Saturday, September 15, 2012

Thank Yous and Odds and Ends

Photo: Rick, with a customer, from Pawn Stars, on

--Just read a poem by a Goodreads friend.  At the end of the poem, the bomb-diffuser unfortunately sets off the bomb, and the poem ends with a thrice-repeated "silence."  (It's a good poem, so read it here.)  Anyway, the question I raised was: Would the bomb expert even hear the explosion before he died, since he's leaning right over the thing?  My comment was this:

"Only caveat is the blast at the end, followed by the silence. Since I'm expecting the blast--cuz my glass is always half empty, and damn that glass anyway--I'm not as surprised when it comes. (Of course there'd be silence, both existential and literal, afterwards.) I'd have been more surprised if the blast had not come, and there'd been just the thrice-repeated silence. In fact, that repetitive silence would be open for even more interpretation. After all, would the bomb-diffuser with the pliers even hear the explosion if there was one, as he'd die immediately since he's leaning right over it? Seems to me that he'd get all silence, either way."

I suppose this is a tree falling in the forest question, but I'm still interested in my readers' responses to this.  Read the poem and comment here, should the feeling strike you.

--Thanks, everyone, for giving this blog over 12,000 pageviews in about a year and a half.  For a blog with just one picture and some text, that's not bad at all.  Quite a mystery, in fact.  Even more mysterious is how my Redroom blog (link in the header) has had over 25,000 pageviews in just under a year, with pretty much the same material.  That one's been getting about 200 pageviews a day lately.  So I thank you all for making this writer feel like he's being read.

--Hello, The Monica.  And my 29 other Followers.  I appreciate you all stopping by.

--Speaking of glasses being half-empty, I recently explained the definition of the word "morbid" like this: "You know how negative people think the glass is always half-empty?  Well, a morbid person has a dark, negative attitude about the existence of the glass itself."  This was met with nods of understanding.

--The new book in the Jesse Stone series, Fool Me Twice, is a good, quick read, as I read it in just a few hours.  Having said that, I can't say much more positive about it, since the plot is a rehash of Parker's Looking for Rachel Wallace (with somewhat the same result for the characters), and the dialogue is almost stolen from Parker's style cabinet, but without the wit and flair.  I read it like I put on last year's professional wardrobe.  Quickly, without effort, appreciating the comfort, but still wondering why I'm still wearing it.

--What do I have at Fenway that the Red Sox don't?  A winning record for this season.

--I've never eagerly anticipated a manager's dismissal before this year.

--It's been getting cooler and the leaves are turning red, for those of you in New England who haven't noticed.  I'm closing the pool this weekend.

--And you have to order Octoberfest instead of Summer Ale around here.  Every year, this is the real change of the seasons for me.  And I don't remember a turnover as soon as this.  Usually they wait until the 20th or so of September.  Not this year.  When the Sox suck, it's not summer anymore, so the vendors say bye-bye to the Summer Ale.  This is an actual philosophy of mine.  Had the Sox made the playoffs, I'd still be seeing Summer Ale around here.  I swear.

--Since recovering from an illness that had nothing to do with my sinuses, I'm breathing better and sleeping like a normal person.  Odd.

--My hammock and I have become good friends.  Brand new.  Tightly-woven rope.  Yard sale, twenty bucks.

--Fall is Brandi Carlile weather.  Hearing her voice is like seeing rock walls and falling leaves.  Listening to her now.  Her latest CD is nowhere near as good as her previous stuff, but it's growing on me.  I don't care if listening to a female folk singer makes me sound like a wussy man.

--I've been in the habit lately of leaving my clothes in the dryer so long that they get very wrinkly, and so I have to throw them back in and put it on wrinkle guard.  And then I let it all sit again.  You get tired.

--Recently I've wondered: If Jesus is God, Eternal and Omniscient, how could Judas have betrayed him?  How can an all-knowing being be betrayed, by definition?  I learned recently that the original text uses a word that probably means "brought to" or "turned over" instead of "betrayed."  I'm just sayin'.  Consider.  I wish I could read Aramaic, Hebrew and Greek.  It's not that I don't trust anyone or anything--it's just that I don't trust anyone, or anything.

--A friend of mine watches Hoarders because she says it makes her feel better about her life.  I can kind of see this, but whenever I watch it, I want to sob openly, or vomit.  These people aren't slobs or clutterbugs--they're mentally ill.  I have papers all over my office, but I'm not pooping and peeing on my stereo speakers.

--Not that I'm so old or uncool that I even have stereo speakers.

--Almost time again for Boardwalk Empire and The Walking Dead.  A friend of mine had a great point about the latter: Whenever a character has to go, bring on a deus ex machina zombie.

--Watching Pawn Stars is like watching American Pickers, except that you see even more awesome historical stuff on Pawn Stars.  But they're both sad, in a way.  People in Pickers are often old, and/or dying, or sad, lonely guys who amass a ton of garbage because they're without female companionship (a chicken and egg question there).  People in Pawn Stars have to pawn off awesome things because they're so broke, they have no choice.  Rick pays great prices to people we see on camera, but you know he's severely underpaying many others.  The whole point of a pawnshop is that you're so desperate for cash that you know you're going to get fleeced--and you don't care because you need the money that badly.  They're wisely editing out the gambling addicts, who need to sell off anything at all so they can gamble away their mortgage payments and kids' college tuitions (they're on the Vegas Strip, after all); they're also wise to edit out the junkies who come in to pawn off their mother's jewelry or their kids for their next quick fix.

--(Kind of a glass is half empty sort of day, apparently.)


  1. When I was a kid, my family wasn't fortunate enough to own a dryer. We had a washing machine, but had to dry our clothes hanging from a clothes line. Nowadays I have to trek all the way out to the laundromat to wash my clothes. So yes sir I consider a dryer to be a luxury along with a dish washer. Growing up poor in the city puts things in perspective. I actually take pleasure out of removing the clean, warm, dry clothes out of the dryer so I may iron and fold them. I'm a little OCD when it comes to having firmly pressed attire hanging in my closet. I think it’s a side of effect of being denied that indulgence for so many years. So you should appreciate your dryer and not let the clothes just sit there. They are anxiously waiting to be picked up. Even without being ironed and folded they deserve to at least be put away. Perhaps I missed my calling and should have worked at a dry cleaner.

    ps--Hoarders definitely showcases mental illness in an extraordinary and quite revolting light. I personally find it fascinating how the clutter of clothes or the poop on the speakers all stems from some deep rooted psychological trauma. Yes it's uncomfortable to watch, but as a psychology minor I sort of embrace the disheartened feelings which follow. Afterward I take a look at my immaculate kitchen and thank goodness I will never see the glass that empty.

  2. Dishwashers and dryers are definitely necessary luxuries!!!