Monday, July 29, 2013


It seems like only yesterday we were all excited about the signs of Spring. I can see autumn in the leaves already. There are a few gold and red leaves in the trees by the Middle Branch Reservoir where M and I walked Albert and ate ice cream on Friday night. 

Then last night, Sunday evening, I was driving back from Rhinebeck and getting myself lost, as I am so more than wont to do. I know that some of it was the light of the setting sun hitting the trees just right, but I swear you could see the orange and gold somehow beneath the green. I tried to photograph this, but iPhone cameras just aren't very good for long distance shots. Maybe the iPhone 5 has a better camera or maybe I should hope and pray for those add on lenses. But there are more important things to hope and pray for like figuring out my so-called life.

The first tomatoes of the year, from the Brewster Farmer's Market.
i have been kind of quiet. I'm not terribly depressed or anything, just moody. If I wait long enough, the dips of feeling smooth out a bit. There is some strange irony or something in the current fact that after decades of loving to go to bed and sleep, I very nearly rue that time in the evening (getting to be about now). As soon as the lights go off, the circus of rumination and self-recrimination begins. I doze or fall asleep, only to wake repeatedly. I know I should just taking the sleeping helpers, but, for some reason, I resist.

And so tomorrow or rather Wednesday begins one of life's big adventures for me. An old high-school bff, LD, who I have not seen since I was about 20, is flying here from San Clemente, California to catch up with me!! I was able to put a relative date on our last seeing one another by realizing we had never had a legal drink together. And that has been a long while. I imagine we will make up for that in short order.

LD and I were the theater gals. She played the lead role of Emily in Thornton Wilder's Our Town. We must have been in plays together, but I have not been able to remember what they were or what roles she played. But we were running buddies for a good couple of years. She bought a used Fiat and we were going to drive up to San Francisco together, but I think  her danged parents objected. 

LD stayed around the LA area and went to CalState Fullerton. I left Dodge for UC Santa Cruz and the life of dissolution known so well to many of you. But I am beyond delighted, feeling somehow blessed, that LD wants to reconnect in person. And is putting her money and her time where her mouth (heart?) is. We are going to crash in Rhinebeck and tool around the Catskills for a day and head up to Schroon Lake, where I take all of my favorites.

And for anyone in my Brothers K watch, not even dragging my visual feet anymore, but it IS a slow read.

Hey do you all know about the Kopecky Family Band? I think they are kind of cool.

This is our most viable tomato. I probably won't be around to eat any of it.

Like Albert, like Emmylou.

Saturday, July 27, 2013


Brewster train station.

Yesterday, I stopped for a flock of wild turkeys and their progeny to cross the road. It was pretty cute. And there were a lot of them. I was coming around the corner and saw one, then another, pop its head out of the bushes and then rush across the street to more foliage. Cars piled up behind me.

Days later.

And then yesterday on the train, I saw a crane take flight. Now that was cool. And for a moment, my spirits took flight took. Although, of course, that didn't last too long. 

But I do so love taking the train. And Grand Central never fails to please me. I used to walk through every day as I lived on the West Side and worked on the East, and I felt a little thrill each day when I walked through the main room.

It's a beautiful day thus far. I woke up with Cooder purring on the pillow in the crook of my arm, which tells you it is bearably warm, and Emmylou farkeling around near my feet. I am going to see if I can make it to the Brewster Farmer's Market in a couple of minutes, so this will be short.

For those on you on The Brothers Karamazov watch, I am more than halfway through and it is, finally, picking up some interest, now that it is a police procedural. I have until the end of the month to read the rest and now I can take some time to read other stuff. At the meeting of the Kermit Place Readers, Sharon and I lead the pack of not liking the book, although as usual, we found we were somewhere near agreement.

I even found some time to read The New Yorker, something I dearly love to, but rarely do. Adam Gopnik ("Swoon. My hero.") had an article about Edmund Burke. Anything Adam writes, I can read. ... (Wish he would rewrite The Brothers Karamazov... just kidding). There were a lot of interesting points and I hope I get to discussing them here, but here's one for starts. 

