The time was shortly after World War I. The place, almost anywhere that there was an area long enough and flat enough. The sound was the coughing and sputtering of those early engines at the front of any of a variety of war-surplus airplanes. The few surviving military aviators and others who sought adventure had been able to purchase the planes, Curtiss Jenny trainers and the like, and they had set off to find their fortunes.
In the middle of the summer, John Mayer released this album, and it sounded like a Hall & Oates album broke out. I couldn’t help but think of the last hit from Daryl Hall and John Oates, “Everything Your Heart Desires,” as I listened to the lead track on this record, “Last Train Home.” Just as they landed in the top 10 in 1988, this album is an attempt to lovingly remind us of 1988.
Today is the first day of autumn. The new season begins at 3:20 p.m. Eastern time, so it’s really the first part-day of autumn. It is not by design that I’ve gone on a bit recently about the passage of time and our perception thereof. It just seems to have inserted itself into a lot of recent (how do we even define “recent”?) events.
Marjorie Thompson died seven years ago today. If you did not know her, that is your loss. She was the most remarkable person I’ve ever known in a life fortunate to have included many remarkable people. She was also the best and closest friend I’ve had in this life.
Time is a funny thing. Well, no, time is time. Our perception of it is where things go haywire. We’re not very well equipped to comprehend the passage of time or its implications.
A noticeable thunderstorm toddled through here a little after noon on Sunday. Nothing surprising there, nor in it taking the power out for most of the rest of the day.
What is there to say? Our country is governed by an ice-cream enthusiast who has combined the policies of Jimmy Carter with the presentation of Gerald Ford (if Ford had suffered rabies) along with his own diminished capacity — and he didn’t have that much capacity to begin with. In his speech Monday he sounded like that angry doddering guy on the front porch of the rest home who causes visitors to enter through the back door instead.
Not long ago, one of the gas lines on a piece of yard equipment here broke right where it connected to the plastic gas tank, causing gasoline to leak all over the place and rendering the thing unusable. I’d hoped to buy just the parts I needed from a knowledgeable person locally, but that was no longer possible.
It was an innocent — even endearing — touch when I received a delivery today. The delivery person left a sticker on the bag thanking me for my patronage. The sticker depicted five stars, a not too subtle hint at his desire for a five star review. And he deserved it — the items came quickly and correctly and in perfect condition. But, it got me thinking about how weird our view of customer service surveys has become.
It was sad to hear over the weekend that Jackie Mason has died. He was 93, so it can’t be said that he didn’t have a full life, and we can all use the reminder that our worldly existence does end, inevitably, for all of us. But he made people smile and laugh, for good reasons, and we can never have too much of that.