"...and she continued to walk down the country road, away from the yardlight in the farmyard, the darkness ahead was absolute. Finally, all light was gone- with only the texture of the gravel indicating the road beneath her feet."
Trillions of trillions of photons. Each day, we are awash in them, surrounding us and defining our existence. Then night falls, and with it so does the actinic shower. Our retinal receptors are quite efficient, but in a deep forest, or a cloudy night away from civilization, the levels drop further, until a profound blackness is acheived. Moving about in such a state, perceptions merge with imagination, and the world becomes ancient, with the goblins, trolls and other creatures of the night regaining their power over us. Will we return to such an exististence? Will the lights go out on us for good? Will the night again become a cloak, with our fears lurking in its folds? When the lights go out, much is lost. But other things are found.
Please Please Me
Mutual gratification. There's more to it than that, I hope. Nevertheless this fact remains; a large part of any personal relationship has to do with giving some form of pleasure to another and receiving likewise in return. It certainly can be stated that a relationship without much reciprocal affection is usually pretty rocky, the lack of pleasure with one's partner can only be ignored for so long without serious repercussions. A relationship based only on pleasure is usually also doomed. What is the answer? Is there a question? "Thank you for pleasing me," has a somewhat selfish ring to it, but it should not. Thanks should always be given sincerely, and accepted graciously. Please and thank you.
Sigur Rós And Amina
The trance-state is characterized by repetition
What kind of place is Iceland?
The repetition contains within it variations
How can a country so small generate so much original thought?
The variations produce chaos out of order
Two Icelandic bands performed in Minneapolis last night
The variations produce order out of chaos
Amina, feminine, creating complex layers of sound
The trance-state has a character that includes repetitions
With strings and saws and lobby-bells and harmoniums and loops
The repetitions contain within them variations
A joyful surprise
The variations promise chaos on our orders
Sigur Rós, rose of victory, takes the stage behind a scrim
The validations premise orders our chaos
The song is one
The trance-state has crenelations that infer repetitions
For two hours the song ebbs and flows
The resuscitations comprise worlds of validation
The climax, and yet another climax
The validation presses outward on chaos
The encore, and then another, and yet another
The trance-state has created our inspiration
And a curtain call, Sigur Rós and Amina
The resolution compels wild adulation
Boys and Girls playing together
The adulation posits overwhelming cries
Some new kind of music
The trance-state of Iceland?
Blogging by candlelight...Thursday evening...
Starting my second full day without electricity, I am reduced to blogging without a computer, flanked by a pair of candles- my laptop is out of battery, the only sound is the scritch-scritch-scritch of pencil on paper. The chainsaw symphony has died down for the night, I'm sure it will start up again at daybreak. I don't know how Abe Lincoln did his studies by such dim illumination. Well, it's dark and I'm tired...I might as well go to bed- after all, it is 8:15! We're all alright, and the sun will come up again tomorrow...
-Now it is Saturday afternoon, normalcy has been restored in our neighborhood, it just won't look the same with all those trees down. And to think what we went through is only about a millionth of what the folks on the gulf coast are going through...
To fear, or not to fear
"You say you're afraid of Death, right?"
"Let's cut out the grey here, is it yes or no?"
"Have you ever tried being dead?"
"Then how can you be frightened if you haven't gone through with it yet?"
I don't know actually...Fear of the unknown?
"You've never eaten a yellow pepper. Are you afraid of that?"
To be honest, yes.
"Okay...what about petting a koala? That's unknown to you."
Well, I guess you've got a point there, but Death is eternal, whereas petting
a koala is not.
"So? What if it's a pleasant kind of eternal? What if you were reincarnated? What if you came back as a koala? Would you want some scaredy cat college girl petting you?"
Um...I suppose not.
"Alright then, I'm glad I made my point."
Flippist World Headquarters has just been hit by a wild storm...Trees down everywhere...one branch poking through our closet ceiling...the road on the next block is under three feet of water...lightning struck a block away, setting a house on fire...power out...but the internet is still up...blogging by flashlight...it could be worse...we're all OK...more later...now where did I put my chainsaw?..
"...oh it won't kill you, but when you have it you will then be able to accomplish that deed all by yourself."
