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I went on a nadventure

And saw one of my oldest & dearest friends, before she finishes moving to Switzerland. How we talked, cried, & laughed together! 

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Polar bears at the American Museum of Natural History—they figure in the movie.


Almost March & still barely any snow. So I went to see a movie called Arctic. It's man vs. the elements & I drank in that white landscape. I don't know that any of my friends (except the one who most shares my snow obsession) would much like it but I was satisfied. 


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Monday Quote

In reality, every reader, while [s]he is reading, is the reader of his[sic] own self. The writer's work is merely a kind of optical instrument, which [s]he offers to the reader to permit him[sic] to discern what, without the book, [s]he would perhaps never have seen in him[sic]self. The reader's recognition in his[sic] own self of what the book says is the proof of its truth. 

~ Marcel Proust, Le temps retrouvé


quoted by Ruth Ozeki in her wonderful & puzzling Tale for the Time Being

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Kill All Your Darlings

Tom Yemm, me on electric violin (& backup vocals), Greg Masters spotlit on percussion, & Rachel Barker (then Walling) lead singer. Not shown: Maggie Dubris, guitar & backup vocals. 


We had hot ideas but none of us were good enough musicians to execute them. After Bob Holman—the only person who didn't flee from our first gig—told us we should try not to look startled if we all ended a song together, that's mostly what we practiced.


Everyone was in a band that year (1979). 

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O joy

Definitely sparking a little contentment to have spent an hour cleaning my desk & throwing out lots of crap. It's maybe not enough for most people, but I'm good.

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Leaving the neighborhood

My reward for agreeing to a meeting way the hell uptown? This beautiful scene in Central Park after a day of gentle snow. 

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Birthday Day 2

Maybe they're right, those people who think birthdays are for kids. Mine was certainly enhanced by the participation of these two young people, who taped a banner to the stairwell to surprise me when I came over, made (sweet! yikes!) cupcakes in festive colors, & gave me two pairs of fun socks. That kind of birthday joy has worn off for me (a little!), but I got some of the magic back this afternoon. 

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Monday Quote

Me as the ghost of birthdays past. The only photo I have of me in the Birthday Hat. Out of focus cuz it's too big, but otherwise it's too small. 


I'm not a huge fan of Yeats but it's my birthday &, well, here it is. This is from a 1936 letter to the younger poet Dorothy Wellesley: 


Gogarty once describd the wit & phantasy of a friend of his calld Tancred (who was he declared a descendant of the Crusader of that name). I knew him once, he had just been received into the Catholic Church. The ceremony over, some priest asked what had led him to th truth & Tancred said "I was in the Brompton Oratory & I saw on a tablet 'Pray for the soul of Elinor de Vaux' & I thought the name so beautiful that I wantd to gain the privilege of praying for her." 

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Friday it is

Simehow, whenever I bolt out of the house early and do my grocery shopping (& today I also defrosted the freezer), i seem to have to lie down & sleep for the rest of the day. That’s where it’s at, friends. Also, I’m writing this letter by letter on my phone, just to see if I can do it. I can but will go back to using all my fingers next time. Zzzzzzzzz...........

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Johnny Johnny Johnny

The man I love. 

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Who knew? DMV Edition

Me in 1971, smiling because I love being in a car more than anywhere in the world. We were all going to Merry & BC's wedding, wearing our only fancy clothes. I had just learned to drive a stick. 

I had an appointment with my accountant a couple of blocks away & my driver's license expires on my birthday (MONDAY)—it felt great to combine two errands. I went to the DMV Express on 30th Street & was in & out in less than 20 minutes. AND everyone there was super-nice.


I asked if I could keep the old picture, which is far & away the best official photo of me ever. Chivaun glanced at it—that one from 20 years ago? Nope, you're upgrading to real ID (so I can fly with a dl) & it requires a new photo. She took a great one! She turned her screen around to show me. Wow! I said, that's great, I look like a terrorist! Her eyebrows shot up. I mean, I said, someone who would terrorize her husband but not anybody else, OF COURSE. I really just meant I looked like a wanted poster, but casual. Oh gawd now I'm probably on some damn list. 


