Tuesday, August 28, 2007

So what fib no. 3

up a rock
with a giant tooth-
pick. A green-headed pink turtle
with yellow spots lies
flat. So what?
is what

– Len "No Nonsense" Blumfeld

All once again based on closer observation of my immediate office surroundings (Chris' workplace).

Monday, August 27, 2007

Why do I get that sinking feeling ...

... even though my horoscope is great?

H: You have a kind spirit.
I: I have, it's true. In fact, some people have told me I tend to be too kind to the wrong people.

H: Although you sometimes focus too much on your career, you try to do good for other people.
I: I often think I should have focused more on my "career" – then I'd really have one. But yes, it's true, sometimes I'm a real do-gooder.

H: Today you might need to step in and be a good citizen.
I: All right, if it has to be!

H: Someone around you might be suffering, and they could use your help.
I: I know at least two people who love to tell me about their suffering and who always proclaim they need my help.

H: You might need to loan someone money so that they can take care of a pressing need.
I: As long as it's no more than a couple of bucks. Ain't got that much more myself.

H: Or you might chat with someone who has had a lot of emotional stress lately.
I: Being one who has had a lot of emotional stress lately myself, we could exchange laments.

– Len "It's All In The Stars" Blumfeld

in response to a prompt from Sunday Scribblings.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Looking around collage

The people across from the office have two yellow and one blue plastic flowers attached to their bathroom window. It is the bathroom window because it is made of that rough-textured glass that is no-see-through.

I'm sure the whole wide world has been waiting to read this.

On to other, equally notable things.

On my absent colleague's cabinet there are two miniature Mercedeses, one maroon, the other silver. One's stuck in sort of a tupperware bowl on a sheaf of papers, the other one on what looks like some sort of ramp. Black plastic. Neither Mercedes looks very happy.

The subprime rate mortgage crisis keeps throwing its weight around. Now it turns out that even the oh so successful on their own Chinese were hoping to make a fast buck on another bubble that was supposed to keep growing forever and that was mostly based on loans that should have never been given in the first place. Idiocy thy name is banking.

Darshini David wore bright orange yesterday. Big buttons again, even though the collar was less pronounced than usual. Made her upper body look humongous. I'd been looking forward to her daily appearance, but BBC did not put her on. Rico Hizon from Singapore, a man of vast knowledge, enigmatic smiles and succinct wording (albeit also guilty of some overuse of personal address interjections), was left out as well.

BBC World News has been showing the same AT&T formula 1 whine car racing commercial for weeks. Something about "ultimate speed," "enhanced performance" and "innovative solutions." Leaves me panting every single time. AT&T would be well advised to axe their commercial scribes for abundance of originality.

And oh the big business world is still complaining about the credit crunch that prevents them from sinking trillions into questionable megadeals.

In Bangladesh the police is sent after students that have been proclaiming loudly what everyone has known forever – niffy, inept, self-serving government. Not so different from most governments. More about this on Global Voices.

Oh well. Time to get on with work.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Louis L'Amour Country

be in
Louis L’Amour
country: big sky – crisp
air – checked shirt – back on saddle –
sipping black brew from
metal cup.

– Len "Office Cowboy" Blumfeld

How'd this one come about? Through an excursion to romance country (Saoirse Redgrave's Write that Romance! blog) and coming upon a Louis L'Amour book cover there. Instant sprouting of the cowboy stereotype material seed stored in my mind into a fib...

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Dear new diary

Written as suggested by Sunday Scribblings:
The prompt for this week is: Dear Diary.
Shhhhhhh... are your secrets deep and dark or wistful and whimsical? Do you have a character that you need to flush out by writing some diary entries? Is there something your twelve-year-old self wants to say? Do you have a silly secret crush? What needs to be written in a beautiful book and locked with a tiny gold key?

Here goes...

Dear new diary,

I’m starting you to turn a new leaf, swearing to be radically honest about the person to be recorded here. For a few minutes being.

First off, what are my motivations?

1. I want to be read, that’s why I’m participating in a blog thread. So I’m like a spider in a way, spinning a web to trap potential readers. Except that the overall web has been woven before. I’m in a chain of webs, so to speak.

2. Why not be radically honest once in a while? Even though I’ve had my share of radically honest attacks and have always come out radically honestly different, this has not worn off all my inclination to radical honesty. I’ve noticed that radical honesty – my own or others’ – is not necessarily free from strings. There might be vanity involved – Look how radically honest I can be! – or sickness with one’s own perpetual lies to cushion up one’s existence. Can we really stand the truth about ourselves? Can we admit to being greedy, stingy, stupid, envious, evil, hopeless, hopeful, befuddled, spaced out, sick, perverse, all that? Not that we are all that all the time, of course. But some of the time or the majority of the time everyone is a bit of this, a bit of that. Even though some of it might be well-hidden under so-called good intentions.

3. After this theoretical preamble on virtue and vice, let me delve into today.

  • I’ve already managed to be tired and not listen to some of the things my beloved held forth about. That’s why I can’t even remember the topic of her holding forth.
  • I’ve already ruminated about a friend – how strenuous she can be, how hectic, how difficult in her relations with others (including me). Although I tend to go to great length with her in trying to smooth things over. To explain her misconceptions benevolently.
  • I’ve already suffered from self-doubt, thinking that, if closely examined, people will quickly find out that I’m not all that wonderful. (Have I given you any reason to believe I’m wonderful so far? No, I don’t think so.)
  • I just thought about wordiness. I’m usually a man of few words. I can put things in a nutshell, but often others want more effusion than a nutshell. They want at least a big, big coconut – stuffed and overflowing. I’ve been accused of being simplistic because I’m usually happy with simplified interpretations of things. Makes life so much simpler sometimes.
  • I’ve already white-lied. It’s that cushioning I mentioned before. Cushioning things up for others, but also for oneself.
  • Worry: the truth will inevitably shine through!
  • I had too much for lunch. Not only that, I ate two more chocolate-covered rice cakes shortly after lunch.
  • Now I’ll have to go get coffee.
  • More reason to worry: I am doing things I am not getting paid to do.

