Sunday Snippet, Poem, the wind bottle by Bill Chance

“A little muzhik was working on the railroad, mumbling in his beard.

And the candle by which she had read the book that was filled with fears, with deceptions, with anguish, and with evil, flared up with greater brightness than she had ever known, revealing to her all that before was in darkness, then flickered, grew faint, and went out forever.”

― Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina

Civitas, Audrey Flack, 1988, Patinated and gilded bronze with cast glass flame and attached marble base, Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden

the wind bottle

The candle wax drips down
the wine bottle
wine and spaghetti
fuel
lighted matches
spent, still
smoke on the tabletop

The smell
Grandma and her doilies
light and fire
hot
Watch the kid burn himself

I blow
and watch the smoke
the darkness stringing streaming out

Short Story of the Day, Stone Animals by Kelly Link

“This is the list you carry in your pocket, of the things you plan to say to Kay, when you find him, if you find him:

  1. I’m sorry that I forgot to water your ferns while you were away that time.
  2. When you said that I reminded you of your mother, was that a good thing?
  3. I never really liked your friends all that much.
  4. None of my friends ever really liked you.
  5. Do you remember when the cat ran away, and I cried and cried and made you put up posters, and she never came back? I wasn’t crying because she didn’t come back. I was crying because I’d taken her to the woods, and I was scared she’d come back and tell you what I’d done, but I guess a wolf got her, or something. She never liked me anyway.
  6. I never liked your mother.
  7. After you left, I didn’t water your plants on purpose. They’re all dead.
  8. Goodbye.
  9. Were you ever really in love with me?
  10. Was I good in bed, or just average?
  11. What exactly did you mean, when you said that it was fine that I had put on a little weight, that you thought I was even more beautiful, that I should go ahead and eat as much as I wanted, but when I weighed myself on the bathroom scale, I was exactly the same weight as before, I hadn’t gained a single pound?
  12. So all those times, I’m being honest here, every single time, and anyway I don’t care if you don’t believe me, I faked every orgasm you ever thought I had. Women can do that, you know. You never made me come, not even once.
  13. So maybe I’m an idiot, but I used to be in love with you.
  14. I slept with some guy, I didn’t mean to, it just kind of happened. Is that how it was with you? Not that I’m making any apologies, or that I’d accept yours, I just want to know.
  15. My feet hurt, and it’s all your fault.
  16. I mean it this time, goodbye.”
    ― Kelly Link, Stranger Things Happen

Design District Dallas, Texas

From my blog (I called it an “Online Journal” then), The Daily Epiphany, Friday, October 09, 1998

The best food ends in “O”

At lunch today I was off to buy groceries at the Hyperbolic Market (Shopping From Hell!!) before it became overcrowded. As I pulled out of the parking lot my pager went off, belt bee notifying me of incoming voicemail. I was pretty sure it was not business and considered going back to get the call, but I decided that I’d better get my errand run, I’d call back a little later.

We’re having guests this weekend. I bought tomatillos, cilantro, jalepenos (the recipe calls for habaneros, but they were three dollars for a few orange lumps in a little plastic tray and covered with red warning labels saying stuff like “Danger, these are the hottest things in the universe, do NOT EAT, wear thick rubber gloves when handling, wash hands thoroughly before taking a leak, For God’s Sake!”, so I chickened out and bought jalepenos instead) and mangos.

Fresh food, tropical food, food ending in “O.”

I’ve been trying to spend some time in the middle of the day, every work day, with my office door closed. I’ll sit there and daydream, listen to a little Mozart, maybe talk on the phone, anything to take my mind away for awhile.

The Others are starting to put this down. One guy knocked, asking me paperwork questions when I opened my door. Immediately others lined up behind him, needing favors or answers or only to unload. It was actually kind of funny, my thoughts were elsewhere and I was no good at all to anybody.

And now, a piece of flash fiction for today:

I have been a fan of Kelly Link for years – ever since her amazing and very odd book of stories – modern day adult fairy tales – Stranger Things Happen was listed as a Times magazine best book of the year. I was happy to find this story from her follow-up collection Magic for Beginners.

Stone Animals by Kelly Link

from Electric Lit

Kelly Link Homepage

What I learned this week, May 13, 2022

B-24 Nose Art, Commemorative Air Force

Doom! Doom! Doom! – According To Hoyt

Sometimes we all fall into doom.


Xi Jinping moves to silence Covid Zero critics in sign of brewing tumult – Times of India (indiatimes.com)


Woodall Rogers Freeway, Dallas, Texas, thirty second exposure, taken from the west end of Klyde Warren Park

5G is a joke and the iPhone is the well-timed punchline

You remember 5G, right? It’s the thing on your phone you hardly notice, except when it’s draining your battery for no good reason.


Pumping inflation, not oil: Biden yanks multiple oil-lease sales – HotAir

Let’s not forget, too, that high gas prices are a feature for Biden in the long run. Progressives want gas prices to remain high so as to discourage the use of fossil fuels. They believe that imposing such pain on consumers will convince them to press for a conversion to renewable energy sources. 


