Wednesday, 28 January 2009

Ox Tail Soup

Distinctly I can remember the day in Kindergarten that I learned that wool products did not equivocally mean the torturous slaughter of sheep and lambs. The rest of my class regarded me strangely during this barn-yard lesson. I suppose, without the aid of ever growing up on a farm, urged not to name the livestock, or a fishing-trip with Granddad, I concluded that all works of man would requite some sort of bloody sacrifice. I can also recall being about to recite numbers no more than thirty-nine, though I knew that counts went higher. I was quite realized to learn that in fact sheep like to be sheared, cows like (need, due to the hormone injections) to be milked, and that the predator populations like to be kept under control. Maybe the belief was grounded in a few provactive, infantile snap-shots, bare, on a sheepskin rug, on which I would later see my sister posed... Incidentally, it's just as strange to me to recall a photograph that one cannot summon up electronically as it is to know a favorite image that one cannot hold in his hands.

Friday, 23 January 2009


The view from my office window (o'er the land of the free and the home of the brave--Play Ball!) also affords me a glimpse in the hinterground of the steam generated from the cooling-towers of the nuclear power plant. In the forefront is shaggy shadow of a dissected Holiday Tree. The place where I work is a bit like Springfield, the biggest little town in Germany. The exhaust really shows in in the sunsets, and some co-workers express periodic angst over inchoate radiation or the potential targetting of terrorists. I, on the other hand, call it our "Cloud-Maker."

Demi-tasse--that's my answer to half full or half empty

Cognitive dissonance is what they call the discomfort experienced when one tries to simultaneously hold two contradictory ideas in his head. Double-think. The most common examples of this phenomenon I go through aside from the occasional buyers' remorse comes with smoking. H and I both talk of quitting, once we're equally ready, and in the meantime, go through the motions by rote and nasty-habit. We both fancy ourselves and each other as smart, capable people (possibly add enabler to that litany) but still make the time for it, and quite often. H told me about a theory that held that out of all cigarettes smoked daily, only five or six are really enjoyed. I think that's a pretty accurate assessment, and really try to savour those rare, tasty gasps of relieve.

Wednesday, 21 January 2009


Casually, H and I are hunting for a home together. There is no pressure to move, we've reached a comfortable schedule and compromise for tearing down the Autobahn to one another's place for over-nights, and the search is quite a bit of fun. There is, of course, an array of practical reasons for living together: primarily, the chance to come home to each other everyday, the chance to no longer be satisfied with our present living-arrangements, and the chance for a dishbot. I also like the fact that we might be living under the aegis of a new city coat-of-arms. Right now, there's just an uninspired bear with bad posture for my village and a shield with crossed, flaming swords for H. I want to live in a land that is represented by what I call "National Chicken." National Chicken is a bit like Famous Grouse or Rolex's Oyster Perpetual, I think. We'll have a very, very, very fine house.

Thursday, 15 January 2009

Maybe the gas came from Uranus

I should suppose that any article that offers theories about extraterrestrial life bears attention. So I wonder why only the UK Sun is running with this story. Seemingly persistent plumes of methane gas could possibly only come from a biological source for replenishment, given the absense of active volcanoes on the planet. There's a lot in the news that doesn't suffer ridicule well these days: calls for ending black history month (despite the superficial annual parade of obligation it usually is handled with) since a black US president makes it redundant, the US army poised for a damage-control mission in Mexico since the state is, in American estimation, teetering on collapse, bin Laden's apparent attribution of Israeli strikes on the Palestinians to America's slipping importance as a world-player, art or anti-art. After the headlines have faded a little, spent their cause-celeb, being able to have questioned the reporting, approaching it with a skeptical-grin, is something that we ought not to take for granted.

Thursday, 8 January 2009

gift horse

With some drawn-out days left yet before the inaugeration, Obama's repeated proclamation that there is to be only one seated president at a time is a little sore sounding. The present seated president seems rather ineffectual as the world is exploded, froze, folded, spindled, mutilated around him, and Obama's silence strikes me much like the brooding of Achilles--his refusal to join the fight nearly costing the Greeks their victory in Troy.

Tuesday, 6 January 2009

Hanseatic or A Fistful of Hamas

A very mere few of the gurus and soothsayers, jilted and can't be bothered, saw this one coming: that rather than celebrating another calendar-brand holiday, like the two decade old anniversary of the collapse of the Soviet Union, which incidentally was caused in part by unsustainably cheap petroleum prices wrought by changes in the way Arab states sell fuel despite the pretenders to its overthrow, we're instead looking at absolute financial-meltdown, carnage and dreaded reevaluation. Is this the bequest of Hope, the yes-we-can? The next president of the United States of America may have been handed a much-diminished superpower, which never was that much different than the Soviet Union (though neither party would want to hear that). Both sulking monsters and accomdations of survival--of unity. Now the whole world is going insane. There is nothing new under the sun, but now American empire tilts on the brink, surreptitious wars are raised, and those on the sidelines, like powerhouse Germany, say they had little to do in causing the problem and should therefore suffer lesser consequences. The former may be resoundingly true, but the latter has dire consequences.

Sunday, 4 January 2009


I know I said that New Year's resolutions struck me as somewhat wanting, lest I revisit the dreaded diary or smoking cessation program, but I imagine they're worth a second look. It would be something if we could resolve to be less human, less fallible--or at least not to forget the lessons that we've already learned. In other aspects of life, belief, people can turn to dogma, a simple set of axioms as guiding principles in religion, philosophy, business-style, since no one of us can keep all the rules in our heads at one time. There's not really something dogmatic for relationships--thank goodness--there are no adherents, at least none that I would like to meet or mimic, of this or that school of matrimonial success. Without dogma, every one of us is allowed to treat each other as unique, forgiving and forgetful, even though the occasional lapse.