Stare.
 
2006 Notebook: Weak XXIII
 
   
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5 June 2006
No. 4,542 (cartoon)
I haven’t seen you lately.

You’ve never seen me.

6 June 2006
Conrad’s Mistimed Hexakosioihexekontahexaphilia
Conrad called early this morning to ask if I was, “excited about today.”

“I suppose I’m about as excited as I can be before my I’ve had my second double espresso,” I replied.

“I’ll give you a little hint,” Conrad said, “I’m a hexakosioihexekontahexaphiliac.”

“Call me back after I’ve had my coffee,” I requested.

“Today is the sixth day of the sixth month of the sixth year of the millennium,” Conrad announced, “Six-six-six!”

“You’re off by a year,” I pointed out. “2000 was the first year of the new millennium, so today is six-six-seven.”

“That doesn’t sound right to me,” Conrad responded.

“Suit yourself,” I advised, “in any case I really to need to get back to the espresso machine.”

“I guess I’ll call you later,” Conrad concluded dejectedly.

He guessed wrong.

7 June 2006
Al’s Exemplary Death
Al the guinea pig died yesterday. The day before that he was fine, albeit creaky, and eagerly gnawing on fresh vegetables. And now he’s gone.

Since Al was the only guinea pig I’ve ever met, I’m not sure whether or not he was particularly clever. In any case, Al demonstrated a popular concept in contemporary medicine: compressed morbidity.

Based on the presumption that we’re all going to die, the premise of compressed morbidity is that we should enjoy a long, healthy life, and have a short, conclusive decline, as opposed to a long, painful, series of debilitating illnesses.

Way to go, Al. I hope I go that way too, cheerfully chomping on carrots the day before I die.

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8 June 2006
Inexpensive Modified Banana
For some reason know only to the grocers at my local store, they sell bananas for nineteen cents each, as opposed to the more common practice of selling them by the kilogram.

I decided to use some simple biological modifications to join three bananas into one. It wasn’t hard; I just cut off four of the six tips with my Swiss army knife, then taped the modified pieces together to create one extraordinarily long banana.

The clerk looked confused when I went to pay for my banana, but followed instructions and charged me nineteen cents for the unusual fruit.

Unfortunately, I ran into an unanticipated problem. It turns out that bananas don’t have the structural integrity to remain intact at three times their normal length. As a result, the lower third of my grafted(?) fruit ruptured from the gravitational pull. The banana skin split along a seam, revealing traumatized pulp that was actually dripping banana juice.

Banana juice, imagine that! There’s a reason bananas only grow to a certain length.

9 June 2006
Perpetual Summer of Love
Today, I took a stroll down Haight Street, a San Francisco neighborhood largely known as the part of town where the hippies used to live. (In fact, many of them are still there, perpetually drugged, sitting on the same curbs in the same clothes they were wearing in 1969.)

As I approached the Ashbury Street intersection, I overheard a middle-aged man admonish a young man, “You just don’t go knocking down doors and shooting people.”

“I know that,” the young man replied indignantly.

Overhearing that snippet of conversation cheered me up; it’s reassuring to know that the spirit of peace and love continues to be passed down from generation to generation.

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10 June 2006
Comfortably Predictable Photograph
This afternoon, I found myself standing on the roof of a bleak warehouse in Oakland surveying a desolate industrial landscape through a fence topped with barbed wire.

I couldn’t resist making a comfortably predictable photograph, so I didn’t. I didn’t resist, that is, and made a nice little photograph that I’ll never look at again.

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©2006 David Glenn Rinehart