Sun’s up again. A clear, blue sky. Today it’s going to be spent out of doors. The afternoon, I mean, of course. Right now, I am back at my small desk in the gallery, staring at the screen, as if looking for paintings, though secretly creeping in on the digital, impossibly wide world.
At the weekend I should spend some time translating from Adinga’s Last Man in Tower. I find it a nice story and I like Adinga very much. White Tiger left a long lasting impression on me and its author (I heard him in a Writers and Co. podcast) even more so.
In the underground I finished the article on Oliver Sacks. He is a nice man and I am, as is the whole world who knows him/of him deeply touched by his fate and by the illness he now knows he suffers from and expect to die soon.
“I mean,” he stammers, “obviously I became a neurologist rather than, say, a cardiologist, because there’s nothing for an intelligent man to be interested in in cardiology. The heart, I suppose, is an interesting pump, but it’s just a pump. Neurology is the only branch of medicine that could sustain a thinking man.” Sacks
Then again, on swimming. Whatever drove him to embrace this kind of danger?
We continue on out. The Empire State Building glistens in the distance, on the far horizon—a paperweight souvenir of itself. “Over there,” Oliver says, gesturing the other way, “is the Throgs Neck Bridge.” Two pulls of the oars. “That’s my favorite swim: from the island out to the pylons and back, about six miles.” Another pull of the oars. “Although it can get a bit hazardous, since the people in their motorboats don’t normally expect swimmers in these waters.” A few more pulls. “Especially late at night.” Sacks
Sacks - facts and stories. Facts are invaluable but they should not be taken on their own. They should be grafted on stories, they should mate with real lives.
On a different note - I like Markdown! Why did I not discover it sooner? It has a clarity and simpleness that is difficult to rival. Writing in Word is a thing of the past!
I should pick a few words from AWAD each day and try to play with them. Perambulate, for example. Quiescent, as well. Saturnine. Let us see what can be done with them.
Just came back from the second run this week. Started slowly, going up the hills around here: the higher, the better was my motto today. On top of one, there was this nice little place where one could sit down, have a glass of wine, a bit of food and look at the city. It might be a bit of an adventure to get there (we’ll need to go on foot for a little while) but I hope the kids are going to enjoy it. R could take his insect jar and he could fill it up with all sorts of arthropods. I am amazed that he is not afraid to pick them up, dug holes in order to find them, let them crawl around his fingers and arms. I guess he never got bitten by any of them. Or, if he did, he never said anything (unlikely) or he is not very sensitive (more likely).
The afternoon found us at the Zoo, perambulating around yawning hippos, nervously pacing cheetahs, and shrieking penguins. A quiescent sky, with a couple of thin clouds encrusted on the light blue firmament, as diaphanous as a marble veil of an Italian sculpture. On the way out we past the lion’s cage. Amid a pair of rocks, looking us, the people, a saturnine face, almost hopeless. How soon did it take this lion to learn it’s never going to be able to get out? How long will it keep it that way? Will it ever see the door someone forgot to lock? Will it ever want to leave again?