i walk into La Feltrinelli on Largo Argentina, on the hunt for scotch-tape and wrapping-paper. this is what happens when you swear off presents that have to do with birthdays, Christmases and calendar dates of any form: you are constantly and consistently caught off-guard when it comes to the gifts you really do want to give. but still. i like this new philosophy. and one can never have too much scotch tape.
anyway. they are playing Tom Waits. so i decide to "take it as a sign". (meno male, they did not have 'Allegro Non Troppo,' and they did not have 'Baraka' -- i would probably have "taken those as signs" too...)
i walk out senza lo scotch. but i have scored this wrapping paper that is a montage of old Italian movies (Sophia Loren is silk-stocking-ed up in 'Ieri, Oggi e Domani,' one hand running lusciously through the locks of hair that tumble three millimetres from Mastroianni; Burt Lancaster is all straightbacked and ice-eyed in 'Il Gattopardo,' "every inch the big cat of the title;" and 'I Soliti Ognoti' are, well, i soliti ignoti). and i have scored a copy of The Asylum Years. there were seven Tom Waits albums in all, and I could not choose based on price (because they were all nine-ninety). so i settled on the one that was Looking for the Heart of Saturday Night, because at least i know her -- that barmaid who smiles from the corner of her eye.
(i know that hooker in Minneapolis too. but the barmaid -- she mystifies me a little more.)
twelve-odd Tom-hours later, i am all slowed-up and looking everywhere but out. this man is not about music to shower to, that is for sure. this man is not about music to work out to, or even to walk to work to, really. he is about music to breathe slowly to, and music to dally to. he is about music to be late to.
he makes me think of Kerouac and Ginsberg and the blues-beat of a poet heart as it berates America, blames America and -- underneath and over and around it all -- beatifies America. furious and in-love and always, always, ever-so-nonchalantly uninvested, all at once.
(and like so many of them, he tells his stories in a way that makes you wonder. can anyone else sing this song? can *he* sing this song, err, sober?)
and of course. he flirts with Lady Metaphor in that way that only a poet can. like he has made love to her so very many times: always under a gypsy moon, always to the sound of a street-urchin saxophone, and no stringy clichés attached.
And with her knees upon the glove compartment
She took out her barrettes and her hair spilled out like root beer
And she popped her gum and arched her back
And you ask for Captain Charon with the mud on his kicks
He's the skipper of the deadline steamer
And she sails from the Bronx across the river Styx
And a riddle is just a ticket for a dreamer
...he dreams of a waitress with Maxwell House eyes
And marmalade thighs with scrambled yellow hair.
Her rhinestone-studded moniker says, "Irene"
As she wipes the wisps of dishwater blonde from her eyes
that Lady Metaphor. she always was a sucker for a fella in a cowboy hat.
[Via Marco Aurelio, Roma]
[lunedì 23 novembre 2009 ore 23:59:24] [¶]
...a work in progress (unfortunately).
- i'm willing to be interested in what you have to say if you're willing to be interested in what i have to say.
- it is difficult for me to like people who do not love food. i will always try, but be warned.
- if you spend more than half of our conversation complaining, i will start planning ways to ensure that the half does not become a whole.
- try not to interrupt, muthaf@cka.
to be continued (unfortunately).
[Via Marco Aurelio, Roma]
[mercoledì 04 novembre 2009 ore 13:35:04] [¶]
So a boy told me about fireflies, and of his "wonderful memory of walking back from someplace, up on a hill at night, and seeing fireflies for the first time in the field below us."
And I got to thinking.
Which means eventually that I got to Googling. (This instant information thing can really kill the romance sometimes...)
From Wikipedia (with my err, "contributions" -- in più):
The term glowworm is also used for both adults and larvae of species such as Lampyris noctiluca, the common European glowworm, in which only the non-flying adult females glow brightly and the flying males glow only very weakly and intermittently.
--- "...weakly and intermittently." Of course. Now THAT sounds familiar.
Some species, especially lightning bugs of the genera Photinus, Photuris and Pyractomena, are distinguished by the unique courtship flash patterns emitted by flying males in search of females. Females of the Photinus genus generally do not fly, but do give a flash response to males of their own species.
-- Why hello there, stranger. Got a light?
Female Photuris fireflies are known for mimicking the mating flashes of other "lightning bugs" for the sole purpose of predation. Target males are attracted to what appears to be a suitable mate, and are then eaten. For this reason the Photuris species are sometimes referred to as "femme fatale fireflies."
--- "Target males are attracted to what appears to be a suitable mate, and are then eaten." And we think OUR men are stupid...
Tropical fireflies, particularly in Southeast Asia, routinely synchronise their flashes among large groups, an example of biological synchronicity. In some fields, this phenomenon is explained as phase synchronization and spontaneous order. At night along river banks in the Malaysian jungles (most notably found near Kuala Selangor), fireflies ("kelip-kelip" in the Malay language or Bahasa Malaysia) synchronise their light emissions precisely. Current hypotheses about the causes of this behavior involve diet, social interaction, and altitude. In the United States, one of the most famous sightings of fireflies blinking in unison occurs annually near Elkmont, Tennessee in the Great Smoky Mountains during the first weeks of June. Congaree National Park in South Carolina is another host to this phenomenon.
--- In another species, and also in the United States (and most other places), instances of biological synchronicity are more easily studied: On Fridays and Saturdays, usually well after sunset / happy-hour, one can find comparable phenomena at the skeezy nightclub down the street. While the females in these cases do glow brightly and in unison like their Photuris cousins, evolutionary changes (also known as fashion), have affected the ways in which they do so. Exoskeletal features such as sparkly earrings and really short skirts are common, and the group instinct towards spontaneous (dis)order is often fulfilled via synchronized giggling, often as a direct reaction to signals from the males in the species (or from far too many Long Island Iced Teas). As with the fireflies, current theories on the causes of this behavior involve diet, social interaction, and
praying mantis, anyone?
[Via Marco Aurelio, Roma]
[domenica 01 novembre 2009 ore 20:04:11] [¶]