December 3, 2019

The Tuesday sunrise, photographed at 7:13.


1. The actual sunrise time was 7:12. The truth is that the best time for a photograph was about 7:00, when there were some vaguely rounded pink rectangles. If I'd delayed the start of the run, I could have captured that unusual sight, but I had it for my personal, private viewing as I ran the first half of my out-and-back. The half run took about 12 minutes, and that's where I stopped and got out my iPhone, and that's the best picture of the morning.

2. At 7:00, I didn't know it wasn't going to get better, so it was hard to decide whether to stop or or to try to get out to the best vantage point sooner. It was cold, so maybe getting out there later would have been better, because once I got out there I ended up waiting, thinking the light would become more dramatic. Post-run, Meade said: "I told you you should take picture at the beginning." I said: "Why didn't you take a picture?" He said: "That's not my thing." I said: "Who was it who was just saying 'That's not my thing'?" Meade, joking, said: "Zabriskie." Ah, yes! Zabriskie Point, site of some of my best sunrise photography (from back when I had no idea I'd be going out for all the sunrises):


3. It was Zelensky, the President of Ukraine. He said: "Look, I never talked to the president from the position of a quid pro quo. That’s not my thing." And I wondered aloud — as we drove back home — how it is that he used the colloquial expression "That's not my thing"? Meade said: "He speaks good English." Which naturally caused both of us to switch to our Bob Dylan voice: "He speaks good English as he invites you up into his room."

4. The Bob Dylan song is "Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues": "Sweet Melinda/The peasants call her the goddess of gloom/She speaks good English/And she invites you up into her room/And you’re so kind/And careful not to go to her too soon/And she takes your voice/And leaves you howling at the moon." There was some confusion over the line "careful not to go to her too soon." Maybe it was "careful not to come to her too soon." There was a long involved discussion about whether the line referred to the male orgasm, which got tangled up with the subject of Trump's imitation of Peter Strzok's orgasm. Even if the word were "come," I think the idea is about accepting the invitation and coming up into the goddess of gloom's room, but you never know about poetry. A woman's room could be her womb, her womb-room. Who knows where Sweet Melinda was inviting Bob Dylan and why it was kind for him to delay? But anyway, she got whatever counts as his voice that somehow didn't render him silent. He could howl. Howl at the moon. Moon, room, gloom, soon.

5. That conversation gets us all the way home. It's only a short drive. It's not as though we dragged out those musings. I had a big handful of mittens and gloves as I walked from the car back to the house. And then I thought I'd lost one of the gloves. (I wear iPhone-sensitive liner gloves — these, at Amazon — with fleece mittens over them when the weather is as cold as today (27°)). But I looked again through the handful of handwear and found it. When you're afraid you've lost something, it's usually best to check to make sure you've lost it before you go looking for it.

6. I wanted to express that principle of lost things in the style of Dorothy from "The Wizard of Oz." What is it? If you haven't something something something then you haven't really lost it at all? I try about 12 variations before I look up the text in the script:  "If I ever go looking for my heart's desire again, I won't look any further than my own backyard, because if it isn't there, I never really lost it to begin with." That's not really apt when it comes to losing a glove. If it's not here in the house, I never really lost it? Makes no sense. I just wanted to say, it might be right here with me, and it's most efficient to look here first, before going outside.

7. But why did Dorothy's line ever make sense? Suddenly, I see the sense of it. She's not talking about searches for all sorts of things. She's only talking about the search for her "heart's desire," and the desire is always in the heart. The desire is not the thing that is desired. The desire is the desire. If the desire is not there in your heart, then you don't have the desire in the first place. There is the desire to desire. As soon as you think you need to look for your "heart's desire," you have the desire to desire. It's there and you have not lost it.

8. "The Desire to Desire" is the title of a book I had on my office shelf for many, many years. Something feminist. What was it? Ah, here: "The Desire to Desire: The Woman's Film of the 1940s (Theories of Representation and Difference)." There was a time when I had the desire to desire to read "The Desire to Desire." That book has 2 reviews — useless, spammy reviews — "I'm very happy with this book. I was glad to purchase it. There is always wonder in the pages of it. Thank you seller!" and "Thank you for the great book, it was better than I thought it would be for my very first used book order online. Thank you so much."

9. There is always wonder in the pages of it...


Bob said...

We're gonna howl at the moon, shoot out the light
It's a small town Saturday night
It's a small town Saturday night
- Hal Ketchum

Roy Lofquist said...

The meaning of any particular line or stanza in a Dylan song is strongly correlated (.51 +- .05) with the day of the week with some indications that the length of women's skirts has some influence.

robother said...

On page one and most pages thereafter, I wondered "What the f....?"

Howard said...

Zabriskie Point: My old geology student stomping grounds. Eastern California is still one of the best kept secrets.

rcocean said...

So you went for rambling run this AM. Good for you. But if its only 24 minutes, why listen to music? But everyone's different. Personally, the more intense the exercise, the less i care to listen to music or an audiobook.

rcocean said...

I thought Zabriski's Point was just a movie. I didn't realize it was an actual "Thing"?

The counterculture audience MGM hoped to draw largely ignored the film during its brief theatrical run and taken altogether the outcome was a notorious box-office bomb. Production expenses were at least $7 milion and only $900,000 was made in the domestic release. The film was listed in the 1978 book The Fifty Worst Films of All Time. It has been described as "the worst film ever made by a director of genius" but it "is still absolutely watchable because of the magic of Antonioni's eye".

And yeah, its not a good movie.

rcocean said...

John McCain never watched the Wizard of OZ.

Amexpat said...

There's a beatnik thread going through "Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues". A goddess of gloom is a beatnik babe. And the whole bit about Jaurez reminds me of "On the Road.

And Sweet Melinda may very well be one of those hungry woman on Rue Morgue Avenue.

mtrobertslaw said...

This morning the sun rose as if it were directly behind Gastineau Channel leaving a beautiful golden trail all along the length of the channel.

themightypuck said...

When I was in film school we'd always get up early for shoots for this reason. I often take pics when I'm on a midday hike and they always look terrible. Unfortunately I go for the warmest parts of the day in these parts rather than the prettiest.