By Vijay Seshadri
How strange would it be if you met yourself on the street?
How strange if you liked yourself,
took yourself in your arms, married your own self,
propagated by techniques known only to you,
and then populated the world? Replicas of you are everywhere.
Some are Arabs. Some are Jews. Some live in yurts. It is
an abomination, but better that your
sweet and scrupulously neat self
emerges at many points on the earth to watch the horned moon rise
than all those dolts out there,
turning into pillars of salt wherever we look.
If we have to have people, let them be you,
spritzing your geraniums, driving yourself to the haberdashery,
killing your supper with a blowgun.
Yes, only in the forest do you feel at peace,
up in the branches and down in the terrific gorges,
but you've seen through everything else.
You've fled in terror across the frozen lake,
you've found yourself in the sand, the palace,
the prison, the dockside stews;
and long ago, on this same planet, you came home
to an empty house, poured a Scotch-and-soda,
and sat in a recliner in the unlit rumpus room,
puzzled at what became of you.
Another from this week's New Yorker.
I had quite a mellow Thursday. Julia came over and we watched a bunch of early Buffy, for which I get more and more nostalgic the more recent television I watch -- I never saw the first season, so I clearly need to catch up on that, and I made her put on "Innocence" because I still think that's one of the best hours of TV ever (and almost makes me forgive Joss Whedon for everything until I remember all the reasons I take that back). I feel better because Julia thinks I don't have to feel guilty for liking Eastwick and does not think I have to love Glee as much as the rest of the internet. I feel badly because I could not eat CalTort with her -- I haven't found their nutrition info yet and am not sure there is anything low-enough sodium -- but I had tuna and granola so I really can't complain.
I spent some of the afternoon fighting with my desktop computer which I try not to turn on because it makes me cry, but I had to get at my hard drive to back up my photos. Is it worth trying to reinstall XP, knowing that I am on my own if it fails utterly, or should I just try deleting every program one by one until it takes less than half an hour to boot the computer and Firefox does not crash every time I launch it? Paul wants to pay someone to look at it which seems silly to me because it would probably cost little more to replace. We had dinner with my parents, who won't be home for Shabbat tomorrow, then we watched FlashForward which very nearly jumped the shark for me very early in its young life with the Nazi Kabbalah crap. I'm still on the fence about whether I actually like the show; the actors, sure, and the overall premise, but moment to moment, I'm not fully sold. I am sure that watching Next Gen's allegorical gay masterpiece "The Outcast" didn't help my opinion any tonight.
I'm not sure whether this is a wannabe Hamlet or a pirate with a skull -- my money is on the latter since it was pirate weekend at the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire.
The acrobats of Barely Balanced get into one of their naughtier positions before flipping around and juggling knives on top of one another.
This woman with her hammered dulcimer is one of several wandering minstrels and musical performers who move through the Faire.
The archery demonstration spans the entire jousting arena and several yards beyond as the archer with the longbow hits targets from far away.
When the falconer is not giving a demonstration, his birds (several of which are rehabilitated wildlife) are on display near the jousting arena.
Damian Blade swallows a sword as the crowd chants, "Swallow, Damian, swallow!"
This man has a portable bubble-blowing machine that's a huge hit with kids and other visitors all over the faire.
My kids are too old to chase bubbles but they are always happy to see Barely Balanced and Don Juan & Miguel.
I'm so glad I'm mostly out of fandom because Emma Thompson signing the Free Polanski petition makes me want to throw up. If Glenn Close, Russell Crowe, or Alan Rickman signs it, I may have to delete my fannish journal.