Monthly Archives: September 2007

1/3 X 1/3 X 1/3 = 1/27 Sad, ain’t it?

Haven’t written a poem for weeks. Some of you are dying to add: “Yeah, and you still haven’t”, or “Make that ‘Years'”
Au contraire!.
This is a poem. Get up and look at the screen from across the room.. No, farther back… on back… oops! Sorry. I just wanted to prove that it looks like a poem. Seriously, if you hit any ‘bumps‘ trying to read it in rhythm, it’s your fault. Actually, it’s the limits of text as a medium for representing sound. The dumb thing sings like a bird to the tune I used to write it. I always think I’ll quick record it and upload the song/tape… but if the poem’s a dog, then I just fed a bull-calf for two years and tried to breed her(?). (Little agrarian humour there). The point (near the end) is mathematically valid, having been tested to pretty damn close to the human limit of n, where Trl (Total equivalent real love) = (1/n)^n.    Limit(Trl) occurs on the Graph of Life where n=1, which sounds like a small number, but hey, nobody’d go see a play called “Romeo and his many Juliets”. Ugh…

My Sunny drifted right, then left. (she always was a Leave-ite)
(Bought a)   New attire, a new address, now ‘Poof!’, the girl’s a she-ite.
For a day I sat in neutral tryin’to be so down-right upright.
‘Whatever sinks her ship’, I guess. (she’ll-be back within a fortnight)

Then Lucille calls, “My eel got loose!”// “..And I’m supposed to catch him?”
You’re never here when I need you!” Oy, She’s skinny but infatuating
“I’ll be right over..”// “…and bring some wine!” Damn, Sunny took the hatch-back
I can walk the bike to the CiITGO. (God, I hope she doesn’t scratch him.)

Gee, Lorrie‘s on the pumps in all her Power and her Glory
You going somewhere?” (she hopes I’ll choose a different destination)
(She says “It’s) warm inside..” I raise my gaze, no time for another story…
But then again, hey, life is short, damned  snakes in The Creation

So we’re behind the tanks, a horn blows, yeah it’s Sunny in her undies
(but-then) So are we, “What, she couldn’t last one week-end with the Fundies?”
And Lucy’s on the cell-phone, “Nu, I’m waiting wet and naked
“So am I”, I almost laughed, but quick remembered Love is Sacred

(In the) End a hapless passer-by we annointed Chief of Octane,
sent Sunny happily-motoring off to the Yukon or the Ukraine.
I gave him the bike, gave Lorrie the wine, she dropped me off at Lucy
Who forgave and forgot, as I gave and got, but why’s my life so juicy?

Big Johnny sez:

I told you once, but I’ll say it again, you brainless little butterfly
Girls, (at least if there’re more than one), add just like fractions multiply
A third times a third times a third is what? You repeating little decimal……..
Just repeat after me “I will grow up!”, I’ll be waiting for your “Yes I will”

THE END (one would hope…)

