Monday, June 9, 2008

white rabbit

I am full of doubts, I even doubt all ideas and values in general. The only thing I do not doubt is life, because I am alive and kicking. Life has a meaning that transcends ethics and if I still have some value, then it lies only in this existence.
Gao Xingjian, "Without Isms" (1993), playwright, novelist, painter

despite sweltering heat it was a wonderful weekend. I feel like a college kid for my weekend fun began thursday night (although I've heard that nowadays college kids start the weekend on wednesday night). thursday f & I met s&p at cleveland public theater to check out the two one act plays by gao xingjian, a french chinese émigré artist. although I had been looking forward to the plays, I was worried as I was really tired, I was afraid that once the house lights went off I'd nod off. no chance of that, the plays - between life and death and the other shore were riveting. the second play, the other shore mixed dance, song and a powerful allegorical journey - we were all moved and spellbound. unless the play is extended the run ends friday so hurry and get your tickets!

friday's work took me to the university circle area, which was most fortuitous. I had read in the paper a few days earlier that the rat sculptures designed by local artists to celebrate the year of the rat were going to be installed in their temporary homes on friday. I discovered on the web that one was going to be located at the cleveland museum of natural history and another was going to be in front of severance hall. after I wrapped up my work for the day, I walked over to the natural history museum. as I approached the museum, I noticed a flat bed trailer with a dozen or more of the rat sculptures. I raced over, I'm sure the installation crew thought I was a complete nut. I showered them with questions and was snapping away at all the wonderful rats; but they were most kind and good natured, they answered all my questions and didn't even seem to mind that my presence and questioning probably set their schedule back a bit.

kudos to the st. clair superior development organization for sponsoring this annual public art project. last year I made it to at least half of the pig locations, even though I have seen well over half of the rats, I still plan on seeing them in situ. for more info and the locations of all 25 rats, click here.

saturday had us firmly entrenched in the middle of a heat wave. however, as the sun started getting low, the worst of the heat was over and soon the backyard was the location of an impromptu neighbor gathering. a bit of scrabble and a whole lot of conversation and silliness (and a fair amount of hoppy nectar). the topic of marmite came up; randeep mentioned that she loves marmite but hasn't had any in a while. a and lin never had marmite and couldn't understand what we were going on about. I went inside sliced up a bagel and brought out the marmite. yes, yes, turns out a and lin thought it was quite nasty. final score - three marmite lovers (randeep, e, and me) and three marmite haters (f, a, and lin). gosh a split down the middle - seems like marmite is a bit like american politics!

sunday was another sizzling, sweltering day. at five the thermometer on the back porch registered 98 degrees. a couple hours later, right when it was time to sit down outside in the shade and enjoy a little birthday bbq for e an incredible front moved in and it spelled relief. unfortunately the front also moved the party inside, for along with some cooler temperatures rain, thunder, and lightening moved in. it's quite pleasant this morning, but today is expected to top 90 again. but, at least according to the forecasters, this should be it. they said the week will return to normal springtime weather. thank goodness. I really do hate complaining about the weather and I really hate hot weather.

jefferson airplane performing white rabbit at woodstock (1969)


mzjohansen said...

As luck would have it I had just downloaded "White Rabbit" and a few other trippy memory songs when I saw your post! I hope e had a wonderful birthday - though the sort of heat that you were suffering through made me glad for our sullen, gray weather here!

R.L. Bourges said...

Did you notice that White Rabbit was put online by...The Doormouse. How cool is that?

Now here's something I never expected to say: nice rats you've got there, mouse.

Sweltering heat and Marmite? uh...I'll just have the beer, thanks (it's George Killian Irish Red over here).

Total change of topic:
La petite souris strikes me as someone who won't mind my going viral on her. I'm passing on this link for folks who might want to download the song "No, No Guantanamo"
I downloaded from a website I totally trust so not to worry - this is good viral :-)

mouse (aka kimy) said...

z - we had a most lovely birthday party. after dinner even got in a card game and the birthday girl's team won (good icing on the cake). send some of that sullen gray weather my way (I love gray, rainy, cool weather)

lee - I did chuckle when I saw that the airplane post was put up by someone with the moniker dormouse!

thanks for the link to sean's music... good voice and most excellent song - definitely worthy of much airtime!

no george killian irish red for me - it's made by coors - if I don't go local (great lakes brewery) I tend to favor guinness. in my opinion coors and anheuser-busch are going after world domination (a la mcdonalds and starfucks) so I try and shy away from their products. in january when busch bought rolling rock it was a sad day in mouseland!

jenclair said...

