Sunday, April 23, 2006

The Tin Woodman?

Down the block from me the city recently put up a piece of art. Here's a picture of it.

Depending upon what angle you view it from it is a metal command, Georgia Pearson's initials, or a diagram of the I-64 / I-70 traffic snarl near the new stadium in St. Louis. Or maybe its Paul Bunyon's "Quit Smoking" fidget toy.

Now, I'm all about art in the city. Beats the heck out of empty lots and abandoned buildings.

At the foot of the flag is a plaque telling visitors that this is a memorial in memory of the "heroes and victims who died in the war on terrorism". Again, an admirable civic effort.

But, there is something curious here. The plaque reads that the memorial is sponsored by the Woodmen of the World.

So here's my question. Shouldn't a memorial sponsored by a group called the Woodmen of the World have some wood somewhere around it? Maybe an actual tree, or something that looks like one?

Last week they trenched alongside the road around the sculpture. Looked like maybe they were going to put in shrubs or a flower bed. Well, that's more like it... right?

Nope. Sidewalk. Dig up and dump grass and bushes into a dump truck in order to put down more cement for a Woodmen's memorial........

Ummmm.... ok.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Voices in my head....

Sometimes random bits of dialogue fall out of my head. Usually at the oddest times. They'll have no connection to what I'm doing, or what I was thinking about or working on. It's almost as if there is a tv tuner in my head and there's some old guy with his hand on the remote. -- he's about a 12-pack into the day, and he has a twitch.

Here's an example: I was taking the trash out tonight... just walking a plastic bag to the can, and this fell out of my head:


A Mobster and woman are in a hotel room. It's after and she's getting dressed. He's sitting by the window, in slacks and a wife beater t-shirt. His shoes, socks and shirt are on the floor in a staggered line between the door and the bed. She's sitting on the bed adjusting her stockings before putting her shoes on. The light from the window throws his shadow across the floor. He's a big guy; mid-forties, thick black hair combed straight back so that it almost completely hides the male pattern baldness. She retrieves her shoes from his shadow and puts them on. After she's dressed she picks up his shirt and socks and puts them on the bed. His shoes she sets next to the dresser.

Then she goes to the mirrored wall behind the sink and checks her face. As she's applying her make up she looks at his reflection, over her shoulder in the mirror.

“So, we been doin' this for what, three months now?” she says. “You never talk about home. You don't talk about your family....”

“Whatta you want to know?” he asks.

“I don't know. How's your wife?”

“Perfect,” he answers and looks out the window. “She's perfect.”

“You love her?” she asks around her lipstick tube, working on her bottom lip.

He looks back at her. “Do I love her? What the hell kind'a whore question is that? Yeah, I love her. You think I'd keep showin' up here, bangin' you, I didn't love her? Christ...” He hammers his cigarette out in the ashtray and gets up. “Do I love her? Don't you ever ask me that again...”

He's throwing on his shirt as she puts her lipstick away and turns from the mirror to face him.

“So, you love her, but you don't sleep with her?”

He won't look at her eyes. “... I sleep with her.”

“Yeah, you sleep with her...but you don't fuck her. Does she even let you touch her?”

“Hey, you watch your mouth, awright? This is you and me here; not me and her.” He sits to put on his socks and shoes. He's quiet for a few seconds. “She don't need some big ape crawling all over her... sweating all over her.... She don't need that. I told you, she's perfect.”

Somewhere in my head there must be a story this belongs to... Who are these two and what happens next....?

Beats me.... maybe I'll find out while I'm washing the car.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Livin La Vida Laundry

The days are too short. The nights are too long.
And I'm living my life through my socks.

It's that time of year when chores seem to pile up, at work and at home. There's more sunlight and "too cold" is no longer available as an excuse to not work on the house.

Something happens to my brain during time changes and I don't sleep much. And when I do the dreams are .... odd.

Maybe that explains why I'm watching my socks dance the night away.

They gather together and dance in the dryer. They roll and tumble, cozy and warm.

It's not so bad when they are in the washer. You can't see them. And I only use cold water, so they don't get to enjoy the "hot tub" effect.

But in the dryer they are partying with all the other clothes, and I'm sitting here watching them.

I think I need another beer.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Spring Forward, Fall Flat

Some mornings it doesn't matter what time it is. It's still too freakin' early.

Ever have one of those mornings where you wake up feeling hung over and don't have a good time to blame it on? Having one of those today. One of those mornings where "Aliens are beating me in my sleep!" Seems as good an explanation as any.

This is Dakota the Wonder Mutt on a good day. Dakota was raised by cats. When you rub her stomach she growls. She thinks she's purring.

It scares the crap out of the little neighbor kids.

Being raised with cats, she thinks nothing of playing with cats. And usually fails to think anything WHILE playing with cats. They love to play chase with her. They love to lead her into places she can't get out of. Places that, when they head off into the neighborhood to tell their cat friends about it... "You won't believe what the Wonder Mutt did this time.....!!" it is guaranteed to get them lots of rounds of drinks or milk, or whatever, at the local cat bars. Here's an example:

The cat and the dog were playing on the other side of the house. I heard a small crash, then some silence, then some banging that sounded like something bouncing off the walls and the dining room table and chairs. Then.... silence.

The cat came in and sat on the arm of my chair and I swear, laughed. Like a dutiful human, I went off to investigate and found this:

The cat had led the dog into the catbox,
Dakota was sitting in the middle of the dining room floor, her head and one fore leg stuck inside the opening. The banging and knocking must have been her efforts to get herself free.
Now, she was sitting very still, looking out from under the lid with this "Please don't laugh at me" plea in her eyes.