Thursday, January 30, 2014

Manlius, On Tap

The Sunoco A Plus Mini-Market in Manlius, New York, at the corner of Route 92 and Seneca Turnpike, or Route 173, presents an odd sight, at least to my eyes. It has a counter with five or six taps for so-called craft beers and some plastic cups nearby. I remarked to the young fellows working there a day or two ago how it struck me as odd. I joked about Manlius's need to have artisanal craft beers made by organic elves. They chuckled. (Maybe the elves are imported from Marin County, NorCal.) Although I do not drink craft beers or working-class brews and confine my brewed beverages to coffee or tea, I am not a temperance snob. If Manliusans or Manliusites need this overt display of non-Stickley arts-and-craftsmanship, go for it. Is it possible that such fluids are requisite lubricants for loosening the square jaws of propriety?

Other queries arise:

  • Do drivers do a grab and go with a beer in hand?
  • Is that allowed?
  • Should it be?
  • Or is this merely for pedestrians?
  • Are there sidewalks?
  • Do sidewalks have handrails in case said pedestrians are tipsy?
  • What do the Manlius swans think of this?
  • Do locals hang out at the A Plus and stand around and indulge in bar-like chatter?
  • What is the conversation about?
  • Would it be against a local ordinance if the booze for sale were decidedly uncrafty, such as Budweiser or PBR or Keystone? (I'm rusty on what is in or out.)
  • How would the military forebears of Manlius, New York, view this?
  • Will this lead to an economic boom such as the ones that the Village of Manlius enjoyed in years past, making it a center of commerce?

Tuesday, January 21, 2014


What are you reading?

For my morning reading, I read Your True Home: the everyday wisdom of Thich Nhat Hanh compiled and edited by Melvin McLeod; Everyday Zen: love and work by Charlotte Joko Beck; and a book by an anonymous author(s).

For bedtime, Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides.

What about you?

Monday, January 20, 2014


In the December 21, 2013, edition of The Economist we learn that the Dutch Party for the Animals (PVdD) succeeded in getting the national parliament to ban round goldfish bowls because they are too stressful. This evokes a bowl of questions. How do they know it is stressful? How do we know that they know? What shape is preferred? Should ponds where goldfish live not be round? What depth? But what about predators? If we favor, say, goldfish over their predators are we playing God, god, or goddess?

I don't know.

Question mark.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

are you sleeping?

I sometimes have this perhaps unhealthy hankering to make money effortlessly while I sleep. Or while awake but still effortlessly. I imagine: you do too. To a degree. So, if you are inclined to aid me in this dream, goal, hankering, vision, fantasy, or reality, these links will help you (no, none of them are spam or malware or anything like that; that's how the clever or amoral or immoral folks make money while they sleep): 

Thank you.

Pleasant dreams.


Friday, January 17, 2014


I get the woolies when I see plywood going up where windows once were. That's not something you want to see in your neighborhood, or thereabouts. No one wants the Katrinafication of their area, by that I mean post-calamity destruction, with plywood preventing further ruin or intrusion. Of course, plywood is good if you're talking about building, rebuilding, or reinforcing. So, it's not that the plywood itself is the problem, is it? Plywood is plywood. Or "plywood" is "plywood." There's a metaphor in there somewhere.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

watchful waiting

Today I exchanged some emails, made some calls, and looked at two potential apartments. I do not exactly know how I will proceed to accommodate my need for comfortable and appropriate and proximate living quarters. But I have concluded that I will know when I will know and that a watchful waiting will prepare the way for me. Yes. Verily.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014


Rain. Its delicious, seductive tap on my roof and my windows. Amend that. My? I rent a space in a former garage, barely joined to a house, a place becoming increasingly crowded physically and metaphysically. Not mine. (What is mine? Or yours? Or anybody's?) I must be leaving these premises. Hence, "my" apartment search. The baseboard heating now and again makes pounding sounds. I always liked the Beatles song saluting the rain. Your rain, my rain, the rain. Speaking of yesterday's topic of aimlessness, the rain (in Spain, or elsewhere) has no aim, does it, save downward, sometimes aslant, but ever downward, into the ground or into a drain or a river or a lake and a tiny bit back up again into the sky, so not so downward there, but content with no other aim but rainness.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

aimlessness, the virtue

My Thich Nhat Hanh meditation book speaks of the virtue of aimlessness. It cites the Sanskrit word apranihita. For me is aimlessness a virtue or a rationalization? I do not mind, either way. It is fine. No direction home. No direction away. No lost. No found. No aim. No lack of aim. All fine.

Besides, what would I be aiming at or aiming for?

I am reminded of Eugen Herrigel writing in Zen in the Art of Archery that a master archer could miss the target every time and still be a master archer.

Don't you just love what my mentor Sam Paterson used to call my love for "socks inside out"?

Friday, January 10, 2014

homeward, words

back along Future86
and 17
the calculus of what is
and might be
in the dark
after sunset
before the sun

Thursday, January 09, 2014


I love that name, Future 86, emblazoned on signs along Route 17 in New York State, bestriding the hills, rivers, valleys, bare trees, and ribboning highway.


Great band name.

Or title of a psychic fair that looks to the past and the future.

Future 86.

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

questions for a new year

Is it a year of the rat?
Or of the hat?
Maybe the sloth, the lemur, or axolotl?
When is the lunar new year?
How about the solar?
Or the plexus?
Where will I be a year from now, days after Epiphany?
Will I *be*?
Won't I *be* a "someone else" in any event, no matter what?
What epiphanies await me this year?
This day, this second?
And am I ready for them?
And does it matter, ready or not?