Friday, October 28, 2005

Leaf Blowing

"What is that noise?" the professor asks with irritation, as if the sound from the buzzing motor beyond the open window is conspiring against her alone.

"It's a leaf blower." I say.

"My word,” her head pushing through the window—glaring, searching for the person responsible for her annoyance “what an awful noise. Can you imagine being a leaf blower? Wouldn't that be an awful job?"

"I've been a gardener," I say strategically cheerful, "it was quite fun actually, especially at this time of year when we'd rake the leaves in great big piles. I wore the blower on my back all day long--getting lost in that hum--quite hypnotic really. A wonderful job," I assert again.

"Hmm, maybe so." She pouts.

I turn my blue collar up and walk away, off to the copy room to run her copies.


Andy and I walked to down the street to Fred Meyer in the dark last night. He’s reading C.S. Lewis’s space trilogy which unfortunately I haven’t had the pleasure of reading yet, but have been meaning to pick up for some years now. He told me about this one part in the book where the main character is pushed through a portal or lands on a different planet…however he got there, it was a completely new place, one in which he had no points of reference or experience with the objects there. In this uniquely unfamiliar place, language was a useless tool in describing it. And where language breaks down, so to does our ability to differentiate between objects. The only thing the character could perceive in this new world was the movement of colors.

Walking into the soft neon light of Freddy’s, I blurred my vision and tried to only perceive color. It didn’t work all that well. My mind kept saying in English: Rice A-Roni, Swanson, tile, wine, person, fish, meat, cereal.

Thursday, October 27, 2005


I have come down with something. I went to the doctor. He diagnosed me with writers block--Avian writers block. I sneezed. He told me to try list therapy. "Wash it down with a spoon full of sugar," he tells me. Medicine: here it goes.


This summer I had a pet spider name Shelob. She was the daughter of Regina, the spider that made her home in my coffee tree plant the summer before. Shelob made her home on a web in the kitchen window just to the right of my computer monitor. She was a cute but scrawny thing in the spring. I'd stoke her chin and say things like, goochi goochi goo goo, and she'd laugh, her back four legs shacking--her venom sack wagged.

As spring turned to summer and summer into the harvest, I started noticing that my window sill looked like the floor of a bank after a robbery gone horribly wrong. There were dead bodies strewn all over the place and little bullet cases all around. I spent one afternoon, I remember, outlining the bodies with chalk.

Then, for a while, I didn't see Shelob. Then one day, I did. She was enormous. All bloated and blotchy. She looked like a buffet restaurant patron. Her appearance frightened the shit out of me so I got a bottle of ammonia and squirt about four liters of it on her. Looking back, that was probably a horrible way to treat a pet.


I'm listening to Chris Thile. Irishy folk music. Check him out.


The period was an old maid. She liked to play yahoo chess locked in her room on Friday nights and none of the boys ever looked at her, mostly because she never left the house. The semi colon was so misunderstood. She wore black rimmed glasses and drank patchouli flavored lattes. The colon had trouble relating to other women, finding it easier to scratch, bite or punch them. She wore overalls with bare, yellow and dirt colored, feet. The exclamation mark got all the guys. When she went out she wore a red dress with spaghetti straps. When she stayed home she made peanut butter and jelly sandwiches with creamy peanut butter and strawberry jam so that the jelly oozed over the crust.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Waking Life

I'm at work. It is 3:27 PM. I recieve an email that suggest that by twenty-oh-seven, scientist might crack open the god particle. A particle that is three levels beneath a lepton. This particle could explain the mystery of mass.

I try to wrap my mind around a scale that small. It makes my face burn and my ears pop.

A professor walks in the office. "Can I get the keys to the promotion room, please?"

My mind is fluctuating at a quatum level. The promotion room? Keys? I ask myself. That sounds like a very mysterious place. I wonder, what is in that room? I have the keys to such a place? The thought occurs to me to hide out in the office tonight and then when the janitors leave, sneak into the promotion room and explore. I almost get the bends as my mind rises to surface level consciousness and I'm suddenly aware of handing the professor the keys.

I realize I am having internal dialogue, and only now do I realize that I've opened blogger and recorded it all.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Whoa, Dude.

It is frustrating sometimes, a lot of the times, having a human brain. Oh yes, as far as humans are concerned, our brains are the most powerful and mysterious thing in the entire universe, but there in lies my frustration. I can conceive of a better, more powerful brain; of something more mysterious than my own mind, of a beauty that dwarves my greatest imaginings. I can almost touch it. I can sense it floating a few nanometers above the crinkles of my cerebral cortex.

