Dear People of Maine

Brownbackistan-logo.jpgTo all it may concern:

So sorry to hear about your troubles with Governor LePage. Seems he has a little difficulty with impulse control, courteous discourse and general deportment befitting the highest leadership position in the state. We also heard he has decided not to resign and is seeking spiritual guidance.

Well here’s the deal. We the people of Kansas will swap you one for one.

It’s only fair to provide full disclosure. Frankly, Governor Brownback is no prize. We would encourage your state budget director to get with his/her team and find a way to squirrel away a very, very healthy cash reserve. On the up side, Sam Brownback is steeped in lots of religion. He speaks quietly and presents himself with a great deal of decorum usually in a suit and tie.

As for Paul LePage’s spiritual quest,  we can guarantee you there is no scarcity of religious tour guides in the great state of Kansas.


People of Kansas

A Cautionary Tail

If you give a pig a pancake

If you drink too much scotch, you wake up with your stomach wandering around in your throat so you have to run down to the kitchen and mix baking soda with water and gulp it noisily over the sink.

Your mouth has a gritty feel to it so you have to fling open the refrigerator door and grab the first thing you see which is cold vegetarian pizza made from scratch that tastes really gummy and leaves a big grease stain on your t-shirt.

So you need to go back upstairs, wrench open the closet door and start trying on clothes just to find that you have nothing to wear.

So you leave on the last thing you tried and grab your wallet and head for the department store.

On the way, you remember you didn’t brush your teeth so you pull over to the new artisan gelato shop on Main and order a small lemon curd.

When you are leaving you nearly trip over the black lab mix waiting patiently for his owner to bring him some water so you drive straight to the vet to buy cat food.

You pass by the kennel of rescue animals and one smiles at you so you bring home a beagle mix with Bette Davis eyes.

So when everyone finally goes to bed you pour yourself a scotch.

(With acknowledgement to Laura Numeroff who wrote “If you Give a Pig a Pancake,” one of a collection of charming what-if tales for kids.)

12 -13 -13

If I didn’t already have a birthday, I wouldn’t mind having this one.

Today is the drawing for the really Big lottery. If you don’t have objections to gambling, it would probably be a good idea to rush out and plunk down a dollar. I think it’s a cheap way to entertain myself — imagining how to spend all that moolah. For all practical purposes, I’m a multi-millionaire all the way up to the time the last number is announced. 

Only in the good ole U.S. of A.

Between December and January

Pablo Neruda Railway Museum, Temuco, Chile
Pablo Neruda Railway Museum, Temuco, Chile (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I went to the Sanibel Bookshop today.

It’s a typical indie bookshop in an up-scale beach town: displays of hard-bound best-sellers, lots of local authors, a deftly-curated kid section and gifty things –coasters, stationary, candles and the like. The two staff are the kind of competent and earnest types served up by a Junior League.

“Yes, it is my first time… Uhhh no, really, I’m fine… Just lookin’… Yeah, I sure will, Thanks.”

Left on my own, I sidle up the aisles and check out the wares. I want to buy Mary Oliver’s new book of poetry, Dog Songs, for my sister who has gotten a new dog. But it’s not there. But there is book by the poet/author Pablo Neruda called The Book of Questions. 

To the staff’s credit, they simply ring it up, they don’t go on and on about much of anything.  I like that a lot.

Pablo Neruda died in 1973; this book is 320 questions that compose 74 sequences.  (Translated by William O’Daly) And I tell you, it’s JUST WHAT  you need to simmer down during a hectic holiday season.

Here are 3 of the his 320 questions. Sit and wonder.

pablo nerudaIf I have died and don’t know it
of whom do I ask the time?

Tell me, is the rose naked
or is that her only dress?

And what is the name of the month
that falls between December and January?

(Sketch – Andre Alvez)