TRANSIENT 2: AT SFMOMA

Went for the Edvard Munch exhibit. Stayed to view the permanent collection. Forgot about Gay Pride and got stuck in the hugest traffic jam. At least, got to see the mayhem starting.

While taking a coffee break at SFMOMA, she shared her little table with a young woman from Japan named Yoshie Yam. It turned out we both love traveling. Love, love, love traveling. So, self chooses to begin her second post on The Daily Post’s weekly photo challenge, TRANSIENT, with this, our little table at the SFMOMA Coffeeshop:

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Coffee break at SFMOMA, after seeing the Edvard Munch exhibit

On the second floor of the SFMOMA is this huge black-and-white photo. Not quite sure about the decade. 1960s? Which reminds self, it is the 50th anniversary of San Francisco’s Summer of Love! There’s an exhibit commemorating the anniversary at the de Young. Self wanted to go today, but was put off by the traffic that always surrounds Gay Pride Day:

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Finally, the Munch exhibit, the one that self drove all the way to San Francisco to see. The paintings are striking, powerful, disorienting. The one below is one of the largest. It’s called “The Dance of Life.” The men are already turning into ghouls:

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Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

BATH: Magnificent Order

And self does mean magnificent.

The Royal Crescent in Bath takes her breath away. Even after seeing it for the third or fourth time.

The shape is an ellipsis cut in half. Who thought of this curved shape? So perfect. It’s almost mystical.

The architect (whose name self immediately forgot) was inspired, according to the guide on the walking tour, by the Roman Coliseum (which is itself elliptical. Really? Self never knew!)

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Royal Crescent

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Royal Crescent No. 1 (Royal Crescent Museum): Self is so happy that this woman came out of the entrance just as self was getting ready to take this shot.

Self had been on the Grand Parade, many times. But she never looked over the bridge to the river below. She finally did, yesterday, and — GAH! Rapids! Who would have thought?

Only after looking at the river for several moments did she realize that the gulls were walking on the edge of the top rapids. Grand illusion! And there are kayaks over there!

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The River Avon from the Grand Parade

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

#amreading: About the Frog Who Turns Out to Be Something Else Trope

  • . . .  there is another very ancient Hindu legend, wherein Bheki, the frog, is a beautiful maiden who consents to wed a King on the extraordinary condition that he shall never show her a drop of water. Being faint, on one occasion, she is said to have asked for water, and he thoughtlessly giving her some, she immediately disappeared.

— Sax Rohmer, The Romance of Sorcery

“First Causes” Quarterly West, Issue # 89

Read it at Sixth Engine in Washington DC, at a group reading organized by Quarterly West in conjunction with AWP February 2017. The editors took a chance with this one, it’s all fractured syntax and stars a professor named Fire Lizard. Self is writing a sequel right now.

What a blast:

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Quarterly West reading at Sixth Engine, Washington DC, February 2017

Discussion of the First Corollary: What is average is perfect. Thoughts dark as dark. Big arguing with her. But but but. Her winking at me behind his back. Me thinking: sunlight and glass.

#amreading: About Fairy Wives

  • In the legends and folk stories of nearly all countries, we find the enchanted-spouse motif occurring again and again, and some very curious parallels exist between such fables of the East and of the West; so that the idea of the fairy wife would appear to be common to all peoples, or traceable to some parent legend of remote antiquity.

— Sax Rohmer, The Romance of Sorcery

Friends, Self Will Be Home Soon!

Missing home and friends and familiar places:

  • The beach at Capitola
  • Highway 101 on the northbound approach to San Francisco
  • The sculpture garden in the de Young Museum
  • More Capitola beaches

Stay tuned.

Last Moments of the Trip With Irene: Evanescent 4

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Self with her usual gear: The book she’s reading is the novel THIS IS YOUR LIFE, HARRIET CHANCE!

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A Woman stares out into the gardens of the Chateau de Vaux-le-Vicomte. Woman stood there so long that self got tired of waiting for her to move and made her a part of the picture.

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Mementos of a Trip, Never To Be Forgotten: Paris, May 2017

 

Heritage 2: Film Maven, Paris While Cannes

Self was last here in 2012.  She’s declined every opportunity to return, until now.

Look what she encountered around the corner: a film festival running in conjunction with Cannes. The movies are in English, with French subtitles. Perfect.

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Her Dear Departed Dad worshipped Orson Welles, and movies in general. He passed on this HERITAGE to self.

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Self didn’t know until today that it is the 70th anniversary of the Cannes Film Festival:

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Self is a film nut. She takes advantage of every opportunity to attend film festivals, wherever in the world she happens to be: Edinburgh; Ojai, California; Cork, Ireland; Palo Alto; San Francisco.

One day, perhaps, she’ll write a script based on one of her stories.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

#amreading: Kristin Dimitrova

Self has read this collection before: it’s in the Blue Room of Café Pardiso.

An Old Mesopotamian Legend About Gilgamesh, King of Uruk, Who Wanted to Become Immortal

— by Kristin Dimitrova

Wanted to;
could not.

— from Dimitrova’s collection A Visit to the Clockmaker (Southward Editions, 2005), translated from the Bulgarian by Gregory O’Donoghue

George Washington: First POTUS

This spring, self began reading a series of histories, starting with Francis Parkman’s Montcalm and Wolfe: The Decline and Fall of the French Empire in North America.

She really enjoyed that book, which gave reader’s glimpses of the very young George Washington (21 years old) in his first combat experience. Throughout the book, there were other glimpses. Finally, by the end of the book, self could not believe how much this young man had grown and flourished. Even though he wasn’t the main subject of the book, and was still only in his 20s by the time the events the book narrated were over, he showed himself to be a natural leader.

Now, months later, self has just begun reading The Oregon Trail: A New American Journey, by Rinker Buck. On p. 30, she reads Buck’s opinion of Parkman: “a notoriously snobbish Boston Brahmin.” Okaaaay. He also says George Washington “worked the same day job as Donald Trump” — he was a “land developer . . .  described as the richest of his generation.” (p. 32)

But, one interesting fact about Washington was that he was so practical, he saw right away the usefulness of mules as farm and/or pack animals, and he immediately began to breed them, and he even “advertised in the Pennsylvania and Virginia newspapers . . . the services of his jacks, who made long breeding tours throughout the . . .  colonies and the new frontier states every year . . . The early descendants of the Mount Vernon stock — tall, drafty, and weighing between a thousand and 1,200 pounds . . . ” (which is 10 x what self weighs, and she can’t imagine having to deal with anything that weighs 10 x as much as her — it would be so devastating an encounter, probably as bad as an encounter with a grizzly) were initially called American Mammoth mules . . .

So there’s our first President for you — a natural leader, a practical man, one who propagated the west with American mammoth mules, and self would never have known if she hadn’t read Rinker Buck.

That is why reading is so important, etc etc

Wonder what SCROTUS reads? Sorry, but self cannot help comparing # 1 and # 45 and feeling that there is a yawning gulf . . .

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

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