1. Book. I did read one book this week, an old Penguin mystery called Puzzle for Fiends, written in 1946 by Patrick Quentin (who according to the cover was actually two people). I read this only because I wanted a book I could actually put in my pocket, and there it was (why I don’t know). There is no real reason to read it, considering there are several millions of books to choose from: amnesiac victim is released from hospital into the care of his wife and mother (but of course they aren’t really his wife and mother, but they need to have their son back to get the money from their recently deceased husband/father’s will), and he is trying to figure out who they are and who he is and he sense something is wrong and he is sure it has something to do with his new and seductive ‘wife’, never dreaming that she is in fact innocent and that it is his wholesome ‘sister’ who killed both her father and her brother, and not learning this until he realizes that his broken arm and leg, both in casts, are not really broken and he can run and shoot and do every thing else a man should be able to do. And, yes, he does find out his real identity on the second to last page of the book.
2. Theater. It is time for the Capitol Fringe Festival and our first venue was to see “Dorks on the Loose”, not a title that would normally attract us, except that the dorks are two of Hannah’s college roommates, and Hannah produced the show for Fringe. It was a lot of fun and quite silly, and they are getting full houses (that means about 80 people: not bad) at the small Warehouse Theater space. So, I said, ‘ok, I’ll go to see more Fringe’ and yesterday morning (noon), I went back to the Warehouse to see “Three Girls and a Man”, about a man whose wife has multiple personalities (three), and one of them wants to divorce him, and he doesn’t want her treated because he likes the variety (the accomplished feminist, the subservient fundamentalist wife, and the nymphomanic). The premise had promise, I thought, but unfortunately it was a bad play, badly performed. So be it.
3. The poet. Gary Snyder, now 78, is a very famous West Coast poet (friend of Ginsburg and Kerouac and others), who is also a student/expert of Buddhism and eastern art and culture, and has spent the last 40 years writing Endless Mountains and Rivers, an epic poem. I had never heard of him. We saw him at the Freer (he spoke in conjunction with the Yellow Mountain exhibit I wrote about several weeks ago), and he was interesting in speaking about his life (somewhat) and soporific when reading his poetry. But then I find most poetry soporific.
4. We had a very nice event for American Associates of Ben Gurion University this week with Mick Alkan, professor of community medicine, and Sirak Sabahat, of “Live and Become” fame, and a nice dinner with them both at Clyde’s before the session. We also had a nice dinner at Oyamel with Hannah after ‘Dorks’.
So, we have not just been sitting around, I guess.