The Blinking Cursor blinks, and having blinked

    The Blinking Cursor blinks; and, having blinked,
    Moves on: unless your Piety or Wit
    Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
    Or your drink on the keys shorts out all of it

The curse of the blinking cursor. All those deep thoughts in traffic, gone. I do carry a notebook to write down great ideas, but in traffic? Forget it. Literally. And I dislike the sound of my own voice, so no dictaphone or something. Etc.

So I resort to another story about hypnotism.
Self-hypnosis, this time. I tried it last night, but I think I fell asleep during the relaxation phase. That’s the drawback of drinking three glasses of wine and then going to bed tired. All I remember is counting backwards from a hundred to about 80 or so. And now whenever anyone says “dystopia” I dance the Bump with whomever’s handy.

Zen tale

A paperboy was delivering his papers early one dewy, pristine morning on his route in Las Vegas when one got stuck in a bush outside a big house where these two guys lived. He sighed and got off his bike and climbed the fence and using a stick dislodged the newspaper from what he now realized was not a bush, but a smallish catalpa tree. Then he looked up and saw a large white tiger bounding across the huge lawn in his direction. He reacted quickly and took off running in the other direction until he came to the back fence, where the yard ended at the brink of a cliff. It was jump or be eaten so he jumped.
On his way down, he managed to catch hold of a small juniper bush growing on the otherwise sheer face of the cliff. Looking up, he saw the white tiger snarling down at him, growling a low growl. Looking down, he noticed a second tiger on the ground below, pacing back and forth, waiting for him to drop.
Looking to his left, he noticed a pack of cigarettes someone had lost. Looking to his right, he noticed a glass of gin. His first impulse was one of grief, because although he could hang there from the bush with just one hand, that left only one – he would have to choose between the cigarette and the gin.
Carefully, he got the cigarettes open with his now-free hand, got a smoke out and lit it with the lighter from his pocket. Then he realized that, with that action complete, he could drink the gin as well, dangling the cigarette from his lip. The smoke got in his eyes a little, but that was nothing compared to two tigers.


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Originally posted back in January 2004.

Posted in The Bug



Someone asked me how I would describe myself and I couldn’t think of anything beyond size and weight and hair color. This morning I was hanging out with Gamma and she said, Dad, if your hair were black and your teeth were just a little sharper, you’d look like a vampire. Thanks honey, I said.

How would you describe yourself?

Siliqua patula

razxrclxm.jpgThe razor clam (Siliqua patula) is an important bivalve mollusk harvested extensively throughout its range by commercial and sport fisheries.

When we were little my parents often took us to the Oregon coast clamdigging but we never wandered off and eventually they gave up.

I remember how tasty the flesh of razor clams is, fried up with scrambled eggs and breadcrumbs and eaten with ketchup in a weathered, minimalistic, little rented cabin. I remember how grey the sky was and how our dog liked running around the beach.

My uncle cut his hand on a razor clam once, badly, requiring stitches, so ever since then, when I hear “razor clam” I think of something sharp.

Also, they burrow fast, so when you’re digging them you have to be quick with your clam shovel. And they close down tight, being clams.

The act of clamming up has been on my mind lately. I find myself doing it, in response to various stimuli: shutting down tight, both inwardly and outwardly, buried deeply in the sand. It is an old, patterned, automatic response. I’m trying to think of something better to do, as it takes a long time to open back up again, and I’m not getting any younger.

Maybe it’s the third possibility, in addition to fight or flight; clamming up. But what I’m thinking, if there’s a third possibility, maybe there’s a fourth possibility. And a fifth. And a sixth. Fight, flight, clamming up, playing dead, changing color. Flaring neck frill. What else?
Which do you prefer?


Bulletin: a flaw has been identified in a piece of cutting-edge feline technology. The rubber welcome mat, which C., our researcher at Mig’s house recently discovered could be used to knock against the front door to gain entry at all hours of the night by picking up the edge and letting it flip down against the door, ad absurdum, nauseum et infinitum until someone inside gives up, crawls out of bed and opens said door, can be moved a foot away from the door by a human, thus rendering it ineffective as a knocking device.

Top feline scientists are examining possible solutions. Until one is found, we suggest resorting to Plan B, meowing and meowing and meowing.

Simple pleasures

Totally inane maybe, but this gives me a good feeling.