Archive for the ‘My life’ Category

Neighborhood gardens, heavy on purple

July 12, 2017

Walking around the neighborhood these days, in between heat waves, alone and with friends, mostly enjoying gardens and street plantings and identifying what we see. Most delightfully, this elaborate container garden in front of a house on Bryant St., just a block from mine:

(#1)

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Chast, Haefeli, Kaplan

July 6, 2017

Three cartoons from the latest issue (July 10th and 17th) of the New Yorker, by Roz Chast (heirloom hot dogs), William Haefeli (gay couple with dog and baby), and Bruce Eric Kaplan (a visit from Dr. Seuss).

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Coconuts and Trumpets

July 6, 2017

Notes from my (mostly unfabulous) gay life in Palo Alto CA: drinks yesterday with folks from QUEST (the Stanford LGBT staff group) at Coconuts, the Caribbean restaurant just up the street from my house (posted about here), wearing a notably gay t-shirt from Trumpets, a celebrated gay bar and restaurant in Washington DC in the 1990s. A shirt from 1995, a shirt not only past the age of consent, but one old enough to vote.

Coconuts is a pleasant unpretentious place, not at all gay-oriented — there are no such places in Palo Alto (for gay life, you travel 34 miles to San Francisco or 17 miles to San Jose) — and flourishing; Trumpets was a serious restaurant with an interesting menu, with a major gay bar in front, and it’s long gone, though for Pride month this year, there was a reunion celebration; a lot of people remembered it with great affection.

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Animated cartoons, fan art, same-sex love

June 25, 2017

… and Pride time … also Opal Armstrong Zwicky, who yesterday posted this:

Fan art of Opal from Steven Universe! She’s one of my favorite characters (and no, not just because her name is also Opal):

(#1)

(Yes, the animated Opal has four arms; she’s also an archer.)

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Don Coleman

June 19, 2017

Family stuff.

From my cousin Eleaner Severin Houck, this death notice from the Reading (PA) Eagle:

(#1)

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Father and grandfather

June 16, 2017

… plus two grandmothers.

A bit more for Fathers Day, with photos from back in the day, more Alpen-Flora, and some reflections on social class. Starting with these photos:

(#1)

On the left (#1a): my dad, with his parents, Bertha and Melchior Zwicky, in April 1941 (on, I think, my grandparents’ farm in Sinking Spring PA, west of Reading). On the right, two photos from 1948, at my aunt Marian (Marian Rice Fries) and uncle Herb’s farm outside of New Smithville PA, west of Allentown. Top (#1b): Dad and his mother-in-law, Susannah Hershey Rice (called Sue). Bottom (#1c): Marian and Sue, her mother.

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Trailers

June 13, 2017

… in NOAD2’s third sense:

3 a thing that trails, especially a trailing plant.

The occasion was an errand-running walk in Palo Alto a little while ago with Kim Darnell, on which we came across a plant I identified as a fuchsia, remarking that they were often planted in hanging baskets, where their down-hanging flowers spilled attractively over the sides of the basket:

   (#1)

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It ended in a Mexican Caesar salad

June 10, 2017

It started with surgery, for gallstones. That was Wednesday. Resting at home, attempting nothing challenging, the lightest of food (miso soup), even after no solid food in 24 hours.

Thursday I managed my senior fitness hour — the old g(r)ay bear, he ain’t what he used to be — with great effort, but without using my walker.

And then my reward, a return to real food: a Mexican Caesar salad at the restaurant Reposado, up the street from me. Delicious, but only distantly related to classic Caesar salad.

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Music hath powers to repel the savage pest

June 10, 2017

In today’s Zits, Connie Duncan schemes to rid the house and garden of chipmunks:

Her weapon in this anti-sciurid campaign? Her son’s rock band.

It’s a lot like using classical music to disperse loitering teenagers from public areas.

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For the day

June 5, 2017

The text:

And I don’t know a soul who’s not been battered
I don’t have a friend who feels at ease
I don’t know a dream that’s not been shattered or driven to its knees
But it’s alright, it’s alright, for we live so well, so long
Still, when I think of the road we’re traveling on
I wonder what’s gone wrong, I can’t help it I wonder what’s gone wrong

And I dreamed I was dying, I dreamed that my soul rose unexpectedly
And looking back down at me, smiled reassuringly
And I dreamed I was flying, and high up above my eyes could clearly see
The Statue of Liberty, sailing away to sea, and I dreamed I was flying

A song of loss, regret, weariness, resignation… and transcendance.

This is my man Jacques’s death day (14 years ago, on a day as beautiful as this one is). I was about to post some photos of his, from Columbus OH and here in California, and I’ll still do this, but Ann Burlingham just posted on Facebook a reminiscence of a moment from the time when she shared the Columbus house with J and me, a sweet reminiscence of Ann and me dissolving on hearing, by chance on the radio, the song excerpted above, sung hauntingly by the Indigo Girls.

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