Last night we made rock 'n' roll
Last night we made rock 'n' roll
-- Tennessee Williams in an essay normally called "The Catastrophe of Success," originally published in The New York Times 30 November 1947
"If you're a parent, there are few experiences more embarrassing than when you report a missing child to the police, and the officer asks you where you last saw little Tiffany, and you have to answer: 'She was entering a giant colon.'"Indeed, I hate it when that happens...
You are blessed with a great deal of physical energy. When used for a good cause there is nothing to stop you, except maybe that they aren't always used for the good. (You could have danced all night.) You respond to the thrill of the chase and the challenge of the mating game. You can carry on great romances in your head. At heart you are a roamer and need to set out on your own every so often. You will carry on long-distance relationships with ease. You are idealistic and need to believe in love. You have a need to be nurtured deep within.
"It is not Reaganesque to support a tax plan that is Clinton in nature.'' Los Angeles, Feb. 23, 2000
"I don't have to accept their tenants. I was trying to convince those college students to accept my tenants. And I reject any labeling me because I happened to go to the university."—Today, Feb. 23, 2000
"I understand small business growth. I was one."—New York Daily News, Feb. 19, 2000 "The senator has got to understand if he's going to have—he can't have it both ways. He can't take the high horse and then claim the low road."—To reporters in Florence, S.C., Feb. 17, 2000
"Really proud of it. A great campaign. And I'm really pleased with the organization and the thousands of South Carolinians that worked on my behalf. And I'm very gracious and humbled."—To Cokie Roberts, This Week, Feb. 20, 2000
"I don't want to win? If that were the case why the heck am I on the bus 16 hours a day, shaking thousands of hands, giving hundreds of speeches, getting pillared in the press and cartoons and still staying on message to win?"—Newsweek, Feb. 28, 2000
"I thought how proud I am to be standing up beside my dad. Never did it occur to me that he would become the gist for cartoonists."—ibid.
"If you're sick and tired of the politics of cynicism and polls and principles, come and join this campaign."—Hilton Head, S.C., Feb. 16, 2000
"How do you know if you don't measure if you have a system that simply suckles kids through?"—Explaining the need for educational accountability in Beaufort, S.C., Feb. 16, 2000
"We ought to make the pie higher."—South Carolina Republican Debate, Feb. 15, 2000
"I do not agree with this notion that somehow if I go to try to attract votes and to lead people toward a better tomorrow somehow I get subscribed to some—some doctrine gets subscribed to me."—Meet The Press, Feb. 13, 2000
"I've changed my style somewhat, as you know. I'm less—I pontificate less, although it may be hard to tell it from this show. And I'm more interacting with people."—ibid
"I think we need not only to eliminate the tollbooth to the middle class, I think we should knock down the tollbooth."—Nashua, N.H., as quoted by Gail Collins in the New York Times, Feb. 1, 2000
"The most important job is not to be governor, or first lady in my case."—Pella, Iowa, as quoted by the San Antonio Express-News, Jan. 30, 2000
"Will the highways on the Internet become more few?"—Concord, N.H., Jan. 29, 2000
"This is Preservation Month. I appreciate preservation. It's what you do when you run for president. You gotta preserve."—Speaking during "Perseverance Month" at Fairgrounds Elementary School in Nashua, N.H. As quoted in the Los Angeles Times, Jan. 28, 2000
"I know how hard it is for you to put food on your family."—Greater Nashua, N.H., Chamber of Commerce, Jan. 27, 2000
"What I am against is quotas. I am against hard quotas, quotas they basically delineate based upon whatever. However they delineate, quotas, I think vulcanize society. So I don't know how that fits into what everybody else is saying, their relative positions, but that's my position.''—Quoted by Molly Ivins, the San Francisco Chronicle, Jan. 21, 2000 (Thanks to Toni L. Gould.)
