The Gate

The Gate (A History)

The gate to the transformer
in the alley behind miracle #32
that abuts history at a right angle,
Also abuts your mind.

The alley's made of cobblestone, and
the abutment smells of honeysuckle,
the stones wear well, except the one
 that rots, being made of wood,
that trips you when winter heaves
the frozen ground.

A place for the cable car turnaround,
now abandoned, is marked by a steel
rail that flares onto the main road
from this lesser alley, that hides the
old conductor's longtime scream

"Turk Street, Turk Street,
get your bread and get your meat!".

What is horror but the paint factory
smell within sight of the woods
that live beside the transformer
just off the alleyway that buries
the cable car rail? And those cries?

The children play, honeysuckle
strangles the old boards --
a fence that saves them shock.
The rail juts into the main, and
the conductor, railman, is a ghost
when the turpentine fills you
with a willingness to die.

5 May 1996
James A. Gardner

©1996, 2000, 2009 by Pen & Sword

Old, good friends

Really have to thank my oldest good friend, Chas, for discovering the "I Blinked Once" video on YouTube that's been rolling around in my head for the past day (from Streets of This Town). He posted it last week, but being busy, it took me a while to get around to it. This song affected me greatly in the late 80s...but I first discovered Forbert when I was a senior in high school and working for the family business after school (a block away in the Brown Hotel)--listening to everything I possibly could--and saw a notice in The Rolling Stone about "Alive on Arrival" during lunch in the lunch "room" at Progressive Optical in the Speed Building (Arthur Loomis, architect). I went and bought it immediately at Vine Records (or did they order it for me, hmm?) on 4th Street just a half-block from my Dad's and Progressive Optical's office. I found the record immediately is my any rate I was soon in love with it--Goin' Down to Laurel, Big City Cat, a great record all the way around.

We just saw Steve Forbert at Gerstle's Tavern last week, btw. Enjoyable show if somewhat obstructed by the tavern management's indecision over sports vs. live music. At any rate, we've been back around to contemplating the many "phases of the age of the time(s)" with respect to Forbert in our lives. We stuck with Steve through Streets of This Town (an American masterpiece, frankly) when I had my old apartment on Jaeger Avenue...those were good times...we hardly knew it. The American in Me, and for me personally having moved to San Francisco in 1994--The Mission of the Crossroad Palms entirely personal and poignant--"count the miles on the highway, San Francisco today" felt like Steve followed me to California along my phasic age.

Nevertheless, remorsefully, I missed Steve live at Phoenix Hill in the 80s and a few other times, I missed Steve appearing in California a time or two. Missed, missed, and missed, until last week.

This morning I'm working on a few new articles in Find Out How and determined to bring a solid week to a solid close. Otherwise, I blinked once and it was gone.


Whirlwind week

A rapid fire succession of cascading waves of work work...bit more gunk...did enjoy teaching TKD last night though and think it was the best class in a while (even throwing out that it was the first with all the current students present in a month's time)...I'm over recent setbacks and looking for my next move. If only I could catch up with all the waves if not catchawave. Old refs: The Duke of Chou, everyday, make it new

No lists. I'll not list them. Old and new obstacles--more to learn than could ever be learned--and no time in which to do that--but remain calm, please. My items relate to decisions about running a (very) small business, the fact that I'm already running that makes two when you get down to it, & although my client is one big'un at the present...I can only plan for Plan B, Plan C with respect to work in this given world.

I haven't hated it, though, and aw, I'm alright. Enjoying increased use of Skype with old friends, bassetball, starting tomorrow got to overturn the mania to catch up and get a good session at the gym, maybe a run, and get that going...I'm the meanest boss I ever had...but now that I'm righteous again in my own efforts--it's time to clear off a few hours here-n-there. Laterz.
  • Current Music
    Goodnight, Oslo, Robyn Hitchcock

Work and basketball

Finished a 2nd draft on my white paper about Adobe Flex testing using S.CT. (my employer's product)--being very productive given that I'd MUCH rather be watching NCAAs. Keeping track of the scores with a ticker. I listed most of the rest of the Travers lot of books over the past 24 hours...and as a result of that and other efforts...sales are back up to a reasonable level. Ordered supplies, need to find a notary for my DBA...anyone know a notary nearby? It's a beautiful, partly cloudy spring day here in high 50s.

DBA innerSword

A lot of things broke in the past day.

I've been walking around with a chip on my shoulder, partly for good reason, partly in an unhealthy holdover from the past.

Antiques? Hmm...well, maybe. There's two sides to every story but it is of no concern any longer. Apologies: the reproofs of instruction are the way of life, my man. No more being very un-dude for now. Pabby was sweet; made pistachio pudding, and dinner--to which I awoke after a slamsleep of despair that went from 1700 to near 2000.

So, some, postponed, bureaucracy no longer postponed, more paperwork ahead--this is Amerika, land of paperwork and printer ink ain't free; a near "quit" job from something that needn't be quit. Suddenly, I found myself listing books online, filing a DBA through LegalZoom (convenient, perhaps cheaper, but it's done). Read: taking it seriously. I've got some stock.

Over the night, some reviews of Adobe Flex whitepaper came in. So, a few changes to make, and once and for all--some solid hours on my JavaScript project. New readings ahead as well, but only not the sci-fi and/or non-fiction I'd prefer--instead--a stack of technical stuff that I am no longer going to hate.

Today, the NCAA men's basketball tourney begins, let it be wallpaper to heal by.

Sunny day in March

Happy hellos to my LiveJournal friends. I just re-upped my LJ.

WIth the new Facebook update came some new features to tie-in streams from just about any RSS service. For Facebook, that now means that my public blog entries stream in as Notes. I had only gravitated away from "macro-blogging" to micro-forms after much remorse over the fractured forms of my web life. when I finally resolved some longtime antipathy to cell phone services in the form of <<fetish>> my new iPhone, which I'm paying for by running an online store (a chain of storelets on various sites and soon to come my won ZenCart-based store (although am considering Drupal as well as being more feature packed).

I'm glad to have some of these divergent sites converge in a successful way for me. I'm still here, 47, not too troubled, but not unencumbered. Happy in my new house and look forward to making the most of the days and weeks ahead in spring 2009.
  • Current Location

See yew in September

On the 14th, Ike rolled through the vicinity and we saw gusts of up to 80mph and sustained winds over 40mph for nearly eight hours. Never seen the like during my days here in KYiana, and although we were fortunate at our home with only a busted window, trees were down all around elsewhere and in our alley a pole and tree and wires in commingled distress. As such, and despite the restoration of power here, I don't have cable/internet at my home office 11 days later (the comminglement in the alley remains).

On the 16th, I moved my office stuff over to Charlestown IN base. Since then, I've been shuttling back and forth for personal and work issues (either equipt. forgotten til needed or pulling inventory for innerSword (my store(s) on amazon/alibris/biblio/half/ebay/gemm (all but AmaZon, which was launched in May, have been launched in August). I've liquidated much but not all of my original collection while acquiring some other stuff, some of which is highly collectible and have also begun consignment arrangements with collectors, friends, and family; I'm most pleased with this marriage of several passions and the spirit of detached materialism in which they reside. I use to keep all my inventory synchronized and I'm working on my ZenCart version as well with a hopeful launch by early December under a new domain. At that point, consider a concept of a Pen nSword zine to be revived, having come full circle. Mark and I talk a lot about how to make all that work and have it be self-sustaining if not entirely profitable to do so (the zine part, I mean, I expect the store(s) to be profitable to the limited extent of my collecting and collection.

I turned 47 on the 7th, whee. A quiet occasion as I was busy entering inventory!