The lady I paid wasn't as jolly. Enhanced? No, that makes me feel like I'm getting plastic surgery. 


In & out in 20 minutes! 

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Monday Quote

Every moment of one's existence one is growing into more or retreating into less. One is always living a little more or dying a little bit.
~ Norman Mailer


Isn't this the same as "he not busy being born is busy dying" from Dylan's "It's Alright, Ma (I'm Only Bleeding)"? 


And Dylan met Mailer, way back when. Did the pugilist beat the pop star? Read this terrific piece by Lucian K. Truscott IV. 

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Every improvement is a step backwards

The Authors Guild, which hosts my blog, has improved it—& parts of what they've done do make it easier. For example, adding links can be done in the text & not just as part of a photo caption.


The step backwards is that it's super-slow to load. I'm impatient at sitting here twiddling while I wait & wait.


In any event, I'm as boring as a plank these days—whenever my feet are cold, it leaches the brains right out of my head. Hoping for a surge of interests, & a faster site. 

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At the library

Epiphany Library. 

I loved this display. It shows with humor how hard librarians work: "I can't remember the title, but the cover is BLUE." 

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Sleep, sleep, beautiful sleep

Some people weren't awakened at 3:23 a.m. by someone's sudden loud music, & some people are the ones who gallop madly at 5. 


Beautiful sleep, so rich and slow,
Waiting in my warm bed clothes!
Who for such comfort would not weep?
Sleep of the evening, beautiful Sleep!

Sleep of the evening, beautiful Sleep!

Beau- ootiful Slee-eep!
Beau- ootiful Slee-eep!
Slee-eep of the e- e- evening,
Beautiful, beautiful Sleep!


Beautiful Sleep! Who cares for fish,
Game, or any other dish?
Who would not give all for counting sheep
To dozens of hours of Beautiful Sleep?
Dozens of hours of beautiful Sleep?


Sleep of the evening, beautiful Sleep!

Beau- ootiful Slee-eep! 
Beau- ootiful Slee-eep! 
Slee-eep of the e- e- evening, 
Beautiful, beautiful Sleep!

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My mincing step

My pedometer app says I walked 11,196 steps yesterday, which according to the app totaled 4.1 miles. Now, if I were walking an average stride, that should have been well over 5 miles. Do I take tiny little bound-foot steps? I didn't think so but my smartphone can't be wrong, can it? 

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Monday Quote

When we risk no contradiction

It prompts the tongue to deal in fiction.

~John Gay


I could probably post alsmost every quote I find as a rebuke to or illumination of the person currently holding the president's office.

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If you click on the caption, you can watch two teenagers try to figure out how to make a call on a rotary phone. For all the stuff a teen digital native has to show us elders, there is an equivalent in old tech that they can't fathom. So what if my mad skills—using a typewriter or an oil spout—are superannuated. We're where we're at & they won't be New Humans for the rest of their lives.


Some interesting facts from the accompanying article:
"As recently as 2004, 92.7 percent of U.S. households had a working landline and only 5 percent had only a cell phone, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's biannual National Health Interview Survey.


"By 2017, only 43.8 percent of households had a working landline and 52.5 percent were cell phone-only. The percentage with landlines has dropped an average of 3.6 percent every year since 2010, and the trend shows no signs of abating."

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Coney Island baby

We also saw a big turtle.
It's been years since I've been to the Aquarium. I'm reading What a fish knows: the inner lives of our underwater cousins, & really wanted to see some of my favorite cousins, like the wrasses, who are sometimes called the corvids of fishes: like crows & ravens, they are smart. (That sentence had 2 colons: if I wasn't done in by an early hour of hard exercise I could rewrite it, & maybe I will: later.)

We also saw sharks, tetras, mantas, sea lions, & beautiful & colorful little guys with fanciful names like clownfish ("Nemo!"), angelfish, rabbitfish, lionfish, & so many more that I don't remember.

Turns out I accidentally left this unpublished, so here it is, a couple weeks late. Read More 
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