"To make anything very terrible, obscurity seems in general to be necessary. When we know the full extent of any danger, when we can accustom our eyes to it, a great deal of the apprehension vanishes."
Edmund Burke.

Not sure I have become accustomed to the terrors of my life situation, (NOT my living situation). 

At any rate, in the annals of obnoxious New York insanely self-absorbed lunacy, (not strictly just about New York), testicles now and testicle grooming now have a store. 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013


A lily from down the street.
Why why why? Will you just tell me? Please? Why after a day of being well-behaved and moderate food intake do I have a snack late that wrecks my good effort AND makes me feel crappy. It isn't as if I just ate pure junk, in this case I had great aged cheddar and multi-seed rice crackers, but I probably ate too many crackers. Yuk. Sigh. I should have gone to bed hours ago

Yeah. It is 12:47 a.m. and I am still roaring. Or really just addictively listening to the lectures for the second part of The History of Rock. I need to stop and go to bed. Or I should be reading the damn Brothers K. (Two days left, 85 pages to get to the Kermit Place Reader agreed-upon stopping place.) Okay, I am stopping after this lecture. Tomorrow, punk!

And by the way, I did NOT fail the first part of this course, notwithstanding the fact that I missed a quiz, 25% of the final grade. I passed by one point. And saved face amongst my friends and peers.
Cooder's paws, no claws presented.

Earlier, but the next night.

I was up pretty darn late. And I did sleep in a bit. However, Cooder was with me and that makes nearly for a special occasion. And it wasn't stupid hot. All these things combined did not entice me to jump out of bed in a carpe diem frame of mind.

But I got through the day. 

It is that beautiful, magical time of a summer night. Almost cool. Intermittent fireflies. But I need to climb into bed so that I can get up in the morning and try to get to the city to have lunch with W and one of the Bs. And I am almost where I supposed to be with The Brothers Karamazov.

I can't say that it is not hard for me these last few days. Tonight, I used my best knife and cut myself. Hmm ... was I so spacey it was a bad choice to begin with. The knife was very sharp and I barely grazed myself. And I consider myself fortunate that I don't cut myself very often (I do try to be careful). Not to worry. I was right by the sink, cleaned it out in a jiff, found some a band-aid easily, and was back to work in no time ... and I was not all that far along in dinner prep.

Sigh. That's what I am doing now. The dumps. That's where I am. Sighing in the dumps on a beautiful summer night. 

Our first calla lily.

Heart art.


I didn't wake up in the best of moods this morning. I know. You've heard that before. I got a text from Iris.

I: How r u?
SA: Lost. Sad. Disappointed. Fearful. Confused.

And there you go. Then I stumbled onto Jeff Nunokawa's FB post of this morning.

4437. "Faults are unhappy virtues" (L. Feuerbach)

July 23, 2013 at 4:23am
Faults are unhappy virtues--virtues that lack only the opportunity to show themselves as such ("Characteristics of My Philosophical Development").

Even unhappiness itself can learn to become a kind of virtue: intent on getting past all the fault lines to let the unhappiness of others know that it's never really alone.
Note: bound up with another . . . life (George Eliot, Middlemarch)

Faults are something I muse on often. I feel as if I have more than my share. Mine are insidious, to me, at least. Or some of them are quite surprising to me. Dismay dismay dismay. 

Later I came across this Stephen Jay Gould quote:

The most erroneous stories are those we think we know best -- and therefore never scrutinize or question.


I tried applying this to myself. Things I believe to be true about myself. All this in an effort to understand where I am, what is going on with me, and how to get somewhere else. Many times this seems an impossible task, an insoluble query.

Did you know this:

A study this year found that people reading on a screen tended to skip around more and read less intensively, and plenty of research confirms that people tend to comprehend less of what they read on a screen. The differences are small, but they may explain the persistent appeal of paper. Indeed, hardcover sales rose last year by a hundred million dollars.

I think this might be a picture of my psyche.

Monday, July 22, 2013


It IS cooler today. The sky has been overcast and there were signs of actual wetness on the ground this evening. Neither M in Chappaqua nor I heard or saw it rain so draw your own conclusions.

