I had a good day today.
Pinsky was good. He reads well---slow enough for me to follow him, for the most part, and though I do engage I can be a little slow on the uptake with these sorts of things. "Ode to Meaning" was a good one to follow. For this one, anyway, who has her issues with Meaning, and the compulsion to seek it, find it, make it. Of course the conceit of addressing a thing like Meaning is goofy and potentially pretentious, but he is serious without (much) pretension, and a little funny here and there. Seems to acknowledge the surreality of the premise of a reading. Was maybe a little self-conscious about doing something of an un-reading reading. But whatever. 'Twas good. Got a little anti-govt bolstering out of it, too, as one often does with poets.
It was fun to be sitting there waiting for a poetry reading to start. And I sent my first real-world text message: "Left side, row 5." ("Mr. Watson, come here. I want you.") The crowd was nicely shabbier than the usual U crowd I find myself in. And there were hairy old people.
I used to be sitting and waiting for a poetry reading to start a lot. It was one of my favorite kinds of moment at college. Looking at the reflections of the other faces in the glass window of the Sophie Kerr Room of the library. Watching Tom Pabon keep turning around in his seat neurotically, craning his neck so his bizarrely round head could be up on who had entered. There I'd sit, with friends, getting ready to take in what would come our way, and then go drink lots of bad cheap wine afterwards & talk to the poets, at least if we liked 'em, after everybody else, when we were good and tipsy and courageous.
Earlier today I got a postcard from the first woman I slept with (more or less). From New Zealand. The signature was covered by one of those USPS stickers, and I actually had to peel it off to figure out who was telling me she'd gone as far away as she could get to celebrate her 44th birthday. I laughed out loud not to've recognized that handwriting, which I had much more familiarity with than I had with her body, or her person at all. Such as she had a person. (Reminds me of my 2nd Oprah book again.)
It was pointed out to me this afternoon that I sounded as if I'm slipping back into protector. Funny, that. Tru.
O Ficus tree, O Ficus tree
I'm going to have a Ficus tree
(Is that how you spell Ficus tree?)
Later I got flirted with. And flirted back. All of it the most easy/natch-feelin' thing in the woild. This one was flirt-worthy! Funny, but not too, and also laughing, but not too. 'Twas half-way through before I cognized that we were flirting, and that didn't stop me in my tracks in the least. Didn't miss a step, in fact.
My back feels almost completely better.
I bought a book and a magazine and a few of those chocolate spheres, in hazelnut. Ate 'em after my supper from Zingerman's.
I watched Chinatown, which was pretty good, in its ways. Funny thing: all this time I'd thought it was a cops-'n'-drugs action kind of picture. From this vantage point in time it does suffer a bit from its era's flavor spilling into its period-piece period, and I have a kind of distancing effect from the combo Jack Nicholson (ugh) and Robert Kid-Stays-In-The-Picture-Guy. Also there wasn't as much old LA to dig as I'd hoped, as there had been in The Long Goodbye, which I wrote about here eons ago, all into the elevator from Dead Again being in it. Nonetheless, a good wind-down to the day.
Some days are so good you hate to go to bed. If I die tonight, long live me; if not, here's to tomorrow! and may I somehow get to the library before it opens!