Browsing all posts in March, 2010.

Mar 31st
Wednesday

Having a melancholy little Wednesday afternoon here.
I’m cooking and listening to music but I don’t know . . .
No more details.
This is a song I used to play with a band I was in years ago and it evokes good memories.
I think that’s what I really need today.
And yes, I want to see the Northern Lights before I die.
It’s a definite on my bucket list . . .

Mar 29th
Monday

Out of respect for my father,
Malarky Monday will return next week.
Please light a candle for kind and gentle man that will be missed.
That would make for a great Malarky Monday.
Rest easy, Dad.
You’re finally home . . .

~m

Mar 25th
Thursday

Got this from a close friend of Sarah’s.
It is, in a literary sense, quite haunting and spoke to me in ways unimaginable.
It was supposedly written by a 15-year-old girl.
Pretty amazing and apropos for this particular time in my life.
Thank you, Katherine.
You are, in many ways, an angel,
although you would never admit it . . .

“The soul and the body exist separately.
While the soul uses the body as a vessel to express itself,
they never truly become one.
For this reason, when one’s body passes on,
the soul does not follow.
Instead it remains living; free to wander where it pleases.
Visiting its favorite places, or doing its favorite things.
And if, while on Earth, the soul found someone so special that it wants never to leave them,
it will enter that person and continue to live.
It chooses to stay in that person.
Forever watching over them,
Protecting them,
Loving them.
Forever being with them.
Realize this, remember this, keep this with you.
Because the bodies of the ones we love will pass on,
But their souls will never die.”

*thinking about Dad and angels

Mar 23rd
Tuesday

His soul sleeps,
buried far beneath a long forgotten vertical landscape,
yearning for home . . .
it dreams of places remembered; warm places, complete and innocently raw

The perpetual journey through a cobwebbed labyrinth remains a stygian quest at best,
an unanswered prayer, a dimly lit votive, a quiet cry in the dark
the clouds thicken, the earth cools and a winter of the mind settles in

Rolling waves of emotion yield snowflakes of blue
that fall like sleet, slicing the spirit into oh, so many unrecognizable pieces of what used to be a life; where nothing fits or belongs but must somehow remain

still . . .

Who knows when, this sadly shattered thing will end
Only God knows when it started,
But it’s wearing pretty thin, as the winter settles in, covering the frozen man . . .

ps. love you.
m&m

Mar 22nd
Monday

There are ephemeral moments in life that defy description and reason simply by lack of concrete definition.
Although they are minute slices of microcosms in time they occasionally scream at me
to look more closely at them.
These serendipitous moments come random and unannounced;
I have missed many because I wasn’t paying attention,
too preoccupied with some other curious ripple in the darkest oceans of my life.
Today was different.
I was listening.
What happened today was a very short and simple conversation with a woman I have never met before.
I don’t make this stuff up it just happens.
A Godwink?
Perhaps.
She came into the store early this morning wearing a long black parka with a fur-lined hood.
The icy Boston rain had her wearing said hood, therefore hiding her face.
She told me she was hoping to find some empty cigar boxes outside the store but that she was sad because there were none.
(We always put the empties outside where passersby can just take them)

Hang on, I said, I think I have a few in the back.

I went and came back with two small wooden cigars boxes with sliding lids.
They were made out of Spanish cedar and smelled wonderful.
Looking back on this morning, it’s ironic that one of the cigar boxes had the name ‘Illusione’ on the top of it.

I have these, I said, handing her the boxes.

Oh, my, she said, this is just what I wanted.
Thank you so much.

No problem, I said.

Before she turned to leave, she looked up at me.
Under the fur-lined hood I saw a distant and almost yesterday version of my mother’s face.
She smiled and softly said, ‘love you’ and made a *mwah kissing sound as she left.
Love and free cigar boxes usually do not go together.
I stood there in the middle of the empty store with ridiculous goosebumps.
She even sounded like my mother, for Christ’s sake.
I could see what I wanted to see and hear what I wanted to hear.
Maybe I’m going out on a limb here making all these iffy connections,
seeing and hearing things that may not even be there.
To think and believe the actual possibility is dreaming and maybe sadly inconsequential is justified
but this morning I was a true believer in existential possibility.
I ‘heard’ the voice of my mother say ‘love you’ for the sake of two wooden cigar boxes.
Some days you have to take what life gives you and today,
I think I did just that . . .