What would be the ultimate designer drug? What qualities would it have that could make you its slave? Pure pleasure? Of course, the more pleasure you have, the worse is its absence when it is gone. Oblivion? Same problem, coming back is worse than leaving. Wisdom? Wisdom without power is frustration, madness. What do you desire, what is it that you cannot obtain without its use? Love? No shortcuts here, love needs to be nourished and have time to grow. Power? The feeling of power is not power, it is actually a very dangerous delusion. Truth?
Truth. The absence of delusion, of illusion, of confusion. The real deal. The portrait of Dorian Gray. Cold hard facts. The ultimate drug- ...oh, it won't kill you, but when you have it you will then be able to accomplish that deed all by yourself.
...Truth, Justice, The American Way...
Where Is Google Going?
"We do not know how long the task took, a million years, perhaps- but what is that? In the end our ancestors learned how to analyze and store the information that would define any specific human being- and use that information to re-create the original." -Arthur C. Clarke, The City and the Stars, 1956
Are we, the blogging community, in the vanguard of a certain type of immortality because of our use of the internet to display and store our thoughts, sights and sounds? Will a future scholar (or just a snoopy idler) be able to re-construct our lives with just a click or two on his or her laptop (or palm top, or phone or just by pure thought) and have the a vast, intelligent server (Google) fashion a reasonable facsimile of our lives, in all their glories and mundaneness? Outside of the obvious question ("Who would want to?), the idea of a person's personal information (or a group of peoples' information), being "mined" to recreate an era, fashion a historical novel, or some other creative use is a heady concept. Millions of people already have a lot of content stored in this global database, imagine what could be gleaned from a lifetime of such information?
But how, one may ask, could any person wade through the chaff and make any meaningful sense out of this haystack of data? This is the traditional role of biographers, who often devote years of research to a particular individual. But a program with sophisticated algorithms could do the job quite efficiently, especially when the links between important data are taken into account. After all, isn't that what anyone who uses a list of regular links in their blog-surfing routine does already? The cross-cultural implications of this are certainly understood by most people who have done any amount of blogging, just looking at my site-tracker reveals visitors from over forty-five countries in only the past three months! Imagine when all this information is accessible for the past 100 years. Or for the past 1000 years?
So, has Google become a permanent extension of our collective intelligence, a true consciousness-expanding mechanism? Or will it become just a sea of digital noise, overwhelmed by torrents of meaningless data? Will the great novels or screenplays of the twenty-second century be "self-assembled" from a thousand blogs, or will we become so self-conscious that our inhibitions will shut down any personal expression on the 'net? Any of these scenarios are possible, it seems to me, and perhaps some aspects of each will come to pass. It is clear, however you look at it, that something has changed, and unless there is a complete breakdown in society (chaos theory) it will be as big a revolution in human development as language and writing had been.
Julie...I could cry her a river or two...London
Dionne...I would never make her over..Warwick
Dusty...From silver threads to son of a preacherman...Springfield
Björk...all neon like and full of love...
Madeleine...I certainly won't wait too long...Peyroux
Who'll be the next in line?
Tonight my visit to the feral cats was made via canoe, not by bicycle as is my wont. The water was a little higher due to the rains we have had recently, but still placid (I'm not one of your thrill-seeking whitewater types when it comes to my aquatic excursions.) I paddled past a couple on a 'fishing date', he was fishing, she was talking; another couple was exploring the river's edge when I surprised them (SORRY!). There is a small landing spot near the cats' colony where I put in. All along this section of the Rum River is a stone wall, probably laid by the inmates of the state mental hospital sometime in the thirties. It may have been meant as a breakwater; I suspect it was instigated as a therapy project. There was a breach in this wall, and beyond it a path led to a clearing where the city sometimes dumps unwanted tree stumps, trunks and trimmings. Beyond that is the 'hollow' where the cats hang out.
Because I came from the river, and not my usual entry from the trail, the 'sentries' were unaware of my presence- I sat by myself for a few minutes. Soon I was surrounded by cats (the Animal Ark people had posted signs telling people not to feed the cats- and they were hungry!) All I had was one can of sardines, (I would usually mix it with their food), I was like Jesus trying to feed the multitude. A few of the old timers showed up, old crimp-tail Tom, Buster and, representing the younger set, Buster Jr.- who may not really be Buster's progeny, but has almost the same markings as his "pop". I dished out the sardines and most of the cats got at least a taste- Buster, my old buddy, got a little head scratching thrown in to boot.
