Monthly Archives: August 2012

Seasons

Spring.

She saw him and wondered who he was. There was something—no, not love at first sight, but something—that she liked. A lot. She smiled and nodded whenever she saw him. She would have liked to stop and introduce herself, but… not now, not right now. Occasionally she also said hello and asked him how he was, and she came to expect the same friendly and polite but impersonal response: Fine, and you?

So, she thought: he’s not interested in me. Well, she thought, the hell with him. That is, at first she thought, the hell with him: I’ve got someone anyway. But because there was something about him, she never voiced this, her sense taking over where her ego failed, and once they became speaking friends, she realized that she really liked him.

When her relationship failed, during that time when she tried to rearrange all the pieces of her broken life, she realized she had come to feel more for him than for anyone ever. He had become, almost surreptitiously, a friend. She talked with him about her sadness over the breakup. She could rely on him, she let him see her as no one else had. He was a sensitive kind of guy. He understood her.

When he asked her to go away with him for the weekend, he was equally surprised and flattered that she accepted. He had planned an easy trip to the shore, some sun, some swimming, some snorkling, lots of good seafood and good wine. He knew she would love this: he knew almost everything about her by now.

She wasn’t prepared for the amount of tenderness she would come to feel for him by the end of that weekend. After all, she was far from ready for another relationship this soon. She had loose ends to tie up or cut off.

When she told him she loved him, he almost shouted “No!” and he looked as if he wanted to run away, but he held back. As he listened to her he realized that he had loved her for a long time already. His heart began to smile as he watched her express her feelings earnestly, with a tentativeness that was endearing. He saw her opening up to him, offering him a likely once-in-a-lifetime gift. He smiled.

Summer.

She loved him. She loved him! He spent his days soaring, letting the joy of this knowledge carry him over the clouds and darkness of his past. Gliding freely, his life became interlaced with this revelation, traces of it brightening his life randomly, making his smile and hum. He would whistle if he didn’t think whistling was weird.

When he first became aware of it, small hints of this love peeking out from here or there, from under woolen layers of fear, it was easy to ignore. He found many ways to divert his attention or he simply looked away. As his awareness of it stirred and grew, however, he came to like it and he became comfortable in its presence and came to be comforted by it. Slowly, over time, he came to cherish the idea of loving her, and he couldn’t believe he had been afraid. He loved her! And he told her so.

He lived it; it wasn’t just talk. He showed it, and he knew it. After so many years of wondering when and where he would meet someone, he took care to express his love, over and over. It fed him as well as her.

He never doubted that he would meet someone, eventually, but he recalled painful times. Times of anguish, of loneliness, of feeling worthless and unfulfilled, of wrong relationships, of being told he was heartless and unfeeling, that he didn’t know how to love. Someone once told him he was contentious. He disagreed, of course, not even really sure of what was meant by it, but he was sure that was wrong. He knew when he was right, which wasn’t all the time, but yes, honestly, most of the time. Was he to be condemned for that? It wasn’t as though he threw it into other people’s faces. He was truly quite humble about his superior knowledge. It was a gift.

He remembered wandering through valleys of loneliness, in shadows. He learned religion because of the pain brought by being alone, and he learned new religions when the old ones failed to ease his pain. Searching, he sometimes met God, and sometimes he walked and talked with God. Other times he cursed God and all the gods for the pain. But he plodded ceaselessly, never losing his own faith, though sometimes losing sight of it. He knew it remained, however, somewhere around some future corner.

He was wary of her at first. He didn’t think she was the right one. She didn’t fit his image, and he knew she was involved with someone else. He didn’t know how serious the relationship was, but it was no matter: he would not fall in love with someone who was taken. He was that mature, at least. That adult about it.

Despite his wariness, he liked her instantly; her easygoing, quick laughter. She was generous, giving. He knew that everyone who knew her liked her a lot, loved her; and he saw that as proof of her innate goodness. Since he didn’t think of her as a future lover—she was practically getting married at that time—his demeanor was relaxed and open around her. They became easy friends, quickly, and their friendship rooted and grew and blossomed into a loving and meaningful one. He began to relax.

When she first said the words, when she first told him she loved him, she had long stopped seeing her long-time lover. She said the words and he jumped. She saw him start to panic, and she recognized the same fears she had had. She was a little amused by it—she took care not to show this—because she was secure. She knew. Even if he didn’t know yet, she knew. She was patient. She could cultivate this, confidently. She started to smile a lot. And she had been right. It was right. It worked.

