reproduction, sometimes it seems vanishingly small. This can cause some anxiety and often does, at the rapid pace, the inhuman tempo of it. But the less time between this and that, the more outside them, and that can be quite pleasant, more time outside.
Coffee's brewing, wishing I was still asleep.

Ah, coffee's done.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Another day, another mac 'n' cheese. Sauteed some broccoli raab also. Half lemon/half grapefruit soda. Happy times.

Drove home from Greenfield, lying in a pile with Peretz, drinking scotch. Should really take him for a walk, damn cold out, don't think either of us have much enthusiasm for going out. A little more scotch and then we'll do it, I think.

After that, have an appointment with some pajamas and TV.
Banging on A/C unit behind my desk led me to work at home for a time, do laundry, pal around with the pup. Back at work now, working on my work. Work workety work.

Liked it better at home.

Going to make more mac 'n' cheese later, if you can believe it. Even if you can't actually.

Face is itchy, soon the dreaded shaving.
Cold, busy morning, fingers feel as though hit with hammers, rubbed with sandpaper, etc., etc. Feel a bit like I'm neglecting the pup, but really he shouldn't be spending much time outside when it's this frosty.

Sweet young thing's getting her taxes managed this evening, planning to use the free time to tidy up around the house, get groceries, do a variety of neglected mundane tasks, perhaps laundry, my own taxes will need to wait till later, deferred gratification and all that, a responsible adult.

Place where I drove glass into my hand a while ago is itchy.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Lovely day, finally got a little rest, bitterly cold out,more like winter.

Made some dinner for me & my sweetie with squash & chicken from the freezer. The squash was the very last of my farm share, quite tasty.

Peretz's digestive tract appears to be back on even keel.

Despite rest, feeling pretty beat, tomorrow, another work week.
Seems these days that without prompting I tend to awake at 8:06 AM.

Been losing track of time a bit, very busy, things keep happening, I guess that's what things do.

Trying to compose some poetry in my head, it's not really coming together as I'd like, feeling less linguistic than usual of late, strange.

Shower, walk dog, work. Brunch after.

Thinking about music.
Busy day, dead tired. Been exposing young mind to art, pretty nice as activities go.

Just after dropping folks off in Greenfield, snow that had been going on on & off all day finally got serious, bit of a scary drive home, back with Peretz now, just popped a bottle of orange dray soda, planning to relax into that & maybe some cartoons, fall asleep, get up, go do work, etc.

Put on pajamas, hurt all over, not very much, but all over.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Walked dog, checked in on fragmentation state of hard drive of poorly maintained, recently acquired server, looks AOK now, wonder if it'll help, thing performs like a dog (sorry, Peretz, figure of speech).

Left Greenfield last night with keys to other car in my pocket in my sleepy stupor, off to return them, wheeeeeeeeeeeee!
Sweet young thing's sweet young kid is in town, spent some time last night watching the two of them playing Guitar Hero, pretty adorable, halfway wanted to join in, takes me a while to get into twitch games. Eventually.

After sleepy drive home, wandered with Peretz through neighborhood crammed full of loud, annoying drunks. Who makes the nazis?

Trying to wake up, trying to wake up.

Plans for later include high quality fish 'n' chips, art, music. What could be better? The days are just packed.

Having trouble waking up, Peretz wants out, I want more coffee, etc., etc.

Friday, February 8, 2008

On way back from fetching amazing local soda, other remarkable products from near & far, realized I hadn't really eaten anything much today, stopped by Tramore Chip Shop for best value in area hot dog special, said hi to nice folks working there, got invited to Andy's wedding reception, but think I'm going to be in Maine when it happens. Can't say enough good things about their hot dogs, really something with the spicy relish. Why not buy five?

They also had local barramundi fish 'n' chips on special, sadly, can only eat so much.

Off to Greenfield to walk Pickles, eat more tasty food, push local soda on local restauranteurs.
How best to live in a time of permanent war is a question I often find myself dwelling on, have done since a wee sprout, no good answers, smart enough that I'm pretty sure their aren't any.

Personally, try to stay combat ready, keep a rough big picture in mind, but stick to local tactics, foot soldier in the field, command and control all shot to hell, just keep crashing through.

Some day this war's going to end. Funny stuff.

Off to walk the dog, then restock on local soda, get some for others, maybe pick up some Polish and/or Portuguese specialties.

Affectionately violent, violently affectionate, etc., etc. Your milage may vary.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Made spicy mac 'n' cheese, mushrooms and peppers with bacon, tasty, melded well, well received, what more could I want?

Dog feeling better, of course, & he does seem to be feeling a bit better.

Pleasure universe. OK, off to Target.
World continues wet & somber.

Spent lunch break wandering parking lots with drippy, bismuth-infused dog, back at work after construction workers were pounding violently on the wall behind my desk, working from home now.

Peretz has just wandered down to basement, making me a bit nervous.
Hectic morning, took precious cargo to orthopedist, bone still in line, she got an air cast. Got home, got Peretz to choke down some Pepto Bismol, hope it helps, poor little guy. Me, I feel just fine.

Trying to figure out what to make for dinner.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Home finishing off leftover beans 'n' rice, after that a walk with drippy dog & a trip into the wilds of Amherst with a functional lcd monitor. Exciting times, these.
Woken by desperate Peretz, out we went into the pouring rain. Another gray day, seems the world is crying, better it than me.