Then, something new happened. Buster Jr., hitherto unapproachable, wanted a head scratch too. I obliged, but I'm thinking that he didn't know quite what to do with my ministrations. He liked it, I guess, but he also was fighting with his 'run away' instinct. We made out alright, for a first "date", he followed me about half-way back to the canoe. Old Tom sat and watched.
So, the old state hospital wall had been breached. And so had Buster Jr.'s natural defenses. I paddled home, the full moon rising. I made a difference in some creature's life. Hooray for me. Hooray for Buster Jr., Hooray for all of God's creatures, great and small, sleeping under the full moon tonight.
Those phantoms of the night, the incubi and succubi of our dreaming hours, what are we to make of their capricious visits? Is it a longing unfulfilled or just a trick of our over-active imaginations? That these scenarios of exhilaration, copulation and depravity can coexist with the minutiae of the mundane makes them even more improbable. Images of nakedness and sexual activity in school, work or public situations, often with ridiculous complications (an elderly relative as a spectator, trying to finish a test, being in a childhood situation, etc.) doesn't help either. There are also the true night-terrors, but that is a another topic.
Perhaps the sweetest of the dreams is a joyous coupling with an unexpected person- someone who, in real life, is not a person of interest or may even be somewhat of an antagonist. Is our sub-conscious trying to tell us something? Or is it just trying to make a fool of us later, when we try to act on these desires?
It has been said by many that the dream-state can be used to work out problems that face a person in daily living. Inventors often 'sleep on it' and awake with a problem solved. If only our love lives were so simple...
...I lost some one...
Moving out from home, I knew it had to be for good.
When you are powerless, the only power you have is to leave.
...someone who's greater than than the stars above...
...someone I need...
Only on the other side of town.
...some one who don't let my heart be...
It could've been the moon.
...someone that's the one ...
I needed to get my heart broken,
...you little stranger come on home to me...
And mended again.
...I love you tomorrow...
I hurt my family.
...I love you today...
But I had no choice.
...help me help me I'm so weak...
Depression will kill you as sure as a gun.
I was on my way down.
...sometime I get a little troubled...
I found a way out.
...let me hear you say yeah...
Two people, trying to make it.
...help me somebody...
It was just the wrong two people.
...now I got something I want to tell everybody...
But we figured it out.
...and I got something I want everybody to understand...
Everybody got bruised on that one.
...you know we all make mistakes some time...
Try it again.
...and the only way we can correct our mistakes...
...we got to try one more time...
But I made it through.
...so I got to sing the song to you one more time...
...I'm not singing the song only for myself...
It can happen.
...I'm singing it for you, too...
I didn't mean to hurt my sisters.
...And when I sing that little something that makes you feel good inside...
They thought I hated them.
...I want you to scream...
They thought I would never come back.
...you don't have to tell me...
They thought they lost someone.
...but I believe some one over here lost someone...
They heard I got married.
...I said it's gettin' a little cold outside...
It started to be alright.
...and everybody needs somebody...
I found someone.
...You know I like to sing this song...
It was a good thing.
...It makes me think about the good things...
Makes me want to scream.
James Brown - Live at the Apollo, October 24th, 1962
...long time no see, what's up with you?"
"Not too much, same old same old, what are you doing these days?"
"Counting down the days to retirement, I guess, what have you been up to since you left the city?"
"Oh, making a go of it... married, family..."
"You still got kids at home?"
"They're at home, but not kids anymore..."
"Yeah I know how that goes, my last one moved out a year ago."
"They're almost gone, I guess it takes a little more than a flunky job to move out on these days."
"Say, do you ever heard from that woman you were with back then?"
"Not really, a couple of times in the last thirty years.."
"What was that all about anyway? Why'd you split up?"
"Oh I dunno, there was a lot of stuff between us that never worked out...I wasn't the most astute lover ever created..."
"It hardly ever comes up anymore, once in a while, like now, somebody brings it up."
"No hard feelings?"
"No, not anymore, you can't let that stuff bug you. It was just some kind of lesson for the both of us."
"Hey, look at the time! Gotta run! Nice talkin' to ya..."
"Yeah, I'll be seeing ya, take care.."
