Stare.
 
2007 Notebook: Weak X
 
   
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5 March 2007
No. 8,604 (cartoon)
Stay with me.

Why?

I want to be alone.

6 March 2007
A Frank Approach to Stealing
Frank opined in another interminable soliloquy that it’s not stealing if lawyers can convincingly demonstrate that a particular theft is legal. Frank is a cretin so I didn’t argue with him. After all, arguing with morons is pointless: they drag you down to their level then overwhelm you with experience.

7 March 2007
The Preciousness of My Life
After wasting over five hours of my precious life this afternoon playing an infantile video game, I think I may have learned something: I guess my life’s not all the precious.

I can relax now, and maybe make it past level sixty-eight if I apply diligence and discipline.

8 March 2007
One or More of Us May Be Dead
Kurt sent me a curious book by Gary Leon Hill, People Who Don’t Know They’re Dead: How They Attach Themselves To Unsuspecting Bystanders and What To Do About It. The volume came with a nine-word cover letter.

    David:
    I think you should know about this.
    —Kurt

Given the paucity of data, I suspect one or more of us may be dead. I may look into the matter later, but for today decided to toss the paperback on top of my overflowing crate of books I may read some day.

9 March 2007
The Lassie Curse
An elderly couple in Anderson, Indiana, named their collie Lassie. Since life imitates television, that was a big mistake. The newspaper headline told the predictable story in six words: Lassie Saves Family From Fire, Dies.

Of course. Collies do heroic, suicidal stunts to save humans. My dear friend Susan is still alive because of her selfless collie Shane, who leapt over a meter on the air to block a poisoned arrow fired by a KGB assassin. The stupid Russian didn’t know about collies; imagine that!

But that was then and this is now. Robert and Elsie Whitson are alive because their collie was smart enough to wake them up when their house caught on fire. Unfortunately, Lassie suffered an operatic death when she died in the flames. Here’s the best line from the news report: “Anderson Fire Department Battalion Chief Larry Towne said firefighters found the dog’s remains underneath some collapsed roofing.” Way to go, Lassie!

This story has two lessons. Get a collie if you want to be protected from fires and assassins, but don’t get attached to the gallant, suicidal beasts.

10 March 2007
All Museums Are in Antarctica
I just read a passing mention of a museum in Antarctica. I couldn’t find a reference to the specific institution after four minutes of assiduous research on the Internet, but I did conclude the Arctic and Antarctic Museum in St. Petersburg is an unrelated venue.

That doesn’t matter; not much does.

For all but a day or two a year, all museums and galleries may as well be in Antarctica. I suppose I could go there, but why bother?

11 March 2007
Smelling Worse Than the Morgue
This story needs a setup, so here it is: I enjoyed pickled herring and roast garlic—washed down with lashings of Rainier Ale—for lunch. Unambiguously yummy! Later that evening, Dr. Lusardi came by my studio for a premature birthday dinner.

I gave her a big hug when she arrived, and that’s when it happened. I don’t know if it’s because she gave me a firm embrace, or because I relaxed with my arms around her, but I involuntarily belched a long, loud, basso profundo, pickled herring, garlic, and Rainier Ale breath bomb.

“Ewww!” she exclaimed, “That even makes me sick, and I just came from working at the morgue.”

I might have been offended, but that remark proved to be a lovely segue to her monologue on all the smorgasbord of gasses a corpse can emit. And to think I managed to be so disgusting after a modest repast! If I can do that well when I’m alive, I can only imagine things will be better when I’m dead.

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12 March 2007
Train Wreck!
Alphonse dropped by my studio on his annual visit to San Francisco, and announced he’d acquired “some Train Wreck” he’d be happy to share.

“Thanks,” I replied, “but I probably haven’t listed to several thousand of the thirty-eight thousand songs I already have on my computer.”

“No no no no no,” Alphonse said with a distinctly Parisian rolling of his eyes, “no, this Train Wreck.”

And with that, he produced a small, plastic bag of marijuana with a photograph of the famous 1895 crash at Gare Montparnasse. The Studio Lévy & Fils image shows what happened when the Granville-Paris Express overran the buffers, careened through the station, and landed up on the street below with the engine of the train hanging out of the building at a forty-degree angle.

Oops!

(Historical afterword: The crash killed an unfortunate newspaper vendor on Place de Rennes underneath the locomotive; the crew was fined a total of seventy-five francs.)

Meanwhile, back in 2007, I told Alphonse I wasn’t interested in either prescribed or recreational drugs. I didn’t tell him that I liked the drug dealers’ marketing campaign; one should never encourage the French.

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©2007 David Glenn Rinehart