"When I was coming up, it was a dangerous world, and you knew exactly who they were," he said. "It was us vs. them, and it was clear who them was. Today, we are not so sure who the they are, but we know they're there."—Iowa Western Community College, Jan 21, 2000
"The administration I'll bring is a group of men and women who are focused on what's best for America, honest men and women, decent men and women, women who will see service to our country as a great privilege and who will not stain the house."—Des Moines Register debate, Iowa, Jan. 15, 2000
"This is still a dangerous world. It's a world of madmen and uncertainty and potential mential losses."—At a South Carolina oyster roast, as quoted in the Financial Times, Jan. 14, 2000
"We must all hear the universal call to like your neighbor just like you like to be liked yourself."—ibid.
"Rarely is the question asked: Is our children learning?"—Florence, S.C., Jan. 11, 2000
"Gov. Bush will not stand for the subsidation of failure."—ibid.
"There needs to be debates, like we're going through. There needs to be town-hall meetings. There needs to be travel. This is a huge country."—Larry King Live, Dec. 16, 1999
"I read the newspaper."—In answer to a question about his reading habits, New Hampshire Republican Debate, Dec. 2, 1999
"I think it's important for those of us in a position of responsibility to be firm in sharing our experiences, to understand that the babies out of wedlock is a very difficult chore for mom and baby alike. ... I believe we ought to say there is a different alternative than the culture that is proposed by people like Miss Wolf in society. ... And, you know, hopefully, condoms will work, but it hasn't worked."—Meet the Press, Nov. 21, 1999
"The students at Yale came from all different backgrounds and all parts of the country. Within months, I knew many of them."—From A Charge To Keep, by George W. Bush, published November 1999
"It is incredibly presumptive for somebody who has not yet earned his party's nomination to start speculating about vice presidents."—Keene, N.H., Oct. 22, 1999, quoted in the New Republic, Nov. 15, 1999
"The important question is, How many hands have I shaked?"—Answering a question about why he hasn't spent more time in New Hampshire, in the New York Times, Oct. 23, 1999
"I don't remember debates. I don't think we spent a lot of time debating it. Maybe we did, but I don't remember."—On discussions of the Vietnam War when he was an undergraduate at Yale, Washington Post, July 27, 1999
"The only thing I know about Slovakia is what I learned first-hand from your foreign minister, who came to Texas."—To a Slovak journalist as quoted by Knight Ridder News Service, June 22, 1999. Bush's meeting was with Janez Drnovsek, the prime minister of Slovenia.
"If the East Timorians decide to revolt, I'm sure I'll have a statement."—Quoted by Maureen Dowd in the New York Times, June 16, 1999
"Keep good relations with the Grecians."—Quoted in the Economist, June 12, 1999
"Kosovians can move back in."—CNN Inside Politics, April 9, 1999
"It was just inebriating what Midland was all about then."—From a 1994 interview, as quoted in First Son, by Bill Minutaglio
"I'm walking down that long, lonseome road, babe
Where I'm bound, I can't tell
But goodbye's too good a word, gal
So I'll just say fare thee well
I ain't sayin' you treated my unkind
You could have done better but I don't mind
You just kinda wasted my precious time
But don't think twice, it's all right."
-- "Don't Think Twice, It's All Right" from The Freewhelin' Bob Dylan
Theory, in its professionalized and systematic intellectuality, widens the gap between critics and non-professional readers; between critics and writers; between critics and scholars; and -- smaller of scale but professionally germane-- between graduates and undergraduates. [Geoffrey] Hartman, for whom the only alternative to theory is 'practical criticism,' says roundly that 'practical criticism is more of a pedagogical and popaedeutic than mature activity' (the words 'propaedeutic' itself being intended to couw the young and immature); he speaks them of 'the mind of the novice,' and of 'the danger in whis undergraduate or undeveloped form of practical criticism.' I share none of the beliefs which underlie such a way of speaking, such an estimate of practical criticism in any of its forms, or of undergraduates, or of the alternatives as Hartman conceives them. But I am sure that Hartman is right to depict theory, or advanced thought as they like to think of it, as intrinsically inimical to undergraduate teaching. ("Literary Principles As Against Theory" 331-332)
*Mosquito repellents don't repel. They hide you. The spray blocks the mosquito's sensors so they don't know you're there.
