Rainy and warm, just as Buzzy the Anthropomorphic Weather Triangle said. He underestimated the rain part, though. I dropped Gnat off at summer school – it’s fun summer school, mind you, not June-gaol for slack-offs – and headed home in a light spritz. I thought of last year when we did this, how I drove home to the XM 40s channel, enjoying the start of the summer, but feeling vaguely troubled. (Of course, that’s one of my resting states. The other is Breezy Willful Ignorance, which is one of the more popular forms of self-delusion; it has a way of masking the roar of Howling Awareness of Mortality, and it does it by whistling.) Two years ago I picked her up with her best friend, and they’d chant ARE WE THERE YET, giggling, until we got THERE, whereupon I would shout WE ARE HERE NOW, to general amusement. This year: everything’s different. Except it’s not. Except it is. I used to write one leetle tiny scrap of a column per day; now it’s five or so. (Man, was I overpaid.) And it’s fun.
I banged out three pieces, gunned a slice of Double-Fiber bread (“Now with More Straw Flavor”) slathered with peanut butter, then drove to get Gnat. The rain began. Ten, twenty tentative drops on the windshield, then whoa: angry pounding sheets. All over town, a million ant colonies suffered their own Johnstown flood. Imagine if they were capable of putting up small historical markers. There would be billions of them. They’d be so numerous as to be unremarkable, even though they were made by ants. Little kids would collect them, but they’d get bored after a while and move on to Yu-gi-Oh. Nothing ants do really impresses us, in the end; it's amazing, but they have no idea what they're doing. They're the million monkeys who typed Shakespeare, right under our feet.
The rain lasted exactly seven minutes, which was the interval in which the parents arrived to pick up their kids. All the parents were drenched; all the kids came out of the classrooms dry. An hour later, the clouds rolled off, and the sun came back, abashed. Sorry about that. Things on my mind. It never got hot again, but no one complained. It’s been hot for a while, and it’s been dry. I blame climate change. As in, the climate changed last week. And today it changed again.
Unrelated New York Link: Coney Island returns! Courtesy of the Norse God of Thunder. Also in New York: $1650 buys you a 3 “Loft Bed” type Bedroom apartment. In Bushwick. Yes, you too can sleep in an elevated wooden box with two other friends from Omaha, wondering as you toss each night whether that mysterious gentleman who sent you the plane tickets really wants to put you in a Broadway play, and whether the little camera in the corner of the room – okay, the box – is really all about the audition process. Because sometimes it whirrs in the night and this strange green light fills the box. What does that have to do with “Cats: The Hostelling”?
(snip: four hours later)
Tonight I had a nice half-hour on the sofa with Gnat, watching “Funniest Home Videos.” She loves that show. Laughs, and laughs, and laughs. I should have been working, but awww, screw that. Then Wife & Gnat went to the park so I could prep some buzz stuff and relax with a little Old Time Radio. Sunday while driving around I caught some Johnny Dollar on the XM, and it was a Gripping Series, one of the best programs I’ve ever heard. I sat in my car and listened, transfixed by a 51-year-old radio drama. I’ll post part of it tomorrow, and you can judge for yourself. It makes me wonder whether there’s not a market for this today – the daily serial drama, five parts M-F, either on the net or the tube. I wonder whether anyone could do that sort of radio drama today, without cutesy self-consciousness or winking irony or a sonorous introduction by an NPR refugee that reminded you this was the Rebirth of Radio Drama. Hell with that; just do Johnny Dollar again, some idea, same format. I think we’re past all the post-modern takes on the noir / PI genre; I think we’re ready for the real thing, straight.
Anyway, that was my day: I wrote, mostly. At least I didn’t spend this entry writing about how I wrote, which is always tempting. More tomorrow, and more all day at buzz.mn! Come say hello to Buzzy the Anthropomorphic Weather Triangle, and have a jolt of Blogsauce while you’re at it. (All will be explained: hit the buzz.mn link below.) New funnies are here. See you tomorrow! (And now it’s back to Ghost Rider. I could Bleat away for another half-hour, but it’s midnight, and I really, really need something extra-strength stupid right now.)
(UPDATE: Finished “Ghost Rider.” Stupid ending: no thanks, Satan, you keep my soul; I prefer to remain damned, so we can set up the sequel. Otherwise, though: fun. Scoff if you must, but pay heed: Sam Elliot gets on a horse and then his head catches fire and the horse catches fire and “Ghost Riders in the Sky” plays on the soundtrack. That’s the Western-movie equivalent of a Mob movie where DeNiro whacks Sinatra in the graveyard where Edward G. Robinson is buried.)