Fall.

They came together easily, in a harmony that was natural and fitting. They laughed a lot, at themselves and at each other, and they were buoyed by the ease of their developing tenderness. They found sense in their life together, in the simplicity of their needs. They touched each other, and their touch was electrifying.

They each held on briefly to fear, waiting for other shoes to drop, fear of skeletons about to be discovered in dark closets, fear of horrifying pasts. When a shoe did drop, it was only while they tore off their clothes as they dove into a passionate embrace, once more before going to work, in a fit of spontaneous elation and lust. Whenever a little skeleton dangled and bone-danced before them, they laughed in its startled, eyeless face. And it was all easy. They grew together, as long-separated twins would, on being reunited, but with the added excitement of intensely hot and satisfying sex. By now, their closets were empty of fear.

When they fought, it was usually quick, intense and painful. They had become so open with each other that they felt a good deal of ease in expressing their unhappiness or disappointment in each other or in life. They knew that ultimately this was a good thing, it would nurture their relationship, but while they were arguing it felt anything but good. They didn’t argue often, but the intensity of the disagreements seemed to grow, along with an indignation, as if they were asking themselves—not each other—”Why are we fighting? Shouldn’t we be past that?” They had a few walk-away fights, but they didn’t stay angry overnight. Mostly they cherished their time together, they missed each other when apart, and they fell in love over and over again.

Winter.

It snowed again last night, huge heavy flakes. They dropped gently, thousands of brilliant stars falling from the night sky, a sky now left dark and starless. They shrouded the hillsides in luminosity, their light, their glow, their flicker just now diminishing. They made small sounds as they landed, barely audible from inside, and you had to strain to hear them, you had to listen intently. The silence of the night was scarcely disturbed by this sound, a primal stillness only damped more by the mantle of white. It went on.

When morning came, it was so brilliant it hurt. The bright, hard blue sky heightened the radiance of the snow cover, and the cold dry air carried the brilliance easily. It blew, sometimes hard, gusty, buffeting, and the cabin shuddered.

Still there were few sounds, not even the gentle plop-plop, plop of last night’s snowfall. It was a lifeless quiet. Nothing stirred except the dry trees that swayed in the wind. The wind scratched over them, and they complained, creaking. Small clouds fleeted overhead, trailing only momentary shadows across the blue-white brightness, silent shadows, moving on. Still again. Silent. Bright.

The cold-clad hills reflected distant dreams. An occasional shadow from a passing cloud recalled a hot-air balloon swiftly and silently soaring overhead, racing toward a new horizon and a new adventure. A trail could be seen winding up one side of a faraway rise. It divided the trees just enough to be visible, despite the snow that covered it, disappearing into the blinding white.

Inside now, the eager crackling of a newly lit fire signaled promises of warmth. As the fire struggled to life, it sought tender kindling, spreading and growing and consuming. The flames danced in the cold room, warding off the chill. As they grew, they cast a yellow-warm glow. The firecracker-crackling subsided as the flames settled, and now only an occasional pop — I’m alive! — was heard.

It was only much later, or so it seemed, that the gentle rumbling of water spoke in this near silence, boiling in the scratched-up saucepan sitting on the cast-iron stove. The steam swirled and rose, dissipating too quickly in the dry air. The bubbling became a gurgle as the water remaining in the pot lowered, a throaty rattle. Their two once-used teabags waited nearby.

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Moby and the Dick

Hey, Anne,

I’m going to take a wild stab here and suggest that Sylwester is probably pushing up daisies now. He was after all, something like 93 at the time he had his penile implant. I will also go so far as to suggest, however, that it’s entirely likely that his Dick is still Mobying along, although it won’t be doing his young wife any good any more (she was something like 26?) And on further conjecture, it’s most likely she’s okay with all this, having become his sole heir.

Oh, yes, I’ve been watching Louie CK. He’s very funny and there is something incredibly likable about him (that word, ‘likable,’ doesn’t look right. I had an ‘e’ in there at first [likeable] but spellcheck said no, so I took it out and spellcheck is happy. Still, to me, however, it looks like it should be pronounced ‘lickable,’ and that’s a very different thing). The series are available on Netflix, which I just reactivated, and I’m watching it the way I like most: several episodes at a time. I decided a long time ago that if I can wait until something becomes available on Netflix or Amazon Prime, I will wait for that and watch mini-marathons (mostly ad-free, too!) and be better off. I’m only at season 2, so I have a lot of enjoyment ahead of me.