Today was a procrastination day. I did get some work done, but I did, yet again, not make the kind of progress on anything I had hoped to. And I ate too many pretzels in procrastination stress. 
Bertha, the aged window fan.

The (slightly) cooler weather and my recent absence have made the kittens very friendly. Cooder even indulged me in some actual cuddling. 

I might be a little depressed. It could be the heat, but I am, at the very least, out of sorts. And stressed. I know it is kind of silly but I am feeling the pressure of reading that damn book. It is casting a pall over my mental state. Is it unspeakably lame to be stressing about failing to complete a self-appointed task? Who am I disappointing, me or the Kermit Place Readers? Or both. I want to have read it, and I am fairly likely to enjoy a Kermit Place Readers discussion, but boy do I have a challenging (and failing) time reading much of it.

Cooder chillin' again on the SIP.
This is one of those times where I feel as if there are brain cells and energy being siphoned off for some other use, like a computer render farm or something. Simple, superficial tasks can be accomplished, but the big thinking is getting used up.

And then there is the "not running on a smooth current" feeling wherein I am not sure of my energy or focus level from minute to minute. Ah well.

Perhaps this is nothing that another night of good sleep cannot cure. Wait. I can't follow the double negatives there (see! too "processor" intensive) ... I did wake up several times in the night, groggily, yet decidedly miserable about life. But I was able to fall back asleep instead of too much tossing and turning. So, yes, I am grateful for that.

If only I could get her to relax.

Sunday, July 21, 2013


Emmylou, Albert, and I are already in the cold bunker, which is what I call the two rooms of the house that we air condition. Emmy and Albert take turns laying near the actual unit. It's 80 degrees at 8:31, expected to climb to 95, which is pretty damn hot. Sigh. I should probably go run my errands (TJ, library ...) or start the wash but I mostly feel like a mid-morning nap. But I can smell the coffee on the stove, so maybe that will help. 

One of the first things I have to do when I have been gone this long, other than clean the litter box, is to comb the cats who rather fall apart from not getting their usual manhandling from me. Cooder is worse than Emmy in this respect, not the least because no one else can really pet her all that much. She has been very happy to see me, drooling and purring with her pets this morning. For a change, she seemed happier about the pets than the Greenies. 

Ah well. I need to soldier on as tomorrow I head down to Brooklyn again for my last two scheduled Celebrate Brooklyn shows. I will catch up with John and Mel and see my friend Marilyn (one of the Marilyns) who is in from LA. That will be lovely as always.

So, this is from a couple of days ago. Been to Brooklyn and now back in Brewster. A bit tired, a bit vacant, a bit head-achey. But generally okay. Just not fired up about writing this minute. 

And besides The Brothers K calls! You will all be so glad when I am done yammering about this. J brought home a new book for me/us Jane Austen's England, which is very delectable and inviting. 

Marilyn and I were so beyond Caught in the Rain at Celebrate Brooklyn. I kept thinking of the Dan Hicks and HIs Hot Licks song, but I could find neither a you tube upload nor a lyrics sheet, so we'll all have to remember as best we can. 

Wednesday, July 17, 2013


Pottersville, where I hung out on Sunday.
Albany-Renssalaer Rail Station
1:19 pm.

Yes, indeed, I am homeward bound. MOZ and Deb dropped me off about 45 minutes ago and I have a bit of a while to wait for the next train. This is fine as it is crazy hot, 95 degrees outside, and it is pleasantly cool in here. As long as there is wi-fi and my laptop is charged, I have plenty to do to entertain myself. 

Deb asked what I was going to do when I got home and at first I rattled off a list. Now, I am pretty sure I am going to sleep. By the time I get to Rhinecliff, get a cab over to Rhinebeck, and get on the road again, I imagine I will not be getting home until 5 or so. 

And oh! what a time we all had in Schroon Lake! Not surprising to me, MOZ and Deb and Larry and Liz and Jane hit it off splendidly, so, as MOZ said, our tribe expanded a bit. Larry ended up working on Monday so I lazed around, as I am wont to do, napping, reading, a bit of graphic novel work, and obsessively watching Orange is the New Black on my iPhone. When MOZ and Deb showed up, hot from a seven-hour drive, they were eager to cool off. So we ... Went. In. The. Lake!!! Whooo.

