tue 02-02-99 Rain. Finished The Lucifer Principle. Sociobiology and original sin, the world can only be saved by the puritan ethic and space exploration. Most of it seems sensible but irritating. Research as anecdote, lots of documentation that doesn't prove anything, not a single mathmatical formula in the whole book, more an exercise in rhetoric and name dropping than in science. It does have some good ideas, that we are not as different from other animals as we like to think, how our actions are more controlled by our biology than we realize.
Clear and warm. Left work at three so I could get to Davis square
before rush hour. I had studied my map and followed the directions,
mostly, so I found where the discussion would be with no problem,
even though it was Somerville, and parked. I was hoping the branch
of McIntyre and Moore had improved since their main store in
Harvard square, which I really liked, had closed, but it hadn't.
Looked around and found lots of places to eat but few real
restaurants, just two chinese places. Met Valerie at the T at
six and went to Yee Village, but had to listen to Dan Rather and
a street person who came to the table and asked for money.
Stopped at Osco after so Valerie could buy zink.
Got to the discussion just after seven thirty but found that some place had listed the start time as seven so it was already crowded. Thirty nine people, another record. People talked about community and how you need a goal or something to hold the group together and self understanding and agreements about how to join, what members have to do, and how to leave. One person talked of a third place that wasn't home or work where you could go to meet members, like Curious Liquids on Beacon street. Agreements can be renegotiated every year and this can be a bonding ritual. Old neighborhoods had shared capital, you helped someone who needed it and were helped in turn. One person spent spent time in a kibbutz, where the family meal each week was for six hundred fifty. Another knew someone who, when she stopped working after having a baby and started going to a coffee shop at ten each morning, found she became part of the north end women's community. Someone said his group worked without a formal agreement and was told it had no type A personalities, and much shared history.
You can see the stars in Somerville.
The file seven tape ran off the end this morning. There were 49330
records yesterday, 2592 the day before. Someone had changed an
insurance field. Spent the day finding the problem and backing out
the changed fiscal records. The program needs to be fixed to allow
more than one reel of tape.
The plumbing was fixed when I got home. I don't like complaining or telephones or answering machines or being ignored, and had the hot water in the sink in the north bathroom turned off because it hadn't been fixed since I told the landlord nearly a year ago that it dripped, but finally called since now, besides the problem with the toilet in the north bathroom, the one in the east bathroom would not shut off even when I tied the float value in the up position with a rope over the towel rack, and the cut off valve was stuck.
Cold with a high overcast, air a bit damp.
Didn't go to winter weekend. Walked to Harvard Book Store
and bought remaindered and used books.
A Different Mirror: A History of Multicultural America.
Still Life with Insects, a novel set as an insect collecting journal.
Primate Behavior, poems by Sarah Lindsay.
She has come to trust the shallow brown bowl
that never shows her own future. She closes her eyes
when she leans over to wash her face.
The Tantra Experience by Osho.
The Dalai Lama at Harvard.
An Unlikely Prophet, by Alvin Schwartz, who wrote Superman from 1940 to 1958, about his encounter with a seven foot tibetan monk.
The Ghosts of Nantucket, for Howard.
Turning Japanese, about the effect of Japan on a third generation japanese american.
Leaning over the low metal railing, twisted light gray branches growing from the stone retaining wall and their dark reflections in the still water of the Charles, and brown stems with white dots. Got two thirds of the way through An Unlikely Prophet. Looked out the window late to see a layer of snow on the driveway and cars.
tue 02-09 Joe and I met with a bunch of people in Labor and Delivery about archiving. The list is never going to work, it needs to be moved to M. We scheduled the server upgrade for 7am monday. There were two left over CRTs mounted above the windows in recovery. They had asked Joe if these could show the A and B displays. They can't. When they found out how disruptive and expensive it would be to find space, mount PCs and monitors, and move network and serial connections across the room, the idea was dropped.
wed 02-10 The busses were late and Valerie didn't have time to buy anything for dinner. I had stuff.
thu 02-11 Sixteen people at the discussion tonight. Jay likes babies.
Howard and I sat in on the development staff meeting and met with
Peter and Joe. I traced through omr (online medical record)
programs with Mike afterwards. They're a mess. The editor is
called via a form driver program.
Jerry suggested I record what I've done at work here.
I didn't go to Bolton.
Ran out bagels. I may starve.
From Valerie: "I had an adventure: I missed my train (the 2:23) because the bus was late. I was leaving early so that I could go to Natick and buy a washing machine for the shelter at Sears and also see Paul. So I took the Orange Line to Back Bay, figuring I could find out if there were any Sears stores within reach and anyway go across to the CP and buy jellybeans, and anyway, the next train wasnt till 3:55 and Back Bay is a nice place to wait. Well, just as I came up the stairs from the Orange Line Platform there was a woman lying on the floor convulsing and turning blue. Someone had already gone to call for an ambulance, but I knelt by her and talked to her (she was essentially unresponsive), making sure her airway was clear and keeping my finger on her pulse. Her color gradually improved and she stopped convulsing. Suddenly she stood up. She was very dazed and would not respond to questions about her name,or if she knew where shewas or what day it was. I tried to engage her in conversation, but she would only say, "I've got to go now." I tried to coax her to come sit down with me, but eventually Ihad to let her walk down the steps to the platform again. Then a train came, and I had a great deal of difficulty keeping her from getting on. She still wasn't talking. After the train left, she sat down on a bench and I just watched her from a little distance, making sure she wasn't trying to get on a train on the other side of the platform. I used the police call box to yell for help in keeping her safe. Finally a T-person came, but he didn't seem to understand the situation, although he did have a radio and was able to find out if the paramedics were on the way. He did seem rather alarmed when she wouldn't talk to him either and when another train came she tried to get on. Eventually, she seemed to come to herself and was able to talk to me a little. I told her she had had a seizure and asked if she was epileptic and she said yes, and she was a patient at BI (she was in her twenties I think) and her name was Drew. I sat with her and tried to keep her occupied till the EMT's got there. Two other women had hung around too, going back and forth to the ticket booth to carry the word that we had gone down to the platform, etc. I gave her my card and I left. Whew.
