free (and worth it) subscription

An Artist’s Notebook of Sorts

Last Weak  |  Index  |  Next Weak



3 September 2016

gratuitous image

No. 3,820 (cartoon)

Love is the key.

What’s the hole?

4 September 2016

Puppy Love

Henri is in love again, “as if for the first time!”

I can see why someone with dementia might say that, but Henri’s cranial cauliflower hasn’t started to shrivel, at least as far as I can tell. Nevertheless, Henri’s been falling in love again, “as if for the first time,” for at least a couple of decades.

He responded philosophically when I delicately pointed out this apparent contradiction to him.

“I love her like a puppy,” he explained rather creepily, “let me clarify.”

“Perhaps you might begin by telling me your new inamorata’s name,” I suggested.

He confused me explaining the puppy analogy with a kitten analogy: one doesn’t name a kitten until the third week in case it doesn’t last that long. Meanwhile, back at the puppy ...

He continued on to declare, “Just because you love the puppy doesn’t mean that you’ll love the dog.”

“You know you’re a sexist idiot, don’t you?” I asked.

He ignored me and concluded his specious argument by noting that humans live longer than dogs do, so obviously his latest infatuation won’t be his last.

Let’s see, it’s now the beginning of September. I’d wager that Henri will probably be in love again, “as if for the first time,” before Thanksgiving, and almost certainly before the new year.

5 September 2016

Good Word Choices

Eric told me that he wants to be a published author in the worst way. That’s when my alarms went off: if you want something in the worst way, that’s the way you’ll probably get it.

I cannot understand why anyone would fret about becoming published when it only takes a few dollars to produce one’s work on the Internet, “with an audience of billions.” (I love how the Internet has always offered an “an audience of billions” ever since the day there were only a million people or so connected to it.)

But that’s neither here nor there.

Eric wants to see his words printed on paper in a traditional book. Instead of paying a print on demand publisher perhaps ten dollars to do that, he hired a professional editor and agent. He showed me his first “literary critique” that lead him to realize that he made a mistake.

“I like some of your word choices,” the editor wrote, “notably it, the, were, and there. The others, though, need extensive revision.”

Eric didn’t take my print on demand advice, and he didn’t like my suggestion to only use the four words his alleged editor liked, so I left him mired in his literary rut and raided his liquor cabinet.

6 September 2016

Driverless Cars

Gomez and I were talking about the changing technological landscape when the subject of self-driving cars came up.

“I don’t know why everyone’s so excited about driverless cars,” he said, “I haven’t been at all impressed with mine.”

“Might that be because you don’t have one?” I asked.

“I do, but it’s not a hundred percent self-driving car,” he explained. “I still have to drive it when it’s moving.”

What a great bit of sophistry! From now on every time I see a full parking lot I’ll appreciate that I’m looking at hundreds of driverless cars.

7 September 2016

Four Flavors of Giraffes

I visited Carlos at his studio this afternoon; that’s where I saw the new issue of Current Biology. The journal features a disturbing article, “Multi-locus Analyses Reveal Four Giraffe Species Instead of One.” That upset me greatly.

I can imagine the next time Carlos and I are walking along the ocean and I announce that I’ve spotted a giraffe (even though the giraffe was spotted before I saw it). I know exactly what he’ll say. He’ll ask whether I’m referring to Giraffa camelopardalis reticulata, Giraffa camelopardalis peralta, Giraffa camelopardalis tippelskirchi, or Giraffa camelopardalis angolensis.

I’m upset, but not very upset, since I rarely see Carlos outside his studio.

8 September 2016

Being and No Such Thing

Herbert asked me what I thought of Jean-Paul Sartre’s Being and Nothingness, but I knew better than to fall into his crude trap. He’s feigning that he’s an intellectual in an unconvincing effort to veil his vapidity.

“There’s obviously no such thing as nothingness,” I replied. “No one takes that French whining seriously today, or do you?”

I was glad when Herbert changed the subject, and relieved that he wasn’t smart enough to call my bluff.

9 September 2016

Positively Defecacious

The government of India has been building public toilets in recent years, millions of them. I’m sure it seemed like a good idea at the time, but the problem is that many people in rural India, including those wearing suits and carrying the latest digital doodads, still prefer to drop their tailored drawers and defecate outside.

In response to the lack of participation, the Indian government has launched an advertising campaign featuring children trying to embarrass their elders into abandoning their free-range bowel evacuations.

“Uncle, you wear a tie around your neck, shoes on your feet, but you still defecate in the open. What kind of progress is this?” queries a child actor.

The whole debate reminds me of Kathleen Meyer’s book, How to Shit in the Woods: An Environmentally Sound Approach to a Lost Art. Maybe it’s not a lost art in India after all, except for the woody part.


Last Weak  |  Index  |  Next Weak
©2016 David Glenn Rinehart

nothing nothing nothing nothing