On the Way 2

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is ON THE WAY.

Share a shot of something you saw, did or experienced on the way: a photo not of your destination, but of an interesting thing along the way.

Bay Bridge Underbelly

Bay Bridge Underbelly, Heading West

Descending from self's unit in the Mendocino Art Center

Descending from self’s unit in the Mendocino Art Center

Through the Window of the Train to Chicago from Glenview

Through the (Tinted) Window of the Train to Chicago from Glenview, ILL

Stay tuned.

Motion: Buses, Planes, and Taxis

Capturing motion is a beautiful way to convey a story in a paragraph, sometimes even more so than a photo of the same subject in a stationary pose. — Jen H. for this week’s Daily Post Photo Challenge

Without further ado:

Crossing a Bridge Into Manhattan On the Bolt Bus From New Hampshire

Crossing a Bridge Into Manhattan On the Bolt Bus From New Hampshire: March 2015

Flying into Chicago, October 2014

Flying into Chicago, October 2014

Downtown Chicago, October 2014

Taxi Ride: Downtown Chicago, October 2014

New: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

This week’s WordPress Photo Challenge is, fittingly enough, NEW.

Hence this post is about 1) New Books 2) New Experiences and 3) A New Play

New additions to self’s personal bookshelf. The Neruda she bought in Venice Beach. By the Book was a Christmas present.

New Books for the New Year

New Books for the New Year

First Time to Visit Chicago in the Fall:

Downtown Chicago: October 2014

Downtown Chicago: October 2014

Caught the U.S. premiere of Abbie Spillane’s new play, the scorching Strandline, at Chicago’s A Red Orchid Theatre:

This Chicago theatre was founded 25 years ago by actor Michael Shannon.

This Chicago theatre was founded 25 years ago by actor Michael Shannon. It’s an intimate (not to say wee) space. The night self saw it was the first night of previews and most of the people in the audience were actors and actresses.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

 

Twinkle 2: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

The WordPress Daily Post Photo Challenge this week urges us to “share with us your photos of twinkling light.”

Here goes:

One of Hundreds of Christmas Ornaments Self Has Collected Over the Years

One of Hundreds of Christmas Ornaments Self Has Collected Over the Years

Another From Self's Collection of Tree Ornaments (None of them Match)

Another From Self’s Collection of Tree Ornaments (None of them Match)

And here’s a picture self took when she visited Chicago in October. It’s the interior of Mooh Dulce (2602 W. Fullerton Ave., Chicago), an art gallery which is also the site for America’s oldest Filipino American Theater Company (founded earlier even than Michael Shannon’s The Red Orchid Theater!), Circa Pintig. Much thanks to poet Angela Narciso Torres for hosting self in Chicago and taking her to see Conrad A. Panganiban’s collection of linked one-acts, Apat.

Waiting for Circa Pintig's Apat to begin: Chicago, Mooh Dulce Art Gallery, October 2014

Waiting for Circa Pintig’s Apat to begin: Mooh Dulce Art Gallery, Chicago, October 2014

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Angular: This Week’s WordPress Photo Challenge

From the “Angular” prompt, this week on the Daily Post Photo Challenge:

Angular might mean the corner on which you live or the intersection of sea and sky at a 180-degree angle. Angular also offers a chance to shoot from an entirely new perspective: from above, below, or even the margins of a fray.

Venice Beach, November 2014

Venice Beach, November 2014

Venice Beach Pier, November 2014

Venice Beach Pier, November 2014

Downtown Chicago, October 2014

Downtown Chicago, October 2014. The sky that day was fantastically blue. Only a week later:  FREEZING. Self took this shot from the plaza next to the Chicago Tribune building.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

Achievement 2: WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge

Angela's husband did this all himself! Oh, the joys of living in a place (Chicago) where Fall/Winter are real seasons.

Angela’s husband did this all himself! Oh, the joys of living in a place (Chicago) where Fall/Winter are real seasons.

Chris Pratt Overcame the Odds and Re-Invented Himself as a Hunk in "Guardians of the Galaxy" -- WOOT HOOT!!!

Chris Pratt overcame the odds and re-invented himself as a hunk in “Guardians of the Galaxy,” the popcorn movie of the summer — WOOT HOOT!!!

Connie and her son, Julian, after mass at San Gabriel church in southern California. Self has known Connie since she was in grade school. But she'd never met any other members of Connie's family until August 2014. Self would say meeting Connie's family was quite an achievement.

Connie and her son, Julian, after mass at San Gabriel church in southern California. Self has known Connie since she was in grade school. But she’d never met any other members of Connie’s family until August 2014, when she attended Sunday mass at Connie’s church. Meeting Connie’s son was EPIC.

