Duh me

Somewhere in my heart I nurtured the hope that Bush and his cronies could someday have to answer for their crimes, until I read this.

Maybe he’ll be shot trying to escape

Boy, after Saddam Hussein is turned over to the new, democratic Iraqi government, wouldn’t that suck if he were rehabilitated and elected president?

Also, I have a question, since I do not have a television and have only read about the event: when “President” Bush II made his “Mission Accomplished” appearance on that aircraft carrier a year ago, he climbed out of that airplane, right? Was he represented as actually having piloted it himself, or was it clear that he was merely a passenger? Because his security guys wouldn’t really let him actually fly an airplane, would they?


The week before last, on Sunday, in downtown Vienna, on the Graben, down a few doors from Demel’s coffeehouse/restaurant, a woman I was talking to hiked her skirt up to show me a large bruise on her thigh. She showed me others on her arm, etc. They were from luggage and furniture. She bruises easily, she told me, so doctor visits are sometimes awkward because she has to convince them she is not in an abusive relationship.

The next day, another woman told me she bruised easily and showed me one on her hip, from a computer table.

It made me wonder whether I had developed some new variety of charisma. Or whether this was a result of using deodorant (normally I am reluctant to use such products as they make my armpits itch. But this one I have now is quite pleasant, much to everyone’s probable relief).

The next day, though, my poor wife gave herself a large knot over the left eye when she tried to run through the bathroom door to see what time it was in case she was late, and the door swang shut and she hit it edge-on. Turns out she has a concussion and needs bed rest.

That was a week ago today. Last night, we were sitting out on the terrace enjoying the evening. Talking about how she needs to go in for some sort of a scan as an old whiplash injury of hers seems to be acting up, when a small green peach, hard as a stone and about the size of a full-sized apricot and traveling very fast, hit her in the right cheekbone just under her eye. She felt lucky, because it missed her glasses.

I expected her to have a black eye today, but she looked okay. Still, though. Poor woman.

We explained to the boys playing in the neighbor’s backyard (their grandsons) what had happened, but they just shrugged and blamed the neighbor girl. So my wife called their grandmother and explained, and the grandmother went out into the backyard and bitched at them.


The cello class at the music school is having a recital tonight. My teacher encouraged me to participate, so I said okay. Sometimes it’s good to do something you rather wouldn’t just for a little variety.
I plan to play a piece by some French composer, a duet for piano and cello.
I had exactly one practice with the woman who’ll be playing the piano – she’s a teacher at the school and often accompanies students when they play, and is good at covering up their mistakes, adapting to their accidental changes in tempo, etc. I asked her how my intonation was, and she said “fine, and it’s a dissonant piece anyway.” So I guess if I make any mistakes, it could possibly sound as if they were intentional. Half the time when I play it, I do fine. So there’s a 50:50 chance it will go well, and even if it doesn’t, there’s a 50:50 chance no one will notice.
She does, however, play the piece twice as fast as I am used to playing it. Over the weekend I practiced with a metronome set pretty fast, and did okay, so I’ll probably be fine.
This is my first recital in 38 years, I think. Last time was Mrs. Baird’s (or whatever her name was – she was about 100 years old at the time, if I remember, so that’d make her 138 now, probably still patiently teaching kids their scales in her little house in town with the blue hydrangeas around the porch).
A year or two ago I accompanied a recorder ensemble at their recital. It was uncomfortable. I developed a sort of tunnel vision so narrow I could barely see my notes, and when we were finished all I wanted was to get the hell out of there.

Mini me

Gamma had a visitor Saturday morning, a little boy she knows from nursery school. We will call him A. He is a husky little blond guy into normal boy things such as swords and suspending himself by the armpits between two chairs (his arms hooked over the chair arms) and simultaneously making running motions with his legs, which apparently gives him a little stimulation. I think this because his parents find it embarassing when he does it in front of company, not because I’ve tried it yet.

We were in the back yard and the little perv climbed the fence to peek through the slats at the neighbor lady hanging laundry behind her house. “A., dude, get off that fence, it’s more ornamental than anything, you’ll knock it down,” I said to him in English. He seemed a little surprised. “I don’t speak English,” he said, in German.

I knew that. I was just saying something while I decided what to really say to him, because I figured I shouldn’t say the first thing that had occurred to me, which was, “dude, get into the house, the view’s much better from our library window.”

Later, he, Gamma and I waited in the car at the train station to pick up Beta on her way home from school. He was checking out all the girls. “Here come the girls,” he said. “There’s four right now. None of them’s Beta, though,” he said.

“Don’t you just love the warm weather, when they put on their summer dresses,” I felt like saying.

“There’s some more,” he said.

It reminded me of when I was five, and our first trip to Hawaii, which I looked forward to because of, dude, stewardesses and bikinis.


They say history repeats itself, like what does it think we are deaf or something, first as a romantic comedy and then as an action movie I think.

I remember trying to debate kids when I was in junior high, stupid twats who thought Nixon was the man. Today Beta came home and told me about an exchange student who visited her school today. He was a nice kid from Louisiana, she said, until they got onto the subject of the current tenant of the White House (note for readers from the future: that means George W. Bush, hard to imagine isn’t it).

The poor boy had been indoctrinated, (probably by his dad while trapped in the car with him on the way to school every morning) because he spouted all the blah-blah liberating the Iraqis this and cutting taxes that. Beta gave him his money’s worth (not that I’d ever brag about my kids). So she went all deficit/warpresident?AWOL/etc on his ass. I don’t understand the people currently calling themselves “Conservatives” in the US (who BigTimePatriot compares to the Vichy French). They’re not conservative at all, they’re among the most radical people I know.

There was more I wanted to say about this but it’s late and I have to get to bed; sometimes, I wanted to say, sometimes I fear I get a black-and-white view of politics, living outside the country like this, jumping to conclusions with a minimum of news. Then I think, what people get from the media in the States isn’t always news either, it’s attitude, or spin, or simple propaganda. This phenomena isn’t limited to the States, you’ll get it anywhere in different degrees; the shit-to-news ratio probably varies in relation to the level of totalitarianism in the country, I’d think. Like, North Korea: not much news. Sweden, Ireland and other nice countries like that: mostly news. US, somewhere in the middle, moving gradually towards the totalitarian end of the spectrum since the end of the Cold War, thanks Ronnie for driving that bulldozer and personally tearing down the wall. Or was it a concentration camp he liberated, I mix those up.

All you need

Is love. Love is all you need.

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