It is morning and I’ve decided to skip class--again. I went through a passage in Hebrews this morning with pastor Dave concerning a high priest named Melchizedek. When that was done, I made some coffee and read about robots. Now it’s 8AM.

Melchizedek. Robots.

Andy was telling me about these guys on the radio the other night that had a theory about oil. They said we’ve been looking at the stuff all wrong this whole time. It isn’t that oil is dead stuff liquefied, but well, actually, it’s a mystery. We don‘t really understand what oil is precisely, just theoretically. According to the numbers scribbled on their notepads, oil is like water, it’s just here, and the earth is filled with the stuff. What is water really? Whoa. Dude. That’s kinda strange, nobody ever told me that the definition of oil was still up for grabs.

And in this class I’m skipping this morning, it is a writing class, the topic being death and love/sex, we’re discussing sex, in a circle, looking at each other. I’m stuck. I know about as much about sex as I know about oil. I know we all use it, and it is pleasurable and all that jazz but what is it really? If I can’t even wrap my head around water how can I add any insight to a group discussion about something as curious as sex? I’m listening. The conversation yesterday got bogged down by talk of lingerie and blow jobs and liberation and revolution--leaded and unleaded. Yes but WHAT is it? Something big seemed to be missing from the conversation, and it was hanging in the room, in the eleventh dimension.

It is that something that I’m really after, the source of all knowledge. Melchizedek and robots. God and technology. God.

Friday, October 14, 2005


There is a tune that enters my mind
after intervals of time
and then exits as a whistle on my lips.
What song it is or where it comes from
I do not know.
It is slow, and sad, and forgetting--
Lost after one time through.
It possesses me for a short time
then wanders away, leaving me wondering.
Such things as these, I believe, are gifts from heaven
A present tied with a silver bow.
Maybe it's just one line from a symphony
I'll play one day in heaven.
Or a seed planted in my heart,
That has just begun to grow.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

The Adventures of A Former Male House Keeper

The theme song from Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon has been floating in my head like a soap bubble today, bouncing off my brain, making me sway like a drunken master, like a warriors silk robe. The trees are shedding their leaves giving the whole landscape a sad but beautiful ambiance.


I loosen my sword in the hilt and tip toe, in my moccasins, over the wet pavement. My robe is clinging to me, water is dripping from my nose and chin and fingertips. I cross into the muddy plains of the park. It is still and silent except for the beat of the falling rain. Dum da-da--da-da Dum Dum. Dum da-da--da-da Dum Dum. The Maple stands between me and the path home. His coat of orange-red leaves has all but disappeared except for near the trunk. The leaves are as smoldering fire against the shadow of soaked branches. He wields the elements, strengthened by the spirit of the season. I approach cautiously with my hand on my sword.

“The way is blocked human!” His voice is like a mighty wind through forests.

“Step aside Demon, I am no human. I am Ramandu, spirit monk--slayer of those things foul and wicked. Be warned.”

He heaves insults and vile laughter at me. His barked skin begins to swirl creating a vortex of energy. From the middle of the energy cloud I see a demon in the form of a faun. He has a pointed beard and pointed ears. “Your powerless against my Will, fool.” he hisses. He dissipates into a moist cloud and disappears leaving behind only evil laughter.

Faster than thought, larger than a man, the mist materializes before me,a cunning trick from the shape-shifting enemy. He strikes. In one move of pure harmony, I unsheathe my katana, lay waste to the forces of darkness and sheathe my sword again. The heavens loosen the clouds and the mud around me beats: Dum da-da--da-da Dum Dum. Light radiates from me as I bow in the mud of the park.

I am Ramandu, the spirit monk. The path is now open.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Did You See That One Part?

We got rabbit ears for our television. That is an antenna. It's been three years with out watching TV! With all that free time, my IQ has probably went up 50 points, meaning I'd almost be of average intelligence 100 years ago--maybe a little below average actually.

Andy and I are addicted to TV already and the really funny part is we only get four channels and one of them is Chinese half the time. And the reception is pretty crappy. But we are still addicted. I find myself watching Perry Mason, Becker, and bad Canadian soap operas. The best show on that I've seen yet is the new Family Feud with Al from Home Improvement.

The thing about a TV story is that it is always lame and you always have to end with: it was so funny. You should have seen it. If your not a TV watcher those stories are pretty unfunny. Ok so here is my TV story. I was watching the Feud and one of the questions was, "Name something that requires constant maintenance." This teenage dude, a real baby faced sort of guy, got all nervous, you know, because his family had two strikes against him, and he blurts out "facial hair."