Having been coming here for the past four years, that I had never been in the lake is a bit surprising. Oh goodness. Was I missing something. The water was just fantastic, warm, clean, soft, ... aye! aye! aye! I love lake swimming and this is just a stellar lake with a nice sandy bottom and potable water. 

First we had some appetizers at Mr. P's Mountain Smokehouse while Larry and Liz sold tickets and got the film going. Actually, we had some Black Raspberry Merlot before we went out. I had gone to the Farmer's Market that morning where I scored some cheese, some Mrs. London's pastries, and the merlot. Yummmmmmmmm ... I think Deb and Moz were suitably impressed with the quality of food and drink. We had dinner at the newly opened Sticks and Stones. That place was good enough that I was there three days out of five.

Tuesday we all (except for Liz who was at work already) had breakfast at the Morningstar so that I could work and have a latte. Then Larry had to head out to work. We walked around, visited the Towne Store, and hit the lake, of course. MOZ and Deb went to visit Larry's place of employment, Railroads on Parade, and I indulged my Netflix sickness, took a nap, and did some work. When MOZ and Deb came back we drank some champagne and ... wait for it ... went into the lake. Ah ... cool water.

Here I am detailing this. Really we were on vacation. No thinking involved. And not very much work for me. Perhaps I will attempt a bit more analysis when I am a bit further away. Still stupid and relaxed and waiting for a train. 

Working on The Brothers K. 
Jane, as ever, interested in food.

There are three powers, only three powers on earth, capable of conquering and holding captive forever the conscience of these feeble rebels, for their own happiness—these powers are miracle, mystery, and authority.

Fyodor Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov

Monday, July 15, 2013


Schroon Lake, 10:26 a.m.

It's so hot already that, even though I am sitting next to a gently blowing air conditioner, there is a bead of sweat slipping down my spine. And I am wearing as few clothes as the general public would allow. It's 85 degrees and no rain today. Larry thinks it is humid, but I just think that is ambient moisture from being close to the lake.

As usual, sitting at Miriam's Morningstar Crepe Cafe, after having had breakfast with Larry who is out hob-or-naybobbing around. Holly, the popcorn worker, was sick last night, so I got to sell tickets. (Liz sold the popcorn instead of tickets as I don't know how to make the popcorn.) It was kind of fun. One really gets a sense of what the social scene is here. After the movie, folks gather in front of the theater to chat about the movie. 

Today, it is back to the graphic novel, maybe make some headway in The Brothers Karamazov (sigh), and test drive the audio-visual room with the new television.

So, I'll leave this one short.

Sunday, July 14, 2013


... (instead of Netflix)

Schroon Lake, NY

I just really like it here. I get here and relax. The stars last night were stunning in their clarity; I absolutely gasped when I looked up. No sirens no trains, just plain old quiet. 

The next day.

Yesterday, Larry and I went to a pretty cool barn sale, but it started a light rain so we didn't hang out very long. Larry worked on the theater and I took a very long nap. After the nap, I worked on the graphic novel for a bit, but felt stuck, so I took my putative 5x-per-week-30 minute walk down to the lake edge. I chatted with ma mere and then called Louise for some Monsterwood consultation.

Larry had to work today at the train museum, Railroads on Parade, so Liz, Jane, and I are hanging out at the cabin in Pottersville. Liz is resting and getting ready for another intense week. I addictively watched another two episodes of Orange is the New Black, and took a nap, (bien sur!). I am now sitting on the Pottersville screened-in-porch trying to wake up and to catch up. I need to be reading The Brothers Karamazov as I am far behind, and I am kind of stuck in the writing. It is lovely to be protected from the mosquitos who are drooling outside the screens like vampires waiting to be asked in. And to listen to the river and smell the soft pine breeze. But it is an overcast day.