In a Gada-Da-Vinci Codex with The Mona-Alma

Closed my third eye just for a second, and the first thing I heard was the moan..
A lease, a piece of Nice, it coulda been-a mine, Oy…”
Then “Shut Up! Alma!” A man’s voice, and the rough sliding of a chair on a wood floor.
   None of this was my business, I thought as I glanced at the little sign near the mailbox. Made of
glued-on twigs, God help ’em, it said, “Alma & Elmo Na’a’li’sah: Blessed Be This House.”
“Does that include the furniture?”
I thought idly, laughing at my own joke. Even real-estate
lackeys don’t sell ‘houses’ anymore.. it’s ‘homes‘, stupid. God, let’s get this kitsch up to
date, now, shall we?
“Just put them on, Al…is-a that too-a much to ask?”
‘Elmo’, (I guess we’re on a first-name basis now), was holding a pair of clunky-looking, well,
‘combat-boots’, one in each hand. holding them up in the air, and perilously close to the
ceiling fan’s oscillating whirr. ‘Torsional Resonance’, yeah that’s what a chopper pilot I
flew with called the frightening runaway self-destruction mode which is only one of the reasons
why,  “You never can relax in it, You’re always “flying” the damn thing”. Elmo brought them down
to a safer elevation before they were apochalypse-now-ed into a spray of leather tongues and
   And all I’d wanted was a beer from the corner store, but they’d been closed. I think I had
seen this house on a previous battle-conditions detour in search of ‘radiator-fluid’.
A house, ‘home‘, excuse me, which coulda been sold as an Ant Farm, you know, two pieces of glass
and you watch them in there.. schools, hospitals, churches and synagogues…. oh, and domestic
. As I paused in a pocket of shadow behind a hedge, I could hear and see the action
escalating to the point where I felt in my pocket, just to confirm that I had brought my phone,
loudly dialing {************} in the process. I can never remember to lock the keyboard; wonder
who answers if I press ‘send‘? Ha, the Inter-Stellar Hot-line? 14.5 germanium wafers per minute,
plus ‘air-time’.
“But it’s a near-perfect Vacuum!” I was preparing to dispute my bill when the chair flew out
the window, and Alma not far behind. Ok, she exited stage-right through the side door, in one
graceful movement which left the door hanging on by one hinge.
“The lower hinge, officer.” I rehearsed my testimony to Forensics, but by this point other
were starting to express a bit of interest. From across the street and down one house,
the monotonous drone of “Heavy Hits from the Mahgreb: the 80’s” ,played on speakers cheaper than
the Happy-Meal window at McDonald’s Drive-thru ,was abruptly silenced. Rachamon Ali Sa‘baba can
wait, I suppose. I saw his rows of mustachioed violin players put their bows down, one of them
pulling out a pack of Galoises and passing it around as the sound-man ran on stage, head-down
like under chopper-blades, to jiggle, and maybe even fix, a bad-microphone.
  Alma, a chunky woman in her middle-ages, her mustache perfectly at one with the smell of
zatar and cumin on her house-dress, might have, in another time, been drawn for practice on
canvas by eager art-students. “The Modest Dadaist Goddess”, bodice open just so, and a
mysterious panic on her face, explained and re-explained for centuries thereafter.
    But I’d been-there. I knew. It was all about the strata, the veins of gneiss, and the
mica schist in strange darkly transparent sheets, ok, the tons of francs too, that Angelo had
promised her, in return for a discreet, non-attention-grabbing third-party acquisition there
on the Cote d’Azur. Could Mica d’Angelo et Freres have chosen a more obscure shill? Or should
they have? Possibly Elmo’s ‘stability’ could have been researched a bit more thoroughly, his
tectonic vector chart put under the flourescents in the lab, and tossed out as too geologically
active? I don’t know. I wasn’t there. I’d moved on.. abandoning voyerism for cubism, then
settling, with a beer firmly and finally in hand, on abstract expressionism.

Solberg says:
Q: Wish you’d stop calling us that!
A: Oops.
Q: What’s this one about?
A: Helicopters, all the rest is filler
Q: No, seriously..
A: Simple: a guy, out walking, passes a house, a disturbance within, he slowly figures out what is happening..
Q: ..through the help ‘clues’?
A: Great, you found ’em!
Q: Found one..
A: So look for the other three..
Q: So, what.. this lady, um.. ‘Alma’ wuz supposed to have been married to Jesus?
A: No, they weren’t married, is all I’m allowed to say.
Q: Ok, I’ll re-read it. I don’t know a lot about rocks, though..
A: Mica was used in oven windows. China’s the main source, but I dig some up in the backyard at my Nice property..
Q: You own a home on the Riviera?
A: Damn Caps=Lock. Keep hitting it by mistake. I meant, “my neice’s property.. near Cannes
Q: Well, that’s on the Riviera too, Solberg
A: I meant ‘Kansas’ Damn spell-checquer..
Q: I like your stories.. that doesn’t make me a queer, does it?
A: I’ll look into it, and get back to you. Some of ’em are meant to be ‘read with one hand‘. I’ll admit.
Q: Yeah.. I think I’ll sit down now… in the back.. let somebody else ask a question..
A: Bon Voyage


Holy Hypno-gogia! I’m “Sloganless in Seattle”

