Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

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Like my brownhouse:
   another rash
Sunday, January 20 2008
January 15th to January 30th is the coldest two-week period in this zipcode. The pattern in this climate is for the average highs to bottom out first (in late early January), followed by the bottoming out of average lows (in early late January). Then average highs start increasing in late January, followed eventually by average lows. On average, the coldest day is January 22nd. In Hurley there are only two days during which temperatures have ever been below -25, and they were on the 21st and 22nd of January in 1961. With all this in mind, the arrival today of the cold trough of a polar air mass felt like the passing of the peak of winter. It wasn't the coldest weather of this season (that actually happened back in December and could happen again as late as early March). I'm feeling better about the firewood situation these days, so I stoked the woodstove continually all day, managing to raise living room temperatures above 70 even while it was in the teens outside.

For the past couple days I've been suffering from a rash that has broken out in random patches all over my body. It's on the back of the right side of my neck, on my forehead, on my right thigh, on the back of my left hand, on a patch below and to the left of my navel, and scattered about my genitals. I'm not absolutely certain what the rash is from, but I'm inclined to believe that it is an allergic reaction to all the cashews I ate when visiting Virginia, on the road trip home, and also back here. Knowing how much I like cashews, my mother had placed several cans in the Creekside kitchen prior to our arrival there, and I'd eaten most of two ten ounce cans. I wouldn't have thought this would be enough to trigger a reaction, but I can't imagine what other allergenic exposure I've had except perhaps to poison ivy (same plant family as cashews) on firewood. (And I wouldn't expect poison ivy to affect the back of my neck.) I've only had reactions to cashews on two other occasions, and one of those was after eating almost nothing but cashews for a week (these were from the gallon box of stale cashews I'd found on Gretchen's refrigerator after moving in with her in Brooklyn; they'd come with her co-op apartment when she'd bought it back in the late-mid 1990s).

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