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Saturday, August 29, 2009

Finding God In My Toilet

August 30, 2009: Those of you who've read my first novel TEMPORARY INSANITY -- (I know there are at least two of you out there, plus my late mentor, who committed suicide shortly after finishing it) -- know that two of my recurring literary themes are 1) going to the bathroom, and 2) God. What you may not recognize, however, is how often life imitates art, as an experience I had yesterday afternoon clearly demonstrates.

I was on a lovely walk down by Burying Hill Beach in Westport, CT, when I was overcome with a gut-wrenching compulsion to evacuate. Like Archie Bunker -- another fictitious character -- I fight to confine my waste-expulsion practices to my own home, but on rare occasions necessity thwarts custom, and with my car a good mile away and my intestines roiling like I'd swallowed a live ferret, it seemed only practical to take whatever opportunity I could find.

Imagine my delighted disbelief to discover not only a clean single bathroom with a lock on the door, but enough paper supplies for an entire army of incontinent men. I indulged myself with a sort of hearty gusto, took my time and care, and even washed my hands with the lovely machine-dispensed soap foam the Parks & Rec Department provided. In a state of gratitude, I noted to myself that God (Fate, Higher Power, the Universe, whatever the hell you want to call it) had seen to lead me to this literal sanctuary atop the hill, meeting the needs of a traveling pilgrim who viciously had to take a dump.

Before leaving, as a courtesy to the next incontinent man who'd need to sit, I flipped the seat up so it wouldn't be carelessly peed upon in the coming hours ... And printed underneath in soft, blue letters, there was that word again ... as it was reported being under the toilet seat in my novel -- "Church."

An inspired company, no doubt, meeting a great need of mankind with its unique and obviously spiritual brand of porcelain. Once again the lesson was clear, as it was demonstrated for my protagonist in my book -- (to paraphrase) Dogmas and doctrines will shift and pass (if you'll forgive the imagery), but when all is said and done, here is where you can always find peace, contentment and relief -- the trappings of a true spiritual experience!


Thursday, August 27, 2009

Squirrels Mating

August 27, 2009: Already facing considerable demand for another entry, I decided to throw my weekly plan to the wind and give the public what it wants.

At the same time, I wanted to focus on something relevant and somewhat informative. That's when I remembered these two squirrels I saw trying to mate yesterday.

It was quite a spectacle. While they both seemed interested -- of course, who knows what really goes on in a squirrel's mind -- they didn't seem to have the least idea how to begin! (It was like watching a pair of humans.) First the male got behind the female. Then the female turned around and tried to get behind the male. Then they both sort of put their tails against each other's and started backing up, like they were some pair of Kama Sutra squirrels. On top of that, you have to understand that the whole thing was taking place on the side of a tree, so they couldn't have been very relaxed to begin with.

Part of me suspects that the excessive urbanization of Connecticut is to blame. Squirrels want to mate, but they don't even remember how, or they're too frightened to let their guard down. I blame the government for this. (Isn't that what "blogs" are for, after all?!)

I'll try to find out more about this situation, but keep your eyes open. If you see pairs of squirrels acting strangely, at least do your part by averting your eyes. It may help relax them.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Email Investment

August 26, 2009: My good friend Matthew Perry and I often correspond by email. We feel it's a fine practice, as we can't stand the sight of each other, but still like to stay in touch.

Many, many words -- and much wit and wisdom -- pass ephemerally through the esoteric airwaves of cyberspace, only to end up deleted and forgotten at some point. (I delete his words promptly, as they often just annoy me.) So much time and attention is invested in our communication, and to what end? As a writer, I've often asked myself what the point was.

So it seemed prudent to finally start this strange process of "blogging," and thanks to the fine people at -- (and you see, here I'm fearful to mention their names, as it might violate their policy or something) -- I'm happy to say that my thoughtful words will no longer be wasted on that cad. (Please understand, I think a great deal of Matt, but I'm still waiting for him to return my lawnmower, which he borrowed in the early 1990's.)

So let the blogging begin. (What an awful word!)