Sunday, August 07, 2022


Social media can be a wonderful thing. Or not. The three short paragraphs below are sequential in reverse order, and linked only by authorship -- my thoughts at various stages of coffee since coming home -- not by narrative connection, place, or logical consequence. Please feel free to read them as three different gentlemen, possibly deaf old coots, sitting in the drafty smoking room of a private club waiting for someone to bring them their sherry.

They say things because they saw someone's mouth moving, and don't wish to seem impolite by not reacting. But the content of the other person's utterance escaped them.

"Sometimes Cornell & Diehl hit it out of the ballpark. I have made sure that I have enough Anthology to enjoy it in the future, stashing eight sealed tins besides dipping into an open one. But the tin note of Limburger cheese still hits me when I rub out a bowl. I guess that's what everyone else calls 'bready' or 'yeasty'. Maybe bakers need to use Lotrimin and Desenex more often?"

"Apparently those were either "spreading civilization and culture to the natives, the benefits of the modern world and all that", OR "sound business decisions" (and the extermination of the population of Banda in 1621 DID NOT HAPPEN! Neither did the puputans of Badung and Klungkung! Stop listening to those anti-Dutch speakers! They're all Belgian!). And I've been reliably told by fellow Dutch speakers who weren't American citizens that what we Yanks did to Hiroshima and Nagasaki and Vietnam and the Native Americans was so much worse that, as a 'jenkie' I should keep my mouth shut and slink away quietly. Never-the-less, Dutch is an eloquent and mellifluous language, which as A.Y.W. would surely agree, is precisely like pure whispers of God's angels (geheel gelijk de pure fluisteringen van God's engeltjes)."

"Everytime I return from Marin, the turkey vulture demands to know why I haven't brought back some fatty inner thighs for him to feast on. I have explained that all the thighs there are scrawny and lean, the bony athletic legs of fit, trim bicyclists and runners, not a yoga practitioner in the bunch."

In actual fact, the conversation in the back room today consisted of Arizona Slim and R. The Subcontinental arguing pointlessly for well over in hour about gender dysphoria, gender reassignment, and Alex Jones. It's a "conversation" they've had three times in the past few days, while watching paint dry on teevee (golf). R. The Subcontinental is Punjabi. This is relevant because when Punjabis are bored, they'll start some sh*t or stir up a hornets' nest. Nothing like a good pointless screaming match to get the ghee in their veins going again, or the stomach juices flowing. It's good for digestion, makes them feel alive.
I worked with Punjabis for several years at a local restaurant.

That whole ghastly mess at partition with five million dead? Probably a fellow from Jullunder told another fellow "sab Lahawr-main bakri-chot hain" (something about goats - you probably have to a Punjabi or a Rotterdammer to 'get it').

All elements in their exchange were repetitions of things they've expressed hundreds of times, nearly everytime they've been in the same room. Both of them are, often, like one imagines a dose of the clap to be if untreated. Constant burning and intense irritation.

I am an extremely tolerant man. Patient and forbearing.
Damned well saintly. A veritable paragon.
An embodiment of civilization.

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