Thursday, July 30, 2009

it's hot and humid here, but that doesn't bother me, since hot and humid define late july, and in fact when it's cool and comfortable it makes me feel as if the world is coming undone, much as people feel in seattle where it's 103, or arizona where it's 116, and everyone's wondering if nature is just trying to push them to their limit. here, hot and humid are quite normal, along with juicy fresh homegrown tomatoes, and cobden peaches, sweet, orange, sticky and messy, and everywhere.

there's one more sunset concert, and that would be tomorrow night, and im proud to say, i've seen them all this year, and will very likely see this last one. It's what we've got around here, sunset concerts, fresh peaches, and homegrown tomatoes, and air that feels like a sauna for you to swim home in, or shut yourself off to it by cranking the aircon even as you only drive a half a mile or so to wherever you need to be. on days off I've taken to not wanting to go anywhere, just because it's such a wretched experience adjusting and readjusting to the cranked aircon everywhere- here it's 60, there it's 70, here it's 60 again, and in between it's 99/99, swimmingly saunish. i exaggerate, of course, but the season tends to promote this; one gets used to extremes; a person becomes an extreme kind of character in this small-town environment. people tolerate extremes because there's nothing better to do; who wants to fight in this kind of weather? at the same time they same to have a kind of conspiracy; none of them are working as hard as they might, it seems. it's self protection, survival. i need to take note of it and do like them. i plan on sticking around also.

I'm going to write obama a letter, because i have an idea; he needs to be pushed into putting his presidential library in southern illinois. the main reason for this is that southern illinois needs it far more than chicago does, or hawaii; i would certainly understand if he were to pick one of those places, but we need it more. I'll present my reasons to him, and then hope that, in a moment of transcendence, he'll notice that they'll just fight for eternity up there in chicago, whereas down here he could have a whole river bluff for a song, and really make a difference for an entire region. and beyond that, maybe I could get a new career out of it. maybe I'm grasping at straws, and it's a long shot. but it's the kind of long shot I'd really enjoy if I had a chance to try it.

i have access problems; I'm not online as much as i'd like, due to broken laptop, and this one keeps making everything capitals against my will. nevertheless, it's the writing that's important; on I charge; I can always remove caps later, when I have a few minutes, between classes at work. at work I swim religiously; I check my twitter and facebook briefly; i pull bizarre sources down off the grid faithfully, in hopes of using them at some point. lack of time leaves me breathless and frantic. at one point I grab this big fresh tomato, and take a bite out of it; it explodes and splatters all over my pants in bright red tomato with little white seeds. by late afternoon though it has evaporated; it's only a memory; not even a tint of red anywhere to be seen. makes you wonder, if the sum total of all these tomatoes, these fresh juicy peaches, which I eat directly over the sink, water dripping and sticky juice all over my chin- is it all just water down the drain, so to speak? a son comes home tomorrow from kansas; maybe he'll appreciate the humidity, the greenness, the abundant richness, the back end of mowing season, before the rains stop altogether. it's actually quite reasonable- not quite 99, really; it's been an extended cool spell. but the summer flies. people do their things; they travel a lot, for one. they find themselves in new places. In some cases, they have time to reflect, maybe find a new course. not me; it's all t can do to keep facing my students, and show them where they've gone astray. they've gone astray, if they thought it didn't matter, if their words were like so much tomato splattered around, gone tomorrow, never even noticed. yes, it's true, it's a wet kind of season, and everyone's in a hurry. some people may not care, may not even read it. but I read it, every time; that's how I know it's copied. a guy figures out how to make word finds and put them on a blog. You can read the words going backward, downward, diagonal, whatever; you can put whatever words you want in there, and the computer will take care of it. i however was never convinced that a word find was of much value besides idle pleasure, mostly to people who were hanging around thrift sales and auctions, or manning a booth somewhere. they would be good, though, if you wanted to hide something, for that very reason. they look like idle entertainment. what better place to hide? it would be like hiding a real code within a sudoku. nobody would ever notice, except the people who actually take the time to read. and that's a distinct minority.

at the sunset concert, the bands' singers note disconcertingly that nobody actually listens to their words; after they start, people get caught up in whatever, talking to friends, small-town social life, and they could sing almost anything, and nobody would notice. In this case, I sometimes hear the words; but, in general, i almost never hear words to songs anyway. when it comes to music versus words, to me it's no contest. here i sit, cranking them out, making something for whoever to read, and at the same time, i think, if i could be standing there playing, i'd rather. one thing about music is, you never mistakenly believe that it's all blather. you never have someone tracking you down, pinning you into admitting you spoke too quickly, or said something you knew nothing about. if you're out of tune, you just quit, blame it on the weather, move on; try it again another time. but believe me, they heard it. and it never, never goes backward, downward, or diagonal...

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