Friday, October 19, 2018

Poem for Friday and Renfaire Raptors

Baseball Dreams
By Charles Ghigna

In memory of Jack Marsh, second baseman, Yale University, 1943

Before the bayonet replaced the bat,
Jack Marsh played second base for Yale;
his spikes anchored into the August clay,
his eyes set deep against the setting sun.

The scouts all knew his numbers well,
had studied his sure hands that flew
like hungry gulls above the grass;
but Uncle Sam had scouted too,

had chosen first the team to play
the season's final game of '44,
had issued him another uniform
to wear into the face of winter moon

that shone upon a snowy plain
where players played a deadly game,
where strikes were thrown with each grenade
and high pitched echoes linger still,

beyond the burned out foreign fields
and boyhood dreams of bunts and steals,
young Jack Marsh is rounding third,
and sliding, sliding safely home.


I did not have a very eventful Thursday, though the weather was gorgeous so I did visit two parks...fine, I was looking for Piplups and Starlys as well as enjoying the autumn. One was a park I'd never been to before, but it was on the way to Bed, Bath & Beyond to look for a tablecloth that might keep cat claws in check, and my friends were raiding there.

When I got home, I negotiated with the aforementioned cats to stop clawing the dining room table and did some photo organizing while I have coupons to print them. We're watching the Red Sox about to clinch a trip to the World Series and delight Paul's parents so I will be brief; here are photos of the raptor show with the falconer at the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire:

2018-10-14 15.35.00

2018-10-14 15.22.17

2018-10-14 15.04.46

2018-10-14 15.18.36

2018-10-14 15.23.38

2018-10-14 15.05.18

2018-10-14 15.15.30

2018-10-14 15.27.34

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Poem for Thursday and Around the Renfaire

Finding the Cat in a Spring Field at Midnight
By Pattiann Rogers

It takes a peculiar vision to be able to detect
Precisely where

The field grasses brushed by blowing
Stars and the odor of spring
In the breath of sweet clover buds
And the star-mingled calls of the toads
In the threading grasses and the paws
Of the clover brushing through the field
Of stars and the star-shaped crickets
In the ears of the sweet grasses
And the tail of the night flicking
Through the calls of the night and the spring
Stars slinking past the eyes of midnight
And the hour of the field mouse passing
Through the claws of the stars and the brushing
Haunches of the weeds and  starry grasses
Threading through the eyes of the mouse
And the buds of the stars calling
With the sweet breath of the field

And the cat begins.


My Wednesday was okay -- lots of chores, but I met Maddy at the mall (we originally had lunch plans but she ended up meeting people for a noon movie so we postponed those and just did some shopping) and Rose came over to see us and the cats (she brought treats so the feline members of the family were very excited to see her). Plus I did a Mewtwo raid and I got a lucky Prinplup!

We were going to put on a movie but the Red Sox-Astros game was actually really good (and still not over at this writing, though it looks like Boston is going to hang on). I chatted briefly with Adam, who was exhausted after his interview and bracing himself to take the red-eye back to the east coast for a day of work and classes. Here's some more fun from the Pennsylvania Renfaire:

2018-10-14 14.50.15

2018-10-14 16.29.39

2018-10-14 16.28.20

2018-10-14 16.30.29

2018-10-14 15.43.36

2018-10-14 14.51.36

2018-10-14 15.31.11

2018-10-14 17.08.58

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Poem for Wednesday and Pennsylvania Renfaire Halloween

Caelica - Sonnet 100
By Fulke Greville, Lord Brooke

In Night when colours all to blacke are cast,
Distinction lost, or gone downe with the light;
The eye a watch to inward senses plac'd,
Not seeing, yet still having power of sight,

Gives vaine Alarums to the inward sense,
Where feare stirr'd vp with witty tyranny,
Confounds all powers, and thorough selfe-offence,
Doth forge and raise impossibility:

Such as in thicke depriving darkenesses,
Proper reflections of the errour be,
And images of selfe-confusednesses,
Which hurt imaginations onely see;

And from this nothing seene, tels newes of devils,
Which but expressions be of inward evils.


