Thursday, July 1, 2004 at 3:16PM
I'm dog-sitting for Meredith out in Remsen. Anyway, before that, I had Just finished driving Meredith down to the airport. We had been singing old Journey and Def Leppard songs. Nostalgia is a frightening thing. "Faithfully" and "Don't Stop Believing" were the two songs of choice. I did my rendition of Neil Schon's whining guitar in "Faithfully". . . . it sounded something like meow-meow-meow-meow. Needless to say, it was a bad but funny rendition.
We also talked a bit about why there aren't any big corporate businesses in Utica. As much as I resent them, I understand that we seem to think they are associated with healthy growth for a community. One of the things that I thought of was the fact that this region is heavily unionized. It would follow that corporations who are trying to make a profit would try to forego situating themselves in an area where the labor is unionized. This is a bad thing. As much as I like having the selection that comes with entities like Border, Barnes and Noble, etc., they hurt union workers. I remember the Mill area during my days at Arizona State University. I liked the Mill because it had one-of-a-kind shops like Changing Hands Bookstore, independent coffee houses, independent shops. This past year Papatya, Sue, and myself drove by the Mill area and it's been transformed into a strip mall. Very disconcerting.
I've been filled with socio-economic programing for the past few weeks. There was a documentary on LINK TV a few days ago tracing the development of a disease entited "Affluenza". Prior to that, another Michael Moore was on the air at IFC, called "The Big One". It's interesting to see the development of this consumer environment . . .
My mind's still coming around to processing all these things. More later.
Wednesday, June 30, 2004 at 5:35PM
The cover art for the talented and glittery poet, Sarah Gambito, is on the Alice James Books website:
Wednesday, June 30, 2004 at 11:01AM
There's something that must be said about Willy, the parapalegic Chihuahua in the picture here:
I guess the folks are calling him "Wheely-Willy," which is cute/appropriate.
And here's a news brief from yesterday:
POLICE: MOM THREATENS CHUCK E. CHEESE
Tue Jun 29, 4:39 PM ET
MACON, Ga. - A teenager dressed as pizza mascot Chuck E. Cheese was pelted with pizza and threatened with a beating by an angry parent who said the mascot wasn't paying enough attention to her child, police said. Macon police reported that the 17-year-old female employee was dressed as the character, a gray cartoon-like rodent with large front teeth, when a 31-year-old Macon woman threw a piece of pizza at her Sunday afternoon.The report stated that the mother then threatened to "whip" the girl when she changed out of costume. No charges were filed in the incident, so the name of the mother and employee were not released by police.
Information from: The Macon Telegraph
Anyway, I think we all wanted to have our birthdays hosted at Chuck E. Cheese when we were younger, right? To tell you the truth, though, the mascots freaked me out.
Tuesday, June 29, 2004 at 4:12PM
I just signed up for a Book Making class at the Munson Williams Proctor Arts Institute. I've always wanted to take a book making class after seeing the fantastic pieces that Karla Elling created down at Arizona State University. So . . . I'm enrolled. It should be a hoot.
I've been thinking about what a colleague of mine, David Habbel, said about the impact/significance of poets in cities. He said he read an article about how you can determine the health of a city by its resident poet population. I want to get my hands on that article. We all know, from a previous article, that poets have shortened life-spans. So I suppose that cities would thrive if 1) they attracted more poets and 2) they kept their poets alive.
One of the ways to keep poets in an area is to create eclectic food establishments. Well . . . Outback Steakhouse just opened along a strip of Commercial Drive. That's the major thoroughfare with the mall, Barnes & Noble, and other businesses. I know. It's not eclectic. It's yuppie food. But hear me out. . .. Restaurants such as TGIF's, Outback, and Applebees attract yuppies. Yuppies bring money to communities. Communities which have money will also develop arts enclaves.
Maybe it's wishful thinking. I don't know. Still, the recent urban development in the area is interesting for what is still considered an economically depressed area.
In other news, I've been reading Gaston Bachelard's "The Poetics of Reverie." Actually, I should say re-reading, because I read it a long time ago in graduate school, but I needed something to kick me off the couch. Monsieur Bachelard certainly has. I've also been reading Edward P. Jones's new novel, "The Known World," and I've found it to be pretty harrowing. In between, I've been picking up some poetry collections: "Winter Stars," "Spar," "The Branch Will Not Break," "The Only World," just to fill the brain up.
Summer makes the television a very seductive entity. I've become addicted to TLC and "What Not to Wear." Meredith and I wait for Wednesdays and Fridays when it aires. I'm normally not a TV-head, but hey, it's summer. . . . Tuesday's a good TV day, too.
Egad, but I should read and I should do some writing, eh? In fact, I think I'm procrastinating with this blogging thing. Off I go.
Monday, June 28, 2004 at 2:51PM
Spent the morning watching Wimbledon and drinking coffee. Quite a fine morning. Anyway, sent a few quick e-mails to my friends, Aimee Nez, and Joseph Legaspi. Other than that, I've been gearing up to go to the gym, but I've been procrastinating. Ah! Summer!
For those of you in Academia, you probably know that we all reach a point in the Summer when we start counting the weeks until we start back up with the Fall semester. Well, reached that point last week. It was jarring. I was thinking about all the writing I needed to get done, all the editing, etc. I've been reading Barbara Jane Reyes' manuscript and it's pretty intense! If you're reading, Barb, it's going to be a few more weeks before you get comments. Sorry, sweetie.
Anyway, I'm also reading Camille Dungy's manuscript. I have to say that there are some some fantastic poetry manuscripts out there!
Well, I best get back to "working" on some poems. Or maybe I'll go to the gym. We'll see.
By the way, I wonder how many of you have already seen Farenheit 9/11? I saw it last night with Meredith. It was quite an event. I don't know if many of you are familiar with Utica and the Mohawk Valley, but it's what I'd call a Post-Industrial town. Anyway, it was incredible to see so many people come into town to see a documentary. I'm still thinking about the film and about a lot of things.
I've got a Sub-Committee Meeting today for Sculpture Space. I'll let y'all know what we decide. We're going to be talking about things regarding the CHAIRity auction that's held anually up here in October.