Stare.
 
2008 Notebook: Weak VIII
 
   
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20 February 2008
No. 3,855 (cartoon)
You’ve been spreading lies.

I said nothing.

Exactly.

21 February 2008
Not Dancing in Bangalore
I never went to a nightclub when I was in Bangalore. It turns out that may have been a big mistake. I just learned that Indian officials there outlawed dancing in clubs some time ago. The authorities even send the police around to make sure no one’s making any nefarious dance moves.

I suppose a good time in a Bangalore nightclub just involves drinking and talking. That sounds perfect to me; I wish there was a night spot like that in San Francisco.

Come to think of it, I suppose there is such a place: my studio. Lots of talking, almost as much drinking, and no dancing to speak of. As long as the Bangalore police can turn a blind eye toward various illicit things and practices my learned friends and I enjoy, they’re welcome here.

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22 February 2008
Forty-One Stamps on an Envelope
I had a couple of envelopes to mail, so I went to the post office to buy some stamps. Although a lot of great people work for the postal service, none of them are stationed at my branch. The local office is staffed by people who are, alas, at least one taco shy of a combination plate. To make matters worse, they all take barbiturates when they report for duty, so even the simplest transaction requires waiting in line for at least twenty minutes.

That’s why I used a post office vending machine to get my stamps. I put in a dollar to buy a couple of forty-one cent stamps, and was surprised when I got a book of stamps. I thought I got a book of stamps by mistake, and I did: a hundred one-cent stamps.

It took me twenty minutes to affix eighty-two stamps to two envelopes, the same amount of time I would have spent in line. Feh; bamboozled by the perfidious postal workers again!

23 February 2008
Making Money With Art?
Joey asked me how to make money with art.

“I’ll tell you,” I said, “but it will cost you a bottle of wine.”

And with that, Joey produced a bottle of cheap red wine and poured me a glass.

Framing,” I announced.

“What are you talking about?” Joey asked.

“Framing art is about the only guaranteed way to make money with art,” I explained. “No one wants to buy art, but they’ll cheerfully pay hundreds of dollars to mat and frame any flotsam they own.”

Joey seemed skeptical, but I understood his incredulity. If he knew much about the commercial art world, he wouldn’t have asked about making money in the first place.

24 February 2008
Well Unread
Katia asked me what books I’ve read recently, so I told her.

None.

“I read A Confederacy of Dunces a year and a half ago,” I said, “but haven’t read one since. I suppose I’m well unread.”

I could tell by the way Katia squinched up her face that I said the wrong thing.

“That is to say, I’m unwell read,” I explained.

More squinching.

“That bad, eh?” she asked.

“No, it’s actually worse,” I admitted. “I don’t even read my own writing; that’s why I have so so many typos.”

25 February 2008
Necessary for Regurgitation
I told Michelle about yesterday’s embarrassing confession that I almost never read an entire book. After having had some time to think about my indefensible position, I came up with a convoluted rationalization to explain that I’m not a philistine, even though most empirical evidence suggests that I am.

My tortured logic goes like this: I’m too busy creating to consume; that’s why I concoct alleged art in a variety of media instead of reading.

Michelle found my unconvincing argument unconvincing.

“I need to be fed in order to regurgitate,” she replied.

Michelle’s more productive than I am, and does better work, so I didn’t argue. Instead, I wondered what I’m generating with my reverse peristalsis. Bile is the first thing that comes to mind, but I should be able to come up with something less unflattering by tomorrow. In the interim, I shall continue to live off my own fumes.

26 February 2008
Newcastle Earthquake!
I heard an earthquake struck Newcastle, England tonight. My first reaction was to contact my very dear friend, Dr. Graham, to see how she fared. I did, and she said she was thinking of me too, since she held me personally responsible for earthquakes.

Who said living in San Francisco was easy?

(As an aside, England’s rickety brick buildings all withstood the tremor. Most curious. Why the glum island hasn’t been overrun by lemmings and cockroaches is anyone’s guess.)

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©2008 David Glenn Rinehart