Monday, October 20, 2008

it's cool and clear here, beautiful blue sky, peak of leaf season passing through, and the colors are fantastic as i ride the bike-and-carriage through the peaceful west side, 3-yr-old in tow. one day i was getting ready, unlocking, putting bags in it, when a young student on a cell phone unlocked her bike and rode off, but forgot she was using the cell phone, and fell, bike and all. i felt like, well, with so many ways to stay in touch constantly, hardly able to cross campus without checking phones & mails and twittering in from the mobile, how do any of us stay afloat? at the daycare they communicate by biting, but they're strongly encouraged not to. the political campaigns use every possible strategy to reach us, but even if i had a tv, i'd only watch baseball, and i've made up my mind about the election anyway.

matter of fact, illinois used to be a "toss-up" state, about half chicago & the other half places like this & the farmland, but these days it's so clearly blue that they're staying away in droves. this i like. also, though i ordered a free obama button months ago & haven't received it yet, i've concluded that that's either because 1) the postman himself is republican, or, 2) the obama campaign is organized in terms of "in the bag" vs. "could vote either way" and thus always sends buttons to other people before they get around to me. i am, after all, totally partisan, so much so that it wouldn't even be much point, me wearing a button, since everyone already knows how i'll vote. but, one shouldn't take these things for granted, and, after all, it is "show your colors" month- time to get out there, and be yourself.

for halloween my wife says she'll be a corn cob, so i've said i'll be a stick of butter, though she calls these cubes of butter- anyway that way i might be able to make jokes as appropriate, but it might also be possible that i end up stuck on the ceiling, as butter was in my high school cafeteria. as we speak i have a hard time conceiving of this costume, but i guess there are still a few days yet before i have to. the 3-yr-old has no problem with this; he wears costumes every day, usually batman but sometimes spiderman or a variation, and has his mind on "transformer" also.

went out to giant city, not once but twice, in the gorgeous weather, and did the trail that goes back by the rocks that stand and surround you, obviously a place of great ancient importance, in the heart of the mississippi valley, surrounded by oaks & hardwood, just a stunning place of ancient caves. one spot known locally as "fat man squeeze" is often occupied by drunk college kids who no longer fit up through the rocks; this could be because they drink too much and grow too fast, or it could be because, as the waitress at the lodge says, the rocks have gotten tighter over the years. the 3-yr.-old heard this as "batman squeeze" but he gets lots of squeezes anyway, and there's no way i'm chasing him up those rocks.

the main point here is, we both ride through the same universe; we both see the same set of stunning sights; yet, we sometimes have totally different interpretations. amazing how life is; by the time he's in college, people will stay in touch with each other by a steady stream of wireless signals in the fillings in their teeth; why should one have to use a hand to respond to people? i can hardly imagine a status to update my facebook account; if someone tweets, out in the middle of the forest, does it still matter, if one hand claps in response? chou.

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