Monday, July 28, 2008


A few things before I head down to DC later this week...

First, this beautiful post by Mike (my co-teacher) about his first week at Gallaudet. He expertly describes the issues swirling around the school and the community.

Second, then there's this development to consider.

Finally, on a lighter note: check out Wide Mouth Grin, a Colorado band headlined by a deaf singer/guitarist.

Strange days. The old rules don't hold. But what are the new ones?

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

In Their Dreams

Olivia and Otis meet on the shore of a purple ocean. Behind them, the world burns in its own selfishness, and shivering travelers light their own clothes on fire to stay warm. Stars drift across the sky like drunken bees.

Olivia: Otis how are the waves?
Otis: Rough
Olivia: Is that your canoe? Is it fiberglass?
Otis: Bark.
Olivia: I see. Did you sand it at least or is it still –
Otis: Rough.
Olivia: (shrugs) Well, then. What should we do? Should we go across? How far is it? What lies on the other side?
Otis: (wags tail; gazes in her eyes with intense friendliness)
Olivia: (sits down, puts head in hands). Shoot, I’m asking a dog for advice.
Otis: (sticks his head on her knee). My darling. Watch this: (the sun emerges from the purple ocean, wearing a crown of pearls). And this: (A mermaid crests, blowing bubbles). And this: (the mountain bends down and pulls a cookie sheet out of the oven). You see? Don’t be afraid. There is nothing to fear. We will cross whatever needs crossing and end up exactly where we need to be. You will manifest the love of God, the beating heart of all creation, at every moment, whether you are aware of it or not. Everything is ok.
Olivia: Are you sure?
Otis: I have never been more sure. Okay? I’m just going to lay here and twitch a bit. Makes the dream more interesting.
(He does so. Meanwhile, the dead come back to life, and walk over a dune holding hands and singing a song from High School Musical 2. Zac Efron takes off his shirt, builds a sand castle and then is swept out to sea by a rogue wave.)
Olivia: Why, yes. I see it now. I see it now! Yes, Otis. Oh, I like this dream. I love you!
Otis: Got any biscuits?
Olivia: (checks pockets) No.
Otis: Ah man, you’re breaking my heart.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Step Back Jack!

Ah man, I was doing my bestest to ignore this bloggo right into the deep rearview but my nemesis Jacko had time on his hands and raised this very good point:

"Who cares if you have work to do and are too busy, you created that blog-o-baby and it needs constant feeding."

Aight, Jack. You'll get yours.

Where to start? Summer in the burbs and hot as tick fart. When Otis and I hit the woods for our afternoon walk, the bugs are too burned out to bite. They just lay panting on the rocks as we pass, fanning themselves with three, sometimes four of their legs. The birds here have quit flying into windows but instead smack right into the ACs.

(Yes, that's a road. Or is it now?)

Just back from a week in Maine, which is about my favorite place in creation. Woods, water, people in no rush. Evenings cool and well lubricated by fermented or distilled concoctions. On the morning of the fourth, in Brooklin, a small town near the coast, we were ambushed by an Independence Day parade that was absolutely lacking in cynicism. It was like a twenty minute long piece of milk chocolate. Before that, Milwaukee for a long weekend, for the Alexander Graham Bell convention. A beautiful event in a convention center so big I burned off a pound a day just walking back and forth to the restroom. Gave a couple talks about The Unheard which went well, and which, really, can now be summarized in just a few lines.

Namely: Darling! We are all ok. We are all loved. Aim to forgive. Every moment holds the grace you seek! God is right here. Still, put on your seatbelt.

Busy week now as I’m trying, with Mike Chorost, to finish the syllabus and reading list of the course we’ll be teaching this fall. Titled History of Change, the course will look at how minorities have adapted to evolving societies through history, and then we’ll encourage the students to relate it back to Gallaudet’s current situation, which, despite some recent gains, continues to be fraught with unknowns.

I’m also pushing to finish a draft of my novel, now tentatively titled, “The thing I really should have finished a while ago but Jeopardy was on and also this weird new game show where they hit people.” No, not really. It’s an interesting book; and has been a wonderful opportunity to work out ideas about death and issues with my folks.

Tons of other irons are in the fire, none of which, apparently, have any money attached to them. I’m skilled like that.

Now then, to tie up some loose threads. The woman I picked up at the airport: beautiful as the day is long. Don’t believe your eyes. The movie of The Unheard: eh, boarded the wrong train and is lost in Alberta. The Obama-Clinton split: people, please. Everybody’s already won.

Gratefully then, I take my leave with the happy dance: