Wednesday, April 01, 2015

"The Greek Thing to Do"

“The future starts in Greece and we will be the first country to use the currency of the future, a currency that doesn’t allow third parties to tell us what to do or how to live, this is the Greek thing to do.”

"Coronates Himself As King"

Before he ruins everything
Takes our way of life
Coronates himself as king
Expose his fraudulent wife.
April 1, 2015

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

"Arrangement With Herself"

". . because of the Secretary's unique arrangement with herself as it relates to public records during and after her tenure as Secretary of State, this Committee is left with no alternative but to request Secretary Clinton appear before this Committee for a transcribed interview to better understand decisions the Secretary made relevant to the creation, maintenance, retention, and ultimately deletion of public records."

"The Last Time We Saw Mike"

The last time we saw Mike
He was peering across a hedge
In some leafy neighborhood
Unaware of the ledge.
March 31, 2015

"Not News"

Yesterday I had the blues
But for me that was not news.
March 31, 2015

"English Professor, Let Thy People Go"

English professor,
Let thy people go
Should they wish
To write like this
All out-of-time
. . (and so)

Set them free
To dance with God
To go where their Muse takes them
Who knows what
. . or when
. . (or why)

Will be the bard
With the Brave New Voice.
March 31, 2015

Lackawanna Easter Tragedy

“They tie a cross to it every year, the both of them. And after they’re done tying the cross, they stand there and say prayers and they leave.”
Ed Kubilus, caretaker St. Joseph’s Cemetery, Throop

“It is unimaginable to think that a visit of a faithful couple to the grave of loved ones in anticipation of the celebration of Easter could have ended in such a tragic manner. Our thoughts and prayers are with the deceased and his family.”
Bishop Joseph Bambera, Diocese of Scranton

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Chevy Chase Coincidence

Hippest Spot in C-ville
Having just returned from visiting Bennington College in Vermont, hoping to see a Charlottesville musician attending there, I was interested to overhear the group of young C-villians sitting next to me at the C&O restaurant discussing that very school.

Turned out one was a musician, which made me nod inside. Most all of my central Virginia coincidences involve musicians. These kids were discussing their dorm "pod" at Bennington, relating stories thereof.

We were enjoying the live act—The Skip Castro Band—and I saw my musician friend Paul Curreri sitting at the bar. Conditions for coincidence were ripe.

I opened up a conversation with the young gal sitting next to me—Anna(?)—opening with the usual question: "What are your plans now that you've graduated college?"

"I don't know."

"Some kids go to grad school."

New "house" at Bennington
"If I had to, I guess I would." (Oh.)

It transpired that her father was from Hawaii and her mother from Maryland. The latter fact drew me in.

(with a gulp)

"What part of Maryland?" "Montgomery County," she replied.

(gulp again)

"What part of Montgomery County?" I asked, fully sensing where this was going. "Bethesda-Chevy Chase."

(big gulp)

"What street did you live on?" "I don't know," she said "But it was right next door to Donald Rumsfeld." (Oh.)

I took another look at her and said, "Your mother would be about my age." "How old are you?" she asked. Telling her my age, she said: "Yes, she's the same age as you."
Paul Curreri

"So," I said, building up to something big. "I probably went to elementary school with your mother. I went to Chevy Chase Elementary School."*

"She went to Chevy Chase Elementary School."

After naming the two teachers who taught our class there—Miss Page and Miss Kopp as a duo—and mentioning the names of some of my classmates, I said it was absolutely certain that I went to elementary school with her mother.

She seemed unsure as she got up to go.** I guess I just couldn't help myself when I added . .

"You know, if things had turned out differently between your mother and me in the sixth grade . ."

Other schoolmates in Miss Page and Miss Kopp's 6th grade class at Chevy Chase Elementary School in 1970-71 that I remember (perhaps imperfectly) included Phil Urquhart, Phil Augustine, Rudy DeSeife, Louis DeSipio, Sharon Flood, Adam Kolker, Maya McGee, Carol Engler, Jack Roche, Harold Patch, Beth (?) Stoner, etc. 

Many, including myself if we had not moved again, would have ended up Class of 1977 at Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School.

*for just one year (1970 to 1971) because we moved to Vermont (the tie-it-all-together coincidence in this Vermont-Virginia story).
**she would later confirm that it was all so horribly true.

"Coded Sexism"

“We will be watching, reading, listening and protesting coded sexism.”
(warning Amy Chozick, New York Times)

Terms that will trigger protest when used to describe Hillary Clinton:

  • Ambitious
  • Calculating
  • Disingenuous
  • Entitled
  • Insincere
  • Out of Touch
  • Over Confident
  • Polarizing
  • Represent the Past
  • Secretive
  • Will Do Anything to Win

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Saturday, March 28, 2015

Common Good Books 2015 Poetry Competition: "Dear You" Letter Poems

The 2015 Common Good Books annual poetry competition aims to revive the lost art of letter-writing. The theme of this year's competition is "Dear You," and the bookstore is looking for poems in the form of letters—and they don't have to be nice ones either, just poetic. And they need to be written to real, living people.

Proprietor Garrison Keillor has upped the prize money to $5,000, which will be divided into three $1,000 grand prizes and four $500 prizes for "poems of merit." This makes the bookstore's competition one of the most lucrative in the country for a single poem. Last year's competition, with prizes of $4,000, drew more than 1,000 entries.

Here are the rules for this year's competition:
  1. The contest it open to anyone living within the United States.
  2. Entries must be a single poem, in the form of a letter to a real, living person.
  3. Entries must be original work, previously unpublished, and the author must have full rights to the material.
  4. Only one entry per person.
Entries must be mailed to Common Good Books, 38 S. Snelling Av., St. Paul, MN 55105 and postmarked no later than April 4, 2015.

Winners will be announced at noon on Sunday, April 19, 2015 at a celebration at Macalester College's Weyerhaeuser Chapel.

"If You Dare"

There's the direct approach
. . indirect
. . . . and prayer
Take the latter
(If you dare).
March 28, 2015