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Today at the pump


Under here.

August 5, 2010

And Then Think
Thursday. Although the alarm went off at six, I didn't go off until seven, so the get up, go to breakfast, read the papers, return before the parking meters start running was later by an hour. For whatever reason I found it difficult to get to sleep last night so I found myself staying up to finish watching a Netflix movie. Why I have no idea. These things happen. They have their own agenda. Not even useful to think about it.

The day, this day, is clear of commitments, so I'm assuming a walk, this journal and a session or two with the guitar. It's overcast, they're doing some kind of maintenance work near the entrance to the apartment - they do seem to do their building maintenance on a timely basis, I have to give them that. No reason to fear imminent oil spills in our foyer is my guess - but otherwise a lazy open day to approach a weekend. Even in retirement we are still aware of approaching weekends.

Later. A bus ride downtown and then a walk about half the way back, the morning chilly. I should have worn warmer clothes, the addition of a shirt to the t-shirt and light jacket would have been the better plan. I've done this before, left in the morning under an overcast sky dressed for the temperature, returned with the sun shining and me overheated. But life is difficult, right? So many important decisions to make after we're retired.

Still, a decent walk followed by thirty minutes on the guitar before falling out and taking a nap. Staying up late did have an effect. A good hour or more was definitely appreciated. More practice for the rest of the afternoon, I think, playing guitar along with listening to the usual series of foreign news programs on one of the local public television digital channels. The choice of programs is miserable without cable, but one of the public channels runs an interminable progression of foreign news broadcasts: BBC News, a French broadcast (France 24), which usually ends with an excellent discussion segment, underscoring the dearth of intelligent discussion that exists here in this country; a German broadcast (DW-TV); Al Jazerra (quite excellent), RT TV (a well done Russian broadcast, they often give the U.S. hell, but with a clear and cleverly direct delivery; a Taiwanese program, a Korean program, a Japanese program and one out of Beijing.

The Russian and Beijing programs conform closely, if not exactly, to their government's current political line, Beijing, II assume, particularly; Russia no longer in quite the same category; Al Jazerra has a preference for the Palestinians, but no more so than our own tip to the Israeli side here in the U.S., and it's in all other respects quite excellent; the Tel Aviv broadcast comes across as too propagandistic, reminds me of our own programs in the fifties so I usually avoid it. Odd though to put your image in the hands of what seem to be ham fisted idiots; the Japanese program (NHK World Newsline) can be trying when it runs puff pieces using voice overs done in a high pitched sing-song English, too cute for human consumption, otherwise fairly interesting; DW-TV, the Germans, quite good; the Taiwanese somewhere out there between the Koreans and the Japanese. India and Pakistan and one other I can't quite recall fill out the group. Too much Bollywood in India, I think, otherwise interesting to experience. (IMHO)

That's a lot of television for someone who claims to read three morning newspapers.

Well, I only read the good parts and I did, after all, get my degree in Political Science. Not so bad if you're practicing your guitar while you're listening. Doesn't seem to distract and it makes the time pass quickly. Multi-tasking they call it, although news reports over these last several months say multi-tasking isn't humanly possible.

Fragments the mind?

That's what they say, although I'm not sure it doesn't add a certain interesting flavor to my playing, but then they say this about most everything: texting, talking, walking, sleeping. It's leading us to perdition, not unlike the prognostications about television since they introduced it.

Later still. I've been hungry this last two or three days and I think I've been eating more, albeit without increased interest. I have a replacement bathroom scale coming tomorrow for the glass one I shattered, we'll see where the weight's been going. It's now late in the afternoon having tackled a couple of new songs in my beginner's book. Maybe finish with a link to Mr. Miyagi whom I photographed yesterday morning and then think about dinner.

The photograph was taken yesterday in the Oakland City Center with a Nikon D3s mounted with a 85mm f 1.4 Nikkor D lens.