Thursday, May 31, 2007
I'm a bit amazed that there was a time in my life when I used words and phrases like "nuclear socialism" and "ops mounting dialogue."
We bought Rum today to make dark and stormys. It's supposedly going to be hot here next week (that means maybe in the 80) and that's a perfect time to have rum and ginger beer over ice on the balcony. They're too sweet for me to have more than one, and it's worth it to get super good ginger beer with a nice bite.
Wednesday, May 30, 2007
It is sunny.
Lester is fluffy.
I live in California.
I am working on another web page for someone.
I tutored today.
I am going to go for a run.
I will put on sunblock before I do that.
I bought milk at Albertsons.
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
Monday, May 28, 2007
I live with a bird.
There is yet another set of nesting finches in the roof of our balcony (the third set this spring).
There are little sparrows that peck at the window of my study.
Yesterday morning there was a blue jay hovering over my bicycle, more startled than territorial, fortunately.
Flocks of migrating pelicans fly over my head every time I go for a walk or run.
A someone I know is trying to leave the country. And, of course, many people are trying to come to this country.
I am not a vegetarian and San Diego is cold.
When you begin to notice birds, you notice that birds are everywhere. What else is everywhere?
Sunday, May 27, 2007
Saturday, May 26, 2007
Friday, May 25, 2007
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Usually Mark and I go grocery shopping together. Sometimes, however, I go pick up a few items at the local Albertsons. There, it's not the people bagging the groceries but the older folks in line with me that want to confess. Usually they are buying a lot of frozen dinners. Because they live alone. Once, the woman behind me was buying a lot of frozen lasagna for one, and I was buying things to make a turkey spinach lasagna. The woman said, "I can cook lasagna. I love lasagna. With turkey. And spinach." For a moment I got all movie sentimental and thought I should invite her to dinner. But the older women who speak to me are often hostile and crazy. She didn't seem hostile, just defensive.
I've been consciously eating more fruit and vegetables this week. Fruit and vegetables with every meal and at least two fruit/vegetable snacks during the day.
Increasingly I'm writing in complete sentences. I want line breaks, so when I type up my drafts, I insert line breaks.
I think writing in my notebook is too slow and contemplative. If I try to write while sitting on my balcony, I usually end up writing about bird song and stuff. I love birds, but there are too many references to birds in post-avant writing. One must be careful about the use of animals in poems. I'm a sucker for lyric + birds, but sentimentalism makes me cringe because I am often sentimental about animals and baby animals. It's just a step from loving the cute fluffy bird to loving the cute fat baby and then the angelic mother baking a cake. Feeling sentimental about something is very close to thinking that it isn't important, or supposedly can't really be important in the real world.
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
Today I went for a walk on the beach. I saw several flocks of pelicans, many California squirrels, and also a rabbit.
The blue line "has an average weekday ridership of 58,400, more than the trolley system's two other lines combined."
Other people have clean fingernails. Why can't I?
I made designs for yoga t-shirts today. Tank tops, actually.
My left hamstring attachment kills. Sitting for long periods of time is really uncomfortable. Not in a sharp way, in a dull, annoying way.
Monday, May 21, 2007
Sunday, May 20, 2007
In San Diego, the difference between what is "real" and what is "fake" is complicated. They're nearly the same thing.
Mark's friend Jim (of Rock Town Hall) was in town for a conference, so we met him in San Diego this afternoon for Kansas City BBQ (yes, the Top Gun place--it's really very good) and then went to the Hotel Del Coronado to wander around and have a drink. The place reminds me of Miss Marple and the Shining and also a fake fantasy version of the old colonial hotels in southeast Asia--Raffles in Singapore, for example, which opened at about the same time as the Del (Raffles in 1887 and the Del in 1888)
I liked it. The next time I go, I'll make sure to wear my gold leather sandals, a tunic, and large sunglasses. It was all very mythological and ahistoric. Well, not quite ahistoric--Queen Anne revival architecture in California has to be concerned with history and tradition, sort of. It wants to evoke history as a feeling/aura and not a fact.
Saturday, May 19, 2007
I had kind of a dinner last night--a cup of cold cooked rice and lentils-- and several glasses of Pernod super diluted with water. It soooooothes the stomach. And I had kind of a breakfast this morning, so I'm on the mend. I'm a seasoned traveler. Sometimes I don't get sick at all, and then sometimes I have major nausea. I have swooned and fainted on many trains.