I think I had the same unfortunate kinds of revelation about The Dick when I was reading it. At one point (and I wasn’t even doing mushrooms at the time) I was convinced some gremlins were adding pages every time I put the book down. That probably happened to me right about where you might be now in the book: at the lengthy discussions of whale anatomy. Still, I muddled through it and if I hadn’t, we wouldn’t be able to be having these scintillating discussions about blubber. I noticed that, even with all Melville’s perseverating on details of whales’ bodies, he omitted any references to the males’ p3nises, and I wondered if a latent homosexuality wasn’t responsible for that. Fortunately I have seen some of Isabella Rossellini’s fascinating series on animal sexuality and she filled in the blanks there.

I’m glad you had good days with Alan before sending him off back to school. I can relate to his wanting another pair of the same Merrells that he’s worn for years now: I have a pair that I absolutely love love love, and they don’t make them any more. The closest things to them (I’ve now tried two different types) are nowhere near as comfortable. I’m kicking myself (with the shoes on, even!) for not buying up a half-dozen pair when I had the chance. I had to google to find them in the first place — saw a pair on someone and liked them — and it was no easy task finding them in the first place: I didn’t even know who made them. It was a most fortuitous moment when I did find them, but I wasn’t forward-thinking enough to realize they would wear out before I could procure another pair.

What I decided, vis-à-vis the PT, is to skip it for the time being. I had a couple of revelations a couple of weeks ago, and having done a little investigating on my own, I’m undertaking to make things better by the use of vitamin E and Ensure Muscle Health Formula. I fully expect to see improvement and fewer aches. The vitamin E also helps the lymphedema and other things, and I’m already seeing an improvement there. Hey, even if it’s placebotic (a word I just made up) I’m happy with that.

Speaking of neologisms, yesterday I accidentally made up a really cool one. I was texting John about the shooting at the Empire State Building, and I meant to write “…an ex-employee pulled a nutty and a gun…” but somehow a slip of the finger turned it into “…an exployee pulled a nutty…” and I didn’t realize the typo until the text got sent. When I saw what happened I realized, given all the disgruntled ex-empoyees out there who pull nutties, we have a serious need for the word “exployee.”

Not much going on here now: the newsletter is at the print shop; proofs have been reviewed and approved, so it’s out of my hands and on its way eventually into the hands of our beloved members/readers, which, fuck ’em.

And thinking waaay back to the BI Yiddish class, I’m pretty sure we didn’t learn right-to-left script because we didn’t use the Yiddish alphabet. It was meant to be a crash course in medically focused conversational Yiddish, so didn’t we just use Roman transliterations of the words? (I’m asking you, but it’s okay to say you don’t remember. I seem to have this weird propensity for remembering minutiae from the past — and forgetting to do things like put on pants before going outside — but even I’m not sure of what we did in that class.)

Okay, some Walrus is telling me it’s time to stop talking about Merrell shoes and whaling ships (and we never got to cabbages or kings, but that’s perfectly okay) and to get myself motivated and moving. Odd. “Motivate” comes from a Latin word that means “move,” and yet we can use both “motivate” and “move” in the same sentence and not be redundant or repetitive.

Crap; I just blew it.

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Little Tuxie, The Cat!

Tuxedo was one of John’s cats who lived with him and her sister, The Evil And Ever-Cranky Dahka, in Clinton, MA, before moving to NYC with John in 1995. (By then, Dahka had mercifully gone to meet her maker, Bastet, in what would have to be the equivalent of Little Kitty Hell.)

They lived in Clinton on the third floor of a sweet Victorian house on a street right out of ’50s television. On my first visit to Clinton I had arrived in the dark so I didn’t get to see much of the town or the surroundings. In the morning when I awoke I went to the window for a first look-see.

Pulling back the dotted Swiss I leaned over and peered down the three stories for my first look at a street-sans-sidewalks and couldn’t help but exclaim, “Oh my God: It’s Mayberry!”

