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Showing posts from March, 2012

Coffee, Tea or Energy

Descarte Before the Horse

According to The Writer's Almanac, today is the birthday of Rene Descartes.

I wonder if Descartes’s a sham, Less thoughtful than he’s said to be. He says he thinks, therefore he am. I wonder if Descartes’s a sham, Why not, “I am, ergo I’m Sam.”? It’s all a Frenchman’s fantasy. I wonder if Descartes’s a sham, Less thoughtful than he’s said to be.

Tricky Rick

Notes from the Home

A week ago, in Ashtabula, I was looking out the window and wondering what it said about a man that all his earthly possessions could be stuffed into a five-by-eight U-Haul trailer. It took a tremendous amount of work to get everything in the trailer, and Nancy and Aaron did all the work. I will be eternally grateful for their effort and for the many, many things they have done for me over the last six years. But, I couldn’t shake the feeling that an estate that fits into a small U-Haul trailer isn’t much of an estate.    On Monday, here in Columbus, Georgia, I watched Russ and Karen unload the trailer and deposit its contents in my new apartment at Covenant Woods. “Where the hell did all this come from,” I wondered. Nancy must have used every ounce of her ingenuity to get it all in the trailer, and there was no way it was all going to fit in the apartment. But Russ and Karen uncluttered the clutter – and reassembled my bed and kitchen table – so  I now have a comfortable, almost roomy…

The Middle Age

Because I am too old to be young and too young to be old, I usually think of myself as middle aged. It has a respectable ring to it, an aura of dignity, seriousness and maturity. I think of middle age as that time in life when a person still has the ability to raise hell and sow wild oats; and the wisdom not to. With its melding of youthful strength and exuberance with prudence and judgment, middle age seemed to be a great age.    Then Anthony Trollope came along. The other morning I was being my self-satisfied, middle-aged self, sipping coffee and reading Trollope’s He Knew He was Right. The title appealed to me. I too know that I am right. But somewhere in the second chapter, I lost all interest in Louis Trevelyn, the protagonist, and whether or not he was right. It wasn’t Mr. Trevelyn’s fault; the problem was his father-in-law, whom Trollope describes thusly: “[Lord Marmaduke] had become at fifty what many people call quite a middle aged man. That is to say, he was one from whom the…

The Hell with Homage

Next week at this time - 9:45, Saturday morning - Russell and I will be heading to Georgia with all my possessions in tow. In order to properly embarrass me on my last day in writing class, Suzanne, among her other assignments, has directed the class members to write a homage or ode to me. To double my embarrassment, she turned to me and said, "Tom, you write one too." So I did.
Please write an homage, ode or triolet. To me? I wouldn’t do it on a bet. Instead I’ll opt for something easier And pen a ditty much more cheesier. In doing my duty, I’m not derelict You see, I wrote this too true limmer-ict.
Tom’s prose is all tangled and dense, Mangling the past and present tense. His poetry crass, A guy with no class, Who writes this claptrap and nonsense.

Youthful or Childish?

There's no Diva in Divagate

Learning new words in a writing class is hardly remarkable, but I’ll remark on it anyway. The other day, one of Mary’s poems included the word “peplum.”  “What’s peplum?” I asked. It is, I was told, a ruffle attached to the waistline of a coat or blouse. Thus enlightened, I left class with a new word in my vocabulary; a word I was sure I had never seen before and would never see again. Never turned out to be about five hours and twenty minutes.    After supper, I fired up the computer to read a few essays in Of All Things, by Robert Benchley. It’s funny, until a couple months ago, I couldn’t understand why anyone would want to read a book on a computer screen. Then I got a new computer with Blio included in the software package. It lets me download books. I don’t pay attention to the books it wants paid for, but I can’t get away from the books it offers for free.     It reminds of going to the book rack at Goodwill. There were always books I “should” have read by authors I “should” have…

'Fraid So