“Why did we hire you?”
Loretta laid down the legal pad, a bit too roughly for my style. A strange question, I thought,
but hey, maybe she just likes to nail everything down real linear-like.
It was my first visit to the Mayor’s Office Building, and I was still a little sore
about ‘linear’, not having bothered to notice that 4th Ave is one-way northbound.
I’d had a long talk with a fairly cubical cop, plus a long walk after I finally found a place
to stash my Fiesta.
“To head the Seattle Slogan Team, is why, Miss Jung.”
I felt a little silly playing the game, but she loked serious.
“No, Solberg, why did we hire YOU?”.
She picked the pad back up and did an un-necessarily sarcastic reading of my first offering:
“Seattle: The Town you can’t Sleep in!” What is this, a joke?”
My first sign of trouble ahead. “Attack.” the book had recommended.
“I cried all the way through that movie, I’ll have you know..”, I countered, expertly.
I was practicing my new assertiveness.. practice makes perfect..
“.. and ‘The City That Never Sleeps’ is taken, you know..” I continued to strengthen my case,
” legally, we can’t..”
“Solberg, du bisht eine Schleep-Valker..”

There, she’d hit me where it hurts.. well, one of the places. I got up and started for the
door.. suicide or Johnny Walker ™, my only options. Or so I thought..
“…but you’re not going anywhere!”
Hmm.. I’d already banged my hand on the push-bar at the exit door. Looked like she wanted to
torture me a bit before the main be-heading event. Head down, I headed back to my seat.
Seven eyes were upon me, Loretta, Winston-the-city-planner,  and Joey, whom I knew and liked
well enough to use his say-so to get my foot in the door here,  oh yeah, and Moshe, my one-eyed
kitty, so docile and pet-able I’d decided to take him along to The Meeting.
Him, and my Sears ™  tie-dyed shirt were supposed to clinch my image as the mad genius copywriter.
Like a cheap politician, I’d brought along a baby to kiss, in an emergency.
And this inarguably was one, I admitted, as even Moshe eyed me with an unfamiliar new
‘loss-of-innocence’ look, as if saying “My Hero, Johnny, say it ain’t so!”.
Course what does he know, living in two dimensions. ‘It ain’t so’, I obliged,  ‘but how’d you guess Mosh?

I shot him a quick look, remembering that he could still smell me sweating with both nostrils.
“…till you come up with something..” Loretta, finally finishing her sentence and passing
“..something ..better..” Winston had decided to help aim the gun at my chest. Or maybe he was
on my side? His face coulda masked four aces.. or a ‘3’, a ‘7’, and ‘no help’. . Remind me
not to warm up to him anytime soon.
“.. which could be just about anything..” from Joey. At least he said it with humor; I appreciated
that immensely, but stopped myself from smiling in his direction. He had neutrality to defend,
having dragged me into this on his good recommendation,
“Well,” I stammered, “I do have several alternatives I’d be willing to share with The Group“.
      I looked around the table, thinking for a second how much I probably looked like that shifty-eyed
disgraced ex-president.. Tricky Dick. Now I hated Nixon even more, and he was a dead man,
for Christ’s sake.
But then so was I, if I couldn’t remember the other two choices I’d thought of in the shower
that morning. What a drunk I am! How could I have been so… so sure of my ‘super-powers’, that
I hadn’t even bothered to stick another arrow in my quiver?
“Soup-er-powers” entered my mind, uninvited. Then “Supper-power”.. hmm, must be hungry.
“Could we break for lunch?” I asked, all politely. Winston looked at Loretta, and then
down at his watch. A good sign? No, his eye-rolling said it all. It was 3:30 PM.
Lunch? Was I on the wrong planet?
“We could offer you a glass of water.” Winston suggested. I was tempted to remind him that
the Court Order does grant me a Last Meal in the State of Washington.
“No thanks” I tried to say nonchalantly as I reached out and petted Moshe on his little head,
“Maybe’Sinclair’ here would like a drink, though”.
I pictured Moshe with a White Russian sitting on his own little chair, euphoric, and
laughing at his dunce of an owner.
Great, now what does the stupid book recommend, ‘bring in the clowns while you re-torque the
I was glad I hadn’t let slip the cat’s Semitic name.  Bad enough ‘Solberg’.
The hastily re-named ‘Sinclair’s look had “You Quisling!” written all over it.
I stared at him as time slowed to a dead stop, letting him focus on me, a loving father and
      His bite actually drew blood. I hadn’t seen it coming. This was new and un-orthodox
behavior, I thought, startled, as I reached out with my other hand..
…and bumped it on the bedframe! Where was I? Tangled up in the blankets, I spun my head,
searching the room for Loretta, Winston, Joey, anything ‘familiar’..
Moshe jumped on my head, purring this time, hungry and playful.
“Sleepless in Seatle?”, I half muttered to him, “Now why did I dream of that?”
“Beats me”
he shrugged. “Breakfast?”