Mar 22nd
Monday

Welcome to Malarky Monday!
I’m  hoping you get the idea by now.
After visiting here, click the links to the Malarky Monday gang and laugh your pants off!

This week is all about annoying things.
I’ve dealt with many lately so this post seemed natural in the overall scheme of things.

Yeah, fruit can be annoying.
And be annoyed . . .

There’s nothing more annoying than being chased by a 10-point buck loaded
with heat-seeking missiles.
I love .gif images . . .

Cell phones?
Annoying.
Especially when playing ‘You oughta know’
by Alanis Morissette.
God, she’s annoying . . .

Finally, there is nothing more annoying than
a woman that badly needs some mustache wax.
Nothing.
Her husband looks like he’s going to get his ass kicked when they get home.
Click on the picture to go to the website . . .

Now off you go!
Visit:
Moe
Morky
and
Dilligaf

& Happy Malarky Monday!

Mar 18th
Thursday

God willing, Pamela and I will be traveling to North Queensland, Australia in 2011.
It’s a long story as far as my newborn love of a country I’ve yet to see but know that
most of the story is already here on the blog.
Troll the tag ‘Australia’ and I think you’ll begin to see why.
We have taken into our hearts two people from the ‘Godzone’ and will be spending
three wonderful weeks with them this coming July.
That said, I found this essay tonight from a favorite writer of mine and thought it was worthy
of a pass along.
Adams has amazed me for years if only for his twists of ideas and language.
When I saw his thoughts on Australia, I had to share this.
It is, for the most part, a tongue-in-cheek look at a country/continent/ island  most of us barely understand.
Pamela and I feel like we’re getting close though.
And we love it, vegemite/Bundaberg and all.
I just want to see the Southern Cross.
Too much to ask?
I think not.
*btw-Pamela is not laughing about all the insects, spiders and other yukky, crawly things Downunder.
I told her, get a stick.

This is Douglas Adams and his deepest thoughts on Australia.

______________________________________________

Australia is a very confusing place, taking up a large amount of the Bottom half of the planet.
It is recognisable from orbit because of many unusual features,
including what at first looks like an enormous bite taken out of its southern edge;
a wall of sheer cliffs which plunge deep into the girting sea.
Geologists assure us that this is simply an accident of geomorphology and plate tectonics,
but they still call it the “Great Australian Bight” proving that not only are they covering up a more frightening theory, but they can’t spell either.

The first of the confusing things about Australia is the status of the place.
Where other land masses and sovereign lands are classified as either continent, island, or country,
Australia is considered all three.

Typically, it is unique in this.

The second confusing thing about Australia are the animals.
They can be divided into three categories: Poisonous, Odd, and Sheep.

It is true that of the 10 most poisonous arachnids on the planet, Australia has 9 of them.
Actually, it would be more accurate to say that of the 9 most poisonous arachnids, Australia has all of them.
However, there are curiously few snakes, possibly because the spiders have killed them all.
But even the spiders won’t go near the sea.

Any visitors should be careful to check inside boots (before putting them on),
under toilet seats (before sitting down) and generally everywhere else.
A stick is very useful for this task.

Strangely, it tends to be the second class of animals (the Odd) that are more dangerous.
The creature that kills the most people each year is the common Wombat.
It is nearly as ridiculous as its name, and spends its life digging holes in the ground, in which it hides.
During the night it comes out to eat worms and grubs.

The wombat kills people in two ways:
First, the animal is indestructible.
Digging holes in the hard Australian clay builds muscles that outclass Olympic weight lifters.
At night, they often wander the roads. Semi-trailers (Road Trains) have hit them at high speed, with all 9 wheels on one side, and this merely makes them very annoyed.
They express this by snorting, glaring, and walking away.
Alas, to smaller cars, the wombat becomes a symmetrical launching pad, with results that can be imagined, but not adequately described.

The second way the wombat kills people relates to its burrowing behaviour.
If a person happens to put their hand down a Wombat hole, the Wombat will feel the disturbance and think
“Ho! My hole is collapsing!” at which it will brace its muscled legs and push up against the roof of its burrow with incredible force, to prevent its collapse.
Any unfortunate hand will be crushed, and attempts to withdraw will cause the Wombat to simply bear down harder. The unfortunate will then bleed to death through their crushed hand as the wombat prevents him from seeking assistance.
This is considered the third most embarrassing known way to die,
and Australians don’t talk about it much.

At this point, we would like to mention the Platypus, estranged relative of the mammal,
which has a duck-bill, otter’s tail, webbed feet, lays eggs,
detects its aquatic prey in the same way as the electric eel,
and has venomous barbs attached to its hind legs,
thus combining all ‘typical’ Australian attributes into a single improbable creature.

The last confusing thing about Australia is the inhabitants.
First, a short history:
Some time around 40,000 years ago, some people arrived in boats from the north.
They ate all the available food, and lot of them died.
The ones that survived learned respect for the balance of nature, man’s proper place in the scheme of things, and spiders. They settled in, and spent a lot of the intervening time making up strange stories.
Then, around 200 years ago,
Europeans arrived in boats from the north.
More accurately, European convicts were sent, with a few deranged and stupid people in charge.
They tried to plant their crops in Autumn
(failing to take account of the reversal of the seasons when moving from the top half of the planet to the bottom),
ate all their food, and a lot of them died.

About then the sheep arrived, and have been treasured ever since.
It is interesting to note here that the Europeans always consider themselves vastly superior to any other race they encounter, since they can lie, cheat, steal, and litigate (marks of a civilised culture they say) – whereas all the Aboriginals can do is happily survive being left in the middle of a vast red-hot desert, equipped with a stick.
Eventually, the new lot of people stopped being Europeans on Extended Holiday and became Australians.

The changes are subtle, but deep, caused by the mind-stretching expanses of nothingness and eerie quiet,
where a person can sit perfectly still and look deep inside themselves to the core of their essence,
their reasons for being, and the necessity of checking inside your boots every morning for fatal surprises.
They also picked up the most finely tuned sense of irony in the world,
and the Aboriginal gift for making up stories.

Be warned.
There is also the matter of the beaches.
Australian beaches are simply the nicest and best in the entire world.
Although anyone actually venturing into the sea will have to contend with sharks,
stinging jellyfish, stonefish (a fish which sits on the bottom of the sea, pretends to be a rock, and has venomous barbs sticking out of its back that will kill just from the pain)
and surfboarders.
However, watching a beach sunset is worth the risk.

As a result of all this hardship, dirt, thirst, and wombats, you would expect Australians to be a dour lot.
Instead, they are genial, jolly, cheerful, and always willing to share a kind word with a stranger, unless they are an American.
Faced with insurmountable odds and impossible problems, they smile disarmingly and look for a stick.

Major engineering feats have been performed with sheets of corrugated iron, string, and mud.
Alone of all the races on earth, they seem to be free from the ‘Grass is Greener on the other side of the fence’ syndrome, and roundly proclaim that Australia is, in fact, the other side of that fence.
They call the land “Oz”, “Godzone” (a verbal contraction of “God’s Own Country”) and
“Best bloody place on earth, bar none, strewth.”
The irritating thing about this is they may be right.

There are some traps for the unsuspecting traveler, though.
Do not under any circumstances suggest that the beer is imperfect, unless you are comparing it to another kind of Australian beer.
Do not wear a Hawaiian shirt.
Religion and Politics are safe topics of conversation (Australians don’t care too much about either)
but Sport is a minefield.
The only correct answer to “So, howdya’ like our country, eh?” is ”
Best {insert your own regional swear word here} country in the world!”.

It is very likely that, on arriving, some cheerful Australians will ‘adopt’ you on your first night,
and take you to a pub where Australian Beer is served. Despite the obvious danger, do not refuse.
It is a form of initiation rite.

You will wake up late the next day with an astonishing hangover, a foul-taste in your mouth, and wearing strange clothes. Your hosts will usually make sure you get home, and waive off any legal difficulties with “It’s his first time in Australia, so we took him to the pub.”, to which the policeman will sagely nod and close his notebook.
Be sure to tell the story of these events to every other Australia, you encounter,
adding new embellishments at every stage, and noting how strong the beer was.

Thus you will be accepted into this unique culture.
Most Australians are now urban dwellers, having discovered the primary use of electricity, which is air-conditioning and refrigerators.

Typical Australian sayings:

* “G’Day!”

* “It’s better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick.”

* “She’ll be right, mate.”

* “And down from Kosciusko, where the pine clad ridges raise their torn and rugged battlements on high, where the air is clear as crystal, and the white stars fairly blaze at midnight in the cold and frosty sky.
And where, around the overflow, the reed beds sweep and sway to the breezes, and the rolling plains are wide. The Man from Snowy River is a household word today, and the stockmen tell the story of his ride.”

Tips to Surviving Australia:

* Don’t ever put your hand down a hole for any reason whatsoever. We mean it.

* The beer is stronger than you think, regardless of how strong you think it is.

* Always carry a stick.

* Air-conditioning.

* Do not attempt to use Australian slang, unless you are a trained linguist and good in a fist fight.

* Thick socks.

* Take good maps. Stopping to ask directions only works when there are people nearby.

* If you leave the urban areas, carry several litres of water with you at all times, or you will die.

* Even in the most embellished stories told by Australians, there is always a core of truth that it is unwise to ignore.

See Also:
“Deserts: How to die in them”,
“The Stick: Second most useful thing ever” and
“Poisonous and Venomous arachnids, insects, animals, trees, shrubs, fish and sheep of Australia, volumes 1-42″

Mar 15th
Monday

I will be taking the next few days off from the blog.
I have much cooking and *Irish things to do*
Found this video at YouTube and really lost it.
I’m not a big Keith Jarrett fan but he got me with this one.
(do I need to say get the headphones?)
My mother absolutely loved this song.
As do I.
And yeah, it’s a bit depressing.
But incredibly beautiful.
This video and version gave me many goosebumps.
It is emotional piano playing at its very best.
I guess it’s not odd that I still miss the corned beef and cabbage
and the woman that cooked it with much love so very many years ago.
The missing ‘her’ will never ever go away.
This one’s for you Madre . . .

*Update:
tried to find this last night but I came up short.
Shamrock is a story I wrote over ten years ago that explains why this song means
so damn much to me.
Please read if you have a moment.


*drink Guinness, wear silly green stuff,
make Corned Beef and cabbage, bake soda bread and listen to Irish music

~m

Mar 15th
Monday

Welcome to Malarky Monday!
(the *I Spy edition)
This is the one day of the week that we offer up some
of the crazy stuff we find floating around the web.
We hope to make you giggle, spit, laugh, cry until it hurts and ultimately smile.
There’s nothing here that will take a boatload of time so be sure to visit
my fellows in hijinx!

Moe!
Morky!!
Dilligaf!!!

This week I ‘spied’ some serious and epic fails on the net.
Here are several leviathan food fails.
Anyone for some canned chicken?
I spy wicked disgusting.

How about a bacon rifle?
I wonder if it can fire a fried egg?
I spy a stupid guy way too proud of a pork product.

Or my personal favorite: Meat Water
Mmm, mmm, mmm
You just can’t beat the combination of ground beef and aged cheddar.
I didn’t even mention the ease of portability.
Got ketchup?
I spy a drink that’s light years away from thirst quenching.

Last but not least this hysterical cat clip.
I spy a seriously funny cat.

 

 

Happy Malarky Monday!

Mar 13th
Saturday

Anyone that visits here knows how much of a theme whore I used to be years ago.
I would change my theme 3X in one day, maybe even more.
(will someone make anonymum stop laughing?)
Definitely more times than I change my underwear.
I have calmed down a bit but today I saw what is currently up and said,
“Yup. It’s theme time!”
So if you’re wondering what happened, let’s just say my blog got a ‘face lift’
For now . . .
Be sure to check back for Malarky Monday!
And change those clocks!
Spring ahead.

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