Saturday, June 03, 2006

"An Assembly of Stockholders" from Coin and Conscience - Popular Views of Money Credit and Speculation
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50 ANIMALS DRIVING A common occurrence in our neighbourhood....
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calendar-marking time for fans of director Anthony Mann, cinematographer John Alton and a dour point of view--TURNER CLASSIC MOVIES is having a quintuple feature of his early ('45-49) noir films on Tuesday night starting 1700PST with "T-Men", then "Raw Deal", "Border Incident" (never seen by me!!), "Railroaded" and "Two O'Clock Courage" (never seen by me!).

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"I can't help wondering today how many of the innocents slaughtered in Haditha took the opportunity to vote in the Iraqi elections -- before their "liberators" murdered them."

Friday, June 02, 2006

Anna's Hummingbird Nests in Coronada, California. Many photos, glimpses of lovely California yards. Hello Oakland! We have a nest in the walnut tree next door, maybe six feet from our dining room window but so teeny as to be almost invisible, at the bottom of a long, curved branch, with a pair (they all seem to be pairs and favor that love seat style arrangement) who look about ready to go out and get their own sugar.

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The Virgin of Guadalupe

"He asked the sign for the sign he required. Mary told him to go to the rocks and gather roses. Juan knew it was neither the time nor the place for roses, but he went and found them. Gathering many into the lap of his tilma, a long cloak or wrapper used by Mexican Indians, he came back. The Holy Mother rearranged the roses, and told him to keep them untouched and unseen until he reached the bishop. When he met with Zum�rraga, Juan offered the sign to the bishop. As he unfolded his cloak the roses, fresh and wet with dew, fell out."

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The thicket of rhetorical question marks on CNN today--Iraq Massacre? Crimes in War? etc. reminded me of the moment when Al Sweringen (above going over the books), looking at the mockup of the broadsheet that he and the "city fathers" have put out in an attempt to assuage smallpox hysteria, says "mmm...Plague in Deadwood...couldn't we put a question mark on that?"

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Weldon Hunter hops the pond...


for Victoria & Vancouver

a suggestion of verticality
in the port city

the Great City of Bearheart
with outsourced roads

& a connect-and-go general purpose
light fantastic ever

crossing my mind
ahead of the story

each filament breaks apart -
they know you want them to work

but they just blink;
security of supply.

turn on the waterfall,
the cover, grrr - lots of stop start

the pace is really gentle & dare i say
disarmed by all the sunlight

my hands are fidgeting in the bikerack
- out in the water lots of stop & stare

in these rhythms, let the categories appear
but don't superimpose definitions

life is a pattern, an effortless string of suns
& moons, then a neat look & a good visual

it's been amazing,
collapsible and restorative!

like supernovas ending their explosions but
i want the lights to go on "

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Canadian teen second-best at U.S. bee

"In the end, Finola Hackett missed one letter in weltschmerz, which means sentimental pessimism, before she finally heard the bell marking defeat that had already rung for 272 other competitors at the 2006 Scripps Bee.

The graceful teenager paused for the first time in the competition when she heard weltschmerz in the 19th round. Hackett tried tracing the word on her hand and looked at the ceiling as she tried to piece together the 11-letter puzzler. Later, she said that she had studied the word before, but didn't know it "extremely well.""

Well though I could have spelled weltschmerz at her age it was part of my problem, but I had no idea spelling bees used so many foreign and scientific Scrabble-dispute type words. And my spelling, in which I once took great pride, is not what it was. Any one of the final nine kids would have wiped the floor with me.

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Tuesday, May 30, 2006

new Alice Munro--

"On the third bus she got a seat by the window, and tried to keep herself calm by reading the signs -- both the advertising and the street signs. There was a certain trick she had picked up, to keep her mind occupied. She took the letters of whatever word her eyes lit on, and she tried to see how many new words she could make out of them. "Coffee," for instance, would give you "fee," and then "foe," and "off" and "of," and "shop" would provide "hop" and "sop" and "so" and -- wait a minute -- "posh." Words were more than plentiful on the way out of the city, as they passed billboards, monster stores, car lots, even balloons moored on roofs to advertise sales..."

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Monday, May 29, 2006

from 1974, the great critic Donald Phelps (mentioned below) on Gilbert Sorrentino--

"To Sorrentino, it seems to me, the irreducible specific is the rain-grey sentry-box at the last outpost of functioning consciousness; that borderline which some of us never cross in either direction."
 Posted by Picasa - The PM is copying George Bush's tactics with his allegation of `liberal media bias,' says Linda McQuaig

"Harper's unwillingness to submit to freewheeling media questions suggests an anti-democratic tendency.

His political views have been heavily influenced by Leo Strauss, a political philosopher at the University of Chicago who spawned the U.S. neo-conservative movement.

Strauss's ideas have been cultivated in Canada by the so-called Calgary school — a right-wing political clique at the University of Calgary — with which Harper and his mentor Tom Flanagan have long been associated.

Strauss was deeply suspicious of democracy. He argued that the public isn't capable of making intelligent political decisions, and so should be kept pacified rather than informed. The real decisions should be left to an elite.

With the elite making the decisions for a docile, dim-witted public, who needs the media — except to type down the Prime Minister's words?"