Solberg says:
A special welcome to folks coming here from Ira’s link, or who thoughtfully(?) ‘bookmarked’ me a week ago during the firestorm. I will now accept Queries from the audience..
Q: Start out with an insult, huh?
A: Yeah. Loretta was tough on me right from the git-go.. oh, you mean ‘queeries’, sorry, make that ‘questions’, I was just tryin’ to sound hi-brow. No offence.
Q: Have you ever been in Seattle”
A: Yes in fact, once, in 1964.
Q: What? Then this story isn’t true?
A: It’s ‘true-to-life’, does that count?
Q: What the hell’s hypnogogia?
A: It’s a little bit of hell, where you are half-awake, half-asleep, can’t move, can’t scream, lying there listening to whirring mechanical noises, seein’ the room spin around, dead leaves flying through the closed window, wishing you could disappear or something.
Q: Or leave your body?
A: Yeah, that works, but it’s not as easy as it looks. And please remember where and how you left it, in case you want to come back into it, otherwise you can end up without a leg.. or a head.
Q:Nothing horrible like that happened in the story..
A: I didn’t want to frighten children or the elderly. No, it’s more an Anatomy of Overconfidence on the Job story. I feel like that sometimes at work.
Q: And Seattle?
A: Yeah, ’cause of ‘Sleepless’ which I loved.
Q: And which just happens to be..
A: Yeah, what a co-incidence.
Q: How long does it take to write a story?
A: I typed this as fast as I can type and never looked back.. about a half-hour.
Q: Looks like it, haha. Lot’s of little typos..
A: Yeah, I’ve been informed, and I plan to fix them.
Q: Don’t you think the style is maybe, too ‘clever’ at the expense of a point.
A: Not really. A good question, though, and not the first time I’ve heard it. There’s a class of writers, and indeed, people, for whom ‘clever’ is the point. Exuberance uber alles. Anybody can make a point. I’m just working around the edges, on the ‘high-style’ part.
Q: And if I don’t like it?
A: That’s what the mouse is for. But thanks for reading.


hello and goodbye

“I say Hello, but you say Goodbye”

I only had a minute to ask her if I could quick shoot her picture; she looked at her watch, and grudgingly agreed: “Run, human!”
I ran inside and got my camera, came back out all excited and said “Look natural, kid”
Another disparaging look (“ if I can look anything but natural? Duh!”)
“I saved your life, you know, you’d have been yummy in the tummy of some crummy pigeon without this cage, Ms. Penny Papillo-chic!”
Was that a ‘grateful’ look? Hard to tell

“Nu, allright already, can I fly?” She spread her wings
“First star on the left, baby” I waved, and started to cry, I really did.

{see her baby-pictures here}

“If I forget Thee, Special Administrative Region, let like all kinda dumb shit happen”…

I take some of it back.”
Take what back?”
The mean stuff I said about Hong Kong
Yup, was on Google learning all about web-crawlers, and search-engineers, and here’s the good part; algorithms for retrieving ‘content’
I’ll call ’em if I lose any, or if I become dis-content, or even incontinent”
You can go piss, I’ll wait here..”
No,it can wait… so what’s with Al ‘Go’ Rhythm?”
Well, for one, he’s got a ‘friendliness quotient’. In laymen’s terms that means they really try not to bother anyone’s server too much.
And Hong Kong’s got one?”
“Not that I see, but wait, there’s more. See, with 400 trillion web pages, they have to set priorities, and they do it, get this, by ‘Depth’ or ‘Breadth’
So that’s why they’re on me like flies at a Polish wedding. I’m both deep and broad,,”
Well, minus your readers in Warsaw now, but yeah, I guess. What else’d you read?”
“I clicked out. That was all I needed to know. The Explanation. Now I gotta send them a thank you note, is all”
“Well, no problem, They’ll read this ten seconds after you post it, right?”
Hey,you’re right: Hi Hong Kong! Thanks for seein my depth.. oh, and my breadth.. I’ll never forget you.. an’ if I do, let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth!”
“It says that?”
“Yeah, Gross, ain’t it. Speaking of deep, two guys were driving around in a truck one night, they both had to piss, so they stopped on the side, right in the middle of a high bridge. Both of ’em jumped out and started to piss over the guard-rail. The first guy says ‘God, that water’s cold!’. The second guy thinks for a second, then adds: ‘Yeah.. and deep, too.’
“Haha, that’s deep,guy..”

