Sunday, March 14, 2010

Joseph came over on the train this weekend and it rained. He came to the house on Saturday and told me that the raspberry bushes I had just bought would be devoured by squirrels. Then we went out to lunch. This place used to be a used car lot, then it was vacant, then it was a taco shop, and now it sells Burmese food for cheap. These windows are great for looking at rain while you eat.

At first, Joseph and I talked about funny things and then my friend John came in and we talked and then he met and interviewed a pleasant Burmese gentleman who was on crutches and I didn't ask but I think he was some kind of victim of the political violence over there. After that, Joseph and I talked about serious things, like school reform and I think escrow accounts.

Then we went to Hyde Bros. I saw my friends Sue and Jeff there who of course were buying all the cool books that I never would have found even if they had given me a full day's head start. At first, Joseph thought it looked like there were "fewer books" there, like the book store equivalent of going back to your old school and not being able to get over how tiny the lockers look.

But we ended strong. It helps to look at the bottom shelves that you usually skip. I won a few good things:

Yusef Komunyakaa, Dien Cai Dau, in which a prior owner has written "Crazy Shit" on the title page. If that alone weren't worth the $3.95, it also has "Camouflaging the Chimera" and "Tu Do Street" in it. It has "Facing it," too, but I haven't liked that one ever since I watched a national Poetry Out Loud finalist recite it a couple of years ago.

Charles Wright, Selected Later Poems. It has poems with titles that reference Li Po and and southern place names like Chickamauga.

Donald Justice, Collected Poems.

Tony Hoagland, Real Sofistikashun, a book of essays and the first one is good.

So anyway, a good day. And today I will read some of these and go to a five year old's birthday party and also go outside to continue construction of the world's lamest-looking cold frame because that's what back yards are for. If my neighbors don't like it, it will be my mild revenge for them hiring someone to cut down one of my trees without asking me.
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Rachel said...

Is this the same restaurant you mentioned in an earlier entry? The way you talk about it makes me really want to go there!

Mr. Hill said...

Actually, this one is south about two blocks, across from the Rialto theater.

That other one has had a sign in the window for a month that says "closed today for kitchen renovations." Not a good sign.

sarahjane said...

Mahn Nin! Sooo good! Sounds like a nice weekend, except for the part where Joseph got all "doomsday" about your raspberries.

Mr. Hill said...

That's the name, I couldn't remember. It's probably Burmese for "Not the Burmese restaurant that closed down, the other one."

Joseph was so right, though. I couldn't believe my gardening naivete. I swear we have the most robust and aggressive squirrels in the city living in our yard.

LetsGoThrow said...

So I've been thinking about your squirrel issue. You could cage in your raspberry bush with some 1/2" chicken wire (will also protect from bunnies in the initial stages). It will also keep the peanut shells out. for the most part.

Mr. Hill said...

I don't know about the aesthetics of chicken wire, but it might be my only choice. The other option is to forget about them and just let the tiny saplings sit in their planters and die there, leaning by the side of the garage. I wouldn't be the first time I've done that.