I always loved explaining to students the literary connections in "White Rabbit" - and in so many other songs from "back in the day."

Heat and humidity here, too, but none of the joy of gao xingjian plays or rat sculptures (I am a rat, so I'd have loved it all the more)!

Anonymous said...

Cool statues. One day there will be one made in my honour.

Dumdad said...

Apologies for Maurice who somehow managed to log on. I think his being featured in all those cartoons has gone to his rodenty head.

P.S. I've always loved that White Rabbit song. Those were the days, as Mary Hopkin used to say.

Ladrón de Basura (a.k.a. Junk Thief) said...

Well, we are in the year of the rat aren't we? So those would be very appropriate for commemorating it.

Bobby D. said...

Do I need to bring some jars of Marmite to Cle. O. when I visit?

I would have liked to see the rat art.

white rabbit --classic, love it.

Steve Reed said...

One of the best songs ever! (Definitely the best from Jeff Airplane, though I like a lot of their other stuff too. Jeff Starship, on the other hand -- ugh. And let's not even mention Starship.)

Those are some groovy mice!

Bob Dylan said...

I like Marmite very much, but then I like Guinness very much too, which has many many haters...

R.L. Bourges said...

he, p'tite souris: I just checked out the other beer I like, the Belgian Grimbergen. Looks like the monks sold out to Carlsberg. So my question to you is: do I go with Coors, with Carlsberg or do I give up on beer altogether?
Please advise

your friend,
bimgy (that's what word verification is saying)

mouse (aka kimy) said...

jen - happy year!! according to knowledgeable sources, when it your birthyear you are to wear something red each day to promote good luck and prosperity. I learned this bit a trivia several years ago (when I turned 48 - year of the sheep) and it explains why I have many pairs of red undies to this day.

maurice - too bad rodin has long passed, he would be worthy of making a sculpture in your honour!

dd - no worries about maurice - in my book he is allowed to get a big head every now and then. it's eat or be eaten when one is a mouse!

junk - our china town may be small, but it does pull out all the stops at time! are you a monkey or a sheep?

ched - I'm sure you'll make it to cle before the rats are taken down. e said there's marmite at world market, so looks like I'm set. although if you run across squeezable marmite, pick some up!

steve - groovy indeed!

bd - if you're in town looking forward to a marmite and guinness party with ya!

lee - can't imagine giving up a nice glass of beer! although living in the land of wine.....

my research has uncovered this information on the two beer giants you mention:

The Coors family members have played a prominent role in American politics and public policy, supporting many conservative causes, including providing a $250,000 grant in 1973 to found The Heritage Foundation,[3] one of the world's most influential conservative public policy research institutes, and, via its parent company, the right-leaning think tank American Enterprise Institute. Chairman Pete Coors ran unsuccessfully for the U.S. Senate from Colorado in 2004 on the Republican ticket.


Carlsberg will be one of the major sponsors of Euro 2008. Carlsberg was one of the major sponsors of the 2004 European Football Championship and use the promotional slogan "probably the best beer in the world"; they were also a sponsor of the 1990 FIFA World Cup. They're the main sponsors of Liverpool F.C. [16 years as of 2008], F.C. Copenhagen, Havant and Waterlooville, Selby Town F.C., Odense BK, Toronto FC, Montreal Impact, Pirin Blagoevgrad and are also the secondary sponsor (after Eircom) of the Republic of Ireland national football team and Tottenham Hotspur FC. Carlsberg also sponsors other sport events, such as golf and skiing. Furthermore, Carlsberg is the sponsor of "probably, the best view in the world" from the Carlsberg Sky Tower in Singapore. One of Carlsberg's brands, Tuborg, was the official sponsor of the 2007 Download Festival.[citation needed] The Institute of Theoretical Physics in Copenhagen, which was an international center for theoretical physics during the 1920s and 1930s, when quantum mechanics was being developed, was largely supported by the Carlsberg brewery.

if it was me deciding who to help profit, I'd go with carlsberg - sports and theoretical physics over conservative causes and right-wing propagandists

R.L. Bourges said...

heck, theoretical physics just decided the issue - henceforth, make mine a Grimbergen :-)

(thanks for giving yourself all that trouble)

lettuce said...

yay marmite



guinness is v. good too

and the rats are most cool

WAT said...

Oh goodness, I read about yer heat wave. Sounds awful! I'm afraid we're coming up soon.