Friday, September 12, 2008

don't put a period where god put a comma, said the church sign at the dangerous intersection where i cross oakland and mill sometimes half a dozen times a day, sometimes on bicycle with carriage, sometimes in car. god's started grading writing, i thought, we're in the same line a' work, though i doubt if god stays up as late as i do, sometimes. weeks are long, grammar's bad, though students are to a person pleasant, polite, interested, & i pack 'em in, most days. also performed tonight, fiddle & hardware-mangled banjo, at a church not two blocks from the one with the sign; this was the opening for cousin andy's season of good folk in carbondale. music was good, helped my soul, and it was a local crowd, enthusiastic and friendly.

the church sign writer, i'm sure, was thinking of people who were giving up on life, which i'm not, and probably wasn't referring to late night bouts with essays. watching ike, i'm glad to be safe at home, dry, with kids asleep & a diabetic, thyroidian cat prowling to get better & enjoy what's left of life. humidity seems to be over 100% here, warm & tropical, with rain almost certainly coming, pushed up from ike, but i'm so tired, i kind of look forward to a break from soccer, running around, vet, all that stuff that usually happens when it's not raining. hate to say that, though; ike looks like iowa looked, & i wouldn't wish that on anyone.

at the corner of the construction fence, right outside the blue hallway stairs, where the fence looks out at the new library, there is a sign on either side of the post, with arrows pointing away from each other; each sign directs you to go a different way to the new library. it's a logical absurdity; you can look straight at the signs and be directed to go two different ways at once. i like this of course; want to grab a picture of it, and this is my favorite neighborhood anyway, as the long grasses going to seed on the other side of the construction fence, are interrupted only by an occasional concrete pipe tossed aside by construction workers, and the workers occasionally occupy parts of the fenced-in prairie to make more noise or dust, or just to enjoy the prairie with their lunch. on my side of the fence, the kamakura garden, orderly, blooming, different flowers, bamboo, kept in order by legions of workers directed to keep the university landscaping up to par. so, as i walk along this fence, an occasional animal gets trapped up against it, or, more often, i just enjoy the changes in color as both the construction grasses and the kamakura plants bloom & change slowly. dust, noise, mud, trucks etc. come from the library which itself has been under construction now for several years. in the other direction the pulliam bells go off, usually right as i'm walking, for either noon or five, as i'm walking there both times, & sometimes in the morning.

so finally the killer was, today, a three-hour blackboard session in the lab, as we exhausted harried teachers got led through the details of putting entire courses, and grades, up on a computer course-management situation. ok, so i have mixed feelings about the whole operation, i'm not here to complain, but my main problem is, fifty hours into the week or so, i'm in no mental shape to keep up with three straight hours of concentration...not going to happen. i do my best, but, then, lapse into pop art, a spontaneous exhibit that worked on the new library & its shapes & colors...i swear though, i've got to stop using other folks' conceptions, and bring my own camera- i'll start with that sign, but, there's lots of stuff i want to get. what i call salukihenge, for starters, big rocks jutting out of the center of campus in a prehistoric, celtic kind of way. or the little sculpture under the eaves of nw faner hall, the rocks in the basket. now that i've started seeing design, & texture, & meaning all over the place, i want to get a little more of it. it's a balance, it's a natural way of processing lots of writing, lots of commas, lots of misplaced articles. what can i do? pop art, i guess. embrace the dust, the grasses gone to seed, the stray snake, the signs on the construction fence- i can live in a one-horse town, long as i got a horsehair bow for my fiddle- and yes, everyone wants change now, obama wants change, mccain wants change, the panhandler on the corner wants change, don't worry about it, change is comin', we're talking 100 mile/hour winds. don't put a period where..., hey, listen, i don't ever, ever, put a period anywhere, unless i absolutely have to. in a url, maybe. but i got a few more...

don't publish, when god wanted a draft...
don't use italics, unless god wants you to park diagonal...
don't keep pullin' horsehairs off the horse, without praising him once in a while...
don't
sharpen, when god wants you to save as...
don't stop too long at the kamakura meditation shelter, the wasps that actually live there might take it the wrong way...
don't walk away with too many tadpoles, the frogs have it bad enough...
never forget the diaper bag...
save as pdf, send as an attachment...
drive safe, park legal, be "hayve"...
but most of all, live to see another day, don't let your hard drive crash, live to try google chrome, see another version of firefox, & see if macs can print blogs off whatever they come up with. store stuff on the desktop, even if it drives everyone nuts...
it's 'cause i'm not finished with it... and, finally, moving stuff onto the trash is how you get stuff out the front door on a mac...makes perfect sense...whaddaya mean it's not intuitive...

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