I had plans to get lots of things done on Tuesday, and then Gen 4 Pokemon unexpectedly arrived. So I ran out with my hair unwashed and no bra, thinking I was just going to drive through the park to see what I could catch, but I could see that there was a Turtwig by the train station and then I ran into a guy who'd never done a Mewtwo raid and was looking for people to battle with, so I summoned some locals on GroupMe and we did the raid at one of the park gyms and I caught Bidoofs and Bunearys and Kricketots and, eventually, Piplups, my favorite Pokemon of all because they're penguins!

It was otherwise an uneventful day involving laundry and food shopping and worrying about a friend whose family has suffered a loss, Adam flew this afternoon to California for a job interview, so I chatted with him online while his flight was delayed; he has landed and is hopefully enjoying the west coast weather. We watched this week's The Flash, which was okay -- I'm ready for everything not to circle around people's angst about their family members -- and Black Lightning, which does a much better job balancing family and community concerns. Halloween at the Pennsylvania Renfaire:

2018-10-14 14.33.18

2018-10-14 13.06.09

2018-10-14 15.36.32

2018-10-14 16.14.14

2018-10-14 14.49.27

2018-10-14 14.54.00

2018-10-14 14.41.11

2018-10-14 17.31.05

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Poem for Tuesday, Yuri on Ice, Pennsylvania Renfaire

As If I Am Someone Else
By Douglas Piccinnini

so much depends
on the authority

of a reality
to guide me

in a logic
of circumstance—

to live comfortably
yet desire differently.


I spent a nice Monday with Denise, whom I had not seen in far too long. Since we are Ultra friends on Pokemon Go, I invited her to the Deoxys raid in Cabin John Park, after which we went to Silver Moon's store closing sale, where we both bought jewelry with copper from the Statue of Liberty centennial restoration at a big discount, then stopped at the Fresh Market to pick up food for lunch, which we ate back at my house while watching Yuri on Ice since she had not seen it. She stayed through dinner so we had lots of time to catch up!

In the evening Paul and I caught up on Sunday's Doctor Who, though I was chatting online with a friend who got some really bad news tonight so I was kind of distracted, which may explain why I didn't have a big reaction to the new TARDIS reveal or various other things. We caught up on the Supergirl season premiere too, which I mostly liked -- if it's going to be a season arc, at least it's a politically relevant one, and the women weren't all a mess for a change. Fun from the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire on Sunday:

2018-10-14 16.27.29

2018-10-14 15.15.28

2018-10-14 13.59.02

2018-10-14 13.19.45

2018-10-14 16.52.08

2018-10-14 15.38.41

2018-10-14 14.01.24

2018-10-14 12.59.12

Monday, October 15, 2018

Greetings from Mount Hope

We spent Sunday with Cheryl in Manheim at the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire, where the morning drizzle eventually stopped though it remained nicely autumnal and cool! It was as crowded as we've ever seen the parking lots, though we had almost no traffic getting there and once inside it didn't feel packed and crazy the way the Maryland Renaissance Festival has the past few times we've gone -- we only waited in line for food for about five minutes, had no trouble finding tables, and there were plenty of seats five minutes before the joust and ten minutes before Albannach performed.

We even got seats at the newly renovated Chess Board Stage where the falconers show their birds, plus we saw the Kings of England and France and met Sir William (I have a photo, will post when I get it to download from my phone). Plus we bought some trinkets and looked at a lot of crafts, though we were getting chilly by day's end and happy to meet Paul's parents for dinner in Hanover, where we ate at the Hibachi Buffet before coming home in time for Madam Secretary. My only disappointment is that the pirate ship armory is now a bar! Here are just a couple of photos, more when I get organized:

2018-10-14 17.31.19

2018-10-14 16.51.08A

2018-10-14 12.58.13

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Poem for Sunday and Countryside Artisans Tour

A Monk Sips Morning Tea
By Matsuo Bashō

A monk sips morning tea,
it’s quiet,
the chrysanthemum’s flowering.