Yeah, and broad, too, just like me.”

(You’ve been listening to “Cybarachnids in Updated Regalia” Tune in next week when we hear Johnny say: “Oops.. wrong ‘depth’ and ‘breadth’…)


“The Myth of Me and Missus Sisyphus”

   Guess if I don’t write about sex they’ll think I’m gay. Wait! Gays have sex… just don’t nuthin’ come of it, is all.

   All this is a true story. I mean, it is truly a story. (I made up the part about the fist-fight.) Hailey is living in Cognito, New Mexico till her divorce goes through, and Al still works the farm, and the animals. The pussy-cat almost got run over by the crimper, but she’s ok. And Warner’s ® is in pre-production for Sisyphus II, they’re just trying to find a guy for the ‘male’ lead love-interest with Al who can say “Myth of me and Missus Sisyphus” without a lithp.

Sis, Don’t miss “The Myth of Me and Missus Sisyphus I SMS-ed my dear sister Alberta gidily on my new perse-phone.
   Not every day I get to do it on TV. Ok, it’s a short… but it’s sweet. They cut lots of inaction-scenes  But the juicy parts are all intact… hers and mine. The ‘roll in the hay’ scene, with Hailey (Miles) in the role of the frustrated field-hand-maiden, married so recently (and to no avail) to ne’er-do-well Al ‘Falfa‘ Lomax, played by a has-been I’ll not mention. Hailey’s dream-scene, as bale after bale falls right back down out of the mow.. the segue into fantasy, as we see her looking right through Al’s goofy head, (yes, the camera shooting ‘in one ear and out the other’), as later she runs through the fields to grasp me, pull me down, engage my power-take-off shaft, and screaming, pull the throttle clear back to “Oh God..oh my God..”

   “I have my singing debut also, at that point”, I told Alberta when she called me back for details.   
   “…Yeah, I’m screaming ‘She’ll be coming ’round that Mountain when she comes, if she knows what’s good for her..‘, and Hailey’s like, ‘I do, Johnny, I do!’..
Of course, Al shows up right then, turns his seed-corn cap around backwards, we have this fist-fight, all the time he’s yelling at Hailey: ‘I do’?, ain’t that’s what y’all said to me?!’ but she’s still a little dizzy and I beat the guy up pretty good, for a man with his pants around his ankles and his shtrunkel hangin’ out. So we tie him up with bailer-twine, me’n Hailey, and let him watch us do it again… a couple more times, I lost count”

  So after Alberta saw it, with my Mom, no less (!), she stopped by my place on Weitzman, visibly moved.
  “I liked the character development” she stated, like a first-year drama student.
“Ha. You mean the ten seconds at the beginning where I pull the drowning kitty out of the well?”
“Yeah.. that was deep, plus after that the audience was on your side..”

“They were?” I wasn’t sure she done a complete survey, but whatever… The guy at the corner store kinda stands in front of his wife now when I stop for a beer.
“…plus the symbolism.. you know, orgasm as a metaphor for finally accomplishing..
“Hey ‘Berta, you remember when we was kids, I used to tell you how I kept dreaming the same..
“..that dream where you were climbing up the swing set, but you never made it to the top..”
Wow. She remembered…
“..And you remember when I stopped telling you about it?”
“Hey, a guy remembers when something starts a lot better than when it ends..”
“We’ll, I remember when it ended.”
I said, “I made it to the top one night. Think I was fourteen.”

