Monday, June 13, 2011

A Whiteness of Swans

One afternoon on my day off I was puttering in the kitchen while listening to Adele Anthony play the Violin Concerto by Philip Glass. Scrubbing a pot when my spouse came in. There was still a little spot on the bottom the the pot. Like a flea.

"See that?" I said to my lifelong love, whom we both call "The Most MagisTerial (capital "T" intended) and Adored (three syllables) Walsingham Thing-Thing."

Spouse wondered what.

"That spot," I said as Thing-Thing peered into the pan. It's a well-lit kitchen. Oddly, James Joyce used the word "illlit" in one of those books. The one I read.

"That's not good enough!" I said. "I grew up in a restaurant."

The music passes by in units that are repeated a few times before changing to another different motive, for lack of a better word, appears. It seems that history passes that way. Only the music compresses it into its own artificial sense of time. Instead of building up and growing towards an eventual route of sequential repetitive periods, Glass leaves out the "social" build-up and moves straight to the concluding economic swings of each society. Then moves on to something else just as repetitive. A musical Marxist. Or just a Buddhist. Same thing, practically.

Sibelius did the same thing at the end of his 5th Symphony, or at least the version of the three that I've ever listended to, having never heard the unused Adagio or the missing 1916 version. The "Thor's Hammer" thing. Thing. That I've heard.

We reciprocate and mutually conclude that life is probably quite different for the people who belong to untouched-by-the-outside-world remote villages.

According to Miriam Ross of Survival International, a group that works to protect the world's remaining indigenous peoples, "These tribes represent the incredible diversity of humankind. Unless we want to condemn yet more of the earth's peoples to extinction, we must respect their choice. Any contact they have with outsiders must happen in their own time and on their own terms."


"Aside from the fear of tampering with a primitive society, the risk of transmitting diseases is significant; these people have virtually no immunities and would likely be hit hard."

Who's happier?

Me, no doubt about it.


That's what I really meant. I'm not breaking any speed limits today.

The Young One came down and inquired after the special vanilla soda I was supposed to get them. They rummaged around in the back alleys of the fridge, found it, opened it and pronounced it "good." No, "pretty good." They set the half-full (heh) bottle on the table along with its tossed cap. I let it go for a bit before it kind of got to me. Then I called up to them.

They responded by coming down and grabbing the bottle and cap before I could get out "I know you're always in such a hurry to get on with things, but you could at least not just leave such stuff there." They smiled, took care of it, and disappeared. Just like that.

I may be a bit behind on my best shots today, but I can still play some sort of part.

This Young One has decided to do away with the wall-posters of past days. They want a new look to their space. A layered repaint. Maybe a rich dark ocean blue underbase. A floor-to-ceiling mirror. A secondary study area, or whatever.

"You want better posters, or art?" I asked.

"Art," they immediately responded.

I am somehow very okay with this.

There are a lot more people at work who talk quite a bit among themselves, probably way more than I do. But when I contribute, I'll have tried to put some energy into it.

One day I didn't wear my usual TAG-Heuer, but instead a nice old estate Fendi. Andrea called me on it. "You're not wearing your watch," she said.

"This is my watch," I replied, adding "I wouldn't wear anybody else's watch. Well, this was somebody else's watch, but I bought it. In a way, we share it."

"Is that so?" asked Andrea.

My spouse does not like it when I do not wear the TAG. They bought it for me. This requires me to behave in a certain way. It modifies my watch-wearing most highly assured American right to put different stuff on my wrist; wholly unnecessary now that everybody has hand-held computers which can also be used as texting devices, but still important to me. I don't know why. I've tried to figure that out.

Brazil has imposed an embargo on its exports of rosewood since 1969. This is of dire importance to me.

There are other rosewoods. They sound great. Many of them are also under legal protection, which in turn has increased their economic value. I'd hate to see such a very useful collection of species suffer a demise, due not to the art of instrument-making, but due to money and short-sightedness. Valuable resources should be developed. Not obliterated.

I have one. A small one. I saved up money over some time and paid cash for it. I'm not proud.

Time to feed the fish. Little wiggly Sirens, those.

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