23 April 2010

i guess one may as well open that cute little bottle tonight ...

20 July 2009

summer readings

whatever our deficiencies in understanding our friends and colleagues,
the person we are fated to understand least is ourselves

Alain de Botton, Kiss and Tell, 1995

18 June 2009

in an e.e. cummings sort of way...

...shall i turn my face, and hear one bird
sing terribly afar in the lost lands.

26 January 2009

been there, done that (or excerpts from an unplanned-for week in pasadena)

another lonely planet guide off an heathrow's newstand

getting hold of flip-flops & shorts (but not of de rigueur 10$ sunglasses) in paseo colorado

a jet-lagged double espresso and a "biscotti" at vroman's cafeteria, before intensely browsing through pynchon, salinger and wallace foster tomes

a sierra nevada pale ale and a bowl of stuffed jalapenos with ranch sauce at lucky's by night

an early-morning presidential inauguration like no others

an assorted choice of asian and mexican food and, last but not the least, the inescapable pizza at chandler's and cheeseburger & chips at "pie 'n' burger"

a couple of intensely all-american movies at playhouse's laemmle's

warm winter nights and dubiously (un)dressed so-cal girls in old town

and finally, too short a sun-kissed walk along hermosa beach boardwalk

and then it was raymord carver short stories and a copy of esquire with an obama sticker at LAX

and lying across 3 seats on an half-empty flight back to london, variously reminiscing of childhood long-haul and other flights and wondering whether I should be going back after all...

06 January 2009

xmas and all

at first it was the snow, falling with surgical precision on Christmas night, New Year's Eve/Day and Epiphany...

then the clearest and coldest skies ever, walking up the hills with an occasionally unhealthy Ani di Franco playlist, the ice nicely cracking under the shoes of an aging researcher panting as if there were no tomorrow...

and the Moon rising sideways at night, and Venus getting so close...

and a literary Christmas throughout, with a touch of repetitive syncretism, with a second take on all sorts of things, from peter's lost boys to alice's rabbit hole, from dave's staggering genius to virgina's clarissa, from henri's "fuite" to roland's "discours amoureux"...

and after a coreographic and alcoholic attempt at burning the witch, and the whole sorry year behind us with her, it was finally the coldest night ever, indeed...

good night & good luck, folks, on to 2009...

26 December 2008

season's musings

So this was another Christmas, and I guess the best anybody can say is that

"On these magic shores children at play are forever beaching their coracles.
We too have been there; we can still hear the sound of the surf,
though we shall land no more."

J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan, 1911

For the supposedly grown-ups, these sunny and occasionally snowy 48 hours brought not only echoes from the Darlings' mansion right off Kensington Gardens and the Neverland, but also (perhaps more than) its fair share of Ani DiFranco through the headphones.

More importantly, through this season's customary numbness (and dumbness) of the media, one could barely read (and mostly on the British side only) about the departure of Harold Pinter, not only one of the last literary giants of his generation, but also one to stir much-needed controversy about US foreign "policy" when awarded the Nobel Prize just two years ago. For his plays, his clear thinking, his highest integrity and yes, also for making us feel a bit lonelier on his departure, we thank him.

On a lighter note, as I was varioulsy pondering over the last few days "What Can You Get a Wookiee for Christmas (When He Already Owns a Comb?)", certainly being sympathetic with hairy fictional space creatures but even more so with our less lucky earth-bound brothers, I thought I'd put aside a little something for these nice folks

Emergency and VSO

and it'd be great if you could spare a buck/euro/quid yourself (along with a thought or two, which never hurts) during sales season.

You take care...