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July 2017

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It's a stunning Sunday evening: the blue-violet sky is still hours from sunset; in the sunlight white paint is burning like tungsten; and insistent birdsong corkscrews through the still air.

I'm preparing for work tomorrow -- marking, musing, making things up -- and waiting for Episode Six of Twin Peaks to drop. I'm intrigued by "I know where she drinks."

So far, the show is sort of an anthology of experimental film-making techniques. I feel like I'm in a brilliant seminar about the possibilities of visual and sonic form. It has such scope, depth, and weirdness --

[Looks up a bunch of measures of intensity]

-- It rises to the top of the Modified Mercalli Intensity Scale. The watts per m2 shatter glass. All the candelas are lit and blazing.

Stuff like that.

However -- I'm really unhappy about and disappointed in the way the returning series has dealt so far with the female characters and their physical being. spoiler )

I'm hoping for a payoff in the end, but I hoped for that with True Detective, too, and spoiler. )

Ok, why not -- True Detective.

I felt like with True Detective I finally understood the difference between direction and writing.

The cinematography, the sound design, the actors' chemistry -- amazing.

Yet I think if I had the script in front of me as bare text, it would read weak.

Apart from Rust's arias, which I loved, (I was all like "finally someone on TV who speaks the truth!") the dialogue isn't actually very good -- instead, it's illuminated by the way the words are performed and articulated.

Further, the plot is full of loose threads, and the show raises, then forgets about, all kinds of essential ethical questions, yet the whole always looks and feels like something full of meaning and revelation.

Season 2 -- same writer/showrunner, different directors -- utter pants.

Resolution: Fukunaga, not Pizzolatto, made Season 1 a work of art -- which I think it is, though deeply flawed, and in some of the same ways Season 3 of Twin Peaks seems to be.

Now. I'm just going to walk down to the store for marking/viewing snacks.

My first walk today was a loop down a beat-up minor artery flowing by irregular ways to the sea, then along the ocean and back inland to commit some mundane errands.

The solstice will be here -- then past -- before I can prepare any ceremony worthy of it (and anyway it might be cloudy), so I'll celebrate today. Hurray.

In the week between classes, I've been trying to take proper long rambles each day, to make more space in my head and all the spaces in me.

Trying isn't the word, really. I'm compelled up and out of the house to wander the earth. Fortunately this bit of the earth is damn pretty right now.

Here, then, are some photos from various park-hunting expeditions of the last few days, organized around the theme of awesome local species rather than chronology, because I'm too tired to explain the chronology.

Distinctive Regional Species and general springiness )

First an interest in barometers, and now another sign of encroaching middle age: idly musing about tide tables.

It's technically Monday now, so this sea-report is late.

It's end of term, so work is all there is in the world -- except that the sun has come out and one has a duty, you know. Here are some pictures of what that looks like along the water in James Bay, on an ostensible errand for groceries.

It was a dry day, the tide fairly well out. I only had one dodgy moment on the path, where I backtracked from a convergence of mud, narrow path, and rounded rock, all creating a natural tendency to the fatal pratfall, and ended up picking my way between the stones below instead. This was perfectly fine; the way was only partially submerged.

stones and sea and a surprising sight )


Walking home

Mar. 28th, 2017 08:43 pm
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Even in the rain, the cherry blossoms are luminous, though less distinct, like a vague cool glance from someone beautiful thinking of something else.

Their smell, though, coaxed loose by the precise and insistent raindrops, seems stronger and sweeter than on a bright day. Beyond the familiar peppery scent, something in them admits finally to being flowers.

There's a good cedary smell tonight, too, like a new fence, a young smell maybe also lifted up out of old wood and stain by the water's alchemy.

A fat black-and-white cat surges like a storm cloud into a foggy window, as if responding to me, but not looking at me.

There is a hole worn right through the concrete here, near the new sidewalk, showing through to the storm sewer like a wound.

This was a long day, and not a happy one, but these small witnessings are more than compensation; they are a clear rain that drives the ugly fragments into the gutter, down the drain, out into the great night-soaked ocean.

Though sometime I may have to retrieve and make sense of them, right now I am just grateful for a small clear space.



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