America’s Crisis of Self-Doubt: We Must Defend Her | National Review

There is no doubt that the country faces severe challenges, many the result of shortsightedness and wishful thinking, but we still have an enormous capacity for renewal. It is because our ancestor patriots rejected despair and kept faith with America that we are here to fight another day.


Pelosi Gets Religion, Uses It in Naked Attempt to Manipulate Conservatives

But Pelosi doesn’t hesitate to invoke her religion when it seems useful to her to do so, that is, when she thinks it can help her advance her far-Left agenda. On Tuesday, she pulled out the Gospel of Matthew to justify sending $40 billion to Ukraine during a time of steeply rising inflation, astronomical gas prices, and a baby-formula shortage.


Don’t miss this weekend’s total lunar eclipse

From Sunday evening to early Monday, our pearly satellite will lapse into a total lunar eclipse, as well as its “super flower blood moon” phase. The first hints of darkness will appear on its surface around 10 p.m. Eastern on May 15. The totality part, when the moon is completely overshadowed, will last from about 11:30 p.m. Eastern on May 15 to 1 a.m. Eastern on May 16.

Moon rising over the skyline of Downtown Dallas.

Heroic Man

“In those days I learned that nothing is more frightening than a hero who lives to tell his story, to tell what all those who fell at his side will never be able to tell.”

― Carlos Ruiz Zafón, The Shadow of the Wind

Heroic Man, Lachaise, Gaston, Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden, New Orleans

Mochinut

I’d rather get a hot dog or a doughnut than write a song.

John Prine

Ceramic cat at Mochinut

The other day I wrote about having to drive between two donut stores on the way to work every day. Due to medical conditions I can’t eat donuts… not even one. I’m used to that, but still I can dream. I am especially interested in the one on the south – a new Japanese fusion donut shop called Mochinut. The donuts look like a circular string of donut holes and are made with rice flour. Best of all, they come in tantalizingly oddly different flavors.

We were coming back from Mother’s day festivities in Downtown Dallas and my son expressed an interest in something sweet to eat. I suggested a quick stop at Mochinut – we would be passing by soon.

Even if I can’t eat it, I can see… and dream.

They were very good (I’m told) the shop is bright and simple – the flavors varied. Here is what they offered:

Mochinut flavors: Coffee, UBE snow, Original, Dark Chocolate, Strawberry W/Poky, and Churro – the flavors change ever week.

The place had a nice attention to detail. For example, on the dark chocolate Mochinut – there was a little chocolate bear sleeping on a marshmallow pillow. Cool.

Chocolate cake bear sleeping on a donut.

Sunday Snippet, Poem, Warm Water by Bill Chance

“You love me. You ignore me. You save my life, then you cook my mother into soap.”

― Chuck Palahniuk, Fight Club

Dallas Arboretum

Warm Water

Complex salts
and surfactants
change the surface tension
make the water smoother
One end loves water
the other oil
The molecules line up, sticking one end in
the other out.
billions and billions in line
to make one tiny
bubble
one unit
of foam.

I know too much
that there isn’t much difference
a chain here
a conjugated double bond
a COOH group there
between lilac
(bath soap)
and the stench of death

maybe that’s the point

The Root of the South’s Downfall

“The first time I saw my father-in-law’s cotton, I though of the Original Sin, gardening being the root of the South’s downfall.”

― Michael Lee West, She Flew the Coop: A Novel Concerning Life, Death, Sex and Recipes in Limoges, Louisiana

The McKinney Cotton Mill at Sunset, McKinney, Texas

What I learned this week, May 06, 2022

French Quarter New Orleans, Louisiana Halloween

What happens to your body and brain when you stop eating sugar

Cutting sugar out of your diet will likely decrease inflammation, boost your energy levels, and improve your ability to focus.


George Tobolowsky Square Deal #2 Irving, Texas (click to enlarge)

The Great Resignation is becoming a “great midlife crisis”

Older, more tenured people are increasingly quitting their jobs.


12 Simple Strategies to Lose Weight After 50

You hear all these stories about how it’s harder to lose weight after age 50 than it was earlier in life. While there are some biological factors that can make it harder to take off extra weight in your 50s and beyond, some of what’s keeping the weight on is that your lifestyle has changed.


Why Feeling Lost Is Necessary to Build the Life You Want

Myself. I want to be myself.


Tree in the frozen fog, Kansas Turnpike

Economy contracts as ‘Bidenflation’ glides toward ‘Bidencession’

To be sure, people generally overestimate presidents’ ability to control the economy. But Biden has done some very specific things to cause damage despite multiple warnings.


Perforations in the roof of the Pavilion in Pacific Plaza Park, downtown Dallas, Texas

An aerospace engineer explains how hypersonic missiles work

Hypersonic weapons fly much higher than slower subsonic missiles—but much lower than intercontinental ballistic missiles.


Deep Ellum, Dallas, Texas

4 smart reasons to keep an old USB drive around

Old dongle, new tricks.