Friday, January 09, 2004

Have You had Enough Yet? BC satire
A tale from Tommy Douglas: "Now if you think it strange that mice should elect a government made up of cats, you just look at the history of Canada for the last 90 years and maybe you'll see that they weren't any stupider then we are."
The Tyee: Premier Scrambles to Restore Trust
Altercation: "Now, it is true that the authors did manage to turn the tide at Foundation Ridge, that they managed alone to hold the ramparts at Thinktank Castle, that they organized the counterattack that swept the field at Buffet Flats, and that they only this week fought to victory in the Battle Of Charlie Rose."
from "When the Band Comes In" (1971)

Little Things (That Keep us Together)

It's on days like these
When your brother falls
You can read it all in the Times:
How a moving car
Stole a movie star--

Little Things that keep us together
While the war's going on.

It's on days like these
When your childhood cries
And you see it all on the news,
Little children starve
Growing tired of born--

Little things that keep us all close and warm
While the war's going on.

Find a place you can hide
And take what you can,
The time will arrive
When you need a friend--
Stop looking at us
We're waving good-bye.

There's a man
Shouting he's with me
When that morning comes
I can't wait to see
Just how high his eagle
On color screens
Is gonna fly
Going to fly--

It's on nights like these
That your neighbor dies
'Cos he put a gun to his head
He was so alone
He had nothing left,
Little things that call for a drink,
That bury a soldier's death.

It's on days like these
When your sister cries
And your brother falls from your hands
Jumbo jets can die
Killing 81
Little things that help us get by the why

Why the war's going on
Why the war's going on
Why the war's going on
why the war's going on
why the war's going on
why the war's going on
Happy Birthday Scott Walker!
Tilt by Scott Walker: "My background isn't Dylan and folk, but the chanson singers and they're grounded in drama. I felt I'd take the time with the words. I figured if I did that, the words would lead me, they'd tell me what to do.... If you get into their world far enough, they'll take you where you want to go. Whatever happens in any part of the album is led by the lyric."
Marginal supremacy: "I have a suspicion that, among some people who should know better, Coleridge is becoming seen as one of the deadest and whitest of European males; let's stop this nonsense before it goes too far. "
from Coleridge: A Book I Value: Selected Marginalia.: "This is the most defective Passage of the whole Treatise. It is not true, and it is of pernicious consequence, to represent Fortune as wholly mad, blind, deaf, and drunk. On the average each man receives what he pays for the miser gives care & self-torment, and receives increase of Gold--the vain give clamour, & bustle, pretensions & flattery, & receive a Buz--the Wise man Self-conquest & neighbourly Love, and receives sense of Dignity, of Harmony, and Content. Each is paid in sort--Virtue is not rewarded by Wealth, nor is the Eye affected by Sound."
MARGINALIA by E. A. Poe : " I know that indefinitiveness is an element of the true music- I mean of the true musical expression. Give to it any undue decision- imbue it with any very determinate tone- and you deprive it at once of its ethereal, its ideal, its intrinsic and essential character. You dispel its luxury of dream. You dissolve the atmosphere of the mystic upon which it floats. You exhaust it of its breath of fiery. "
Marginalia and Other Crimes

Thursday, January 08, 2004

One sweet sales strategy: "The top seller for the Minneapolis Girl Scout Council last year sold 2,050 boxes. That's more than $6,000 worth of cookies. The seller, identified only as Danielle, still found time to encourage others.
'She wrote a letter to the other girls to not give up hope,' said Rosi Hewitt of Coon Rapids, whose daughter is a Girl Scout."
::: wood s lot ::: has a section on Canadian poet Alden Nowlan & much else of course
Paradise Lost, Has the Dean Campaign Reached Its Upper Limit of Support?, by Sandeep Kaushik (01/08/04) Tough numbers for Dean
via under the fire star--
from "The Hindu": "If I were to relinquish my passport, I would do so in favour of a country that I found superior to India. But while there is much to be admired in places like Denmark and England, there is also much to be ashamed of. The heart of whiteness is lit with lamps of blood.
And today the heart of whiteness is closing its arteries. It is doing to people with the wrong colour (of passport?) what it tried to do to its own poor in the 18th and 19th Centuries. Even the discourse sounds familiar: undeserving poor, accountability, violence, criminality, free market, etc, we have heard all this before. But this time the struggle will be longer and more bitter as the poor cannot be deported and settled in 'newly-discovered' continents, where they can get rich by their own sweat or the blood of the aborigines and slaves. Today the poor of the world can only be attracted like moths to the rich heart of whiteness. And hence the arteries of Europe and U.S. are being closed with new rules and regulations. "
The Journals of Lewis And Clark: "This traffic on the part of the whites consists in vending guns (principally old British or American muskets), powder, balls and shot, copper and brass kettles, brass teakettles and coffeepots, blankets from two to three points, scarlet and blue cloth (coarse), plates and strips of sheet copper and brass, large brass wire, knives, beads, and tobacco, with fishing hooks, buttons, and some other small articles. Also a considerable quantity of sailors' clothes, as hats, coats, trousers, and shirts. For these they receive in return from the natives dressed and undressed elk skins, skins of the seaotter, common otter, beaver, common fox, spuck, and tiger cat; also dried and pounded salmon in baskets, and a kind of biscuit which the natives make of roots, called by them shappellel. "
The Whale: "Lewis, at least, seems to have swallowed it with relish. 'It was white & not unlike the fat of Poark,' he judged,'tho' the texture was more spongey and somewhat coarser. I had a part of it cooked and found it very pallitable and tender, it resembled the beaver or the dog in flavour.' "
Cannon Beach: "The Kilamox although they possesed large quantities of this blubber and oil were so prenurious that they disposed of it with great reluctiance and in small quantities only; insomuch that my utmost exertion aided by the party with the Small Stock of merchandise I had taken with me were not able to precure more blubber than about 300 lb. and a few gallons of oil;