Then I did buy my jellybeans, got on the late train, went to Natick, bought the washing machine. Went to see Paul."
Bought a quilt with purple and brown squares and leaf patterns.
At Keith's chocolate party with Valerie and co, sat on the floor and the couch, between Valerie and Cathy.
sun 02-14 Went to eight centuries of recorder music at the church. They played variations on happy birthday by Matthias Friederich, one like Elgar's march.
Clear and cold, meditating in the dark. Walking to work before
sunrise, in at seven to do the upgrade, the guy never showed.
This afternoon, when I went back to TJ Max the lamp with the dragonflies was gone.
The toilet paper is not working right, it doesn't unroll.
Discussion in Medford, many directions, sitting with little space on the couch. Simultaneous small groups might be popularity contests.
wed 02-17 Went with Valerie to the Mary Cassatt exhibit and the MFA this afternoon and learned she painted more the just children. At the end of the last century in Paris, she painted many pictures of women at the theater or at home.
Proformance reveiw today, rated as "needs improvment." Also was
told I had been transfered from systems to applications on monday.
The review was supposed to be before jan 3, my hire date and when
I was supposed to get my raise, which I am told will be at least
two per cent.
Lunch with Valerie at Brown Sugar after her round table discussion. Pineapple fried rice with chicken and two shrimps. Another lunch at Thornton's with Howard and Sandy and Elaine. French fries.
sat 02-20 Saw My Favorite Martian, thought it was stupid but fun. It's a comedy, it's not supposed to have a plot. Then felt cabin bound so went to Tower looking for Lionel Richie, but they didn't have what I wanted. Exercised much sales resistence by not buying a whole bunch of stuff I looked at but did spent a lot of money. Found Sandler and Young. Since the new album of Bert Bacharach's music is so popular, they reissued an album of his I wanted. Found a disc of Bach's English Suites by Murray Perahia with a sale sticker they forgot to take off, it is very good. Also got, at the Book Annex, Rexroth's One Hundred Poems from the Chinese, which I am not sure if I already have.
Sunlight and snow from a blue slightly hazy sky when I left for
Sharon, heavier when we got to church. Choir rehearsal with Cy
Coleman's Rhythm of Life. Sermon about the dispute over sex ed
in grade K one, people will not accept the course material that
was used several years ago. Questions about paganism
at UU history class on America and Emerson. No snacks at church,
squash soup for lunch. Dropped my car on Recreation road by the
no parking after dark sign and got a ride to Townsend. Three
new people at the discussion on agreements. Some like to
interact with other members of the co, others don't.
When to answer the phone.
mon 02-22 No staff meeting at one.
Staff meeting at two, almost got stuck in the small conference
room. Was asked to look at the list of interfaces for y2k.
Talked to Joe about omr and the program tree, David about
formdriver and filing. Bob was in Idella's office, talked of a
better program editor and a faster machine.
Talked with Valerie.
Wandered around downtown and found a Casserole cookbook at Buck
a Book. Met Valerie by Park street station and walked past the
skaters on the Common to Bangkok Seafood on Charles street.
Chicken coconut soup, peking ravs, special, tofu and vegetable
masamn curry, ginger ice cream. Reasonable and good. Walked up
and over past gas lights, a church where they rang changes, and
apartments with character to the Studio theatre in what looks
like an Emerson college dorm. It's a black box with seating at
an angle going up the walls. I want the ceiling and lights for
my living room.
Knick Knack Patty's Stack: yellow chairs and school girls.
Me, My Fear, The Fields: solo, baggy blue shorts and top.
Coming to Terms: black conference table, pinstripes and black shoes.
The Past is a Foreign Country: three in short print dresses.
a la fin, pas une autre danse de chaise: green spiral eye and chair, toe dancer and man in black.
It was cold walking down Arlington street to the green line. Valerie asking where's the snow.
thu 02-25 Snow, I wasn't told. Left work early. Lots of comics, more Superman robots.
fri 02-26 Snow finally ended, much of it melted. I now work for Bob again. To Tower for the rest of Bach's english suites and Gardner's version of his montets. This completes my collection of Bach's major works.
Valerie was minister for the Journey Toward Wholeness service
today. She sang Fred Small's If I Was a Moose, Don sang
Mood Indigo, and Mel(!) sang It Don't Mean a Thing.
She told of going to see Miles Davis in a bar. Red Fox, filling
in between sets, noted she and her date were the only white
people and said if they didn't laugh at his jokes he would move
into their neighborhood and drive the property values down.
Ken(!) was there.
Valerie's car died, so Judy took mine to Qunicy Adams station, Valerie and Ken drove me to the station later, and they bought a new used car. The old metro had three cylinders and got forty five miles per gallon, so they found one. My CRX gets fifty.
There is one washer and dryer in my building of sixteen apartments, many of which contain roomates. Yesterday there was a waiting line, but today I only had to wait for the dryer.