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NauenThen

Buster, pensive

Buster always sleeps with us. He waits till I get into bed, when I click at him & a moment later, there he is, wiggling into comfort between us. When I wake up, he's usually at the end of the bed but sometimes he's on my head or pillow. 

 

Last night he didn't come when I called. He slept deep in the closet. I worry. Dante did that when he was separating from life & from us. 

 

I snuck in & gave him an appetite stimulant, & I dragged him out to give him his subcutaneous fluids. He ate (he ate!) & now he's sleeping at the edge of the closet. 

 

He doesn't look unhappy or gaunt so I'm going to believe he'll be OK for a little while longer. 

 

I love that little purring loving being. 

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Monday Quote

We were prepared to have a nurse and a servant as a necessary extravagance, but would never have dreamed of having a car. If we went to theatres it would be to the pit. I would have perhaps one evening dress, and that would be a black one so as not to show the dirt, and when we went out on muddy evenings, I would always of course, have, black shoes for the same reason. We would never take a taxi anywhere. There is a fashion in the way you spend your money, just as there is a fashion in everything. I'm not prepared to say now whether ours was a worse or a better way. It made for less luxury, plainer food, clothes and all those things. On the other hand, in those days you had more leisure–there was leisure to think, to read, and to indulge in hobbies and pursuits. I think I am glad that I was young in those times. There was a great deal of freedom in life, and much less hurry and worry. ~ Agatha Christie

 

I am thoroughly enjoying her autobiography & this passage really struck me. So true! It's an individual thing too. Everyone seems to be cheap about certain things & (willing to be) extravagant about others. I reuse plastic bags for the cat litter, X buys them. I think of myself as frugal—I don't want to replace something I needn't have thrown out. I never begrudge money I spend eating out but lots of people do. 

 

I don't know that I know what the current fashions are in spending. Maybe when I was younger & more a part of the zeitgeist. 

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OK, I may live after all

MUCH better than thinking about this dang tentacled cough is hanging out with Cousin Susan, who is related to me in the most convoluted way possible: step-half-semi-demi-hemi-ish. And yet, the bond of family is strong & we are part of each other's lives & hilarities. I'm still a bit half-masting it this week but I feel the winds of health starting to blow my way. 

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In the neighborhood

It's in the next block, so I've walked by this building probably 30,000 times (I did the math: 2x a day x 43 years in my apartment) but I never once sat at the bust stop across the street & really looked at it. See that handsome trim along the top? The rich color?

 

Every day I fall in love again with New York City. 

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Sleeping beauties

We may grow to look look our pets, but they grow to act like us. When Johnny's sleeping, so, often is Buster, & in a similar curl. 

 

Update: Sleeping beasties, Johnny just said. 

 

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Poem

Family History

 

Hybrid or multi,

what are you,

my Welsh cousin asked

Jewish/English/white/not quite

 

Dad loved being first in his precinct

let me pull the lever

to clank closed the curtain

voting was Dad at his most profound

 

he believed in voting

as immigrants do

and in America

& in what we kids could do

 

I step into the shimmering pool

but there's no water, the concrete

sides wave in sunlight through willows

what I reach for isn't there

 

 

Is this finished? I dunno. Plopping it in here in order to get some distance. 

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Monday Quote

If you can't make knowledge your servant, make it your friend. 

~ Baltasar Gracián, 17th-century Spanish Jesuit

 

Hope for the half-assed thinker! I like this. 

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I ❤️️ libraries

Right around the corner from me. 

A haven on the Lower East Side, the settlement houses were part of a reformist social movement that began in the 1880 to provide educational, recreational, and other social services to the inner city. Still going strong today!

 

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Roll over, Ike Turner

Everyone knows the first rock song was Jackie Brenston's "Rocket 88" (1951). Except that it wasn't. 

 

I'd been listening to a good bit of T-Bone Walker, which led, as these things will, to Goree Carter. I'd never heard of him but there's a good claim that his song "Rock Awhile," which came out two years before Brenston's, was really the first rock song. Take a listen & while you're at it read this terrific piece in Texas Monthly. 

 

Isn't it amazing how much great art there is? Great music, great poetry, great painting—& so much I'm lucky to stumble on. 

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The sky today

I know, I know, it's hopeless to take pictures of clouds, which never look as magnificent or sweeping in a photo as they do when you're standing on your corner, breathing (wheezing) chilly air, looking up & somehow everyone is also looking up. What are they seeing? I didn't notice that bird (gull?) till now.

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