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The Adirondacks!

Through the magic of technology, I'm writing this in my office on 5th Street on Thursday afternoon, but will be on a train headed north when it's published. If I can, I'll post from Westport, NY, 6 hours away, but since the only wifi is a few miles from my friend's house at the library, which is probably only open a couple hours a week, I'm not planning on it.

Back Tuesday!  Read More 
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A fun night

OK, I didn't take a photo. But the band last night was lined up just like this. They were less white & less snappily dressed too.
Five of us friends from the dojo had Ethiopian food on MacDougal Street (yum, but that spongy injera bread kept expanding in my stomach) then went to hear jazz at the Zinc Bar around the corner on 3rd St. Our dojo friend Mark plays trumpet in the band, which, we learned, doesn't rehearse. At the break I even heard two of the musicians introducing themselves. The bandleader holds up big letters so they know what section to play, either rhythm or solo, and they just do it. Pretty amazing & I think all of them surprised themselves at points. Or maybe not. Maybe they expected it to work this well. I see why pot & jazz go together—you sort of want time to stretch so you can hear everything that's going on.  Read More 
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C'mon, it's the end of August. How could I possibly have any thoughts in my head.

Jeg trenker på brannmenn hele dag.
I think about fireman the whole day.

That's what's in my head.
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Half a thought

For all the people who find out that they're (part) Jewish—Madeleine Albright, John Kerry, lots of not-famous folks—there must be some who find out they aren't Jewish, yes? All Nauens but us are not Jewish, & my dad knew very little about his family. How strange & unnerving Read More 
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So they say

William Jenkins, a North Carolina Civil War soldier, with his flintlock.
I was talking with a couple of guys about idioms & words that hold an invisible meaning, such as one of my favorite words, companion, com = with, pan = bread, so your companion is the person you break bread with.

We got going on expressions that no longer refer to anything that we know about, such as "dead as a doornail," credited to William ("Piers Plowman") Langland, 1350. Doornails were long used to strengthen doors, being hammered all the way through the board then pounded flat, bent so it would be more secure, a process called “clenching.” This rendered the nail unusable for any other purpose. Thus, the bent nail was commonly called “dead."

Here's a whole bunch more, some of which Read More 
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A gift for burning

It's a strange feeling when Johnny is working and Maggie is away. It's the same feeling when I used to drive cross-country long ago. In those days before computers & cellphones, when I would stop when I got tired or to spend the night in a town I took a shine to, I loved the lonesome feeling that no one knew where I was. I would repeat my favorite Adrienne Rich poem, "Song," from Diving into the Wreck, (which is too good to pull apart to quote from so please look it up). The joy is that I won't always be lonely.  Read More 
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Jeg snakker norsk!

Stave church in Norway, which I learned about from my language course.
Well, it's not so much that I speak Norwegian as that I am learning Norwegian. It was a random thing, as my sister turned me on to the terrific language app DuoLingo, and I lit on Norwegian. I can almost read a thriller in Norwegian so it's working. And thrilling.

You can really see the Anglo-Saxon roots of (connection to?) English in it, with many similar words, like hus/house.

I did study some Old English not long ago. Read More 
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Yankees O Yankees

It's like finding your favorite shirt in a drawer, the one you used to wear every couple of days & loved how it felt on & how you looked in it, that you somehow inexplicably forgot all about. I've been—inexplicably (not just because Jeter retired—on baseball hiatus & it took the beautiful game Tuesday to remind me of how much I've  Read More 
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Julian Bond (1940–2015)

I've been looking at the bound volume of my high-school newspaper, the Orange & Black, given to me by my journalism teacher, Miss Norman, because I was the editor my senior year. My then-boyfriend Ken, who was the Features Editor, & I drove down to Yankton, about an hour away from Sioux Falls, to hear Julian Bond speak.

I ran a full page Read More 
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Quick Tuesday note

It's my half birthday! I'm going to the ballgame! The Twins are in town! I saw Fred! I ran into Leo! I survived pilates-after-vertigo!
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