She understood. Alberta’s smart. Always liked her.
“So, like, did you guys really, like, do it?”
“What, you closed your eyes for that part?”
I covered my eyes with one hand and held the other skyward as if to plead “Gawd Almighty, Save us!”
“No I mean, like really? I saw her in Pyhrric Victory II and you could tell it was fake.”

I leaned a little closer to her and whispered in her ear:
” Yeah, Bertie.  Hailey told Casting she wouldn’t take the part unless we.. um.. how’d you put it?”
Did it. I guess she just wanted it to look real this time, huh?”

Gotta love Alberta. A true film-buff.
“No, kid, she JUST WANTED IT.”

“If I forget Thee, Oh Hong Kong, let my right foot lose its kicking power” Xanga 13: verse 27

Xanga announced a few days ago that they had succeeded in killing the search-engine listings in Footprints. And indeed, Google, (whom I love, just not ‘that way’, Yoohoo, MSM, and all the other nose-problem robots have been ‘disappeared’… all except stinking Hung Kung, the absolute worst of the crowd. They show in my other tracker as Hong Kong(sar) whatever that means, and on Footprints, for example, between 5:23 and 5:41 PM today they accessed my site 113 times! Page after page, nothing but their influenza. I’m learning to hate them, and want to kick them hard where it hurts, which is a hard place to locate in a robot. I’ve left two comments on the Xanga-Team site , under the post which had announced this ‘victory over nudnicks’. Not exactly stunned to not receive a personal reply,and reply or no,the pox continues to replicate. And so I ask my brethren here, out of curiousity, Are you, or have you ever been… experienced? (Yeah, Jimi;, what I meant here was “Have you experienced the same evil?”)

“If I forget Thee, Oh Hong Kong, let my right foot lose its kicking power” The Book ofXanga , Chapter 13: verse 27

LATE NEWS: Add ‘QUEBEC’ to the nudnick list. It’s probably Yahou with a fake nose and mustache, getting around Xanga’s robo-wall. Obviously a Robot, plus doesn’t ‘register’ in third-party trackers.

centipedal footprints

ADD*  I don’t complain much; vastly preferring to applaud, so speaking of which, If you want to read a short, eloquent, and incredibly well-written  piece of maybe fiction.. two souls sitting on a park bench, go now to nohelpandlovingit’s site. You might be there forever..

“.. and frankly, ‘W’, you’re no Dan Quayle!”

   Ok for the benefit of any readers who, through no fault of their own, were ‘born yesterday’, I’ll explain that during the vice-presidential televised debate of 1988, the likeable and fatherly Democratic candidate Lloyd Bentsen, having tired, as indeed I had also, with child-actor Dan Quayle’s thick hinting at comparisons between himself and the legendary John F. Kennedy, turned to the little creature and said, if me’n Wiki remember correctly, “Senator, I served with Jack Kennedy: I knew Jack Kennedy; Jack Kennedy was a friend of mine. Senator, you’re no Jack Kennedy“. Quayle’s face reddened, even on my little black-and-white cow-stable TV, and although he tried to wriggle out of it, the mortal damage had been done. I here steal the line and re-use it against an even more un-qualified creature, who makes Quayle look like a Fulbright scholar (God I miss Bill Clinton!)  But let’s move on.

This post is bullet-points of varying callibre (don’t say ‘blanks’) toward my up-and-coming trip to America. And since Pynschon has already done ‘V’ in high style, I suppose I’ll have to settle for “W“. Stands for ‘Woeful‘… or “Why?”. Also short for WTF?  As in “Who fell asleep and made this fool president?” Two minutes of watching him and I find myself saying “Can I please speak to your superior?” To Which some Wag stage-Whispers “That could be almost anyone, Johnny..”
Oh well, can’t see him from 35,000 feet, so let’s move on up to Aviation