Another funny one was when a woman from the other family said that she "showered". The question was, "What do you do when your bored at home?"

It was so funny. You should have seen it.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Hi-Ho Hadario

Dreams are the illustrations before chapters in a book. If my dream last night were to precede a chapter, it would be a little wood block print at the top of the page and underneath it, like a secret, lonely, lake of ink surrounded by plains of pulp, the chapter number with a simple period after it. The picture would be of a man skating in socks over polished marble. He’d be weaving between two women carrying shopping bags. He’d have a boyish smile and upside down curving slits for eyes. The women would look very incensed at the tomatoes, baguette, and tin toy robot, bouncing out of their bags in the excitement. What a wonderful image to start my day, my chapter.

I recently met a co-worker of mine and we asked the usual questions students ask each other, what are you studying? what do you want to be when you grow up? So I asked this girl what she was interested in and it turns out she is studying French. Cool. “What are you going to do with that?” I asked, as if speaking it isn’t enough. She told me that she’s a sophomore and that she’s going to double major in French and Anthropology and then go on and get her masters, her PhD, join the peace corps, and then teach poor kids in French speaking Africa. “What about you?” she asked. “Me. Hmm.” A squirrel caught my attention in the woods and I spaced out for a second imagining what a fantastic life he must have, forging for acorns in the dumpsters and finding instead, corn dog sticks and greasy paper plates incrusted with rubbery cheese barnacles, and cardboard cups with sugary puddles of milks at the bottom. “I’m not sure actually. I'm blown away by today.” She looked at me like I was a serial killer, or maybe more like I was a weirdo shoving Funions and ranch dip in my mouth while wearing a cape and nothing else-- except suspenders--and ski pants--and a Gap sweater…and a chicken-mascot head dress. That was the end our conversation.

I was going through the book of James this morning and came up on chapter 4 verse 13: You who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.


There is also that grasshopper and the ant parable that warns about fools who waste away their days. Not having a plan is surely foolish, and yet thinking that the future is a real thing seems to be a mistake. I am attacking this from all angles but some how am missing the mark. Let me try one more time.

Give us this DAY our DAILY bread. Amen.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Windows 2007

I doubt this idea is original and that's why I don't hesitated to share it hear on blogger. My avatar, Wu Li the Lotus Blossom, was walking around the wooded paths and flowery glens of Jade Empire, getting in kung fu fights and manipulating chi magic, and I was sitting in my chair here in regular old Bellingham, Washington, United States, North America, Earth, Sol's systems, Milkyway Galaxy, Corner of the Universe, and I was teary eyed not only from the hours I'd spent staring at neon vacuum tubes but also because of the reverence this beautiful computer generated fantasy world was creating in my heart. I turned off the game and took a shot of Saki and ate a bit of fish and rice with chop sticks and then headed down to my secret basement lab and grabbed a huge piece of thick chalk. My hands were receiving signals from my unconscious mind or from Alpha Centari and I began furiously scribbling on the blackboard. When I came to, I was aware that I was lounging in a tiny desk chair with grains of rice crusted in the corners of my mouth and polka dots of tear splashes on my chalk covered jeans. Before me on the board were the plans for windows 2007. A three dimensional world like Jade Empire that one could navigate not with a mouse but with a video game controller. I discovered that instead of moving a mouse arrow over a two dimensional field like pong, my design allowed one to store and retrieve information in a three dimensional virtual space. One could bury secret files in a treasure chest on a distant island or conveniently, on their virtual desktop. And everyone's computer would be hooked together to create one huge universe. I cried at the beauty of it and then went up stairs and have made myself a cheese sandwich and now I am typing.

Book Suggestions

What an awesome technology language and writing is. Especially when carved or inked on scrolls, rock tablets, or in the pages of books. It transcends cell phones, life extension, time travel. How I'd love to meet that first human author when he got that mad desire to look at his thoughts in physical form. To share them with niegbors, with offspring. A true Alchemist! The first mad scientist!

With that reverence out of the way, I'd like to recommend two books in particular that are worth checking out.

1) G.K.Chesterton's, Orthodoxy. I won't give a synapses of the book but I will say that his common sense approach to thought is invigorating. It has given me a confidence in my beliefs that for years I have questioned in the shadows of my modernist college professors.

2)Donald Miller's, Blue Like Jazz. I just saw him read from his book at Western the other night. He blew me away with not only his writing style but his wisdom. He writes about Christian spirituality with a voice that rings true with our generation. I implore you to check out his book.