*Dentists have recommended that a toothbrush be kept at least 6 feet away from a toilet to avoid airborne particles resulting from the flush.
*The liquid inside young coconuts can be used as substitute for blood plasma.
*No piece of paper can be folded in half more than 7 times.
*Donkeys kill more people annually than plane crashes.
*You burn more calories sleeping than you do watching television.
*Oak trees do not produce acorns until they are fifty years of age or older.
*The first product to have a bar code was Wrigley's gum.
*The king of hearts is the only king without a mustache.
*A Boeing 747s wingspan is longer than the Wright brother's first flight.
*American Airlines saved $40,000 in 1987 by eliminating 1 olive from each salad served in first-class.
*Venus is the only planet that rotates clockwise.
*Apples, not caffeine, are more efficient at waking you up in the morning.
*The plastic things on the end of shoelaces are called aglets.
*Most dust particles in your house are made from dead skin.
*The first owner of the Marlboro Company died of lung cancer.
*Michael Jordan makes more money from Nike annually than all of the Nike factory workers in Malaysia combined.
*Marilyn Monroe had six toes.
*All US Presidents have worn glasses. Some just didn't like being seen wearing them in public.
*Walt Disney was afraid of mice.
*Pearls melt in vinegar.
*Thirty-five percent of the people who use personal ads for dating are already married.
*The three most valuable brand names on earth: Marlboro, Coca-Cola, and Budweiser, in that order.
*It is possible to lead a cow upstairs...but not downstairs.
*A duck's quack doesn't echo and no one knows why.
*The reason firehouses have circular stairways is from the days when the engines were pulled by horses. The horses were stabled on the ground floor and figured out how to walk up straight staircases.
*Richard Millhouse Nixon was the first US president whose name contains all the letters from the word "criminal." The second was William Jefferson Clinton.
*Turtles can breathe through their butts.
*Butterflies taste with their feet.
*In 10 minutes, a hurricane releases more energy than all of the world's nuclear weapons combined.
*On average, 100 people choke to death on ball-point pens every year.
*On average people fear spiders more than they do death.
*Ninety percent of New York City cabbies are recently arrived immigrants.
*Elephants are the only animals that can't jump.
*Only one person in two billion will live to be 116 or older.
*Women blink nearly twice as much as men.
*It's physically impossible for you to lick your elbow.
*The Main Library at Indiana University sinks over an inch every year because when it was built, engineers failed to take into account the weight of all the books that would occupy the building.
*A snail can sleep for three years.
*No word in the English language rhymes with "MONTH."
*Average life span of a major league baseball: 7 pitches.
*Our eyes are always the same size from birth, but our nose and ears never stop growing. SCARY!!!
*The electric chair was invented by a dentist.
*All polar bears are left handed.
*In ancient Egypt, priests plucked EVERY hair from their bodies, including their eyebrows and eyelashes.
*An ostrich's eye is bigger than its brain.
*TYPEWRITER is the longest word that can be made using the letters only on one row of the keyboard.
*"Go," is the shortest complete sentence in the English language.
*If Barbie were life-size, her measurements would be 39-23-33. She would stand seven feet, two inches tall. Barbie's full name is Barbara Millicent Roberts.
*A crocodile cannot stick its tongue out.
*The cigarette lighter was invented before the match.
*Americans on average eat 18 acres of pizza every day.
*Almost everyone who reads this email will try to lick their elbow.
*Don't forget to pass these weird facts on to everyone you know.
They will get a kick out of it !!
PS... So, did you try to lick your elbow????
"In music the passions enjoy themselves."
--- Friedrich Nietszche, Epigrams and Interludes
Breake of Day
Tis true, 'tis day; what though it be?
O wilt thou therefore rise from me?
Why should we rise, because 'tis light?
Did we lie down, because 'twas night?
Love, which in spite of darkness brought us hither,
Should in despite of light keep us together.
