TUNDRANAUTICA

Bringing Home the Freshest Kill

Posts in the life category

I’d like to apply the worldview of Avvakum the Archpriest to all components of my life, starting now.

Please join me, and begin with this quote:

Are your eunuchs fanning you to keep the flies from biting the great sovereign? And when you shit, do you wipe your bottom with that hellfire? The Holy Spirit tells me … there’s no need to shit away what you’ve eaten since the worms are slowly eating the great sovereign himself … into the bowels of the earth with you, son of a bitch!

Stallone

h/t Daniel Kalder

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The Shining is an overall optimistic story because ‘anything that says there’s anything after death is ultimately an optimistic story.'”

The Shining

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Attack of the Grackle Cloud

Starling murmuration - "King Cobra"

Alberta, Canada, 2010

Gdansk, Poland, 2011

Prentice Hospital

Yayoi Kusama

Swimming Anemone

Wurlitzer organ at the Paramount Theater

Baby King Cobra

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Recently a woman here in Portland ridiculed me for living near Gresham, a suburb that Portland’s indie-alpha culture finds repugnant.

“Why do you live there? she asked. “Is it because of the close proximity to all the great cuisine and culture?”

Or something. She thought she was being smarmy-yet-cute. But unbeknownst to her, the former greatly diminishes the latter.

So I told her:

GIRL…

The Ham of Gresh is made of stern stuff, it is the most purely triplicate articulation of the Godhead anywhere.

Like you, I am a mere commoner of Southeast Portland. But unlike you, I live scant blocks from the hamlet of Gresh.

I like misunderstood places.

I like coal piles.

I like coyotes, I like scorched engine oil.

I like places where the snow gets dirty.

I like places far removed from emergency renewable energy fairs, yoga parlors, Sleater-Kinney, bike shops, microbreweries and C.h.u.n.k. 666 Tweet-ups.

I like unpopular places.

I like the face-smacking winds of the Columbia River Gorge. I like Kevlar-bottom boats I can smash around the Sandy River with. I like places where ultimate fighting trumps roller derby as the key fringe sport of interest.

I like places that force themselves on the landscape.

I like blight.

I like whatever urban planners hate.

I like vacant lots.

I like wide-open places.

I like places where elk hunters outnumber pansexual dilettantes 100-1.

I like places with grease, gunfire and burning tires.

I like Gresham.

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A Good Week

I think I’ve mentioned that it’s been a strange year for yours truly.

The strangeness has manifested itself in many good and many bad ways. Happily, this past week, the strangeness has been a very good, very fun thing.

Not all of the strangeness is fit for disclosure in blog-form.

Some of it is, though.

From Texas, the great Daniel Kalder sent signed copies of his excellent books Lost Cosmonaut and Strange Telescopes. He also sent the Polish-language version of Lost Cosmonaut, which looks really cool, although I can’t read a word of it:

D.K. was also kind enough to send several amazing photographs from his personal collection (© Daniel Kalder). Please don’t redistribute in any fashion.

Here’s a few from Kalmykia, the strangest of estranged Russian lands, IMHO.

__________________

Fuck All You Motherfuckers

Another nice bit of mail showed up in the form of this book:

Imagine my surprise when I discovered that Brian Clark, the author, mentions yours truly in the “thank you” section, along with a diverse group of talented folks:

Thanks:

Skiba, Boyd, Emily, Vadge, Trace, Stephanie, Ruth, Iced Borscht and Lisa

Beautiful this strange world of ours, nyet?

Thanks to Daniel and Brian for adding to the past week’s excellence quotient.

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daredevil_stopit

A classic Frank Miller Daredevil cover from the 1980s.

It ably articulates my own thoughts regarding modern life.

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2009: The Year That Eats People

2009: The Year That Eats People

That’s what my friend Joe calls it, and from what I’ve seen this year, he’s not wrong.

So much loss, so many people dead. So much change, and yet so much opportunity.

I was calling it “The Year Everything Changes” until I met Joe about mid-way through it, when he told me this was our last chance to get all our crap wrapped up and into the dumpster, because everything we don’t get rid of this year is going to hang around and pollute the whole next decade.

Yeah, I’ll buy that. We all may have different names for it, but we’re all feeling the same thing.

Inside of a year I went broke, had to redefine myself as an individual, not part of a long-term and very public marriage, had major surgery, and am still facilitating the end of life for probably the best cat ever to grace planet earth. I lost friends and watched other friends lose their parents.

The scary shit’s far from over, and yeah, you’ve just got to keep your head down and power through it sometimes. But you also have to pick your head up and open your eyes, because the world is still out there world-ing, whether you’re participating in it or not.

And in the midst of all the shit — and believe me I’m the last guy to tell you it’s not shit — there’s still an overwhelming beauty out there.

How many truly great people did I meet this year? Joe, Agatha, Nan, Mark, Steffie, Peter, Marc, Mike – and that’s just a short list. There are a lot more, and a lot more to come. Plus I was reminded of who my friends are, and how incredibly deep their love and support extends.

If you’re alive and reading this in 2009 chances are you’re having troubles of your own.

Reach out. Then allow yourself to be fished for — even if it’s only catch and release.

Ruth Waytz, Lovely as Always -- Forever!

Ruth Waytz

x-posted at Ruth’s new blog, CHAOS THEORY: INTO PRACTICE

Catch me spouting the provocative and the insane, pretty much weekly, on The Filter. Los Angeles is my home.

A BORSCHT-IN 2009

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