Saturday, May 27, 2017

Notes from a Strange Week

--I am seeing/reading/hearing people paying tribute to Denis Johnson by talking about how much his work meant to them.  I tried to read Jesus' Son after seeing the movie.  I remember feeling puzzled, but not moved, the way so many people are.  Perhaps I should try again.  I used to feel the same way about Raymond Carver, and then a friend told me how much "A Small, Good Thing" had meant to her.  I'd read it before and not been impressed, but I read it again--and was blown away.

--I am much sadder about the loss of Zbigniew Brzezinski--what an amazing analyst/creator of foreign policy.

--In terms of national news, I'm beginning to think that some folks are going to end up in jail for treason.  Setting up a secret channel of communication--with the Russians?????  What alternate world do these people live in?  The news headlines are beyond anything I could imagine if I was trying to create a corrupt administration in a fictional world of my creating.  It makes me feel like my imagination has shriveled up somewhere along the way.

--I heard a quote from someone in the intelligence sector--maybe former CIA director Brennan.  The person talked about how often people find themselves on a path that leads to treason before they even realize they're headed towards treason.  But setting up a secret communication channel--when is that ever a good idea?

--Happily, my work does not seem to have set me on a path to treason.  This week was a tough one for faculty at my college--lots of people out, so I did some teaching for some classes (Humanities), while making arrangements for others (like Math).  It was fun to be in a physical classroom again, not an online classroom.  The students give me hope for the future, unlike our current political leaders.

--And now, a 3 day week-end!  I haven't had a week day off since Jan. 2--and almost every week has had me working 45-60 hours in the office--not to mention the nights I wake up at 1:30 with my head full of stuff that won't let me sleep.  I am very ready for a day off--and most week-end, I can sleep; it's the nights before I have to go to work in the morning where my brain seems overengaged.

--What will I do with a 3 day week-end?  Why, chores, of course.  The weeds have overtaken the yard, and we're still troubleshooting the pool.  And the cordless lawnmower has finally stopped holding a charge.  Sigh. 

--But let me not get lost in chore woe.  Let me remember that I will have time for delights too.  There will be some wine and cheese.   And there will be some brunch, I think.

--Hopefully there will also be some time to read.  My friend and I have decided to read Drabble's The Radiant Way (which in my head I've been calling The Realms of Gold).   Sure, I could read Denis Johnson--but I'd rather read Margaret Drabble.

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