Light hath no tongue, but is all eye;
If it could speak as well as spy,
This were the worst that it could say,
That being well, I fain would stay,
And that I loved my heart and honor so,
That I would not from him, that had them, go.
Must business thee from hence remove?
O, that's the worst disease of love.
The poor, the foul, the false, love can
Admit, but not the busied man.
He which hath business, and makes love, doth do
Such wrong, as when a married man doth woo.
--- Grandfather in William Faulkner's THE REIVERS: A REMINISCENCE
--- Sir Alec Guinness
Portrait of a Lady
Your thighs are appletrees
whose blossoms touch the sky.
Which sky? The sky
where Watteau hung a lady's
slipper. Your knees
are a southern breeze—or
a gust of snow. Agh! what
sort of man was Fragonard?
—As if that answered
anything.—Ah, yes. Below
the knees, since the tune
drops that way, it is
one of those white summer days,
the tall grass of your ankles
flickers upon the shore—
the sand clings to my lips—
Agh, petals maybe. How
should I know?
Which shore? Which shore?
—the petals from some hidden
I said petals from an appletree.
In Breughel's great picture, The Kermess,
the dancers go round, they go round and
around, the squeal and the blare and the
tweedle of bagpipes, a bugle and fiddles
tipping their bellies, (round as the thick-
sided glasses whose wash they impound)
their hips and their bellies off balance
to turn them. Kicking and rolling about
the Fair Grounds, swinging their butts, those
shanks must be sound to bear up under such
rollicking measures, prance as they dance
in Breughel's great picture, The Kermess
The Rose from Spring and All
The rose is obsolete
but each petal ends in
an edge, the double facet
cementing the grooved
columns of air-- The edge
cuts without cutting
itself in metal or porcelain--
whither? It ends--
But if it ends
the start is begun
so that to engage roses
becomes a geometry--
Sharper, neater, more cutting
figured in majolica--
the broken plate
glazed with a rose
Somewhere the sense
makes copper roses
The rose carried the weight of love
but love is at an end-- of roses
It is at the edge of the
petal that love waits
Crisp, worked to defeat
plucked, moist, half-raised
cold, precise, touching
The place between the petal's
edge and the
From the petal's edge a line starts
that being of steel
infinitely fine, infinitely
the Milky Way
from it-- neither hanging
The fragility of the flower
Part V of History
But it is five o'clock. Come!
Life is good -- enjoy it!
A walk in the park while the day lasts.
I will go with you. Look! this
northern scenery is not the Nile, but --
these benches-- the yellow and purple
the moon there-- these tired people--
the lights on the water!
Are not these Jews-- and Ethiopians?
The world is young, surely! Young
and colored like-- a girl that has come
a lover! Will that do?
You Have Pissed Your Life
Any way you walk
Any way you turn
Any way you stand
Any way you lie
You have pissed your life
From an intellectual fool
butting his head blindly
against obstacles, become
performing accurately to
a given end--Any way you walk
Any way you turn
Any way you stand
Any way you lie
You have pissed your life
The wall, as I watched, came neck-high
to her walking difficulty
seaward of it over sand and stones. She
made the effort, mounted it while I
had my head turned, I merely
saw her on top at the finish rolling
over. She stood up dusted off her skirt
then there lifted her feet
unencumbered to skip dancing away
Love Song : First Version: 1915
What have I to say to you
When we shall meet?
I lie here thinking of you.
The stain of love
is upon the world.
Yellow, yellow, yellow,
It eats into the leaves,
Smears with saffron
The horned branches that lean
Against a smooth purple sky.
There is no light--
Only a honey-thick stain
That drips from leaf to leaf
And limb to limb
Spoiling the colors
Of the whole world.
I am alone.
The weight of love
Has bouyed me up
Till my head
Knocks against the sky.
My hair is dripping with nectar--
Starlings carry it
On their black wings.
See at last
My arms and my hands
Are lying idle.
How can I tell
If I shall ever love you again
As I do now?