Some little "bird" put Eddie Rabbit's song, Love A Rainy Night, in my head! I have this dim memory that Eddie Rabbitt was a dj, maybe on KROQ, back in the early 1970s, but I can find no confirmation of this. Nope, that was Jimmy Rabbitt. And the only reason I can remember that is he played Fleetwood Mac's Go Your Own Way about 10 times in a row when that album (Rumors) came out. I can relate to that kind of obsessive behavior.

I am slightly out-of-sorts but that might be the relaxation, the (momentary) stress about the graphic novel writing knot, or the six delicious chocolate chip cookies that Liz fed me. Haven't had much else to eat today except for a little bit of oatmeal and some vanilla yogurt. 

Sorry you can't quite see the river or better yet hear it.

Okay, it time to either read or write! Tomorrow, MOZ and Deb!

P.S. For the interested parties, here is the website of the Monsterwood graphic novel illustrator:

Friday, July 12, 2013


The Emmylou I left behind me. Yes, she is as cute and sweet as she appears.

Still listening to Calexico, weeks later. Two Silver Trees. You know how a song, even if you don't know the lyrics, can just get stuck on mental replay. I wonder what emotional notes this song is hitting for me this summer. False economies ... no, just checked the lyrics, it's false identities ... hmm ... there's some spying and such going on in this song ... the NSA zeitgeist ... at any rate ...

I am writing and posting from the Amtrak train as I head up to the Adirondacks for five days. Amazingly, I was able to get up at 6:00 a.m. and drive to Rhinebeck where Louise and I had coffee and then over to Rhinecliff to catch the train. I am getting off in Schenectady where Larry will meet me. On Monday, MOZ and Deb are driving in from Cape Cod, so that will be some fun. The Strand is showing that new Brad Pitt movie so I guess I will see that, too.

A made it to Akron last night. She sent us a little movie of the road, which was sweet. I hung around with Cooder and Emmylou yesterday, giving them a bunch of catnip and pets. I do so dislike leaving them. 

Now we are in Albany for a bit. They always stop here for a bit. I imagine the train will fill up as this is the daily train up to Montreal. Yep. The engine is even turned off. The internet is still on, but the 'lectricity is off.

Anywho, anything intelligent or significant has left my mind. I am going to see if I can't make some progress in the graphic novel. Working on the train is kind of fun. Wish I had brought my better earphones. Hmm ... Amtrack blocks youtube.

At least the weather is bettah.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013


Cooder cooling out on the SIP.
I love a good nap. Sometimes it's the only thing that gets me out of bed in the morning.
- George Costanza, Seinfeld

Napping is kind of sacrament in my family, although, come to think of it, I am not sure my brothers practice it that often. I didn't get much of one today, although I tried a couple of times. We are all part cat in my family, I think.

The weather was intense and changeable today, going from clear to rainy to near foggy heat. It has cooled off for the moment, now. But I am still sticky.

There's a pervasive sadness around here, a gentle, maybe wistful sadness, but still we know that A and E are both leaving in a couple of days. They will be very missed. M, A, E, and I sat on the screened-in porch after dinner (fresh pesto made by M!) played a card game called Shithead. A & E killed us. We listened to Marvin Gaye's Greatest Hits and all danced in our chairs as we crooned and tried to crush one another in cards.

I had occasion to correspond with one of my long-distance, long time mixer friends on FB this evening. Somehow we got to chatting about Aimee Mann and I sent him this clip of I've Had It, which I have a tendency to listen to repeatedly. I think reading the lyrics and listening is best. 

We made it down to New York
with everything intact
but as for getting back -
it was Boo who made the joke,
they don't give you any hope
but they'll give you plenty of rope
And Dan came in from Jersey
he went to get the drums
and if Buddy ever comes
we can get it off the ground
I hope someone's coming down
'else I can't see hanging around

Oh, experience is cheap
if that's the company you keep
and a chance is all that I need
and I've had it
I've had it

So we all just started playing
and then something strange occured -
not a person stirred
oh, it started out one way
but it turned out to be okay
and I felt that someone should say -

Oh, experience is cheap
if that's the company you keep
and before you know that it's free
you've had it

Like most amazing things
It's easy to miss and easy to mistake
For when things are really great
It just means everything's in its place
When everything was over
and we loaded up the van
I turned and said to Dan,
Dan, I guess this is our prime
like they tell us all the time
weren't you expecting some other kind?