Life for Tux on the third floor was pretty sweet. There was a strange little double-hung sideways window that stayed open most of the time, through which Tux could exit to a roof. From there she managed to get down to the next level and from there to the yard below. Getting back in seemed to be as easy for her just by reversing the steps back up to the roof outside the sideways window and back into the apartment. Unless she decided to splay out on the roof for a while, enjoying the warmth that emanated from the sun-warmed shingles. It wasn’t uncommon for John to get a phone call from a neighbor, “Hey, John, do you know there’s a cat on your roof?” “I do.”

The Park Avenue apartment was a neat one-bedroom cum-small-terrace and Tux loved going out there—here, a small hopper window that remained open all the time gave her free entry and exit—to eyeball the house finches, sparrows and the occasional black-capped chickadee that flitted around out there. On one occasion I found a half-dozen small feathers on the living-room carpet, but mercifully nothing else, nor did Tux subsequently egest anything untoward and birdlike.

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A few years passed and Tux heard Bastet calling her, too. She withered slowly but luckily rather painlessly, so there wasn’t a lot of suffering for any of us, especially her.

Before she popped off, however, John and I had planned our first-ever real vacation: a week at the Cape. Never having taken a real away vacation (all the others were to a family home in RI, where everything that we needed was already there, so packing meant throwing a change of underwear—if we thought of it—into a paper bag and grabbing a bottle of water for the train ride) we kind of maybe over-packed for this week away. Somehow we ended up with ten bags, backpacks and other assorted satchels in our collection of away-stuff.

Tuxie went to her reward just before the vacation, so a few changes were necessary. First, call Janet and call off her house-and-cat-sitting week at our place. Next, what to do with Tux…

We were planning to stop at the home in RI on the way, and the expansive yard there would surely provide a final resting place for Tux, so that was the plan. The few days before we were to leave posed a problem, however, but luckily our freezer provided the solution. Into a classy Lord and Taylor box she went, tissue paper and all, and we apologized to her posthumously for having to seal such an elegant container with shiny gray duct tape, but a serious seal was needed, so that we did and into the freezer she went.

It seemed forever before: Saturday morning! Vacation! Okay, we’ve never done this before, so we need to be sure we count all the bags! every time we move somewhere: to the cab downstairs, to the train station, onto the train, off the train and into the waiting car in RI. Okay, let’s head out. Bags? Ten of them, right? One-two-three, etc., up to ten. Got it!

Into the trunk of the cab they went, all ten; into the back seat we went, the two of us, and off on this adventure. About three blocks. That was as far as we got. The traffic was ridiculously heavy for that time of the morning, and down Park and around the corner was as far as we got before we bogged down.

Still, we sat comfortably, and we griped only half-heartedly about how long the ride would take, until, as one, we turned to each other wide-eyed and blurted “THE CAT!

Drat! The little uncounted eleventh item, the duct-taped L&T box, was still reposing chillily in our freezer at home. Could we leave it until we… Oh, lord no.

Always ready to take charge and solve problems, (a boon, but also at times a bane), John said “I’ll meet you at Penn Station!” and jumped out of the cab before I could even get out the words, “But… but…” and he ran off back toward the apartment.

“But… I have ten bags to manage… ” I whimpered softly, to no one. Oh, maybe there will be a Red Cap at Penn, and even though they’re ridiculous rip-offs, this time I would have to avail myself.

Wrong. No Red Cap. And no John yet, with or without dead cat. I had no choice but to start strapping bags and such onto whatever parts of my body could hold them and I gotta tell you the process was no easy deal, but I finally managed, and having turned myself into a walking luggage rack I made for the entrance to Penn Station.

Slowly. Very slowly. And arduously. But I made it to the doorway and when I got there I wondered why the automatic doors didn’t open. I didn’t see it as an omen portending a series of failures of modern technology, but it was. Getting the doors open turned out to be easy though: leaning into them slightly, I found the weight of what felt like 800 pounds of luggage open them without a problem.

The next failure was waiting for me at the top of the long descent (long? ridiculously long) down into the station: the escalator wasn’t working. As, in my mind, I saw myself plunging helplessly to my death under some tonnage of bags and backpacks down the thirty feet of stairway, I took to them very carefully. I had only gotten down two steps when a “gentleman of a certain Penn-Station demeanor” who was leaning idly against the wall hollered, “Y’want help witcha bags?”

Now, I’m no naif: I know about guys who offer to help tourists and other easy marks with their “stuff” who bolt off suddenly, carrying away your best belongings, but even so, I contemplated ever so briefly taking him up on his offer: stealing some of my stuff would mean less for me to carry.