Filming The Many Trials of One Jane Doe was the first time Gary had traveled to North America and he was very enthusiastic about joining the film’s cast. “I was intrigued by the project from the start. Once I got the part I did some research on the Internet and couldn’t believe how this story had played out.” It was a challenge for Gary to play Jeremy Sharp. “I don’t subscribe to any of Jeremy’s character traits! When I was discussing this role with some of my friends they had to give me a shake because I was too sympathetic to the character of Jane Doe.” But once he delved further into the script, he totally appreciated the character of Jeremy Sharp.
“Knowing who the person is provides you with both barriers and keys,” explained Gary. “Being that arrogant is something you have to portray to the audience.”
Date: Sun Aug 20 00:06:13 EDT 2000
X-Bonus: Today the real test of power is not capacity to make war but capacity to prevent it. -Anne O'Hare McCormick
scurf (skurf) noun
1. Scaly or shredded dry skin, such as dandruff.
2. A loose, scaly crust coating a surface, especially of a plant.
[Middle English, probably of Scandinavian origin.]
"One moment the sky was full of words, the next flakes of blue
were falling upon the earth like scurf from the unwashed heads of
Jeremy Sharp, Necessary Angel: On the Nature and History of Anne
Szumigalski, Essays on Canadian Writing, Fall 1998.
This week's theme: words that make one say, I didn't know there was a word
Also: Wanted to archive these notes on Dryden before they disappear permanently from the Net, b/c I don't think I have my own copy of them anywhere. They were written in response to some notes made by RK on Dryden.
"Just happened to read your blog on the idea of order. Quite good. Got me thinking, though, that one of the particular strengths to reading Dryden is his ability to coalesce the reasonable and orderly with the emotionally-aware, evidenced so clearly in the romantic clarity of All For Love, and in his ultimate preference for Shakespeare over the more rationally obedient writers (like, say, Ben Jonson). I think, in a way, this ability to coalesce those two 'pulls,' for want of a better word, may be (in part) why he was able to perfect the heroic couplet as well as he did-- and, indeed, better than just about anyone after, including Pope. Admittedly, much of his writing is of the intellectual sphere (primarily the satires, but elsewhere, of course), but that emotional sense always remains, and that sense is often manifest in the resonance of his rhymes. I think, for example, of the closing lines of "Song for St Cecilia's Day," with its "And in that last and dreadful hour / This crumbling pageant shall devour," and the triplet, "The Trumpet shall be heard on high / The dead shall live, the living die, / And Musick shall untune the sky." The completeness of the rhymes-- that is, the evasion of half-rhymes, the solid choice of sounds like 'our' and 'aye'--- manages a double task, of technical matching (and careful ordering) as well as achieving a rousing use of metrical structures. This is not of the 'forced' rhyme ilk, and the simplicity of the language ensures an emphasis on the rhythmical bases. This all sounds kind of airy-fairy, I know. But it's rather as if there's an emotional crescendo building, first in the turning of hour to de-vour (with that 'v' sound upping the verbal ante), and the following triplet capitalizing on the rhythm building. I'd also note, here, the beautiful mixing of directions: high/die/sky does rather an effective job of sending our poetic eyes inclining (high) then declining (die) then ascending once again, on the fixating image of the sky. Dryden manages to escape the tendency toward turgidity that often goes with rhyme, in part because his verse is aware of ordering sensibilities but is not desensitized by them.
It's pretty easy to see what so attracted Eliot to Dryden-- the clarity of language and poetic structure, but also the freedom from the binary pulls of the overly-rational and the emotionally slithering. A key word for this is 'untune,' a negative of an otherwise simple word which otherwise links up nicely with other key words in the poem (c.f., 'from harmony to heavenly harmony'), but which neither overstates nor understates the situation: in describing an otherwise apocalyptic moment, he uses deliberately unapocalyptic language, giving the final action of the poem to a metaphor of music, even if that metaphor is collusion of the apocalyptic and the harmonic. And yet the metaphor is decisive rather than querulous, and that adds to the solidity of the image: it functions so effectively because it unites the rational with the imaginative, without subsuming one to the other, and without investing too much in the symbol entire. That decisiveness -- or certainty, or whatever one chooses to call it-- seems reflective of a unified mind, not just in relation to the image described, but of poetic technique. All in all, those lines strike me as a kind of poetic masterstroke which few others mastered. I also wonder if Eliot would consider Dryden a practitioner of 'objective correlativity,' though I think the 'untuning' example I mentioned above would have caught praise from Eliot. So hard to find decent editions of Homage to JD these days....