The Accidental Traveling Companion
Some vacation trips are family affairs, others are romantic getaways for two. Then there is the third type, the solo excursion. Traveling by oneself has some unique advantages. You only have to please yourself. You can set the pace, either fast or slow, according to your mood or disposition. So you can imagine my slight consternation when, in my carefully planned solo trip to Iceland last year, I was "befriended" by a somewhat clueless, flabby college counselor who was the "tour leader" for a group of teachers-in-training from a state school in Michigan. He had done no homework about this trip, about Iceland in general, and Reykjavík in particular. My schedule was complete, I had about twenty hours of things to do each day, but I was not a slave to that schedule, I just didn't have the time to babysit.
But I relented, I mentioned that I was going to Laugardalslaug, he was welcome to come along. "Do you have a car? How far is it?" Well no, I wouldn't have a car until later that week, and it was about 1500
km meters. to the pool from our guest-house on Bólstaðharlið- not really a long walk, but far enough to tax the feeble- in other words, my accidental companion. He did make it there, complaining all the way; we had to stop a few times to rest. We showered and changed into our speedos; he felt the need to wear a shirt into the pool. I did my laps, then soaked a bit to get the travel kinks out. I think my 'pal' spent the whole time wondering what he had gotten himself into.
Finally, it was time to go (the pool was closing), and we headed back. He had to stop at an 'American Style' resturant, where we drank Cokes, while he complained about his time in Iceland. Some date. When we got back to the guesthouse, he went straight to bed, I stayed up and talked with some of his 'charges', the students who were far more in tune with the idea of Icelandic exploration. Over the course of the evening, some of the students were complaining about being stuck with such a dud. I thought about this for a while, then said: "...yeah, but I had to see him naked!"
Last House On The Right
When the weaver and I were starting out, we lived in a small concrete house on the fringe of the warehouse/industrial area of North Minneapolis. Our landlord lived next door, in a somewhat shabby duplex. They moved out and we moved in, eager to live in a "real" house. That house was real alright, with dozens of doors leading to strange, odd little rooms and additions. On the second floor was a porch, used mostly for storage, that had an irregular hole in its ceiling- an entrance to the attic above. When winter rolled around, I thought it prudent to see if there was any insulation in the attic area. Of course there was none. There was, however, a huge pile of old liquor bottles. Some of those bottles went back to the prohibition era, with the disclaimer "For Medicinal Use Only" neatly printed on the label.
Later on, we learned from an old neighbor (who had lived for years in a house that was on the other side of the back fence) a little more about our property. It seems that in the twenties and thirties, before our landlord owned it, that house had a bit of a reputation- our neighbor told us of seeing young men going in the back bedroom (our bedroom) to see a "horse-faced woman", she didn't elaborate. Parties and perhaps a little "tippling" went on there, and of course we did our best to uphold those traditions.
Later on we actually bought those properties with a group of friends (mostly in the music biz) and ultimately ended up selling it for 'urban renewal' years later. There were no ghosts, it was just an old house that served its tenants well for over a hundred years.
New Concepts In Flippism
Here at Flippist Industries™, we are always striving to come up with new ways to give you, faithful reader, the most value in your internet experience. Alas, not every thing works out as intended, but we will give you a "sneak peek" at some new concepts in Flippism.
Batty Shower-Cam- Actually tried this for a while, the lens kept getting fogged, the constant shot of the shower-head wasn't that interesting anyway...
Blog Soup- sort of like stone soup, e-mailers contribute one ingredient apiece, had to stop after the Caramel-Tuna-Fresca ice cream...
Flippism, P.I.- an ongoing serial where the Flippist team investigates those little mysteries of life, like missing car keys, unmatched socks, "forgotten"anniversaries, lost self-esteem, etc...still in development...
Flippist Home Shopping Network- readers buy "gems" of Flippist wisdom, only to discover they recieved a cubic zirconia philosophy...
The Flippist Encyclopedia of Spam- featuring that classic "All the watches you ever dreamed of!" and the comment "Hey! Nice blog! I'll be sure to bookmark it! Meanwhile, check out my Mortgage Refinance Site!"
The Flippist Funnies- hmmm. That one might actually make it soon.
Brackety-Ack and her Raunchy Puppets!- all we need is a video server and a camera in her alley...
...and so, as you can see, the future is bright, here at Flippist Industries™
The Price Of Silence
Middle Of The Rum River- Anoka, Minnesota.
