Yeah, Happy Halloween.

This article and the accompanying photos are making the rounds of the internets this week:

Such lovely people, those foreclosure lawyers. Wonder what the party theme will be this year?

And the CEO of Bank of America is incensed that regular people are ticked off at his company. Poor thing.

An excellent comment from Daily Kos member mmacdDE (extra points for the Princess Bride reference):

I too, believe in small govt (9+ / 0-)
But I don't think it means what they think it means.
To me, it means that the police don't break down my door because my kid downloaded some music. It means that I don't have to satisfy some religious nut if I want birth control or need an abortion. It means that no govt agency reads my email, wiretaps my phone, or cares who I fall in love with.
I'd like it if govt was streamlined, if duplicate regulations were deleted, if fraud, waste, and abuse were seriously dealt with. But I don't want all regulations thrown out the window.
To me, that's small govt. And doing that would save everybody money.

I'm not sure I even need Halloween this year, things are scary enough. But yes, I have several bags of candy bars (lots of chocolate) to hand out. I loved Halloween as a kid, and I still love a good dose of ghost stories and monster movies.


Richard Brautigan:


New edition of Food Rules, illustrated by Maira Kalman! yay!

Right brain/Left brain: Ian McGilchrist on The Divided Brain (via Chemin Faisant)

Listen up, stud puppets! Judy Tenuta at her best, in 1987, with absolutely perfect timing and delivery:

(HBO special, "Women of the Night")


Happy Monday!

Yes, it's a happy Monday, because Tom Waits has a new album out (his first in 7 years). I just listened to it at NPR's First Listen and it's a doozy.

And the Decemberists have a new song, premiered here.

Working on pieces for a group show next month... 


Lemony Snicket

Thirteen Observations made by Lemony Snicket while watching Occupy Wall Street from a Discreet Distance 

1. If you work hard, and become successful, it does not necessarily mean you are successful because you worked hard, just as if you are tall with long hair it doesn’t mean you would be a midget if you were bald.

2. “Fortune” is a word for having a lot of money and for having a lot of luck, but that does not mean the word has two definitions.

3. Money is like a child—rarely unaccompanied. When it disappears, look to those who were supposed to be keeping an eye on it while you were at the grocery store. You might also look for someone who has a lot of extra children sitting around, with long, suspicious explanations for how they got there.

4. People who say money doesn’t matter are like people who say cake doesn’t matter—it’s probably because they’ve already had a few slices.

5. There may not be a reason to share your cake. It is, after all, yours. You probably baked it yourself, in an oven of your own construction with ingredients you harvested yourself. It may be possible to keep your entire cake while explaining to any nearby hungry people just how reasonable you are.

6. Nobody wants to fall into a safety net, because it means the structure in which they’ve been living is in a state of collapse and they have no choice but to tumble downwards. However, it beats the alternative.

7. Someone feeling wronged is like someone feeling thirsty. Don’t tell them they aren’t. Sit with them and have a drink.

8. Don’t ask yourself if something is fair. Ask someone else—a stranger in the street, for example.

9. People gathering in the streets feeling wronged tend to be loud, as it is difficult to make oneself heard on the other side of an impressive edifice.

10. It is not always the job of people shouting outside impressive buildings to solve problems. It is often the job of the people inside, who have paper, pens, desks, and an impressive view.

11. Historically, a story about people inside impressive buildings ignoring or even taunting people standing outside shouting at them turns out to be a story with an unhappy ending.

12. If you have a large crowd shouting outside your building, there might not be room for a safety net if you’re the one tumbling down when it collapses.

13. 99 percent is a very large percentage. For instance, easily 99 percent of people want a roof over their heads, food on their tables, and the occasional slice of cake for dessert. Surely an arrangement can be made with that niggling 1 percent who disagree.

via Neil Gaiman, here

And now for something completely different.

Thought I'd take a break from politics for a bit and so it's time to lighten up.

This ring from Jeanine Payer is lovely. The quote is from Walt Whitman: "The strongest and sweetest songs yet remain to be sung.":

Love this marbelized scarf from Ilana Kohn:

A perfectly simple bracelet from brvtvs:

Happy belugas (via Chemin Faisant):


Peace like a river

"You can't outrun the history train."
One of my favorite Paul Simon songs, just felt like posting it today.

Occupy Your Conscience

A terrific essay by Steve Almond at The Rumpus. Read it here, sweet peas.



From the blog Poemas del rio Wang, these beautiful and haunting photographs taken in Japan during WWII. A collector found a camera with the film still in it, had it developed and found these. They have been hidden away for over 65 years and were never seen by the subjects. (Found via For Me, For You)

Here is the original post, in Russian.


Tomas Tranströmer

Winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, 2011.

A nice article about him here: The Beauty of Stillness.

And a poem:

After a Death   by Tomas Tranströmer
translated by Robert Bly

Once there was a shock
that left behind a long, shimmering comet tail.
It keeps us inside. It makes the TV pictures snowy.
It settles in cold drops on the telephone wires.

One can still go slowly on skis in the winter sun
through brush where a few leaves hang on.
They resemble pages torn from old telephone directories.
Names swallowed by the cold.

It is still beautiful to hear the heart beat
but often the shadow seems more real than the body.
The samurai looks insignificant
beside his armor of black dragon scales.
 Installation: A Gust of Wind by Paul Cocksedge                    
Source: dezeen.com via LB on Pinterest


Occupy Portland

  photo from @Vanadia at twitter

I went to the march yesterday, it was good. I think I've been to too many marches to become really exhilarated at the prospect of changing things, but glad to be there to show my support. No, I didn't take any pictures (shame!shame! bad Blogger!)-- but everyone else and their aunt Sally was taking them so I figured there'd be plenty floating around. This one (above) I think, is the best. It sums up the general energy around this particular event. A volunteer wrote the phone number of the National Lawyers Guild on my arm with a purple Sharpie pen (just in case the mood changed from the pic above). Lots of good will from bystanders. The march passed a strip joint and even the strippers came out to watch and cheer us on. The weather held, too. News media says 5,000 attended and organizers say 10,000. I'm thinking it's somewhere between those two numbers. There were a lot of us, all ages. We must have taken up six blocks of wide downtown streets and when the march stopped at Pioneer Square, it was jammed and overflowed. My friend and I couldn't get into the square at all. We. Are. The 99 Percent!


... and a few random pretties:

Photo by Luke Stephenson.

Source: bonadrag.com via LB on Pinterest
 Earrings by Lila Rice.

Source: tumblr.com via LB on Pinterest

Ceramics by Norikazu Oe.

Random (again) Monday.

Went to a dinner last night to honor and say farewell to a dear friend who is moving to Seattle. Our conversation ranged from Occupy Wall Street to Lucretius to recipes using kale. Our lovely host served a wonderful meal followed by an extraordinary orange muscat dessert wine. This talented artist also recently published a memoir titled What Doncha Know? About Henry Miller. It sounds fascinating and is next on my to-read list. We should all have such fabulous pasts, and here's to civilized dinners.

First I need to finish this book:

Currently listening to this:

And a quote for the day:

A person who is a master in the art of living
makes little distinction between their work and their play, their labor and their leisure, their mind and their body, their education and their recreation, their love and their religion. They hardly know which is which and simply pursue their vision of excellence and grace, whatever they do, leaving others to decide whether they are working or playing. To them they are always doing both.
— – Zen poet (via whimsicalities)