Dear new diary, that’s it for now, some time in August of 2007, in the middle of the week. I can look out from underneath the shutters and see dense white clouds moving along the stark contrast of a uniformly sprayed sky. Just thought you needed to know that for environmental completeness.

PS: I'm fighting with some Blogspot formating issues. Sometimes Blogspot does something different every time you save the same post.

Gacela of the three dark pigeons

Three dark pigeons were sitting on the ground in a triangle.

“I am chest,” said the first one.
“I am beak,” said the second.
“And I am eye,” said the third.

The first one was another,
the second one could not speak,
and the third one was none.

Three dark pigeons were sitting on the ground in a triangle.

– Leonard Blumfeld

Unavoidable note
This is what you get when you walk over to Penny Market for a frustration snack and notice three pigeons seated in the parking lot. Brings up memories of García Lorca's Gacela de las palomas oscuras, and your mind starts playing around...

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Elucidative Ad Sense

In my previous post I used the word "elucidative" without being quite sure whether it really exists. To verify, I did a Google search and landed on a Free Dictionary by Farlex page that promised help.

Alas, the page had little elucidation on the elusive elucidative, but wisely knew what people who search for the word might actually need:

HD Endoscopy
Endoscopy cameras utilize HD to improve clarity and visibility.

Prevent Server Down Time
Pre-emptive Support - 24/7 Identify problems before they occur

What Is Metaphysics?
What Metaphysics Means / Courses University Of Metaphysical Sciences

Thank you, Ad Sense, for understanding my needs in such a precisely targeted manner. I'll definitely check out the true meaning of metaphysics the next time I have a few hopefully elucidative moments. Whatever that may mean.

Should I worry about blogspot server down time, though? Enough to identify problems before they occur? Would endoscopy help?

Monday, August 20, 2007

Small world

line at
Fried Chicken: Naked
white globe in crown of tousled hair.

– Len "Bad Food" Blumfeld

I admit it, I went to KFC for lunch. Well, all the people I usually have lunch with are either on vacation or were out. Still I looked over my shoulder to see if anybody caught me.
Before I entered, I spent a while reading up on the footnoted ingredients they use at KFC. Quite a list! Flavor enhancers in various combinations with phosphate and colorants, to name just a few. Even their corn cobs are artificially colored. Having slung down my flavor- and color-enhanced chicken product, I came to the conclusion once again that neither I nor anyone else should be caught at KFC – dead or alive.

Anyway: When waiting in line, the hindhead of the gentleman in front of me inspired me to the above fib.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

A Kenneth Patchen Love Poem for Poetry Thursday

Oh now the drenched land wakes;
Birds from their sleep call
Fitfully, and are still.
Clouds like milky wounds
Float across the moon.

Oh love, none may
Turn away long
From this white grove
Where all nouns grieve.

– Kenneth Patchen

(from "The Love Poems of Kenneth Patchen", City Lights Books, 1966)

Posted for one of the last Poetry Thursdays to take place.

To readers not familiar with this great and underrated American poet and novelist, I recommend the Wikipedia page on Patchen as a start.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

So what fib no. 1

and Indian
spice was good. So what?
you ask. Where is your gratitude?

– Leon B.

As the number in the title indicates, more of these are intended to come.*
The idea goes back to Richard Brautigan and his green pepper/salad bowl so what poem quoted in Poems like untucked shirts.

*Readers are left with three or more options: joy, indifference, horror, ...

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Darshini David’s wardrobe

Dedicated to her

her big
buttons and
collars and has sets
of them: mauve, beige, red, turquoise, etc.

– Leonard Blumfeld

This is in reference to BBC news presenter Darshini David, who seems to have a distinct predilection for tops with oversized collars and plastic buttons. She has at least four of these in different colors. Where does she get them?
Can “etc.” squeeze through as a one-syllable word? I hope so. (It certainly would have one syllable if it were pronounced “ets.”) If not, the purity of the venerable fib form is compromised here.

Blood, sweat and tears

so bad:
Sweat, no blood,
no tears. Just dry eyes
from screen slog. For daily bread. For
others, yes and no.
Daily toil.
No end.

– Leonard the Screen Gazer

Friday, August 3, 2007

The merest touch of her

Poetry came by again last night
to drop something off.

I spend too much time
without Poetry but don’t

want to be too insistent
in calling her over.

What did she drop off?
A locket I can’t seem to open.

But I’m not worried. It
sits on my desk with

a silvery half-smile
and reminds me of Poetry.

– Leonard Blumfeld


This is my belated contribution to Poetry Thursday's invitation of August 2.

I was working hard on inspiration (see previous entry To squeeze tears out of a rock) and found it in a line read on Poetry Thursday itself:

“Poetry keeps me company and sings me lullabies. Poetry is making moments, little moments, into brushstrokes.”

Thursday, August 2, 2007

To squeeze tears out of a rock

Can it be done?

Or is it a mission impossible?

(I'm trying to come up with a poem for Poetry Thursday – currently vacationing and without topic suggestion – and feel quite rocky and unpoetific.)

Doesn't necessarily have to be tears, either.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Office still life

The face of the house across is brightened to a stark near-white by the sun coming in from the southeast.

Yes, it's that house with the leisure area on the garage, the terracotta pot array supplemented by three bright green plastic watering cans.

There's a bright red Fiat Cinquecento on the window sill.

If I crane my neck, I can see some bright red flowers on corn stalks.

Corn stalks?

– Len B.