This is all, of course, highly ironic, given Dryden's own internal divisions (his conversion, his dumping by the government, his final years lived in relative poverty). Dryden, I'm fairly sure, would have grown increasingly awkward with trusting patterns and impulses of order, though he'd certainly not have been a champion of emotionalism or an outright challenger of order, whoever was in charge. The poet, ultimately, is a verbal musician, a comparison appropriate too (in part) to his work for the stage, as mixed as that often was, especially as the years passed. And poetry, like music, was inevitably conceived as a fusion of emotional sensibilities with highly technical structures, whether metrical, lexical, rhetorical, or whatever. Dryden, more than he's now credited for doing, negotiated how that fusion could be done within a 17th century context. And it often seems that Dryden, at his best, could build emotional momentum, and then constrict it, and then open it up again, and then constrict it again, depending on the needs of any given poem or play. Just when order seems to become a burden, he tends toward the emotional; just when the emotional or the extra-rational seems to become a burden, he tends toward the rational; and the pulls react in relation to one another, and the result is a kind of 'measure for measure.' Even in the more intellect-driven verses like the satires, when allegorical references may seem to those of our age drawn for rational purposes, the carefully-reasoned choices for analogues (esp. in Absalom) are, or were, emotionally effective, and the two compulsions work in tandem with one another. Reading Dryden (again, at his best) is rather like watching a champion skier crest down a slope. Like any poet, he doesn't always accomplish the slope as well he would like, or as we watching would like.
I'm inclined to think of Dryden as a poet-- in Wallace Stevens' terms-- struggling to order words of the sea, 'the blessed rage for order.' But rage is an emotion (or an emotional action) and order is an abstract idea (or an action to make of things that exist to approximate that idea). And for Dryden, the impulse toward order is dominant, or more prominent, but the emotional impulse is always at work, and given a more significant place than in a lot of writing of the time. It makes me wonder how much Dryden's poetics was a result of watching the aftermaths of division and capriciousness and volatility; it also makes me wonder how much he came to see order as a self-legitimizing concept, especially in the wake of the battles for the governance of England. I wonder, too, how much Dryden learned, or tried to learn, from Milton's experiences with the above. Dryden may not have possessed Milton's sense of 'fire' or 'poetic rage' or 'righteousness,' but he was certainly not the emotionally-bankrupt, super-rational rhymester (and dead white guy) that recent criticism tends to suggest.
Or that's my current thinking, which may just be bunk, or which I might discard when I can look again at Dryden, all of my copies of whom still remain in my office since the poetry comp. Dryden was obviously not one to wear his heart on his sleeve, but he was certainly not given to the unidimensionality of which he is often unfairly criticized. Someone once described Wallace Stevens as a 'real' poet-- highly Romantic as he was (despite his Modernism), he was a man who worked during the day, and kept poetry for his own time, and who didn't lean on the image of the Byronic suffering poet. He felt, but he organized and dealt with emotions in a manner that was 'professional,' and, in some fashion, orderly. Dryden, I suspect, was of a similar ilk, 250 years prior, except for Dryden writing was his profession.
D represented passions, indeed, as well as anyone could expect in the same days as Nahum Tate. D was tidy but not a desperate maker of order, as Tate most certainly was. And D's attempts for a tidying of emotions within the capacities and possibilities of the rational and logical were more genuine attempts to grapple with the difficulty of that situation. All of this suggests to me why D is a much greater poet than he's now given credit for being. Or, again, I may be entirely off my rocker. Alas, to have the experience to flesh out thoughts on Dryden.... "