25 September 2005

word on the street, bicycles and giant hearts.

so word on the street was today, and it just made me HAPPY. i of course spent too much money at the Beguiling's table, i FINALLY got a copy of Shari Boyle's Witness My Shame (YIPPEE YIPPPEEE YIPPEEE!!!),then i re-read bits of Brick 68 as we tried to decide which Brick to make our favourite for those who might ask, since Brick 69 was Totally sold out (which I think had been the agreed favourite).
and i must say i feel the need, dear reader(s) to share just a blip of the glee 68 brought me. sure, it's kind of a shameless plug for the publication i work for, except that i had UTTERLY nothing to do with its creation at all. but Honestly. I had read it in bits and pieces before, today was no different, it's kind of how i work with short stories and journals and such, but this time was particularly edifying.
There's this GLORIOUS series of photos from the Louisiana Correctional Institute for Women, and they're like these strange black and white carnival-esque shots of these women staring Straight at you, one of which was moving her head so her features have all but disappeared, and they are unquieting and Excellent.
there's also a Ridiculous bar-time conversation over the title of a book between Michael Winter, Lisa Moore, Stan Dragland and Michael Crummey that just made me Howl (a bit of it follows for your (possible) gratification, and Definitely for mine):

...L: Mouths Open.
M: It's perfect.
C: I'd pick it up.
S: Me too.
M: Yes, it's great. but it's better with a comma.
S: Not in a title.
C: You could have the story have a comma in the title.
S: There's a story called Mouths, Open?
L: Yes.
M: Her whole book is an open mouth.
S: Yes, well I gathered as much.
L: What do you mean by that?
C: It's true.
L: Yeah you're right. Jeez bye I wrote it. You think you know everything.
C: Now that's a good title.
A: What is?
C: You Think You Know Everything.
L: It is.
S: It's a bit Alice Munro. Who Do You Think You Are.
L: That'd be a good title,Who Do You Think You Are, Alice Munro - You Think You Know Everything.
C: I still think it's a good title....

and, of course, Ever Cecily Moos, and this time her uncle, or her nephew or someone. Excellent.

shall we at least Try now to move on from my banal listings of things that bring me glee to more practical endeavours?

so then i was google/searching heart/circulatory system for kicks, and for a project i've been working on in fits and starts for (what seems like) a very long time, and i came upon THIS. a Giant Heart. fit to scale a 220 foot tall person, and built for people to walk through. in Philadelphia, no less, land of the mütter museum, as well, which is pretty much one of the top five places i want to go in the world before i die.

well, this big heart officially started beating on my 31nd birthday, 1 October, 2004. sigh. it was picking up the slack on mine at that time, obviously, but here's what it looks like inside:

i'm Impressed. i don't care if it's a cheesy stupid museum model. it's Awesome. and who knew Philadelphia could house anything so interesting?!?!?

but onwards. here's the quote from Barbara Kingsolver's Animal Dreams that first brought me over to my dear computer with googling intentions:

"Why do you suppose the poets talk about hearts?” he asked me suddenly. “When they discuss emotional damage? The tissue of hearts is tough as a shoe. Did you ever sew up a heart?”

I shook my head. “No, but I've watched. I know what you mean.” The walls of a heart are thick and strong, and the surgeons use heavy needles. It takes a good bit of strength, but it pulls together neatly. As much as anything it’s like binding a book.”

“The seat of human emotion should be the liver,” Doc Homer said. “That would be an appropriate metaphor: we don't hold love in our hearts, we hold it in our livers.”

I understand exactly. Once in an ER, I saw a woman who’d been stabbed everywhere, most severely in the liver. It's an organ with the consistency of layer upon layer of wet Kleenex. Every attempt at repair just opens new holes that tear and bleed. You try to close the wound with fresh wounds, and you try and you try and you don’t give up until there's nothing left."


of course what i also found were other Completely useless but gratifying nonetheless quotes, and since today was all about other peoples' work i am dedicating tonight's post to shameless pilfering and repetition, at least for a few moments before i resume my own thoughts on this and that, and my 76 proofreading duties to follow.

and no, i Wasn't googling bicycles, i was googling heart. and yet somehow.... aaahhhh.

Most bicyclists in New York City obey instinct far more than they obey the traffic laws, which is to say that they run red lights, go the wrong way on one-way streets, violate cross-walks, and terrify innocents, because it just seems easier that way.  Cycling in the city, and particularly in midtown, is anarchy without malice.
~Author unknown, from New Yorker, "Talk of the Town"

Consider a man riding a bicycle.  Whoever he is, we can say three things about him.  We know he got on the bicycle and started to move.  We know that at some point he will stop and get off.  Most important of all, we know that if at any point between the beginning and the end of his journey he stops moving and does not get off the bicycle he will fall off it.  That is a metaphor for the journey through life of any living thing, and I think of any society of living things. 
~William Golding

right. that's quite enough of that, i think...

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