Thursday, February 21, 2008

my wife pulled a canadian dime out of the washing machine and accused me of laundering money again. not that it couldn't be me, but i'd never seen it. so i said, you throw these on a hockey rink when you're really mad, the hockey players hate 'em. not that i ever did it, never even saw a game in canada, much less get so worried about it i'd commit hostile assault, but i did see it done once, maybe at a game in toledo. i thought, wouldn't want to be skating around in that world.

another huge ice storm here, siu going into its third day off in two weeks, absolutely unbelievable. i don't think they took three days off in the previous two centuries, it was against their moral upbringing and general character. the ice brought them to their knees though. now all of us- preschool, elementary, high school, all the way up to graduate studies director- get the day off, to watch food supplies steadily dwindle and road get layer upon layer of ice & slushy stuff. this one doesn't seem as ruthless, as slick, as the last, still, they tell us to stay off the roads, and i don't mind complying. i've become somewhat of a wimp, don't want to drive in it really, would rather stay around the house making marble castles or maybe playing the new weboggle which can only be done, here, on firefox.

but, the other night, a birthday boy needed a ride over to get a card, see his mom, and there was an eclipse of the moon- turned the moon a dusty reddish brown, like the rivers coming down out of minnesota copper country. sure enough, a night clear as a bell- this was right before the second storm- and plenty of stars out, orion, king of the winter sky, prevailing- somehow we knew more ice was coming, but the moon was so clear, full, and at the same time shadowy, we opened the car window.

eclipse of the moon happens every couple a years, i told him, two or three, i've seen a few of them, but never this clear. when he looked it up later, he was amazed that i was more or less right- the next one will be 2010, or something like that. it's the eclipse of the sun you have to watch out for, i told him. it gave him a boost that an eclipse of any kind would actually fall on his birthday- and not only that, but now, school is out for two more days. the first ice storm had hit on abe's birthday- this one started on his and now is carrying right over to george's. but the weather has hit all the big ones- abe, george, noah, and even darwin, whose birthday they are only now beginning to celebrate seriously. i'm going to celebrate obama's, too, i have every intention, but first i have to find out when it is. this is the land of obama (you heard it first here)...someday, in the distant future, they're going to have to close the post office, let out school, get the garbage pickup all screwed up, that kinda stuff. this same boy, the birthday boy, he once told me that abe lincoln was shot by robbers while he was watching tv. nothing wrong with revisionist history, i told him, this was in the yellow elevator at work, i'll never forget, usually when i'm there, i'm in more of a mood for accuracy, but, you gotta roll with the punches. this time a year, we always cut a cherry pie, and tell the kids about how george once cut a cherry pie with an axe, but he didn't tell a lie about it, he did, however, take the biggest piece for himself. set the tone for a nation that, even today, wouldn't hesitate to use a brand-new, golden, silver dollar, where the smallest brazilian penny would do just fine. it's a kind of overkill, you could say, upsetting the balance, but, today, you wouldn't know it, you look out the window, and it's all white, a steady drizzle of ice and rain and snow which has been coming down now for what, a couple a weeks, when ordinarily we could be plantin tomaters.

which reminds me of two things, you'll have to forgive me for the second, first one is this: a satellite is heading our way, the government hopes to shoot it down out of the sky before it really hurts anyone, but it's due to hit earth any day now, and anything could happen. it's a kind of incoming news story, we've got our eye on it in my newstalk class, which of course now has been cancelled 'til the new week. but my point is, ice storm or not, clear bloody moon or not, don't wait for that old orion to shoot it down. he's been pointing that bow and arrow at taurus the bull for what, a few thousand years now, and he isn't fixin' to change yet. talk about throwing a dime on the rink- you never know what a little glowing hot metal will do to a level playing field, do ya?

second one, let me tell you, from the heart of the country, you buckeyes & longhorns, it's time to do the right thing. vote for obama. his name comes off your lips easy, you can vote for him easy, i agree with his wife, it makes you feel like you can have hope for this country, for a change. it's time to show the world we can do the right thing, and that we're more than what we've been, time to get someone who can pronounce "iran," and "iraq", and "nuclear" and who knows a pakistani from a mexican, and who can name a few countries down there by el salvador. 'nuf said, except that i'm a buckeye myself, always thought, if i was still there in ohio, maybe it woulda worked out differently. but there's always tomorrow, at least i hope there always will be, and assuming there's at least a chance, it's time to get started setting things straight.

layer upon layer falls, sits on the car and the road, makes it slick out there, makes a few trees lose their long branches. makes ya wonder. my parents were apparently in tucson arizona for a couple a days, said it poured down rain the whole time....can you imagine? my wife reads blogs & says, everyone's talking about the weather, doesn't matter where you are, it's unusual, nobody's ever seen anything like it. a friend moved to fairbanks recently, where it's eighty below, and it doesn't seem at all unusual, like well, everything's gone kinda bonkers anyway. that's all i can conclude, we've gone a bit too far, we've tilted the balance, we pushed the earth a bit too much. as for me, life's been going too fast, i've been writing for work, ignoring my creative stuff a little, trying to do excel charts and the "easy-grade-pro", finish the christmas shopping package mailing, falling behind on the birthdays and the groceries, not to mention library books, medicine and kids' art & swimming lesson, icy driveway daycare parallel parking 30-yard-dash olympic triathalon, but hey, if someone's gonna throw dimes on the rink, i'm 'a stop the zamboni, i'm 'a sit in the penalty box for a couple of minutes, and watch the show. i'd forgotten they even had stars, out here, on the west side, maybe if i keep my eyes open, i'll see a meteor shower, or at least see the earth tilt back a little, toward spring. if ya just give us another chance, we'll do better next time, promise.

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