I just spilled my tea all over my lap.
When I was in Oman, I told people I was visiting from Washington, DC. In Vancouver, I told people I was visiting from San Diego, CA. In DC it was kind of fun and ironic to look Californian (at least to someone from the East Coast). Here, my very blond hair and love of 70s style are no longer ironic. Maybe they were never ironic.
Friday, May 18, 2007
We're back from Vancouver. I'm in the process of posting pictures and so on. We had a totally fabulous time. However, I got sick on the way to the airport (fortunately not before then) and remain sick. I am chewing on a piece of candied ginger. Cross your fingers for me.
Wednesday, May 09, 2007
Friday, May 11, 2007 @ 8 pm
319 West Hastings
" If MARK WALLACE did the comedy circuit, all that big hair and those sweet drinks would riot in the streets. Nothing Happened and Besides I Wasn't There is a series of one to six line stanzas all revamping the idea of the one-liner. But the joke is always frightening, a world where the 2x4s pounding the cat are hitting our heads and they hurt damn it, as they always make us stop and consider what we are. He is the existential joker: if Batman met the poet and it was for real."
RACHEL ZOLF writes of her most recent book, Human Resources: "Human Resources makes a vain attempt to answer Anne Carson's question around Paul Celan's poetry: "What is lost when words are wasted and where is the human store to which such goods are gathered in?" The subject of the book, a poet, wastes words writing "plain language" marketing and employee communications for pay, turning into a kind of writing (or rhetoric) machine in the process. As the two worlds of poetry and plain language collide, overlap and merge in the book, we enter a nonsense state of fractured subjectivity, experiencing the psychic cost of selling things with depleted words. Psychoanalytic, general-economic and transmission-theory rhetorics fed into the writing machine are spit out as bungled associations among money, shit, art production and communication. In the end, the new-look body without organs organizing the text is semi-recuperated through ethical confrontations with the multiple voices within and without her, while her book-machine frame crumbles before it can really form."
Sunday, May 13, 2007 @ 2:00 pm
Kootenay School of Writing
309 - 207 West Hastings
A talk by Wallace + a reading by Graham
"I have seen Graham's work compared to that of the late Kathy Acker, she's got something of Acker's sexual frankness, voracious intake, the sense that anything can come into the writing, but even if she isn't, you know, Kathy Acker she's got something that Acker never had. I can't really characterize it right now, but I'm a sucker for Graham's writing and this is the best example of it I can name." - Kevin Killian, on Graham's book Terminal Hunting
Tuesday, May 08, 2007
Monday, May 07, 2007
May and June in San Diego are usually overcast and cold, but today it is 75. Unseasonably warm. There are dudes swimming in the little swimming pool. Lester and I are having a pity party. Poor us, we have to work. Well, only I have to work. I am grading and Lester is molting. His mood has improved, and he hasn't screeched once yet today. He took a shower, which always helps the pin feathers.
I don't think classification essays should be taught in composition classes. They just encourage students to make stereotypes and be overly-general.
Sunday, May 06, 2007
Friday, May 04, 2007
My ESL class finished the unit on corporal punishment and spanking. Now we've moved on to a unit about marriage. I don't make these units up myself. In general, the books I'm using (Northstar) are much better than most other intermediate ESL textbooks I've used, but in-class discussion doesn't work if everyone is too tired or bored to talk. I'm used to having several students who have enough energy to help stir the class so I don't have to carry it all on my own.
This particular class fears any questions where they have to talk about their own opinions. After a particularly painful discussion where I more or less had to extract thoughts out of everyone with yes/no questions, I looked at them and said, "Well, we can listen to the ticking of the clock together, or you can pretend that you're awake like I'm pretending that I'm awake." I miss having mostly adult students who are spending their own money to pay for classes.
It's been a particularly long week.
Wednesday, May 02, 2007
Tricky of me asking this question of you when you haven't seen the poems and objects in question, perhaps.
Lester is grumpy and molting, but still very handsome and brave.
There are now sparrows nesting in our balcony roof, so I get to fuss and worry about hatchlings and fledglings all over again. And there are also some ravens nesting in the tree outside the window of my study. And then I saw three hawks being chased by jays this afternoon as I was teaching TOEFL. I only have two students, so I took them outside. I saw the hawks and pointed to them and got excited and they got excited and we stood on the picnic table for a while watching them. They'd never seen hawks before, let alone smaller birds attacking hawks.