dialysis machine – partial view

if it turn my head I get this view while undergoing  a dialysis session

Most boring novel I ever read

I am afraid to report that W.E.B. Griffin’s The Shooters is the most boring novel I have ever attempted to read. I am sad to report this since I have read and reread a number of books by Griffin, including most of the Brotherhood of Arms series and the Marine Corps series. He has given me many hours of entertainment. This one however stinks. The most illuminating fact offered in it is the historical speculation that Adolph Hitler lost a testicle to the teeth of a large breed of dog called a Bouvier de flandres.  And Hitler did his best to have the breed eliminated from the planet. Max, a bouvier, plays a supporting role in The Shooters.  Nice dog.

Poem – The Idea of Order on Langton Avenue ( a repost )

We were talking about clutter.
How the hell to get a handle on
the swamp of papers and files,

boxes of hurry, the need for some
secret method to make it all
perfect, when I saw the photo

you had shown me before,
your face between your mother’s
and your father’s at the dinner

for their anniversary, all the smiles,
but a different look in your eyes
or maybe I just add that after

you told me that the doctors’
lost you on the table that morning
for a short while and how you

knew you could go on to
the other side, but you weren’t
ready, there was more here for you.

much more than heaps of paper
much more than me
but that was ten years before me.

And puzzles and projects and
fixing things all appeal to my brain
which my body carries around for me

So I offered the only thought that has
ever made sense to me about
the idea of order.

“You have to decide the place
where things will go,
where they belong,

which ones to keep.
And then you have to clear that place
and lift them to it

Then you have to stick to it.
If you don’t, if you move

it to a temporary refuge you are lost,
the alligators will get you and the swamp
will fill in again.

Nature hates a vacuum.
It will be as if you were in a boat
with no oars, drifting,

waiting for the moon to show up
because you are alone and in the dark
and angry because you

have done it again,
done it to yourself,
as if we were really talking

about clutter and not about time
and not about the drifting emptiness
that we glimpse

that I recognize more each day
that burns my ass and turns me against
myself until I throw that out

the entire thrown together
accumulated mess of nothing
and nothing and nothing

much at all.
Like me and not the least bit like me
you want to wear alligator shoes

and go dancing until
the sun replaces the moon
and the coolness of the night air begins to heat.

I will take an order of that.

– copyright 2006 William J. Gibson –

ready to go back in

it has been bloody cold of late and the dog and I are considering Tahiti as our new resting spot. several times yesterday and today he had to stop with his toe pads frozen and my gloved hands had to emerge on a chore of mercy to melt the ice for him. winter is the cruellest season.

The Unit Jumped the Shark

Last night’s episode of The Unit, David Mamet’s tv drama about special operations operators in the US Army may have jumped the shark. That phrase may be obsolete since I have not seen it used much lately. Still I fear it is applicable here. Sergeant Dirt Diver was injured seriously during a mission insertion into the mountains of Chile. His team leader helps him get aid at a mountain monastery. Meanwhile back at the base, the powers of the Committee require a new objective be snatched. It is a doozy. It is the spear point that piereced the side of Christ. Wow. this artifact has supposed awesome powers to both heal and destroy. Sergeant Blaine suddenly an expert in short sword fighting beats several opponents who have spent years honing their sword fighting skills. But he wins anyway. I had to suppress some serious guffaws and chuckles. it remains my favourite show but I do fear the shark has been jumped. I do hope they will retreat from warrior fantasy and return to normal operations soon.

The Ignition Temperature of Paper

there are a few moments in my education when my brain kicked up and did the right thing. My old Biology teacher, Mr. Kosior asked us one fine day what the ignition temperature of paper was. It turned out that about a dozen of my classmates shared with me an interest in science fiction literature and had in fact read Ray Bradbury’s work, Fahrenheit 451. I raised my hand and supplied the information.

Mr. Kosior asked how many in the class had read the novel. About ten put up their hands.  He went on to make the point that what we learn is not limited to what we learn in school and that school is not a separate box that has no connection to the rest of our lives.