Monday, September 2, 2013
Wednesday, August 28, 2013
Yesterday the company who provided the portable toilet to the house under construction across the street from Caroline’s house came to empty it. A truck with a giant white tank on its bed pulled into the driveway, and shortly the entire neighborhood smelled like shit. I pulled my shirt up over my nose and finished my business on the internet. Then I went inside to tell Caroline about the smell, but the smell had already entered the apartment.
My friend Andy has been living in Germany for the last ten years. He calls me about twice a month. This spring he called me and told me about the “dirt menu” some chef in Japan created. The menu is a $120 tasting menu, and each item on the menu contains “dirt”—i.e. specialty compost made under very controlled conditions. I don’t know too much more about the menu. My phone is ringing off the hook—an expression that no longer makes sense—and I need my breakfast.
Tuesday, August 27, 2013
The other night I got drunk. Zoe had come home from Brooklyn—she’d been away all summer and we’d missed her—so me and Caroline and Zoe picked up a pizza and a bottle of wine and took them back to their apartment to celebrate her return. I disappeared between ten and eleven PM to say goodbye to Emily who moved to Brooklyn the following morning. When I returned, Caroline and Zoe had not moved from their seats at the table. I assumed that they had continued to drink wine, but they had not. I alternated between wine and beer and said a number of harmless but inane things, much to their amusement. The next morning, I woke up to a terrible hangover.
In five years I have made five hundred posts here, and I would be willing to bet that at least ten of those posts were written under the influence of the anxiety ridden euphoria bad hangovers can provide. Similarly, I know that at least a few posts were written whilst totally drunk. There is always the temptation to hit “publish” or, when writing e-mails, “send,” when you are drunk, but I am here to tell you that you should not do that. E-mails especially do not disappear into memory the way inane conversations can. If you say something dumb to your friends when you are drunk, they can only rely upon their memories, but when you write a drunken e-mail, a permanent record of your stupidity is created. If I ever deleted a post early on a Saturday morning, it is because I was feeling shameful and wanted to retract it. I have retracted many posts for many reasons over the years.
This should come as no surprise to my loyal readers, many of whom would probably readily admit to having done the same—or even better, readily admit to reading a post written on a hangover whilst having a hangover themselves. Such was my station in life for a period while creating this blog, suitable for poets I suppose. If you want to know why I chose to show a picture of a compost tumbler on this second-to-last or third-to-last post, it is because compost symbolizes death and renewal—death to that which has come before and renewal for that which has yet to come. I must now make my dinner: stir fried green beans and brown rice, a recipe I learned from my Chinese boss in Bloomington, Indiana, many millions of years ago.
Friday, August 23, 2013
Someone is running a tile saw next door. Never mind. It’s not a tile saw. It’s just some anonymous whirring noise, and now it’s done. It’s Friday morning, the twenty-third of August, 2013—i.e. approximately one week before the conclusion of this blog. I am on Caroline’s side porch. There is a slight breeze. I am in my pajamas. We shall swim today.
The saw noise has returned. It is a tile saw. I went onto the front porch and found Caroline reading Al Jazeera because she could not access the New York Times. The house across the street is having its kitchen remodled. A team of roofers was there yesterday, replacing some slates on the roof. One roofer attempted to emasculate the other roofer by telling him that his saw was “short.” He responded that he had been using his short saw for twenty-five years.
I can now hear the distinct sound of a garbage truck. There is a gas station about one hundred yards from here. I am guessing that the garbage truck is emptying the dumpster there. Sometimes I fetch Caroline chocolate bars from that gas station. Two houses and a bunch of trees stand between me it. I don’t have much else to report this morning, except this: last night I dreamed that Caroline was ordering hundreds of dollars worth of pizza and several salads. I was concerned about the number of toppings. It was going to be expensive. For one salad, the “Delmarva salad,” she ordered two separate dressings. That concerned me, too. I am going to miss writing this blog.
Friday, August 16, 2013
bread and tomato from Jono Tosch on Vimeo.
To make pan con tomate, toast some nice bread and then rub raw garlic onto the toasted bread. Drizzle the bread with olive oil and then put some slices of fresh tomato onto the bread. Sprinkle with salt and enjoy.
Thursday, August 15, 2013
I am sitting comfortably on a wire chair with my feet up, on this beautiful morning, the fifteenth of August. It's surprisingly cool, the morning, not the chair. A few puffy clouds are in the sky. I am not sure what I will do with the remainder of my life. Will I get married? Will I have children? Will I have a home in the woods? From where I am sitting on this porch, I can see a portable toilet. It's so blue. I has a white roof. It is parked in front of a one-car garage. It has a little black chimney. There is a tall, old oak tree behind it, but I cannot tell you which specie of oak it is. Is it a pin oak? A white oak? I don’t know my oaks. I don’t know my pines either. Donald Rumsfeld once said that there are known knowns, known unknowns, and unknown unknowns. I wonder what the unknown unknowns of my life are. It’s possible that I will become enthralled by a hat this afternoon. It’s possible that this will be another ordinary day, one that I will not remember.
Jacob wrote to me the other day and told me that he wished he could have a collection of my essays, in book form, to have and to hold, a real book made of paper. I would love that. I have dreamed about that for a long time. But will that book happen? Is there a publisher out there who would want to publish a collection of lyrical essays about botany and the life of the self? I have no idea. I hardly know how I will spend the remainder of the morning. This is only a note to say hello to the world. Hello world whose trees I cannot identify on this surprisingly cool morning. Hello portable toilet. Hello vacuum cleaner sounds arising from the hospital. My next objective is to make some toast and spread a bunch of peanut butter onto it. Beyond that peanut butter toast, I have no idea. I hope I do become enthralled by a hat, and I hope the hat is huge.