Would someone please remind me what I did to reset the path to my image library, because I need to undo it.


The other morning, as Miz Shoes attempted to park in the station garage, she was forced to wait while the driver in front of her maneuvered a full-sized van into a space clearly marked “compact only”. A space, incidentally, which Miz Shoes considers to be her own spot, as it is bordered on the driver’s side by a wall, and the people who park on the passenger side spot always go over the line, making this a parking spot almost too narrow for even her Smart Car.

But there was the van, and the driver was adjusting his angle of approach by microns as he backed in and out wedging his behemoth into this tiny slice of asphalt. How he got out of his vehicle is a mystery, since there would not have been room to even crack the door open, much less allow for the passage of an adult human body.

Which brought us to the point of quantum physics, as Miz Shoes pondered the question: in which universe would a full-sized passenger van be considered a compact car? And how does that universe end up intersecting our own at the point of this particular tiny parking spot?

And while we are on the topic of parking spaces, why do motorcyclists insist on parking in car spots, while leaving those designated for motorcycles empty, and why are THEY not ticketed when leaving the Smart in a motorcycle space (into which it fits admirably) WILL generate a parking violation?

Well, having a company policy which states that while blogging is not, cannot be forbidden, it can be a fireable offense has certainly taken the bloom off of this particular rose. What else is there to write about except that which takes up two thirds of every one of my days? And since the RLA and I dropped cable tv to pay for the unlimited access on the i-pads, I can’t even discuss mainstream mass entertainment.

Well, I did get sucked into going to see The Hunger Games a couple of weeks ago. I’d never read the books, so didn’t have a preconceived idea of what I was in for. In the event, it was just another dystopia set in the not-too-distant future wherein the rich are exceedingly rich and the poor are exceedingly poor and the rich like to see the poor kill each other off in televised games. Donald Sutherland was convincingly evil. The secondary evil guy had an amazingly crafted beard. There were poison berries, sadistic teens and mutated wildlife. Pretty par for the course. It was visually appealing, enough. And I hated it.

I do not do well with dystopias, particularly in light of the current political situation in America, or PanEm, if you prefer. The right is circling the drain of outright fascism, the war against women is heating up to levels I have never before seen, and the majority of Americans still can’t get their heads out of Fox News’ ass long enough to notice the rather alarming shift in the gestalt. 12 Monkeys left me depressed for weeks, and I still break out in a cold sweat every time I even THINK about The Handmaid’s Tale.

Oh, I know, I can write about cats. And fashion. And food. I bet nobody’s doing any of that.

On and On, On and On

After I wrote about my broken-heartedness over the loss of my friend, The Coolest Person In the World, she sent me photos of our place: the room with Monet’s Waterlilies at MOMA. In one of those universe is laughing at you moments, she sent them on my birthday, without realizing that it was. We ended up talking that night, and all is right in our world. At the same time, another friendship I despaired was irreparably broken became whole again.

Last week, I passed on my copies of Walter Pater and Ferlinghetti’s Coney Island of the Mind to a young man embarking on a two-month tramp tour of Central America. In two months, the Number Three Surrogate begins a year of teaching in South Korea. So many changes.

In this season of melancholy introspection, as Miz Shoes ponders how she got to this place, there is another friend of my youth who seems to have gone missing. Oh, she's here in the periphery of my on-line life, but it would be more accurate to say that I am on the outer-most periphery of hers. She was the first friend I made after college, and from the instant I laid eyes on her, I knew her to be the coolest person in the world.

The fact that she and I became so tight (after an inauspicious start, the retelling of which she and I both perfected, with hillariously divergent perspectives) was both a mystery and a treasure to me. After all, I had gone from lowest high school nerd to Queen of Art School cool in just the past four years, and art school cool doesn't necessarily translate into the real world. Yet she and I were friends, and that friendship lasted over years and miles, forever amazing and delighting me.

Sometime in the past year or so, though, something happened, and I don't know what it is. She doesn't answer my calls. She doesn't respond to my emails. After 35 years, she's dropped me, and I have no clue why. Don't get me wrong, I have embarrassed her, insulted her friends, overstayed my welcome; given her any number of reasons to dump me over the years, but she never has. It's the timing that has me so puzzled and hurt. If I knew what it was, I would apologize. I would swear never to do it again. I would make amends. If I only knew...

I want so badly to just sit down with her and a bottle of vodka and talk all night and pour over the old photo albums while we gossip and drink. I want to wake up hungover and do it all again, after fortifying ourselevs with grease and coffee. I miss her friendship and don't know if we'll ever see each other again.

To quote someone we both know, I came for you, but you did not need my urgency.

Spirit on the Water

To burn always with this hard, gemlike flame, to maintain this ecstasy, is success in life. In a sense it might even be said that our failure is to form habits: for, after all, habit is relative to a stereotyped world, and meantime it is only the roughness of the eye that makes any two persons, things, situations, seem alike. While all melts under our feet, we may well grasp at any exquisite passion, or any contribution to knowledge that seems by a lifted horizon to set the spirit free for a moment, or any stirring of the senses, strange dyes, strange colours, and curious odours, or work of the artist’s hands, or the face of one’s friend. Not to discriminate every moment some passionate attitude in those about us, and in the very brilliancy of their gifts some tragic dividing of forces on their ways, is, on this short day of frost and sun, to sleep before evening.—Walter Pater from “Conclusion to the Rennaisance”

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