It was still tonight on the Rum and, for some reason, it was much quieter than usual. It wasn't silent, the Highway 10 bridge a half-mile away saw to that, but it was at least an order of magnitude (-10dB for you tech-savvy types) less noisy than it usually is. What is the price of silence? It used to be simpler. Just drive out in the country somewhere, or go up to the lake. Now most of the lakes are built-up, lake homes all around, jet-skis and speedboats buzz from dawn to dusk. Lakeshore property is plenty expensive too, in many cases worth more that the 'house in town'. The country has a similar case of the 'jitters', with sprawl, ATVs, SUVs and motorcycles breaking the peace.
Is there any value in silence anymore? In primitive society, the sounds of nature are the audio backdrop, no added charge. Now the noise has been made internal, via a personal stereo system smaller than a deck of cards. Price? About $200 or less.
There will always be a place for silence, if marketers have figured out how to charge $1.10 for a bottle of water, they can make silence pay too. Now where did I set those $250 noise-cancelling headphones? This paddle is too noisy!
In my senior year, my self-imposed rejection of all social customs came to an end. I asked a girl out on a date. Not such a big deal, but this date was to be with K____, the daughter of the speech teacher, who the most intimidating member of our high school's faculty. Another complicating factor was the fact that I didn't have a driver's license. But I did have a friend who did, a friend from my childhood who had access to a '65 Chevy Bel-Air. But he didn't have a date. In fact I don't think he really liked girls that much. But I talked a sophomore in my Spanish class into going "double" with him, and so the table was set.
We went to the Tyrone Guthrie theater, the classiest venue in town. A modern French farce, Thieves' Carnival was the play, a bit suggestive but not offensive fare. The performance was a big hit. We all laughed and laughed, and then went out for a bite to eat. At that stage in my development, I could eat five meals a day and remain a near-skeleton. The girls, unbeknownst to me, were already in the constant diet mode, so had little. I chattered away like a marionette on speed, my friend said almost nothing, but we managed to make it through that awkward repast. My friend dropped his date off first and they were out of view (in her back yard) for some time. He finally returned, and as we headed out to drop off my date it started to sprinkle. To pour. The rain was biblical in its presentation. We managed to get to K____'s house in near-zero visibility and K____ and I dashed to the back porch between squalls. We spoke for a second or two, and then her father, my speech teacher and a real bear of a man, opened the door: "And how was the play?" he boomed.
That was pretty much the end of the date. I don't think my friend ever had another- he remains a bachelor to this day! The girl from Spanish class disappeared from my life, but thankfully, K____ did not. Many years later, I was given the opportunity to transfer some audio tapes onto CDs for K____. They were tapes made by her now deceased father of her family when she was growing up. There was one tape, a tape made when K____ was only three or four years old, where she talked with her father. Her father teased her, she responded, and both of them sang songs and told stories.
After hearing this tape, I forgave K___'s father for interrupting our date so many years before. To hear the love expressed by this man to his then-little daughter on those tapes made me understand that to him, she was still his little girl, and that he had given up a lot to let her go, even if for only an evening, to some one else.
It took me 35 years to get that good-night kiss.
It was worth the wait.
In a café, just off a busy square. The skateboarders terrorize the tourists, but it is quiet in here. She sits alone, but is not lonely. Writing a card to a friend, she pauses from time to time to get the right words. She doodles a perfect Ash tree, smiles and signs her name.
I am not asleep, only very far away.
Gelatin And Silver
After a five year hiatus, I returned to the basement darkroom last night. While I make my living (justify my existence?) in the imaging arts, that is all done with modern automatic equipment. With the advent of ink-jet printers, one could say that some of it is not even 'photo'-graphic.
It was a pleasant return, and what capped it was opening the bag of photographic paper and inhaling the aroma of the silver-laden gelatin emulsion. For over one hundred and sixty years this process, invented by Henry Fox Talbot, has made its magic real in darkened cellars and closets around the world. This feeling of kinship with medieval alchemists, turning not lead into gold, but visual experiences into tangible and permanent representations- is truly a milestone in the expansion of human consciousness.
Tonight I contemplate a follow-up visit, the term "dry-down" meaning nothing to most people, but those who know will comiserate.
The King Of Fools
And so it has come to this. Our once proud nation, a nation that could get the job done, a nation of the people, by the people and for the people- is now paying the price of years of corruption: political, legal, and spiritual. An administration that has gained power by playing upon the fears and superstition of ill-educated electorate by a hostility toward Science and Nature, by its systematic destruction of the state itself, by an arrogance and contempt for those at the bottom of society, and by the dismantling of American industry and commerce in the pursuit of short-term profits, has reached the pinnacle of its expression.