Cold fingers make it hard to type.

Trying to keep it all straight in my head, only place I can keep things straight, pretty much.

Would like to be writing poems, head full of stuff I need to get done at work, ick.

Ah, Planet of the Apes is on, nothing like a little historical drama.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

I really dislike being in fights. I think this is largely down to my experience of physical conflicts as a child, once engaged in one, I generally found it difficult to stop until my opponent stopped moving. This isn't a very pleasant fact, but it is one nonetheless, try very hard to avoid seeing others as my opponents, regardless of whether they see themselves that way. Makes me a bit of a mess sometimes.

Was very foggy up in Greenfield, less so here, still a little haze around the streetlights.

Hurt all over, need more water, more sleep, might manage the water if I try hard enough.

Peretz is still feeling poorly.
Boredom at work got to be too much, home feeding more squash to the dog, after that & a walk, I'm off to deliver little dumplings to my little dumpling, feebly ensconced in her high tower.

Feeding loved ones makes me feel more like myself, about time.

Wet, gray day, barely like February at all, maybe that's best.

Terribly behind at work, don't much care.
Work one long string of help help help since walking in this morning, lots to catch up on from time away, no time for it, argh, ugh, etc.

Need to go walk diarrhea dog, waiting for giant amounts of spam to get deleted first.

(whistles a little spam-deleting, dog-neglecting tune)

Monday, February 4, 2008

Her broken ankle being her clutch ankle, just back from swapping my automatic for her standard.

No longer used to driving standard, quite easy, but not used to it.

Driving home through the mixed precipitation, was trying to get used to feel of tiny car, feels like it's going faster than it is, sticks to the road less, will get used to it soon enough, I imagine.

Peretz's stomach seems to have settled down somewhat.

Going to fall asleep watching an episode of The Saint now, I think.
Exhausted, everybody's feeling lousy, about to go advocate for the continuation of an academic program about which I have serious misgivings, oy.

Place where I jabbed broken glass into my palm yesterday is aching throbbingly.


Just for good measure.

The little dear's Valentine's chapbook is coming along nicely.
Busy morning, making scrambled eggs, coffee, fizzy drinks, tidying up, etc., etc.

Peretz's upset stomach equalled multiple sleep interruptions, poor guy, still has a disturbed stomach, made him some steamed hubbard squash, he's lying like a wet rag next to me.

Need to go to meeting at Smith Voke in a while, after that, soup & game night, whee!

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Made ginger-pineapple soda/mango ice cream floats, very refreshing. Made red beans and rice burritos with shredded habaƱero cheddar, spicy, filling. Been doing a bit of a Buffy the Vampire Slayer marathon, going to move on to Woman of the Year momentarily.

Finally got around to trimming my nails, huzzah.

Peretz has a bit of an upset stomach, seems like. Lauri's tired of hopping around, can't say I blame her.
Making a ginger syrup, going to make ginger soda with it later, need to get club soda, pineapple juice, half & half, etc.

Drove a glass shard into my palm while washing dishes earlier, stopped bleeding but hurts a bit.

Sweet young thing working on Valentine's chapbook.
Back from a nice day spent off the grid in NYC, trip went surprisingly smoothly for one made with a broken-ankled better half, parked one door down from theater where 'Slugbearers of Kayrol Island' was playing, hit trendy bar restaurant down the corner for chicken & waffles, rosemary tofu skewers, hobbled back & enjoyed the performance, was really quite something.

Ended up ditching any further theatrical involvements to drive back up to Riverdale with Nancy, check in on bronchitis and bloody infected throat afflicted Henry, beers (none myself, a model of propriety), bland Thai food ordered in. Drove home late up the Merritt, loved one asleep beside me, city day with broken ankle having been a bit much, singing along to my lovely green ipod- 'she cracked, I'm sad, but I won't.' Palimpsest, reinscription, doubling.

Made french toast & bacon to make the oxycodone go down more smoothly, need to go swap tapes, recover Peretz from the kind souls tending him shortly.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Woke from dreams of lesbian wedding announcements to an an alarm I had trouble turning off, hand asleep.

Preparing for weekend trip to New York revised to day trip on account of personal injury.

Right thumb hurts. Not the injury I'm speaking of.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Went shopping, got groceries, lil' helper figurines from vending machine, more groceries, came home, made fruit salad, made breaded pork tenderloin cutlet sandwiches, going to make garlic spaghetti with broccoli raab later.

Sweet injured creature, now properly fed, sits at my kitchen table, playing Internet.
After writing that bunny dialogue, things got a little more exciting than I like for a bit. Went to work on servers that feed the poor, got call from sweet young thing in distress, had slipped on ice, heard a crack, thought her ankle might be broken, was waiting to hear back from her doctor's office, whose appointment computer was down, how many computers do I have to fix, anyway? Jeez.

Eventually she determined that her doctor couldn't work her in, went to take her to the emergency room, during preparations for departure, Pickles escaped the house, spent some time chasing Pickles, finally recovered him with the help of some meddling kids and an Irish setter, moved on to emergency room, that all went pretty smoothly, for an emergency room, ankle broken in two places, but bone not all out of line or anything, splinted and on our way. Still pretty good at the whole taking people to hospital business, I guess, who'd have thought?

Went for fish sandwiches after, not cod, but not bad.

Have set up temporary miniature one story abode in my living room for injured loved one, we're on folded out futon, playing with Internet.