June 24th, 2008


"While doubling entendres with the voicings..."

So, I awoke at 11 ayem this morning —— an hour or two later than I'd intended —— to connectivity issues with the wireless, and as we have no landline, we were stuck in a holding pattern while Spooky spoke with the landlord, and the landlord spoke back, and the landlord spoke with Cox and our downstairs neighbor. And finally I picked up the modem, asked it nicely, sweetly, firmly, if it wished me to break it. Then I, once again, disconnected the damned thing, reconnected it, and it started working. You just have to know how to talk to these bloody silicon beasts. Still, I'm running two or three hours late, and looking at a day that's going to be, by and large, a write-off. I cannot afford write-offs at this point.

I'd meant to have the photographs of the abandoned amusement park ready for today, but I forgot to edit them last night so...maybe this evening. Or tomorrow.

As for yesterday, well, I'd begun to wonder if I would ever have a "blah day" here in Providence, after three weeks of days that were either wonderful or bad or just sort of okay. No longer do I need to worry. Yesterday was a genuine blah day. Huzzah. We drove down to Moosup Valley, as planned, but it started raining (it's raining again as I type this), and it was raining so hard that the only thing I could really accomplish was getting a good look at the Tyler Free Library. We drove down Barb's Hill road, and it was beautiful and green and wet, rather primeval. Surrendering to the downpour, we headed back to Providence, my having resigned myself to the fact that I must begin the next chapter of The Red Tree without a great deal more research. Right about the time we arrived home, I began to recognize that the "blah factor" had come into play.

What else about yesterday? We started hanging pictures. I finished Chapter 2 of Fraser's book on the Triassic, "A Brief Phylogeny of Triassic Fishes and Tetrapods." I also read a story in the new National Geographic concerning the Jurassic dinosaurs that are coming to light from the Junggar Basin of northwestern China (Guanlong, "Gongusaurus," Yinlong, etc.). I skipped the story on the murder of mountain gorillas; I already hate humanity just fine, thank you. Dinner was the third and final night of the chicken stew, this time with rice and salad, for which Spooky had made a very nice mint, cucumber, and yogurt dressing.

Later, we watched Peter Hyams' 2010 (1984), because Spooky had never seen it, and I'd only seen it once, during the original release. It's not really a bad movie, but it suffers so enormously in comparison to 2001: A Space Odyssey, and how the hell does one watch it and not expect it to live up to that standard? Roy Scheider's voice-over bits are awful. The SFX are hit and miss, and, all in all, it lacks the epic grace and sense of awe present in Kurbrick's film. Too many questions are answered. The best bits are likely Hal and Bob Balaban's performance as Dr. R. Chandra, and watching Jupiter converted to a new star by the millions of monoliths. The ending is cloyingly, naively upbeat, though I suppose that needs to be viewed in light of the period of history during which the film was made. Maybe. Its view of 2010, from the perspective of 2008, is often laughably dated (and I don't know that you can blame the film for this, as the same could be said for many great sf films). I think the worst "prediction" was the proposition that Omni would still be in print. Anyway, it was an okayish way to pass two hours. Later still, there was some Second Life, but I did make it to bed by 3 ayem.

Anyway. There's work I need to try to do, loose-ends to tie off, and so forth. I doubt anything will actually get written today. Too much energy was wasted threatening the wireless. Oh, and it also happens to be Spooky's birthday.