Favorite Place 3: A Book

Self added Utopia to her reading list, just today.

She figures, any book that manages to remain in continuous print for 500 years is surely worth reading.

She took this picture in another favorite place: the Philosophy section of Gallery Bookshop in Mendocino. She’s sure Thomas More would have been tickled pink to know that a young writer named China Miéville, in the 21st century, would be introducing his book by writing about how much he influenced her.


Her reading list for spring and summer goes something like this:

  • Every Philip Pullman book written in the Dark Materials universe, starting with Volume One of his new trilogy The Book of Dust: La Belle Savauge
  • Homer’s Odyssey
  • Utopia

Yes, she is forsaking the contemporary, at least for now. Apologies about the heavy concentration on male writers. She’s on a quest to find books about islands, and she’s only just started her hunt. Women writers will appear, of course they will.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Favorite Place 2: Tyrone Guthrie Centre at Annaghmakerrig

This week’s Daily Post Photo Challenge is FAVORITE PLACE.

Cheri Lucas Rowlands: “This week, share an image of your happy place, a secret spot you love, or a faraway location you return to again and again.”

Regular readers of this blog already know what that place is!


No more beautiful place: Ireland in Spring


The Lawn in front of the Main House, Tyrone Guthrie Centre at Annaghmakerrig


Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

FAVORITE PLACE: The Daily Post Photo Challenge, 21 March 2018

  • This week, share an image of your happy place . . .  (Cheri Lucas Rowlands, The Daily Post, 21 March 2018)

Self’s favorite place is her imagination.

It’s a place where anything can happen: where porcupines turn into lizards, where a teenager carries a woman on his back from San Francisco to Los Angeles because the Apocalypse has happened and people need to stick together, where a taciturn sea captain is the only person who can save humanity from an invasion of creatures called Longnecks who suddenly appear in the Bering Sea.


Children’s Book: Found it in son’s room, a week ago.

Self’s stories may not sound happy, but she is most happy when she is writing.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.


“Worlds of Decay, Renewal Merge Unexpectedly”: Elegy for a City, San Francisco

  • Like a lot of people, I have mixed feelings about a walk in the city these days. The Sunday before, my companion and I had walked the streets of Washington, D.C. and marveled at how clean they were. On returning back home, it was clear how much of San Francisco was a mess, particularly downtown with its crowds of lost souls roaming filthy streets. — from Carl Nolte’s column, Native Son, in the San Francisco Chronicle, Sunday, 18 March 2018

Don’t ever try to walk (alone) from the Asian Art Museum to Powell. Don’t. Even if it’s broad daylight, you will be accosted by xxx panhandlers, and some will be quite aggressive. Just saying. That stretch of San Francisco feels like Detroit. Or like a Third World city. The decay is absolutely heartbreaking.

Self tried it once, last year. Every few steps, someone said something to her. Like running a gauntlet. Don’t reach for your wallet, don’t hesitate. Keep your earbuds in place. Keep walking.

If that’s what it’s like in the daytime, can you imagine what it’s like at night? Downtown San Francisco is not a woman-friendly city.

(And on the streets, there are Teslas. And Jaguars)

Stay tuned.

Art Speaks: Mary Rose Kaczorowski


“Redwood Mary” by Mary Rose Kaczorowski, Fort Bragg, CA

Self bought this card from one of her favorite bookshops: Gallery Bookshop in Mendocino.

The art is by Fort Bragg artist Mary Rose Kaczorowski.

The sentiment speaks to the current political climate, so self wanted to share.

Remember, #NeverAgainIsNow and #MarchForOurLives #March24


I’d Rather Be . . . On a Boat

San Pedro Marina, this morning. Just behind the forest of masts, the San Pedro Naval Shipyard, the largest shipyard self has ever seen.


San Pedro Marina, the Day After a Reading at Philippine Expressions Bookshop on W. Sixth Street, San Pedro

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Poetry Friday: San Francisco Native Son, Tony Robles

From Fingerprints of a Hunger Strike, by Tony Robles (San Francisco: Ithuriel’s Spear, 2017):

An Excerpt from Proud

City of St. Francis
I’m proud
Of being
Loved by you

And don’t worry,
I don’t hold that
Eviction against you

But it did come
As a surprise,
All wrapped in a
Gauze colored envelope

Just the way
It goes, I guess

I’d lived there
45 years, grew up
There, Mom’s died
There, at home,
Where she belonged

I got 60 days
To vacate

I’m proud
Of being loved
By you

And Mr. Fare Inspector,
I don’t got no ill feeling
Towards you for looking me
Up and down as though I
Were defective while you
Scrawled my life story on
That ticket you wrote me,
Legible only to a doctor or

I’m proud
Of being
Loved by you


Tony Robles’s Love/Hate Book About San Francisco Is Beautiful and Tragic

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

I’d Rather Be . . . : The Daily Post Photo Challenge, 14 March 2018



Backyard, Redwood City: 15 March 2018

About the Louvre’s Islamic Art Collection

A few weeks ago, self participated in The Daily Post’s Photo Challenge OUT OF THIS WORLD by posting pictures of the Islamic Art Collection at the Louvre, which she visited in May 2017.

Regular readers of this blog know that museums are self’s jam!



The Louvre’s Islamic Art Collection, which opened to the public in September 2012. Self visited in May 2017

The Louvre’s Islamic Art Collection is absolutely amazing.

Allan G. Smorra, whose blog self follows at Ohm Sweet Ohm left a comment. She didn’t have an answer for him (he asked who designed the space) and at the time she was too busy to look it up.

Today, freshly returned from AWP Tampa, and enjoying a few days’ rest before her next trip (to Long Beach, for a reading with other Pinay authors on Saturday, 17 March, at Philippine Expressions Bookshop in San Pedro), she decides to see if she can find out more about the Islamic Art Collection at the Louvre and found this link on the Louvre’s Official Home Page.

The space opened to the public in September 2012. The architects were Rudy Ricciotti and Mario Bellini. The videos explaining the choice are in French, so if you don’t speak French (like self), don’t get frustrated, you can see the accompanying text in English.

Browsing the page, self learns that the roof (which is the most amazing thing) “consists of a free-form lattice of steel tubes and glass” beneath “a gilded metal casing.”

Kudos, Messrs. Ricciotti and Bellini. Major kudos.

Stay tuned.

STORY 2: Visionary Art Museum, Baltimore

The baby of James Rouse, grandfather of actor Ed Norton, the Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore is dedicated to “outsider art” — people from all walks of life who feel an inner urge to create and just do, without the benefit of formal training. There’s art by diagnosed schizophrenics and insomniacs, nurses and postal workers — all kinds of people. It is a great museum.

Stan Wright’s sculpture is made out of telephone wire. It’s called First Dance. He gifted it to the Visionary Art Museum, and it is amazing.

  • “It’s so hard to communicate with words, that’s why I do it with my hands . . . ” –Stan Wright

Stan Wright, First Dance (Material Used: Telephone Wire)


Stan Wright, First Dance: A Closer View


Another Close-Up: All Hail, Visionary Art Museum, Champion of ‘Outsider Art’

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.


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