Diverse Diversions: Not Aggravating Aggregations

31 Aug
Kodak 'Brownie'

Kodak ‘Brownie’

Recently I noted (in the cursory manner to which I am accustomed) Teju Cole’s commentary on a Rene’ Burri photo. Over at Howard Dinen’s 1standarddeviation.com, Dinin engages in a informed and illustrated exchange with another photography enthusiast

The big news is that Japan won the Little League World Series (which is a legitimate world competition, unlike some misnomered World Series to which we can point) but we should (and will) note a charming display of sportsmanship from the Chinese Taipei/Uganda (next big beisbol powerhouse) game.

RIP Oliver Saks ” poet laureate of medicine”*, whom millions knew as the physician played by actor Robin Williams in the 1990 film “Awakenings”

The box office hit documentary Amy is not the only recent memorial to MS. Winehouse. Two (so called) art exhibits in San Francisco, A Family Portrait and You Know I’m No Good

Hockey tradition comes to baseball when Edwin Encarnacion hits his third dinger of the game in Toronto

Jim Harrison and Dalai Labrador Rosie [photo: Robert Birnbaum circa 2004]

Jim Harrison and Dalai Labrador Rosie [photo: Robert Birnbaum circa 2004]

From Jim Harrison’s Songs of Unreason

When young I read that during the Philippine War
we shot six hundred Indians in a wide pit. It didn’t seem fair.
During my entire life I’ve been helpless
in this matter. I even dream about it.

***

In summer I walk the dogs at dawn
before the rattlesnakes awake. In cold weather
I walk the dogs at dawn out of habit.
In the pastures we find many oval deer beds
of crushed grass. Their bodies are their homes.

***

I left this mangy little
three-legged bear two big fish
on a stump. He ate them at night
and at dawn slept like a god
leaning against the stump
in a chorus of birds.

***

The fly on the window is not a distant crow
in the sky. We’re forced into these decisions.
People are forever marrying the wrong people
and the children of the world suffer.
Their dreams hang in the skies out of reach.

Vin Scully has been calling baseball games as long as I have been alive—he’s coming back for one more year

ALEX COX is the director who among other films made Repo Man, Walker (for which Joe Strummer did the soundtrack),Sid and Nancy. I recently received a this note, “Robert: This is what old filmmakers do when they show us the barn…”

Alan Watt observes

The real reason why human life can be so utterly exasperating and frustrating is not because there are facts called death, pain, fear, or hunger. The madness of the thing is that when such facts are present, we circle, buzz, writhe, and whirl, trying to get the “I” out of the experience. We pretend that we are amoebas, and try to protect ourselves from life by splitting in two. Sanity, wholeness, and integration lie in the realization that we are not divided, that man and his present experience are one, and that no separate “I” or mind can be found.

To understand music, you must listen to it. But so long as you are thinking, “I am listening to this music,” you are not listening.

Eleven days before George Scialabba is feted in Cambridge and other parts of the known world

* from Washington Post obitituary

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2 Responses to “Diverse Diversions: Not Aggravating Aggregations”

  1. hdinin August 31, 2015 at 8:38 pm #

    Dear Izzy

    My esteemed jacked in associate, let me tell you how delighted I am you honor me with a mention and a link.

    Let me tell you as well, after, lo, these many years (can it be 36? And I tell you, yes it can) how dismayed I am that you still misspell my name.

    It’s Dinin.

    I tell you for the sake of my father and forebears, honest tradesmen, rabbis, judges. Who had the name for centuries in Ukraine and Belarus, with nary a solecism.

    But they never imagined the phenomenon of the Birnbaum, impaired literary journalist.

    With mixed emotions, and a full heart,

    your friend

    Heshie

    From: ourmaninboston
    Reply-To: ourmaninboston
    Date: Monday, 2015 August 31 at 2:36 PM
    To: Howard Dinin
    Subject: [New post] Diverse Diversions:

    robertbirnbaum posted: “Log rolling Howard elaborates Recently I noted (in the cursory manner to which I am accustomed) Teju Cole’s commentary on a Rene’ Burri photo. Over at Howard Dinen’s 1standarddeviation.com, Dinen engages in a informed and illustrated exchange with an”

    • robertbirnbaum August 31, 2015 at 9:38 pm #

      To quote Billy Wilder, “Nobody’s perfect.”

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