Who are these silent strangers waiting for me to know who they are?

Saturday, January 8, 2011


Sitting amongst the books is like spending an afternoon with your best friend. Here one takes you off to a distant land and entertains your child within and there you have sage advice given without prejudice or sarcasm. Laugh, cry, scream, nothing phases the books. There are particular volumes that are just plain irresistible to hold, their warm leather smooth in my hands and the pages of fine linen with crisp images are compelling. There’s a specific thump a nice heavy tomb makes when you snap it shut. Never underestimate the tactile experience of running your fingers lightly across a page of text printed on letterpress. Gilt edges on the pages and marbled end pages add to the visual orgy.

But that's not today.

Today I was at D's shop. Nobody. Nobody. Cheryl calls. Mindless talk and gnashing of teeth. Nobody. Nobody. More nobody. Karl shows up bearing the vileness that is McDonald’s. Nobody. I browse a lewd book called “Pissing in the Snow” by Vance Randolph. Then two women come in. One is young and blonde. She has glasses and a hasty ponytail. The other is older, maybe her mother. She has red hair and a purple thing on with a brown vest. She also has glasses and spends a great deal of time looking at the dishes. The young one looks at the books. First she looks at the vintage children’s books and then moves onto the religious books and the cookbooks. They convene in front of the religious books where they confer on the ridiculous titles. Like – ‘My Shining Jesus’ and ‘ Life without a guiding light’. Much whispering happens over by the classics along with a few yawns and head scratching. Finally the young woman buys a small bible and one of the classics, “Tale of Two Cities.” About this time I notice how dark it is getting outside. It is snowing steadily with alternating brief gusts of blizzard and tiny peeps of sun. Traffic is also fairly steady. Punctuating the gusts with slushy swishes and rumbling from the plow. It is 2:30 p.m. I am to be here until 5 p.m. but I really want to just go home. The radio is playing “She’s a lady”. Tom Jones can get on one’s nerves, Ya know? I’m sorry, I misspoke, ‘Uptown girl’ is much worse. Well, now the man with the big white dog has stopped to sit on the bench outside the window. This man never smiles and never acknowledges a nod of wave or salutation. Maybe he’s a deaf mute with limited vision. Maybe that’s really just an unruly seeing eye dog. Yes, and on top of that he’s spy. The whole thing is just a fa├žade. In real life he’s a friendly kind of guy. Not on the job though. (Never on the job.) Big white malmute kind of dog is now barking viciously and pulling the man off the bench. With his arm barely in the socket he follows the beast, as he must. Of course, it’s all in the plan. The woman with the little ball of fur on the end of her leash is actually a terrorist, which the hell beast is trained to sniff out. (Residues of stuff left behind from making bombs) They have all gone now. There’s nobody. Oh, there he’s goes again. The beast is dragging him back the way they came. The phone is ringing – oh thank god.

Back at home. So what city is this. Which capitol dome is the back referring to? AND What is KL's great grandpa doing with that axe?

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