01 December 2014

Cliché Country

t’s cold here in Portland, and I feel like huddling around the fire, all one of me, except that I have no fire and there is a gas furnace roaring away somewhere in this edifice. According to the weather report it’s not really that cold out, being somewhere in the forties, but the patches of ice alongside the sidewalks seem to cast doubt on that statistic. Maybe it’s a political statement, the ice defying the thermometer in some elemental protest against being reduced to a mere numerical construct.
So it has come to this, has it? Reduced to mangling platitudes about the weather, spinning cobwebby fantasies about inanimate objects, putting words together more or less at random in hopes that some sort of sense will ultimately emerge from the process. It never works, not really, but it’s easier than doing (say) actual research and attempting to use it as a basis for a paragraph or fifteen.
I could riff on the news, I suppose. Muse about why a school district in California thought it worthwhile to hire a private detective to investigate a second-grader, only to learn that she didn’t live in the district for two whole days in every week, thus rendering her ineligible to attend public school there. (I wonder what the district in which she spent those weekends would think about being called on to educate a child who lived five days a week—the very days school is in session—in another district.)  Looks like the school district has backed down—for now. Still, you’ve got to wonder. Is this really the best use of taxpayer funds?
Or how about that Texas minister who refused to bury a longtime parishioner because she wasn’t tithing during the years she was in a coma? I mean, he’s got a point. A church’s got to make a profit like any other business. It’s not like it’s a charity or something. The reverend Walter Houston is quite correct—membership does indeed have its privileges. If you were too damn lazy to get up out of your coma and pay your dues, well, then you’ve got no call to complain if the church dumps you in your hour of need. It’s just doing its job.
But it’s cold here in Portland, and I’m out of ideas, out of interest, and out of friends. I can always look forward to another day, I suppose. One where the ideas come, and the words flow, and I don’t have to babble inanely about the weather.

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