Small as this stock is I prise it highly; and thank providence for directing the whale to us; and think him much more kind to us than he was to jonah, having Sent this Monster to be Swallowed by us in Sted of Swallowing of us as jonah's did. "
The Lewis And Clark Rediscovery Project
Sacagawea |: "[T]he Indian woman was very impo[r]tunate to be permited to go, and was therefore indulged; she observed that she had traveled a long way with us to see the great waters, and that now that monstrous fish was also to be seen, she thought it very hard she could not be permitted to see either."
Jan 8 1806

Wednesday, January 07, 2004

Happy Birthday Albert Bierstadt
Frosted Windows 330 years of St. Petersburg through Western eyes
FBI: Potential Terrorist Use of Almanacs: "Almanacs, available both in print and online, provide comprehensive information on a variety of topics, including government, geography, vital statistics, the economy, health matters, science and technology, weather trends, and tourism. Information commonly found in almanacs that may be exploited for terrorist use includes profiles of U.S. cities and states and information on geographic and structural features such as waterways, bridges, dams, reservoirs, tunnels, buildings, and landmarks. This information is often accompanied by photographs and maps."
SQUISHED by books: There but for fortune...
The varieties of traumatic experiences good short review of new Vollman.
When Is Violence Justified? Big Question Gets Long Answer another review of Vollman

Tuesday, January 06, 2004

Twelfth Night
Joyce--"The Dead""A few light taps upon the pane made him turn to the window. It had begun to snow again. He watched sleepily the flakes, silver and dark, falling obliquely against the lamplight. The time had come for him to set out on his journey westward. Yes, the newspapers were right: snow was general all over Ireland. It was falling on every part of the dark central plain, on the treeless hills, falling softly upon the Bog of Allen and, farther westward, softly falling into the dark mutinous Shannon waves. It was falling, too, upon every part of the lonely churchyard on the hill where Michael Furey lay buried. It lay thickly drifted on the crooked crosses and headstones, on the spears of the little gate, on the barren thorns. His soul swooned slowly as he heard the snow falling faintly through the universe and faintly falling, like the descent of their last end, upon all the living and the dead."
from Robert Pogue Harrison's new "The Names of the Dead"-- his 1992 "Forests: The Shadow of Civilisation" one of my favorites: "One's initial impression of the memorial wall from a distance is that of its dramatic horizontal extension, yet as one descends along the pathway toward the highest part of the wall the anxiety of the vertical gradually wins out over that of the horizontal stretch to infinity. Joyce's image of the snow, by contrast, works the other way around. The verticality of the snow's descent gives way, by the end of the last paragraph of The Dead, to a more sublime impression of its vast horizontal extension over all of Ireland. Yet the effect in both cases is similar. The tense relationship between extension and descension gives both symbols their sublime epic reach....The epic's vocation, as well as its burden, is to contain such excess in its narrative, ideological drive toward synthesis. We have seen, if only briefly and in passing, what moral strains and pressures this put on Virgil as well as Dante when it came to representing or accounting for the fates of history's plethora of victims. In the case of the memorial wall, the excess of names is uncontainable, not because the wall cannot accommodate them--it does--but because in its mute memory of the Vietnam War, it proclaims, or seems to, that each one of its inscriptions is one too many. The excess lies in the moral doubt raised in and by each and every name. The wall, in its conception and its material presence, is pervaded with the pathos of an early, sacrificial death reminiscent of Virgil's infernal scene of "high-hearted heroes stripped of life, and boys / and unwed girls, and young men set upon / the pyre of death before their fathers' eyes." Yet Rome--that "eternal idea in the mind of God" which would honor or redeem these deaths--is missing."
Mirages in Finland: " On the open sea, low waves may reach into the mirage-producing air layer, where they become vertically stretched into high columns: this produces a vision of dancing columns far out to sea. "
Happy Birthdays Sandy Denny
and Kathy Sledge!!
As well as the usual Towhees
there's lots of Grackles (the "parking lot bird" says Daph) enjoying my uncooked flaxseed oatmeal in the snow

Monday, January 05, 2004

PressThink: Horse Race Now! Horse Race Tomorrow! Horse Race Forever!: "
The origins of the term 'inside baseball' are in one writer's view of sports reporting during the 1980s. He's Bill James, now a famous scholar of baseball. The arguments he made then explain why the term migrated so easily to politics. The inside, said James, is a hall of mirrors."
Coffee, Tea or Handcuffs?: "“Oh, you’re a journalist,” he noted. “What are you here for?”
“I’m interviewing Olivia Newton-John,” Smethurst replied.
“That’s nice,” the official said, impressed. “What’s the article about?”
“Breast cancer.”
When Smethurst tells me this, she pauses and adds, “I thought that last question was a little odd, but figured everything’s different now in America and it was fine.” What she didn’t know was that her assignment and travel plans, along with the chicken soup and stroll through Central Park, had been terminated the moment she confirmed she was a journalist. Fourteen hours later, she was escorted by three armed guards onto the 11 p.m. Qantas flight home."
thanks Plep for
The Oxford Book of Ballads