Saturday was a spectacularly beautiful day, and we spent most of it in the vicinity of Sugarloaf Mountain on the Countryside Artisans tour. We started at Heron's Meadow Farm in Howard County, a tea farm that also sells jams, spices, and crafts, which had samples and lots of cookies and brownies too! Then we went to Something Earthy, a pottery, needlework, and jewelry studio on a farm with goats and chickens.

The glass studio Art of Fire was largely deserted since most of their artisans and glassworks are at the Maryland Renaissance Festival this month, but we got to see their cats, plus we stopped at Little Bennett Park to see whether the leaves were changing (not much). Finally we went to Dancing Leaf Farm and Sugarloaf Studio, a wool-and-fiber studio and a painter's studio next door to each other.

The sheep next door to Dancing Leaf Farm...

2018-10-13 16.06.15
...and yarn from Dancing Leaf Farm's sheep.

2018-10-13 14.17.24
Heron's Meadow Farm, which grows tea and has a pottery studio.

2018-10-13 15.05.39
Glassblowers working on projects at Art of Fire...

2018-10-13 15.03.11
...and a wizard with glass.

2018-10-13 15.38.14
The streams at Little Bennett Park in flood.

2018-10-13 14.42.24
With the goats outside Something Earthy studio and farm...

2018-10-13 14.50.51
...and inside with the dog and crafts.

Adam is flying to California twice in the next two weeks for job interviews, and he spent all day at a coding challenge for another potential job -- we have no idea when he has time for his internships, let alone his classes -- so we stopped in College Park to bring him some stuff he needs and had dinner at Ten Ren since we were over there so late. Then we watched the Red Sox game till it got terrible, so we put on SNL!

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Poem for Saturday, Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society, Étretat

On the Seashore
By Rabindranath Tagore

On the seashore of endless worlds children meet.

The infinite sky is motionless overhead and the restless water is boisterous. On the seashore of endless worlds the children meet with shouts and dances.

They build their houses with sand, and they play with empty shells. With withered leaves they weave their boats and smilingly float them on the vast deep. Children have their play on the seashore of worlds.

They know not how to swim, they know not how to cast nets. Pearl-fishers dive for pearls, merchants sail in their ships, while children gather pebbles and scatter them again. They seek not for hidden treasures, they know not how to cast nets.

The sea surges up with laughter, and pale gleams the smile of the sea-beach. Death-dealing waves sing meaningless ballads to the children, even like a mother while rocking her baby's cradle. The sea plays with children, and pale gleams the smile of the sea-beach.

On the seashore of endless worlds children meet. Tempest roams in the pathless sky, ships are wrecked in the trackless water, death is abroad and children play. On the seashore of endless worlds is the great meeting of children.


I spent Friday morning working on my France photo book, which is taking forever because Shutterfly's site is sucking so much that I'm thinking after decades I need to find a new service. Then I went to a Pokemon raid in Cabin John Park, where a friend helped me catch a 98 IV Mewtwo, and I walked for an hour because the weather was magnificent. We were supposed to have dinner with my parents, but my father wasn't feeling well and thought he might be contagious, though I saw my mother because she brought us cookies.

We watched the season premiere of Blindspot, which I liked because of Jaimie Alexander kicking ass though the show needs to stop finding contrived ways to keep Jane and Kurt apart. Then we watched The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society, which has lots of Downton Abbey actors and is quite enjoyable though a lot of the darker aspects of the story are kind of glossed over to keep the focus on the relationships. Because I am missing the beach, here are photos of the white cliffs of Étretat in Normandy:


2018-09-02 12.40.26