    I’d like to favorably mention Hans and his Luft-menschen at Luft-Hansa, who’ve agreed to give me a ride in one of their Flug-zeugie-thingies. An ‘aeroplane‘ this time. Note the spelling. I didn’t once, and flew on an ‘error-plane’. Who needs luggage anyway? So meanwhile, Luft-geschefter’s Fly-me girls got the news, and are lining up to greet me and avail themselves of my in-flight ‘services’ again. I did mention ‘five’ as a maximum this time; even Samson needs to parcel-out his intercontinental prowess wisely.
I do trust the Germans to get me there and back, though. I’m reminded of a time many years ago when I was disassembling a fleet of Dornier military aircraft for shipment from Israel to “Country C”. Since I was (and still am, it hasn’t been that long!) wiry, aggressive, methodical, and electronically radio-active, I decided to be the one to pull out the ‘avionics-package’.. basically all the instruments and radios, etc. in the cockpits. This entails, as any reader who has worked under a small car’s dashboard knows,  lots of ‘unusual attitudes’, in pilot-speak, like ‘head on the floor between the rudder-pedals, butt on the seat, and toes holding on like an ape to the trim-wheel on the ceiling. In one of the aircraft I found the original Pilot’s Manual tucked under the seat.. open to the page which said, loosely translated, “Should you need to ditch into das Wassser: Vat to do..” There were penciled-in corrections to some of the checklist items, such as flap-percentage, airspeed at stall-in, etc. This guy looked like he’d done his homework, and was ready for the worst-case, Gott sei danke. I hope my flight crew is related to him, but who knows? My only un-breakable rule is that I never get on a plane if I see the pilot wearing a parachute.. unless I have one in my carry-on also.
   Word has reached these shores that although my dead-beat tenants didn’t exactly leave smiling, my albums somehow escaped becoming impromptu Frisbees during their moving-out party. Other equally valuable assets which I dumbly stored in the attic also survived, so I’m told by my Guardian-Angel/Enforcer/ Friend-on-the-scene. The ‘Bonfire of the Vanities’ which attracted the attention of the local authorities was apparently not fueled by my cherished photographs or ‘inventions’. Yes, I left an attic full of prototypes.. proto-typical of me!
   One item of un-finished business I intend to address, after I’ve had a real breakfast. (Hey I insist on it, once every five years or so. Sorry, Israeli cucumbers and bitter herbs don’t count). It’s a long story, and I rarely talk about sports here, but imagine my suprise and chagrin (Who’s grinning?.. God, who makes these words up!) .. my ‘dismay‘ when, after pole-vaulting almost to national fame, winning every meet, and feeling all-around good about my contribution to the track team, I open the Yearbook to read, under my picture sailing high above the bar; and I quote, “Though not having any real natural talent, Solberg still managed to add a few points to our team’s totals.” (!!!). Revenge is a dish best served cold, they say, well 40 years, it that cold enough? I will find out who wrote that insult, I shall locate him/her, and I will, so help my God, crash my car into his or his son’s or his grand-son’s new Impressa or whatever parked at the Quickee-Mart. That oughta send a message. I’ll show him “natural talent” I will..
 What’s left? Just a little bureacracy, that’s all. Although I’ve been a loyal citizen here since before the start of Begin, for some reason the Interior Ministry (‘Ministry of Faces’ in Hebrew) seems to think I need to be “Naturalized”. That’s about all I know. It’s a bizarre term even in English, Immigration and ‘Naturalization’.. I mean, like.. I try to act natural, eat natural foods, respect nature, and never drink de-natured alcohol.. so why me? I think they might have gotten their hands on my High School Yearbook, is what I think. But I might just be paranoid… (or maybe I just made that one up.. sorry, couldn’t control myself. Says right at the top of the page, ‘Fabrications’. But all the rest is true.)

Oh, and if I see any Xangans while I’m there, what’s the professional thing to do? I really have no experience at that. Do you ask them to ‘bend over, and I’ll leave a comment’? Sounds a little ‘forward‘ to me...

How about “Should you happen to see” ?

