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").


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Like my brownhouse:
   a little more breakfasty
Sunday, March 9 2008
We don't often do this since hitting middle age, but late this morning Gretchen and I threw a little party. It was nothing special, in that only two couples were joining us, but in our lives at this stage it was an exceptional thing. The couples in this case were Jon the world explorer and his lovely girlfriend Fiona as well as Penny and David. Marbletown was definitely in the hizouse. Gretchen had intended this brunch mainly as a showcase for vegan brunch foods, since neither Fiona nor Jon are hip to that vegan thing. Jon is the kind of guy who will eat the raw face off a live baby seal if that's the local custom, though Gretchen had some hope in Fiona, who hails from an island off the coast of Tasmania and is famous in her hometown as a rescuer of orphaned wombats. After brunch there would be a walk in the forest, a showcase of how it is possible to get outside and have an enjoyable time in nature even in an Upstate New York winter (again, this was targeted at Fiona, who had been complaining about the bleakness of this climate).
Daylight Savings Time had kicked in last night, and Gretchen and I spaced the whole thing. In all fairness, it was only the second time for it to come so early in the year (indeed, my laptop, which runs a pirated version of Windows XP and cannot be patched because it would fail WGA tests, went through the time change completely unaware). Our friends are more on-the-ball than we are about such things, and Penny and David arrived dutifully at 11:30 while Gretchen was puttering in the kitchen and I was out in the living room in my spattered stinky long johns trying to chase the entropy away with a vacuum cleaner. It didn't really matter; we each only had about ten more minutes worth of work to do.
The greatest thing about the brunch was the biscuits and gravy. If I was locked away in prison and was forced to eat nothing but that for the rest of my life, I would consider it a fate far superior to that of a large fraction of the American population.
Fiona, in keeping with her loveliness, had illustrated one of Gretchen's poems with this small painting, which she'd decorated with an actual freshwater pearl.

Jon and Fiona had brought the makings for mimosas, but by the end there Penny just wanted the champagne straight up. That sounded like a good idea to me too, so that was how I took it. That's how you know you're a drunk: you're unwilling to even play along with the game of making champagne into something a little more breakfasty.
After brunch, the six of us (and dogs) walked on a three mile loop through the forest. At this time of year the terrain can vary drastically. Near the house we had to avoid floodwater washing across the trail, and further out we had to contend with snow and extremely slippery ice. At the south end of the trail is a south slope, where the season had already advanced to April. There was no snow at all and it seemed positively balmy. Coming back, though, we re-entered winter, particularly before and during the walk up the so-called "Mountain Goat Path." Penny doesn't do well when confronting heights and slippery conditions and at times had to negotiate the trail as a quadruped.

This evening Gretchen and I watched the final episode of The Wire, which we've been watching since its first episode back in 2002. It was a hard thing to watch, knowing we were letting it go. It was a little like hanging out with someone who was about to die in the electric chair. That said, the episode was unexpectedly satisfying. For example, I'd assumed the worst for young Michæl, and to see him become the new Omar was enormously gladdening.
In the end, though, the whole series ended up being a massive exercise in Hindu pointlessness, with not a shred of progress having been made by the society being documented. It had merely executed a loop, one of many to presumably continue meaninglessly for all eternity.

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