Call Northside 777 has two things going for it: Jimmy Stewart and the letter 7 three times. It will remind you of the days when telephone numbers had names in them like JUniper 1-7726 and MAdison 3-1147 and HIlltop 3-2711 and GRidley 4-4426 and my favorite: MYrtle 1-1221. Other than that the movie is dreadful and there is absolutely nothing you will want to see in it although Jimmy Stewart does calls NOrthside 777 and someone does answer but it's a depressing old lady janitor answers and her son is in jail for murder and she cries and cries and Jimmy Stewart gets all excited. That part was actually kind of cool.
On my way to TRAVELS WITH CHARLEY, I have been reading the John Steinbeck library. Right now I am diving into (and loving into) OF MICE AND MEN. It is partially enhanced–or troubled–by the fact that I have seen the 1939 Lewis Milestone film version with Burgess Meredith and Lon Chaney, Jr. Can't decide which. This much I know: it's nearly impossible to read the book without hearing the distinctive voices of Burgess Meredith and Lon Chaney in your brain-noggin. And this, too: Lon Chaney is one underrated actor. Forget the Wolf Man: this is where this man shines in the moonlight.
I reach out at night and touch a blue velvet bag with my right hand. In order to do this, I must twist my body in bed but I want to. I am right handed, and I want to touch the blue velvet bag with my right hand. If I were only to touch it with my left hand, my weaker hand, I would cry more than I already do because I wouldn’t be able
to do as much now, even though it’s too late, really,
to do anything at all. But if I can barely touch it
Nothing ever moved in this house until I bought a turntable and it broke and I had a fellow come in, he was a nice fellow,
and he repaired it and dusted it off and said “Now it’s squeaky clean!” and it started moving again and he put on his hat and left and nothing moved.
You could say the fan moves in the house it’s true but I never see it because I turn it on after I turn off the lights and go to bed and wonder where you might be now if you are happy now as I lie here and listen to Ravel andante which really just means 'a lonely man in France, walking' and he is also not in the house.
STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN is playing way too loud because I am in the shower and it is on the radio. Not everyone wants to hear of a stairway to heaven at seven o’clock in the morning, and I imagine cranky Edna down the hall don’t want to hear a story about a lady who is told all that glitters is gold. But none of this worries me as much as what import this little piece of paper in my hands will have should it survive five hundred years and be read by someone who doesn’t know know the sassy frill tight jeans of Robert Plant and the double-neck Merlot-red guitars of Jimmy Page. How can I possibly explain that in an age beyond radios? Worse yet, what if ‘heaven’ is no longer a word in our sure-to-be post-apocalyptic utopia? Perhaps heaven exists beyond the words we assign to designate it as such. Perhaps in a generation far away, words will merge their meanings, and there will be only one word left, and it will play constantly on the radio. Yes, there will be those. And they will play the word, and also, be the word. And the word will be heaven. With only one word left, there won’t any choice in the matter. Who do you thank? You have no choice. You thank heaven for that.
I made the transition from marshmallow to tofu. And then I made the transition back to marshmallow. Allow me to direct your attention to a trip I am taking to Provence. The fields are crazy with lavender, yet I am
in New York, walking by a shop selling marshmallows made of lavender. Which makes no sense. I am in Provence, munching a petite tofu. But I am very good at transitions.
Even now, I am staring at a wall filled with tofu in Shanghai, with the spirit of marshmallow permeating the air, when really what I am doing is considering the potato chip, in San José.
I use my meat tenderizer to hammer things, like nails and bags of ice. I have never used it to tenderize meat. If someone were to look at my belongings, they would find a meat tenderizer with small silver marks on its head, the kind that you might find if you are using your meat tenderizer for something other than tenderizing meat. That's really what is happening here, because there is no reason to tenderize meat. Here is something I learned: rather than tenderize meat, simply slice the meat in half, saving yourself the fuss and the muss of tenderizing meat. It’s as though you tenderized meat, but you didn’t. And with the time you save, you can hammer many nails into the wall or hammer many bags of ice and look at pictures on the wall and drink cocktails that are cold and delicious. With the time and money that you save, you can look at even more pictures and drink more cold and delicious cocktails. Tenderized meat can be delicious, you think sometimes, especially when you are meditating, or when the room is especially quiet.
I drew a cartoon in which a poodle leapt into the air and became a flower. When it did, a spaceship came out of the sky and captured it with a beam of light. I didn’t have time to draw that part, it happened too fast.
I try to look at the bright side. He had time to shave today, she is able to take a well-deserved nap, one turtle is able to give him a little smoochy kiss on the back of the neck, and it is still warm enough to go swimming.
Yes. Now. Superman wore a super suit, which was super.
But when he didn’t, his clothes were unsuper.
Some people want it that way. Pay no attention to me,
Superman says, and they say, and yet, in the same sentence,
it is said, beneath the riddle, beneath the unsuper, Love me.
At this point in the conversation there is an intense need
for something super, but something super, at this point,
does not come. The surprise is what is super. Always. Here it comes. Ta-dah! And nothing. It’s hidden in what is not there. Which doesn’t mean, don’t look for it. No. Look for it. I always say, I enjoy a good microscope and a good view of looking for a surprise on a moonless night.