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I have goals for this blog and among them are regular short stories and poems I've found notable or otherwise engaging stumbled across stupidly each week. To start, here's a story by Italian writer Giuseppe Berto. Information about Berto is posted in the comment section.

The Need to Die - Giuseppe Berto

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mulled wine

I've taken to mulled wine like a fish to water. My method is on the cheap and may wear out its welcome soon but it drives the chill away.

I combine water and Merlot in a 1:1 ratio and heat in a coffee maker. Don't go too heavy on the wine or you'll find yourself with a nasty case of pucker and cotton-tongue. Beeton calls for boiling the wine but alcohol evaporates at 78 degrees Celcius while water boils at 100 degrees. The longer and higher its heated the more alcohol you steam off and that's just not savvy at all at all. If you don't want that blessed buzz just make some apple cider, ok? Heat up some apple juice and drink it from a safety sipper but leave my booze alone, you nancy.

I digress.

Stir in one packet of powdered apple cider and let cool for about five minutes. Drink. Smile. Have some more. You made enough for seconds, right? RIGHT?

To date, I haven't experimented with other Merlots or red wines; I'm using a five liter boxed wine as a starting point for mulling. Its a left over from a booze-and-bike race I participated in last summer and this is the only way I can drink that pap - it unexpectedly survived a one-way trip down the toilet. I do keep a jug wine around the house for cooking but box wine is a major no-no in my hastily prepared book. When I make my next trip to the booze barn, I'll pick up a bottle of Gnarly Head Old Vine Zinfandel. Gnarly Head is cheap enough that I don't feel bad about slow-roasting it but good enough that I can dip the coffers later. I seem to do more and more dipping these days.

A MORE TRADITIONAL RECIPE

This is a Swedish version known as Glögg served in tiny tea-cups. I prefer my wine in coffee mugs THANK EWE very much.
I never knew how to whistle.  My cleft lip couldn't complete the form, collapsing into the outline of a walnut.  I'd huff and puff, launching fountains of spit into the air like a garden hose left out through winter, constipated and gurgling.  Normal kids could whistle but after they learned amazing words like SHIT FUCKING NIGGER PIMP, whistling lost its appeal.  While they screamed motherfucker across the playground, I was left to my own ineffective devices.  Making deflated tire sounds in the key of fart lost its appeal and I, too, fell sway to the amazing words and their fantabulous charm.  I eventually gave up on whistling and resigned myself to unutterable silence. 

After I dropped out of college and took work on the newspaper press, I went under the plastic surgeons knife for the last time.  They cut a slice out of my lip and stretched the healthy skin over scar tissue, stitched it up and sent me on my merry way.  The mirror image became less repulsive, I felt human.  I cut my hair off, I bought clothes that fit, I began to socialize.  The scalpel opened a  new world of mingling and affairs I once refused to indulge.  The world of human affairs was a strange place and I knew certain things were missing but I was patient enough to wait.  The most conspicuous absence was TUM TE TUM whistling.  I sputtered, I spat, I sprayed - nothing worked.  I made some headway; the deflated tire sounds of my awkward childhood weren't in the key of fart.  Fair enough, I said - aint no big thang, wasn't doing it anyway.

Then it happened.  Someone gave me a copy of the Swans 'Children of God'.  Its a bleak album but strangely catchy.  Slow, distant, impersonal; it took up lodging in my head without down payment.  I tried everything to get it out; I got shit-faced, I talked to myself, I listened to obnoxious Baroque pop - nothing worked.  Gira and his stupid tune were in my head for good and I had better get used to it.  And then I found myself whistling his strange bleak little tune.  Oh how I wish I had a camera strapped to my face so I could see my look of astonishment!  Alas, we cannot all have our own personal paparazzi.

So now I whistle all the time.  I've gotten pretty good at whistling harmony along some old jangly blues riff.  Its still a little rough, still a little toneless, still not the way normal people whistle. 

But its better than nothing.

statement of intent

Currently, I have nothing to say.  There is a vague discomfort with the remainders of another life but that is inadequate. 

Nope.

This blog is a collection of shards stumbled upon in research; this blog is a directionless and vapid stream of random accidents - I am not about to redefine the world as I see it.  I am here to categorize and document the slightly useful, the overlooked and the embarrassingly pointless minutiae as I happen to trip over them in the dark.  Upon stubbing my toe and cursing the ceiling, things will be posted at my inconvenience while simultaneously bumbling about stupidly with things I do not understand. 

Nope. 

The things which occupy my time are incapable of majesty but certainly interesting if one can overlook the clutter.

Nope.  Obtuse is not my specialty.

I am a bored horny small-town English student living on the edge of the prairie and I have no motivation whatsoever to join your century.  Pardon the mess, I can't afford servents.Also, I'm awkard, like an erection at a funeral.

Aug. 31st, 2008

What sign have we save blood and smoke?
Here is my answer then.
That on you is fallen the shadow,
And not upon the Name;
That though we scatter and though we fly,
And you hang over us like the sky,
You are more tired of victory,
Than we are tired of shame.

- G.K. Chesterton