“No, thanks,” I said, as I cursed the street-smarts that kept me from letting him have at it.

Did I mention this was in July? Did I mention July in NYC is most often very hot and way too sticky-humid for human comfort? It was. Arriving at the bottom of the stairs I had to take several moments to ferret out my handkerchief and wipe my brow, an effort that became futile in a heartbeat, as the hanky was soon sopping wet.

Some passersby stared, as if wondering if I were maybe some poorly thought-out performance art. One or two of them even stopped to watch, the way you do when you have the time to enjoy the entertainment provided by subway buskers and the like. When I eventually shuffled off, I didn’t care one bit about their apparent disappointment at a “bad show.” At least it was free.

I turtled over to the departure board, at the same time looking hopefully but futilely for John. The board showed an on-time departure for our train, a miracle in itself, so I was obliged once again to make my way down another staircase, to the lower level. Oh, there are escalators that span those levels, too, and these were working, but of course they were all working upward to accommodate arriving passengers.

The train having arrived at last, I trudged on board and managed to find two seats together, which I quickly took ownership of by dropping onto them two of the myriad containers that had by now almost become part of me. Stowing the remaining eight was no easy task, as the overhead bins were already pretty full, so I had to spread out the rest of our booty, hoping my efforts to remember where each of them was would pay off.

Finally—finally!— I could sit, and dropping in a lump onto my seat, I continued to wipe my face with a handkerchief that needed frequent wringing-out.

A-a-nd, enter John, one second later. “Oh, you got two seats together!” “~no comment~” mostly because I still couldn’t talk. He, too, had to hunt for a spot in the overhead rack for Our Beloved Tuxedo, and having found one he returned to his seat.

“I had to run all the way here!”

“~grumble~”

Eventually, I cooled off both physically and mentally, and the spirit of adventure returned, as all seemed well. For a time.

As the train approached Westerly Station, we began gathering our belongings. Westerly is a small station and not all the doors open there, so you sometimes have to traverse several cars to get to an open door. Dragging the bags through two cars to the only door that would open, we made sure once again to count them: One, two, three, the rest. Small sigh. We stood in the doorway as the train slowed, getting really excited now: the first leg of our trip, the train, was nearly completed and it was usually the most difficult.

Slowing; slower, slower — train whistled as it neared the station — we’re smiling, we’re happy, we’re—Oh my god! “THE CAT!”—once again in unison. And once again, John is off, running back through the train to retrieve Our Poor-But-Beloved Tuxedo, who had been about to be abandoned on a train. (Most likely until the train reached its final destination, Boston’s South Station, at which time some nefarious crony would probably see the duct-taped L&T box and grab it, thinking it was full of $100 bills or something. We decided it might have been worth leaving Tux, just for the joy of contemplating the face of such a would-be thief, after he struggled to get through the duct tape to find, by then, a well thawed and probably partially decomposed cat.)

You can probably guess who has to deal, once again, with shuffling ALL TEN BAGS off the train. And was I really, really hoping John wouldn’t make it off the train in time and end up in Providence? No, not really. Big sighs were hove all around as John made it off the train and back to me and our stuff.

Back at the house, a small hole was dug with reverence and sadness, into it went Tux and over her went a sweet little rose bush in lieu of a grave marker. We couldn’t think of a better resting place for a wonderful friend.

I am pleased to say the rest of the vacation went by astonishingly swimmingly, both literally and figuratively.

A year went by and we were back at the RI house when one morning John noticed a rather nondescript gray bird perched in Tux’s rose bush, singing gleefully. “I wonder if that bird is driving the spirit of Tuxedo crazy.”

“Nah. It’s a catbird. It’s having a little chat with Tux and she’s loving it.”

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Dear Mel,

Dr. Who has been on TV in the UK for, oh, nearly 50 years, but it’s only recently gained popularity in the US. I watched a few episodes over the years, maybe beginning 15 years ago, but since I’m not a big SciFi geek I didn’t get hooked. Lately, however, partly due to my ALL TIME HERO, Craig Ferguson, (who watched and was terrified by Dr. Who as a child in Scotland) who has featured on his Late, Late Show many of the current performers from Dr. Who, and who keeps a small TARDIS (I want one!) on his desk, I’ve gotten more interested in the program. I lined up a few episodes last year in Netflix and John and I watched them. John is a burgeoning addict for just about everything TV- or drama-related, and after two episodes he was clamoring for more, so we’ve been getting caught up with the latest two seasons.

