Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Sharp Shot, Slim Story - Today

In which a picture says considerably more than than a few hundred words.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Diamonds: Why Must You Ruin My Sundays?! - Today

So I am watching football, which is how I like to spend my Sundays. Everyone jokes about the Viagra ads, but they are negligible blips on the media landscape, vaporous. The mind goes naturally elsewhere. The diamond ads, on the other hand, with their insistence on narrative? Sicklysweet retrograde narratives of slicklysweet men and ickilysweet, diamond-needy women: Scarring! And the flopsweat efforts to create new "occasions" for diamonds? Well, I consider these a full-on challenge to check out the latest on the evil, evil world of diamond mining. Wish I could link to the latest from Zales, but this will do just fine.

Oh, and check back soon for news on my Forever Gimp line of camp-created commitment bracelets.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

This is How to Dance - Today

Also how to get a tan, shoot a video, and wear clothes. You can learn everything from Acid House Kings.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

"In Which He Punched a Latin Teacher" - Today

Now, this is a life: read about it here.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Robert - Unsent Letter - December 1983

Dear JP,

I am in the mood to type to you, but the typewriter, like the yellow VW bug, is broken this Christmas. The dishwasher door must be left open so that the pipes do not freeze. The puppy must be locked in the kitchen at night so that she will not chew things; this measure has been only partially successful. The puppy's casualties this Christmas include a calculator, a scarlet-and-glitter Christmas-tree bird, the corner of the kitchen hutch, and one of my new shoes -- slightly injured.

"Slightly injured" is the phrase used on the radio here to describe the condition of Gene and Tim Kelly after the fire that destroyed many cherished mementos of a long and laudible and legendary show business career, and made Gene cry... As neighbors like Carl Reiner (and possibly you?) rushed to the scene to help/console/talk shop. Celebrity tragedies, minor and major, like celebrity weddings and celebrity funerals, are not immune to media name-dropping.

I have spent the past week in Akron recovering from a cold, Christmas shopping, trying to quit smoking, recording in painstaking detail every tremor in my little mind, and considering every possible variation on the theme of What Robert Will Do the Rest of the Vacation. I have, in short, been thinking too much and doing precious little.

Now I sit on the dining rooom floor near the heating vent, by the Christmas tree, and this is where things stand:

I am disheartened by my efforts to quit smoking; I feel weak.

I have determined that home is NOT the place to rest and relax and become strong again -- Florida is.

I would like to go to Florida with Eric, but I doubt that my father will pay to send me. My father is not among the ranks of those who believe in Florida vacations or the need for the sun's replenishing warmth or the value of a nice tan in January.

I might go to New York, but New York is cold like Akron, and involves anxiety and too much planning. If I do go to New York, however, I will get to spend time with Alice and also my mother and her boyfriend, who have invited us to spend New Year's Eve "loft-hopping" with them -- pleasant prospects both.

I may just return to Washington, because while Washington is also cold, it demands little effort and allows me a lot of money to spend. I can work a little and buy a bureau and learn my lines. "Queen Eleanor -- Your Grace." The play seems silly to me now, as does school.

I need Florida and I need more vacation time and I need a second window blind, and a calendar for 1984 and a new pair of tennis shoes and many other things. I make lists.

Here is a list of things I no longer need because I received them for Christmas:

1. A watch
2. A bathrobe
3. A sweater
4. A portable bookshelf
5. Gloves
6. A work of art
7. Socks
8. The 1983-1984 edition of Fiction Writer's Market
9. Two records
10. A white turtleneck
11. Money from my grandfather

To tell the truth, I know that need and rest and strength are all states of mind, and that Christmas vacations are no more capable of supplying them than any other arbitrary block of time. I just want everything restored to schooltime order -- I want to do and not to think about doing; I want continuation or ending for things left unfinished.

Friday, December 4, 2009

The Job Market - Today


QUALIFICATIONS: Graduation from high school; or any equivalent combination of education and experience that would provide the following knowledge, abilities, and skills: Knowledge of student behavior as applied to children; of the language, culture, and other characteristics of the families whose children are enrolled in Loudoun County Public Schools. Ability to work effectively with children; to supervise student behavior, maintain discipline, and to perform general lunch room duties. Good human relations and communications skills.

JOB DESCRIPTION: This is a part-time employee working in the school lunchroom in an elementary school. An employee in this class is responsible for overseeing students from the time they enter the lunchroom until the time they leave. Work is performed under the supervision of the School Principal/Assistant Principal