Oh, experience is cheap
if that's the company you keep
but I'll never get that disease
'cause I've had it
I've had it 

Anyway, maybe this is jejune, but I think it says a few things. I know I was certainly expecting some other kind of "prime" ... And it sure seems we were promised something else than what this country is about these days.

I've had a headache for the last couple of hours, likely because I keep losing my glass of water and therefore am not drinking it. 

Okay, Cooder is here for her Greenies and I need some analgesic and real sleep. The kitties and Albert will be sad when I go away for a week as the porch will be closed more often. 

Whatever it takes to get cool.

Monday, July 8, 2013

1 + 1 AIN'T 2

Mexican day lily. I guess they meant it only lasts a day.
Ah hell. Maybe it is just time to cry. There have been tear flurries since the pageant of Mary's passing, but the waterworks have mostly been on drizzle. Now, though, I am writing a difficult email in an important relationship that I think should be on hold. (On a cheerier note, Cooder just walked into the room ... at 2:00 in the afternoon, which must mean the weather is somewhat cooler. Is it just checking-in pets ... she is marking my laptop with her face as I type ... or is it [more likely] greenies time?)

So, the old Bertha fan is in the living room window. This keeps this room a bit cooler. I can see A packing her car for the move to Arizona and this, too, hit me with some sadness. Pretty scary and brave to be driving across country for a new job. She's a practical kid, full of good sense, so I am sure she will be fine, do well, and all that, but she won't be around as much. I can only imagine how her parents feel if I am so sad.

Sensibly, Cooder has ensconced herself on the Stickley reproduction rocking chair that she has called her own for many years (just one of a couple of rocking chairs known as hers). This gives me an opportunity to make my bed and vacuum my room, which sorely needs it. And then maybe I will take one of my not-happening-yet-five-times-a-week walk.

I was able to check in with John today, who is dealing with the myriad of issues in his mother's estate. Lots of red tape and I would imagine realization kinds of things setting in. 

Here's a small tidbit of more positive moi-news. Notwithstanding this brutal heat, I have been able to sleep without medication these last couple of nights. And not just unmedicated sleep, un-air-conditioned sleep! I have woken up a few times, and the usual spectre of middle-of-the-night-bummerness-and-night-misery was available, but I avoided for the most part.

I got this email in response to my Night Humming post:

it sometimes goes from little victories (if you want to call them that) to microscopic victories and I am learning to take that

been very much in deep mind lately pondering "What's it all about Alfie?" stuff

due to who knows?  the book I just finished (Information by James Gleick) or the one I'm just immersed in (The Exegesis of Phillip K. Dick, an incredibly dense book that I can read a paragraph or two or a page and stop and go Whew!!) 

the philosophy of religion class, your blog postings of late, remembering to remember, waking up earlier, an ecstatic dance camp I attended with Deb, new synth app that blows the mind (Alchemy), the music I'm learning from YouTube (Nick Drake), the new age/ambient stuff I'm listening to now (and often)

 who knows, 

but lately I'm feeling I've found a thread that I'm pulling on but rather than unravelling it seems like I've hooked some metaphysical fish that is pulling me in.  Very interesting.  People are asking why I am unusually quiet of late.

This is why

But it's hard to say that to someone and not feel too precious or self involved

I guess I've rhetorically asked myself Go Figure! so often that I have gone ahead to figure

I've brought along my own personal calculus and right now 1+1 ain't =2



Fig. 1 - Metaphysically balanced.

Sunday, July 7, 2013


In the midst of all this madness, I missed a quiz for my Coursera course of The History of Rock, and I think I won't pass the class. Which is more funny than anything else to me. I did well on all the quizzes, but I missed the deadline for a quiz due to the emotional fracas around. Oh well. I have started another class about the veracity of photography or the image, but I have only listened to the first week and I will have some catching up to do.

Another remarkably hot day. I again rotated between the porch and the air conditioned area. It's just muggy enough to stop one in one's tracks. And make one very very stupid. 