Over the years, the actor playing the role has changed 11 times, which makes sense, given the length of the series, but in the plot he’s a Time Lord who travels through time and space in his TARDIS (Time And Relative Dimension In Space), and he has the ability to regenerate, resulting in a new appearance every so often. The current Dr., Matt Smith, has won a couple of awards, one being a BAFTA, but I think I prefer his predecessor, David Tennant. Those are the only two Drs. we’ve watched.
Now that you’ve slogged through all that dreck, you don’t need to watch the show, but here they are in all their glory, all 11 of them:
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Bottom row center: David Tennant, right: Matt Smith
 
I’ll be putting butter in my coffee from now on. Well, starting tomorrow, probably, after I’ve had a chance to pick up some Irish unsalted butter from grass-fed cows.
I was tepid toward Brian Williams, until he appeared on a couple of episodes of 30 Rock, where he vamped and japed marvelously, totally out of character as I had perceived him previously. It was such a stretch for him, I think, and it seemed he really enjoyed the break from being a staid news reporter. It was very endearing. In one skit he attempted his best Brooklynese “Fugheddabouddit!” that was just a bit off enough to be hilarious.
I don’t know Tate’s cookies! I don’t think I’ve ever seen them, but I’ll keep my eyes peeled (always hated that expression) for them. Sounds like they’re your Oreos, although I’ll probably never be able to eat an Oreo again, now that I’m so Paleo. (The butter in the coffee.) (No, I’m not going to Ireland today: they sell it in the market across Broadway.) They might have Tate’s there. They’re one of two gourmet-ish supermarkets in the nabe.
Good luck to you with The Dick, as I ended up calling it. Let me know when you get to the part where he goes on about the thickness of the fat layers in various parts of a whale. Oh, you’ll know you’ve gotten there: it goes on for 385 pages. Seriously, I ended up enjoying it and was glad I finally read it, but Oy-can-I-say-Vey, Melville does go on about the minutiae of whale anatomy!
You’ve mentioned Louis CK before, but I keep forgetting to seek him out. In another instance of the synchronicitous mention of a TV show, my niece just ‘Liked’ his page on Facebook, so I guess I’ll have to be better about seeking him out. I did see him as a guest on something a while ago, so at least I know who he is.
And speaking of the TARDIS, sold in various versions by ThinkGeek, I ordered myself a couple of t-shirts from them that were supposed to be delivered on Tuesday and the tracking says they were, but I never got them. I sent an inquiry off to Customer Service at TG, but haven’t heard back from them yet. I’ll bet some neighborhood geek is enjoying my T’s! This has never happened to me before: an item allegedly delivered that I didn’t get, so I’m a little bummed out and don’t know how it will be resolved.
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The TARDIS; it’s bigger on the inside.
Oh, and yes: The newsletter, from my perspective, is ready for the proofers except for one small glitch. One of the contributors, not a regular contributor to the newsletter, wrote an 1100-word piece, although his max was 600 words. I wouldn’t be surprised if he was never told that, but the point is his piece came in and the editor trimmed it to 700 words, which I’ve managed to squeeze into place, but yesterday, after three days of silence, the stupid guy resurfaced and offered to make his own cuts to the article, so we’re waiting for that, at which point I’ll have to refit it, but it shouldn’t be a real problem. That article, and a final approval on two ads that I created, are the only things outstanding, and given that today is the deadline, we’re in good shape. I get to make final adjustments over the weekend, send an initial proof copy to the editor early next week, she’ll return her corrections and then I send out three copies to the proofreaders. They, in turn, will return their corrections to the editor by the end of the week, and she will give them to me so I can incorporate them and have the final galleys ready for the print shop on Monday or Tuesday of the following week.
It’s kind of like watching an enormous pimple building up on your neck, knowing that you have to wait for the right time to pop it, but when that time comes and you do pop it, you feel enormous relief, and the afterglow of the popping is a kind of peaceful elation.
(That might not have been the most pleasant analogy I could come up with, but having toyed with constipation I figured it was the better choice.)
Joe
Remember: It is To Laugh
In the end, everything is a gag.
— Charlie Chaplin

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