   Having just this week suffered enough Windows ‘Dialogue-boxes’ to silence the proverbial 300 pound deaf-mute (ex:! An unknown error has occured, click OK and you’ll feel a lot better about it“) I was fascinated at my job to overhear my client, who is a tech-writer/page designer working from home a lot lately, discussing in English and Hebrew the fine points of a software installation manual she’d been asked to translate and layout. We tune in as Susan says:
“Ani lo ohevet et ha’me’lim “YOU SHOULD SEE”.
Oops, that meant “I don’t like to use the word “Should” in this situation”.
Making a cup of coffee, I forgot for a second that she was on-line with a multi-billion dollar firm, and couldn’t stop myself from starting to ad lib my own comments; “Ma’mash ya’chol le’he’yot  sh’tir’eh..” (“It’s really actually possible that you might see..”)) Her tactful “Shh!” shut me up, but now, safely out of earshot, I’m free to share with the world my thoughts on this ‘issue’, as if anyone asked:
1) Anyone printing in the instructions “YOU SHOULD SEE..” unavoidably hints at the distinct possibility, (which is in my case an almost certain probability), that I will in fact not SEE it. Having acknowledged this fact, a writer with any conscience should feel a duty to guide the hapless victim who somehow ‘SEES’.. like..oh.. some other dumb shit. In failing to do this, most installation manuals kinda throw you to the wolves, and often on the first damned page. So let’s not say “SHOULD“. Takes care of that issue.. or does it?
2) “YOU WILL THEN SEE..” No help here, just a higher confidence-level, and an even sicker feeling when I don’t.
3) YOU MAY SEE..? No good for two reasons. It suggests that there are like, tons of stuff you might possibly end up gawking at, which, though technically true, is better left unsaid. (I know it’s unclear whose side we’re on here, but stick with the program, maybe we’ll find a good compromise somehow. Plus, the dual meaning of the word “may” implying permission as well as possibility is distracting.. Speaking of which..
4) I personally like     “You should see what I’m seeing!”
                     “What’s that?”
                     “Um.. a girl without underwear.. oops, wrong file!”
5) Let’s not forget
the Yiddish-ism sense of ‘should’, as in “You should live to be uh hundert tzvantzig! (120). Looking at the instructions in that context forces the customer realize how much the manual writer cares about him as a person.. but contributes not much of substance other than that.

“Yeah, I ‘should’,’I’m thinking,  “..but if this shit keeps up, I’ll be dead by my own hand by midnight!”
6) So what IS the proper word-choice?
Susan calmly explained to me the realities of the trade. When one has neither the space nor the budget to address all the bizarre screens a user may encounter, it’s best to just stonewall,  insist “YOU WILL SEE..” and leave it at that.

What you actually see is your problem. Keep the receipt; you should live long enough to get your money back, god willing!

You should see

“It is finished… maybe. Whew!”

   Another Guy said that. In response to a similarly mixed blessing. Someone apparently told Him the best way to get His name on TV for thousands of years was to have a day-long gruesome but none-the-less interesting ‘event’. Ya’all probably want to see the wounds. Nothing that won’t heal. I appeared to my on-line friend elgan briefly last night; we went over the proofs from yesterday’s Pieta photo shoot.. I picked the one where the halo shows up nice and clear and the gold “X” for ‘Xanga’ looks non-chalant hanging around my bruised neck. The Louvre is moving pictures sideways to make room for me as we speak.

  Matters-of Fact Version:
1) 2000 visitors so far; we’re down to about 50 an hour now, and moving back to the three-a-day I’m used to.
2) Fifty or so comments, almost all of them thoughtful and appreciated
3) Three brave souls clicked on the link in the original post, to my ‘Queen for a Day’ description of the experience
4) … and one of them even clicked the link on that post to discover what my site is really like. That’s an invigorating 0.05% Curiousity-Factor
5) In the process of going to about 800 of the sites who looked at my post and thanking their owners, I found a few to whom I subscribed. A half-dozen xangans subscribed to my site. Hope I don’t disappoint them.
6) Conclusion: I believe Time, or Free-time, is the truly scarce resource these days. Sure, my site has lots of meaty content, but then so do a million others. I hereby forgive yer average human for deciding that, rather than bask in my illuminating Holiness, he ought to be taking the trash out and getting to work on time. Even Jesus, who also had a lot to say, and not all of it baloney, had to watch from a safe perch in Heaven and cringe as his spokesmen resorted to torture to win Subscribers. I don’t plan on doing likewise. And so:  Thanks, Xanga, for my 15 minutes of Warhol, and now back to normal Eternal Life. Quality or Quantity, pick one, and be happy with your choice.

it's finished