Saturday, November 26, 2005

"My shoes were by this time in a woeful condition. The soles had shed themselves bit by bit, and the upper leathers had broken and burst until the very shape and form of shoes had departed from them. My hat (which had served me for a night-cap, too) was so crushed and bent, that no old battered handleless saucepan on a dunghill need have been ashamed to vie with it. My shirt and trousers, stained with heat, dew, grass, and the Kentish soil on which I had slept - and torn besides - might have frightened the birds from my aunt's garden, as I stood at the gate. My hair had known no comb or brush since I left London. My face, neck, and hands, from unaccustomed exposure to the air and sun, were burnt to a berry-brown. From head to foot I was powdered almost as white with chalk and dust, as if I had come out of a lime-kiln. In this plight, and with a strong consciousness of it, I waited to introduce myself to, and make my first impression on, my formidable aunt."

watching George Cukor's great David Copperfield on TCM, how much of movie/text/illustration (as in many cases hopelessly conflated in my mind) was gone, what came back & in what form, intense moments utterly unrelated to narrative, those donkeys on the cliff, Freddie Bartholomew--my Dad's nemesis--and the milestones...

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from Mark Mushet at Tyee a very nice set of images (in the warm Burns Bog fire light) of Vancouver's abandoned Arbutus Line--

"The CPR acquired what became known as "The Arbutus Line" from the Vancouver & Lulu Island Railway in 1901. Until 1958, the line was leased to the BC Electric Railway (BCER), which ran passenger services from Vancouver to Steveston. In its time, BCER "Interurban" cars carried people from downtown Vancouver to Steveston. But by 1958, all across North America, rails were replaced by rubber and, eventually, the gridlock we know and love today."

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decent Georges Perec piece--Eng. translations of his books gladly all back in print, including Gilbert Adair's "A Void". I was very pleased to meet M. Adair at Lee Ann & Tony's salon, though too shy to subject him to quizzing about one of the most virtuosic translations attempted since Urqhart's Rabelais, let alone his "Love and Death on Long Island". Maybe next time!

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Friday, November 25, 2005

David "Spider" Perry, Carla Billeteri, Me & Monica Fauble in Bangor last week

, originally uploaded by Mongibeddu.

I'm the one gazing wistfully at Ben & Carla's magnificent shelves. Many more of Ben's great pix inside.

Thursday, November 24, 2005

George Monbiot

"But we shouldn't forget that the use of chemical weapons was a war crime within a war crime within a war crime. Both the invasion of Iraq and the assault on Falluja were illegal acts of aggression. Before attacking the city, the marines stopped men 'of fighting age' from leaving. Many women and children stayed: the Guardian's correspondent estimated that between 30,000 and 50,000 civilians were left. The marines treated Falluja as if its only inhabitants were fighters. They levelled thousands of buildings, illegally denied access to the Iraqi Red Crescent and, according to the UN's special rapporteur, used 'hunger and deprivation of water as a weapon of war against the civilian population'.

I have been reading accounts of the assault published in the Marine Corps Gazette. The soldiers appear to have believed everything the US government told them. One article claims that 'the absence of civilians meant the marines could employ blast weapons prior to entering houses that had become pillboxes, not homes'. Another said that 'there were less than 500 civilians remaining in the city'. It continued: 'The heroics [of the marines] will be the subject of many articles and books ... The real key to this tactical victory rested in the spirit of the warriors who courageously fought the battle. They deserve all of the credit for liberating Falluja.'"

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

farewell Link Wray (1929-2005). On arrival home a choking fog & now this bad news. I'll be back once a good breeze clears out the valley. Meanwhile: crank it up, daddy.

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