All in all, a quiet day. I wasn't able to get in touch with John, who is working on the Holbrook house by himself. Mel was back at work and had a stellar day financially.

I had a rough night, psychologically, last night, but did finally fall asleep. The litany of failure, fear, and regret is so familiar these nights. Having the slightest bit of hope and/or patience is a challenge in itself. But of what use is the song of misery I at least hum to myself at these times. It is hard to know there is any "use" to these internal conversations. Do I generate them or are they "spontaneous"? Is it reality? 

Well, clearly, I am wandering off into topics I am far too hot and sleepy to do any justice to, so I will just try to see if sleep visits me easily.

I was greeted this morning with two beautiful blooms I was not expecting from the Mexican Day lilies. It was pretty hot out there, so I am not sure if they will survive until tomorrow for a possible photo op.

Friday, July 5, 2013


Mary's lily garden.
This particular heat seems disinclined to let up. Even at 11:11 p.m., it is still uncomfortably clammy outside. Hence, I am sitting, yet again, in the air conditioned room. I could have likely lived without it today, but I did take advantage quite a bit. I rather rotated between my very hot desk, the screened-in-porch, and the air conditioning. The screened-in-porch does get WiFi, but not as strong or consistently as I might like. So I found myself back on the couch in the cool.

While I did my usual curation gig, I did get caught up on some tv. I had heard good reviews of the new CBS show Under the Dome, and decided to watch, notwithstanding any incredulity I might have had. And it was mostly stupid, but there were enough compelling elements to make me watch both episodes. Orphan Black on BBC America also has some tour-de-force acting and some good plot elements, so I finished out that season. And I am keeping up with Borgen, the Danish political drama airing on KCET and available on-line. Unfortunately, KCET only keeps two episodes at a time, and we are on to episode eight, so you all missed it. But, particularly you females and politics hounds out there, keep your eyes open for it.

And there you have it. A day hot enough to make you cranky every un-air-conditioned breath you take. 


Back on the Port Jefferson-Bridgeport Ferry heading back to Brewster. It may be hella-warm but at least it is clear and I have hopes that the drive back will not be as confusing and harrowing as the one out here. The ferry is fairly empty, which was surprising both to me and the folks at the ticket office. The weather is so nice after several days of unpleasantness that people are making the most of it.

It looks so damned ATLANTIC over here, which I know it should. But I am such a Western girl, even after all these years (20 in December, save for a return sojourn to Berkeley for 20 months), that this environment still feels quite exotic to me.

Port Jefferson ferry pier.

John, Mel, and I grilled last night: some chicken and pork chops, and kind of everything else I could find from the post-viewing spread. I even grilled some pickles and they were not bad. The hit of the evening were the grilled sweet potatoes, which I cut into French fry shape, coated with olive oil and garlic, and then grilled. Simple and quite quite good. Next time I will get some kind of screen that keeps any of them from falling through the grill, but we did pretty well.

I also made sangria from the left over fruit and chardonnay sitting around. I guess I mentioned that yesterday. After dinner and after I wrote my post and Mel and John played with fireworks and watched the stars and fed the mosquitos, we just lazed around the living room, chatting and quaffing and listening to Calexico. An oasis of normality or emotional calm in the midst of the squalls of reality (you can tell I am on the water; when else have I used the word “squalls”?).

Well, I should do a little work on the graphic novel as I haven’t attended to it since Monday and I would like to be halfway through by this coming Monday. I started reading Tom Bissell’s Magic Hours in the hopes of finishing it soon. I was thinking about Mary at sixteen and her mother coming to the USA in 1938 and wishing I had spoken to her at greater length about her experiences. But this quote from Bissell seemed most appropriate:

Of that time, there is still much we do not know.”

Mary's grape vine over arbor.

And, not so germane, but interesting:

An artist can respect the backfield of fact before which every human being stands and choose not to address those facts.

Sounds very much like the philosophy of one of my dearest and proudly Jesuitical  friends.

Mary's arbor.

Emmylou AND Cooder were so happy to see me! They are both curled up near me at my desk. i have been gone for the better part of the week, but I am here until next weekend, I think. Nice to welcomed.