 

 

Descent 4: Various Cities, 2014

Various Descents: Chicago, Dublin, Seattle

Plane landing, somewhere just outside Chicago:  October 2014

Plane landing, somewhere just outside Chicago: October 2014

Sign in the Irish National Gallery, Dublin:  June 2014

Sign in the Irish National Gallery, Dublin: June 2014

Downtown Seattle, During the AWP Conference:  February 2014

Downtown Seattle, During the AWP Conference: February 2014

Oh Chicago

Self is just back from Chicago. Weather was positively balmy, and self saw four plays:  “Apat” at Circa Pintig, “Animal Farm” at Steppenwolf, “Strandline” at A Red Orchid Theatre, and “Smokefall” at the Goodman.  BLISS.

Here she is with poet Angela Narciso Torres (Angela’s first book, Blood Orange, won the Willow Book Prize.  Angela is an editor of Rhino Magazine). We’re on the train headed downtown from Angela’s place in the suburbs.

BFFs with, by sheeir coincidence, almost the same shade of red lipstick!

BFFs with, by sheeir coincidence, almost the same shade of red lipstick!

Seeing Angela again in a few.  She’s giving a reading at Beyond Baroque in Venice Beach, this Sunday, Nov. 2. Can hardly wait.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

 

Cover Art: Halloween-Themed

“Remember you are back by nightfall. The sky looks bright but there is a shiver in the north wind that says there might be a sudden storm.  But I am sure you will not be late.” Here he smiled and added, “for you know what night it is.”

— from the Prologue to Dracula, by Bram Stoker

Do dear blog readers know that Bram Stoker was born in Dublin?

Self only found out when she was in Ireland, earlier this year.

Self is still in Angela’s home in Chicago.

One of the books she found here is Bram Stoker’s Dracula (Self found it in the room she has been staying in, the room belonging to Angela’s eldest, currenly an undergrad at USC)

Because this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge theme is COVER ART, here’s a picture of the book cover:

Cover Art:  DRACULA by Bram Stoker, Illustrated by Edward Gorey

Cover Art: DRACULA by Bram Stoker, Illustrated by Edward Gorey

And here’s a bit from the book’s Introduction, written by Marvin Kaye:

Dracula is a late flowering of gothic literature, with its formidable array of proud and iniquitous Counts, its ruined castles, its secrets; natural, supernatural, and unnatural.  Certainly, though its expression is more restrained, Stoker’s profane vision wells up from the same dark regions that spawned M. G. Lewis’s fallen Capuchin clergyman in The Monk. Analogies also can be drawn between Stoker’s three-century-old vampire and Charles Maturin’s soul-vampire, Melmoth the Wanderer. But Dracula is more than just a Gothic retread. It is the quintessential reworking and culmination of devices and techniques common to the subgenre of vampire fiction.

Vampire stories share common elements. Almost by definition, they must have an innocent victim or victims menaced by a predatory villain, though sometimes, as in J. Sheridan LeFanu’s novella Carmilla, the vampire is initially winsomely appealing.  The victims are typically numerous, though there is usually only one vampire. Dracula bends this latter convention, but not by much. The Count dominates the three “sister” vampires, just as he does the action.

Fascinating.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

 

Serendipitous: Philip Larkin, THE COMPLETE POEMS

It’s always the bookshelves self ends up perusing first, when she is staying with friends.

This is self’s first visit to Angela’s home, so of course the books are so enticing, an undiscovered country.

In the study, self’s eyes landed on a hardbound copy of The Complete Poems of Philip Larkin, whose poetry she only began to read very recently. While she was in Ireland, earlier this year.

She spends the morning perusing his Complete Poems. Here’s one:

Posterity

Jake Balokowsky, my biographer,
Has this page microfilmed. Sitting inside
His air-conditioned cell at Kennedy
In jeans and sneakers, he’s no call to hide
Some slight impatience with his destiny:
‘I’m stuck with this old fart at least a year;

I wanted to teach school in Tel Aviv,
But Myra’s folks’ — he makes the money sign —
‘Insisted I got tenure. When there’s kids — ‘
He shrugs. ‘It’s stinking dead, the research line;
Just let me put this bastard on the skids,
I’ll get a couple of semesters leave

To work on Protest Theatrer.’ They both rise,
Make for the Coke dispenser. ‘What’s he like?
Christ, I just told you. Oh, you know the thing,
That crummy textbook stuff from Freshman Psych,
Not out of kicks or something happening –
One of those old-type natural fouled-up guys.’

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

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