[lit-ideas] Re: Sunday Poem

  • From: david ritchie <ritchierd@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Mon, 16 Jan 2006 21:10:25 -0800

I want to thank all of you who said good things about this weekend's poems.

I wish I could encourage you all equally, but Scots are banned by Presbyterian edict from giving anyone hope. We are all but motes in the eye of the smallest sparrow and to hope that one or another amongst us should have the smallest success is to tempt Fate. If only people would listen to the soundtrack now and then, we'd have a few more survivors, but as it is, boats go out and no matter how much twisting of scarves goes on, the proceedings remain as inscrutable as ever. It's a hard life, lifting seaweed from the shore and scrabbling for fish, looking out for a word full of vowels, or just a place to grow a decent potato, but on this hard bare earth we are given but hints of associate professorships or lottery wins, and a hint of a lottery win isn't much use.

But we take heart from understanding that the cleanness of an aquarium isn't so hard to manage. Ick was tough. It meant replacing half the water every day and siphoning like there was gold at the bottom of the gravel, but since then we have put back the charcoal filter and crystal clean has been the order of the day. We have also discovered that goldfish food is way more popular than serious aquarium food. SAF sinks to the bottom in mouth-sized bombs, there to lie and rot. Goldfish food, on the other hand, sits like candy on the surface and drives all the fish wild. It could be that days from now we will pay the price of not giving our fish sufficiently serious food, but in the meantime everyone seems happy and spry.

Where was I on Sunday? Buying dresses and assessing damage. One daughter wanted a dress for a dance that has a Greek theme. I suggested she go as one of those soldiers who wears the fluffy- waisted outfit, very Renaissance, but she wanted no hint of transvestite behavior. So we went from place to place and learned that this is not the season for dresses. I think it must be hunters that we should blame, "Stop all that sewing of wispy frilly stuff and turn your machines over to camo. Dresses can resume once the deer are dead."

We were minding our own business in the Lloyd Center parking lot when, despite my best honking, students from Willamette University decided to back a college van into the driver's side rear door of the SAAB. Today the news on the damage is that a door costs about $1100. By the time they've painted it and primped themselves, we're talking about $2400. I decided to e-mail the highest financial officer at Willamette I could find on their website, signing myself "Professor." He immediately responded, with e-mails to all subordinates, requiring that they respond by day's end. I was impressed. This is clearly the sort of thing that makes studying for umpteen years worthwhile.

Within hours I had a referral to Roosevelt Whisenant of the Traveler's Insurance Company... who didn't return my phone call.

But we did get a dress.

David Ritchie
Portland, Oregon
To change your Lit-Ideas settings (subscribe/unsub, vacation on/off,
digest on/off), visit www.andreas.com/faq-lit-ideas.html

Other related posts: