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November 17th, 2006

split screen musing



I read this week about how the satellite that circles Mars and maps Barsoomian wastes lost touch with Earth at last, a decade after its two-year mission began. I love the happy-ending space science, when things Hubble along grandly despite obstacles, wear and tear. So much of the day to day seems like science fiction tonight. I watched a music video of a friend's song which someone had created with the freeware animation program Blender. The resulting video was 3 and a half minutes of professional animation, featuring plot, great characters, and lots of cool little design touches. It makes me feel good, somehow, to know that someone did that at home (*do try this at home, children, it's harmless fun not limited to professionals*).

I lift my teleidoscope up to the mirror (still sporting its price tag, $ .92), and render myself prismatic. I wonder, sometimes, about the many roles and faces that people wear and play. A lot of folks feel a division--wife, mother, father, son, boss, employee, friend, acquaintance. I am not so much that way. I think I accept that I am so many things, and yet one thing, and yet nothing at all, and yet, in a way, almost everything I know.

We watched the public television special about Annie Oakley the other night,and I mused about how much we create our own mythos. I think that sometimes the goal is not to avoid such creations--although that has a certain zen appeal--but to create the right mythos. An authentic story, more than a "happy ending", may make the best life novel--and yet happiness can be awfully authentic, too, and the dualism between "real" and "faux" need not break down on happiness/unhappiness lines.

I like the way I constantly map ideas, like those google things in which one pushed the arrow, and the map shifts. So many contours we bear and share--the inevitable fractal of living. I wish I may, I wish I might, explore another surface tonight.

Clouds--Blue



Lately I visualize a kind of Norman Rockwell moment. An open field. A sunny afternoon. Deep grass, punctuated by the tasty-yet-poison fronds of jimson weed. Warmth as if the world were a hot plate, a process of slow but pleasant baking. The lifting of weight--up from shoulders, up into the sky. A Cold War sky, a sky that will one day rain bombs but today features clouds. Endless clouds. Clouds punctuated by blues. Blue clouds punctuated by whites. Last night the sky had red fronds--sailor's delight. I visualize lying in a yard, staring up into clouds, as surely as I'll later stare up at the moon or the constellation in Orion through a plastic reflecting telescope purchased from a J.C. Penney catalog. The quick sliver-whisper of a fighter jet on maneuvers. The sound of barking dogs, chasing cars. The fellow across the street, a little older, who hoarded fireworks like kruggerrands. An era when Jonny Quest was truly frightening and global war was merely inevitable. The taste of pecans which fell from huge trees, thick non-paper-shell specimens from a time when good things required work to discover. Drainage ditch creeks with mosquito fish. Bats on July nights. Baseball games in Babe Ruth Leagues with concession stands in which mustard competed with chili on the hot dogs. Men named Dub, boys named Tiger. Mini-skirts and letter jackets. Soul music oozing from car speakers. Keys left in cars overnight. The plastic-wonder feel of a cheap football. The smell of burning trash, burning leaves. The thermonuclear explosion of aerosol cans burning. Bacon-fishing for crayfish. Bicycle rides on banana seat flyers. The sound of flipping baseball cards as bike wheels spun. The barber passes out Bazooka Joe bubble gum. Twenty five cent milkshakes. Clouds--blue, and white, and gray, and black--and always tinged with a kind of moving joy and sadness all combined, pulse-red.

beanight

Tonight the very mildly chilly weather turned very mildly mild.



I put the leash on young Bea and stalwart Teddy, and we intrepidly walked in the darkness to our favorite Glendover Pond.

Dogs have an inherent advantage during such walks, as their sense of smell seems to aid them in night walks far more than my sense of stars.

We saw no leonid shooting stars, though we did see a basset hound which caused Teddy and Bea to see stars.

Then my wife and I sat down to a dinner of mahi mahi cooked with cherry tomatoes and a very green cooked spinach.

I see that November is nearly over, and yet I am still 180 points from my goal of having a blitz chess rating at the Free Internet Chess Server of 1600 by 12/31/06. I must either have a winning streak, or face up to my limitations. I plan to stay the course.

I received in the mail my eBay purchase of the Japanese film "after life". I had wanted to see this in the theater when we lived in Los Angeles, many moons and a governor or two ago. I could never remember its name--but then I did, and now I have it, and I will watch it, and I'm in Heaven.