Last night Jack was talking to his mother on the phone and he said, “It’s colder than a witch’s tit in a brass brassiere.”
Now that Mr. Nut’s beginning to respond to words — for instance, he’ll turn and look if I say, “There’s Kitty” — I am reminded of that old Steve Martin routine where he talks about teaching your children the wrong words for things. So that on the first day of school, when he raises his hand to ask if he can go to the bathroom, the kid says, “Can I mambo dogfish to the banana patch?”
I don’t really have that dark impulse, but occasionally I do give him a little French lesson. Ne laissez jamais un enfant seul, I said to him this morning (never leave a baby alone). Aimez vous les pommes de terre? (Do you like potatoes?) didn’t get much of a response, perhaps because I used the more formal vous instead of the familiar tu — and he felt distanced by that.
Jack calls my electric toothbrush a “Polish vibrator.”
Jackson cut his first tooth today, on his seven-month birthday. He’s been remarkably good-natured about it, though it disrupted his sleep (and mine, and Jack’s) last night. Poor little guy. He’s sleeping now. Sometimes I love him so much I just ache.
He wasn’t much in the mood for photos today.
Here’s the first page of John Fante’s Full of Life, which he dedicated to H. L. Mencken.
It was a large house because we were people with big plans. The first was already there, a mound at her waist, a thing of lambent movement, slithering and squirming like a ball of serpents. In the quiet hours before midnight I lay with my ear to the place and heard the trickling as from a spring, the gurgles and sucks and splashings.
I said, “It certainly behaves like a male of the species.”
“No female kicks that much.”
But she did not argue, my Joyce. She had the thing within her, and she was remote and disdainful and quite beatified.
Still, I didn’t care for the bulge.
“It’s unaesthetic,” and I suggested she wear something to pack it in.
“And kill it?”
“They make special things. I saw them.”
She looked at me with coldness–the ignorant one, the fool who had passed by in the night, a person no more, malefic, absurd.
The house had four bedrooms. It was a pretty house.
Why is this so hilarious?
One day Jack passed a woman and her four-year-old son on the street, and the son lifted up his mother’s shirt and shouted, Mommy! Moo-moo! Now! So now every time Jackson’s ready to nurse, Jack says, Oh, it’s mommy-moo-moo time. I plan to wean him at a year, if anyone cares.
I’m drinking whole milk by the quart these days. I haven’t craved it this much since I was a kid. Now that you can buy the organic stuff I feel better about it, but for a long time there I was in the “cow’s milk is for baby cows” camp. But now that I have three pounds of See’s candy left over from my birthday, milk is the only antidote to complete sugar overload. I got that advice from a student of nutrition at NYU.
that if I turn on two lamps, the space heater, and my computer, I overload the circuit and blow the power for the whole apartment. Extra fun: finding a flashlight in the dark! Super extra fun: discovering that the flashlight’s batteries are dead! Macro fun at its most ultimate: finding a candle and something to light it with. I stumble into the coffee table and grab the lemon aromatherapy candle I swiped from work last summer, then I dig blindly in the silverware drawer for something to light it with — a nonexistent pack of matches? An almost-empty lighter? Then, clutching a jacket around my shoulders, feeling like Jane Eyre, I go outside in the cold to get to the breaker box and find I’m standing in the alley beneath a perfectly clear and starry sky. Orion and his belt. The Seven Sisters, of which I can count only six. Taurus and his one red eye.
A celestial end to a peculiarly difficult day.
Here is another prose poem. It’s by James Tate.
Jesus got up one day a little later than usual. He had been dreaming so deep there was nothing left in his head. What was it? A nightmare, dead bodies walking all around him, eyes rolled back, skin falling off. But he wasn’t afraid of that. It was a beautiful day. How ’bout some coffee? Don’t mind if I do. Take a little ride on my donkey. I love that donkey. Hell, I love everybody.
today as I was trying to add a counter to Fussy to see how many people were visiting me. Unfortunately, somehow the insertion of the new code obliterated all my photo and site links, so it will be a bit before I get them up again. And if you’re looking for a visitor counter, I do NOT recommend Site Meter.
I have been scrubbing the same burned pot for three days now.
Last night while I was feeding Sir Shitsalot (forgot about that one! pardon the vulgarity), Jack was having a meeting with his business partner, Gregg, and Gregg turns to me and asks me if I’d like to do the marketing for their company. They have a new business building and renovating houses, and they need someone to go around town and make PowerPoint presentations to architects and whatnot. Gregg says, And we can’t do it — if Jack and I walk into a room full of construction guys they’ll just say, Who’s the tough guy and the fag with green teeth? But if you walk in, they’ll just look at your tits and believe everything you tell them. It’s mercenary and sexist, but it’s also probably true.
I told them that I am really not a salesperson, but Gregg said that’s why I’d be good at it.
After Gregg left, Jack said he had no idea that he was going to pitch that to me. He also said that I don’t have to do it if I don’t want to. I mean, marketing? Me?
Jack and Gregg both have greenish teeth from taking tetracycline as young children (Jack was a very sickly child; now he’s healthy and robust — I don’t know what the deal was for Gregg). You just see the effects of it in their teeth, of course, but Jack says their bones are green, too.
I was going to save this one for a rainy day, but it’s probably raining somewhere in the world, so here it is.
one evening when we were lounging in his apartment in a relaxed mood, smoking a little hashish, charles baudelaire said to me: “you know, everybody has seen rain falling — most people have, at one time or another, actually noticed it.”
i agreed with a chuckle. he continued: “you know, i think we can be fairly confident that it has been raining, on & off, for a very long time!”
having said this, he collapsed on the chaise-longue, in a veritable paroxysme; but as always, there was a tinge, a definite tinge of bitterness in his merriment.
“it would be absurd to imagine,” he said, “that rain could ever have behaved in any way different from that which we observe today . . .”
after a moment’s crystalline silence our conversation drifted to other topics — the day’s gossip, the inexhaustible genius of edgar poe. but when we stood on the fire escape, taking leave, he gazed over my left shoulder into some indefinable distance or abyss and said, almost dreamily: “it is for ever washing the substance of the land into the sea.”