It is fitting, even poetic, that the debacle that is the response to Hurricane Katrina has come while "Dubya" is the chief executive officer. A lifetime of failure, of his being bailed out of one self-created disaster after another, has prepared him for the position of presiding over the greatest calamity in the history of the United States. The problems of the modern world call for a strong Federal government, not one weakened by years of tax cuts for the wealthy. The 'neocon' mantra has been "The government that governs best, governs least." I wonder what government they were thinking of- Haiti, perhaps? If so, the result of such thinking has been a prophecy that was spectacularly fulfilled by the events of the last week. His continued wars- war on the people of Iraq, war on any social programs for the people of the US (Social Security, Medicare), the war on 'drugs' (meaning the people who are addicted and need help for their medical problems), his war on Science, his unstated war on any country that has shown the sense not to follow in lock-step with his lunacy...the list goes on and on.
Abraham Lincoln once said: "...you can fool some of the people all of the time...", but by doing so, in the face of hard reality, you become the fool yourself.
All Hail George "Dubya" Bush, The King Of Fools.
The quiet one, the not-so-quiet one, the finely-scented one, and I had a luncheon 'date' friday.They are three women of whom I have had the pain and pleasure of working with for the last 5 years or so. That I could 'tag along' meant alot to me, that my presence is accepted, for all that we've been through. Good times, bad times, very bad times, there to help each other out, no hierarchy here, just four people trying to make it at a job that sometimes seems more ridiculous by the day.
The finely-scented one, whose usual attire of jeans and a grey t-shirt, no make-up and a no-nonsense attitude, is leaving the group, going to school for a better job, she's only comes in when we are short-handed. A single mother, her life isn't easy, but she doesn't give up.
The not-so-quiet one is always full of chatter, keeping a positive spin on her personal life (not without its own struggles) and is always the one to enliven the proceedings. She is the MC, the leader of the pack, but still realistic enough to see that our jobs are always on the line.
The quiet one, the mother of a toddler, with another baby on the way, is charming in a mysterious way, perhaps because she is so quiet, but when she speaks the mystery deepens, and her placid demeanor is occasionally broken by flashes of the fire that dwells within her.
And then there is me. Old enough to be paternal, but not really comfortable in that role. I try to keep my mouth shut at these gatherings, I can learn far more from them than they can learn from me. Because we love each other, but are not lovers, that state of acceptance that exists when we are in shared company is easy to attain. If only all of my relations with other people were so congenial.
The luncheon ended. We went back to work, or home, and back to the daily grind. Life is good.
Stop Putting Words In My Mouth!
"I didn't say that! You write whatever you want, and put it in a set of quotes and people think that it's the gospel truth!"
...well of course, it is not a transcription, I have to have some creative license, don't I?...
"Who do you think you are, God?"
...I am the author, if not for me then where would you be?"
"That's beside the point I, I, think you are right THAT'S WHAT I"M TALKING ABOUT! I don't think you're right, but your 'creative license' is ruining the chance for any semblance of the truth!"
...I am trying my best...
"It just not good enough, my story must be told! Get Out! I don't need you!"
Very well, you're on your own...
"Good! Now what I want to say is this...
"Uh, Mr. Author?"
"I seem to be in a little bit of a rough spot here, perhaps you could help out with a word or two?"
"Oh nevermind, I guess."
Canoe #1. My little Old Town. I was on the Rum River again last night, managing to scare up a Great Blue Heron. When a bird is as tall as a man, it deserves the title "Great". A bit later, a hawk soared overhead as I paddled by. I stopped on the shore near the feral cat colony (to take a leak) and as I got out, I saw fresh little cat-paw prints in the mud where they had come down to drink. After the sun set, I headed back and was splashed upon by a frisky bass. A beautiful late-summers eve on the water. Everything in its place, everything OK.
Canoe #2. Came home, the Weaver was watching a special on the flooding and aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. There was my canoe again, piloted this time by someone else through the streets (canals) of what was once New Orleans. The water was polluted and stagnant. The ninth ward is under twenty feet of water. Fats Domino is presumed lost in his home that he wouldn't leave. Looters have been seen in the town. (Call out the National Guard? I'm sorry, but they are in Iraq.) A beautiful late-summer's eve on the water. But everything is wrong.
They're tyrin' to wash us away
They're tryin' to wash us away
They're tryin' to wash us away
They're tryin' to wash us away