Thursday, August 27, 2009

DOGGEREL and doings at Peanut Road:

I just finished reading a slender book by Calvin Trillin, 'Deadline Poet: My Life As a Doggerelist.' Trillin is long time columnist and political commentator with a humorous bent. Back in the late Eighties he began adding light verse to his regular columns, one piece per week of self-described doggerel on a (usually) political topic. This book covers the early years.

I'm not one to write reviews, normally, so I won't this time either, other than to say I enjoyed the read. Wit will always win me over. Calvin Trillin has written several other books, including novels -- I may need to look into those -- and continues to work as a columnist.

However, I will paste a sample of the verse here, a non-political (except peripherally) piece about not being chosen as Poet Laureate.


They've named another poet laureate.
It's not me yet.

I do want to applaud him from the bench--
To be a mensch.

And yet I've been ignored so many times.
And my stuff rhymes!

Hey! Maybe that's my problem-- rhyme's a curse.
I'll try blank verse:

Listen, selectors, I'll make a great
poet laureate, and I'm not the kind
of guy who would get uppity if you asked
him to knock out eight or ten lines for
the First Lady's birthday or anything like
that. Think about it. Thanks.

* * *
Once again, I have wasp stings. Or, more accurately, hornets this time. They were apparently attracted to the sweet smell emanating from a bottle of laundry softener and I was paying no attention as I went out in the carport to do some loads of wash. Got me on the ankle. Dang, that hurt! In the process of fleeing them, I bashed the knee on the other leg into a crate and cut it open. That's only an annoyance, however bad it looks (and it looked pretty bad while bleeding profusely). The foot and ankle swelled up considerably and I've been hobbling and complaining for a couple days. It's getting better, as it always will.

But it's something that I can count on every summer since moving here, usually more than once. I could take antihistamines and relieve it some (not a lot) but I hate the way they knock me out. I only take a pill when my allergies are really acting up.

* * *
I went to Lulu, where I have a store (Insolent Lad Media), to look into offering art prints there -- something I'd intended to do for some time -- and found that they had discontinued that line of merchandise earlier this year. I'll probably do other projects there eventually, another book or something, but I guess Cafe Press will continue to be the only outlet for my posters and prints for the time being.

I've been working on getting new higher resolution scans of my paintings for this purpose. I know from past experience that it is best to offer these only on paper products. Tee shirts and such do not work well with anything other than blocks of solid color. New product should be up soon, available via my Emporium.

* * *
I had a pretty young lady visit me from the Water Management bureau yesterday, to check the water levels in my well. I wish the government would send such visitors more frequently -- a good use of my tax dollars, I'd say!

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