1282

New York, New York, it's a helluva town ...

I heard indirectly Felix recently wrote that when he feels homesick, he thinks of Paris. I think of Manhattan. Never mind the last time I was on that wretched, wonderful island I vowed never to set foot on it again in this lifetime.

This splendid NPR series on Bernstein makes me homesick. And despite the fact that most of the weekend's programming was made impossible by their fund-raising activities, they kindly only interrupted the Bernstein hour once, and for one minute.

I was awakened during the night by thunder and lightning, then it rained for most of Monday, a miserable day. Fortunately it did stop long enough around noon-time for me to feed the furry ones, and I was able to get from campus to the mall without getting totally wet later in the day, then sat there for hours watching the rain fall and listening to NPR beg for money.

There's really no better illustration of the "rich-poor gap" in the United States than sitting on those benches at the mall as sunset approaches, watching the trashpickers slog by, and then the lights go on in the surrounding condominium apartments.

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Felix said about Robert de Montesquiou, "near the end", the Count avoided young people, but added that he (Felix) is still running around "shameless". I told him I am not sure if he can match me for shameless. Especially not after quoting Browning to the Sleeptalker. Prefaced by explaining what "breadth and height" mean.

The Sleeptalker was fine with being called "swell", but then he knows he is.

I also told him his beautiful brown eyes are the most important thing, not what's between his legs. (Talk about shameless.)

A Fool Moon, an Eclipse, a bottle of Jack Daniels, and the Sleeptalker. Who could ask for anything more from one week?

I'm sure if anyone wants to take the time to research the Tales, a pattern would be found with appearances of the Sleeptalker and the Full Moon. So I wasn't too surprised when he arrived on campus the day before the Eclipse. "I was just thinking about you," I said. True, but I could very often honestly say that when he appears.

He started to tell me a story about how the boyfriend of his sister had been kidnapped. "I don't believe it," I said, "nor do I believe the story about Angelo being a child-killer." He laughed and discontinued the story. I told him he should write a book rather than make up all this stuff, but I was relieved to see that he really does understand the difference between reality and imagination.

He just wants to make his life more interesting.

I can sympathize with that.

When I got to the Black Hole on Tuesday evening, the Sleeptalker followed me up the stairs, said he had a "present" for me, gave me a bottle of Jack Daniels whiskey. I was touched to the quick, like the Wizard of Oz, but I wish he wouldn't take such risks even if I did buy him lunch earlier.

A sweetheart of a local Japanese lad sat across from me while I was sipping Jack Daniels on ice Wednesday afternoon. He was pondering the crossword puzzle in the student newspaper, deeply pondering it. If I'd given him a Sunday NY Times crossword, he'd probably spend the rest of his life pondering it.

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"Go away, just go away!"

Sigh.

I've told you for years how much I love the Sleeptalker, but that man can be SO exasperating. Of course, by sunset on the day after the eclipse, and after several afternoon hours in his company ending with that comment, I was feeling very guilty, wished he would appear. He didn't, not at the mall, not at the Black Hole.

He has never seen The Wizard of Oz! His mother should be arrested for criminal negligence.

1284a

Well, the Sleeptalker was at the Black Hole on Friday night so I got a chance to apologize for losing my patience. He shook my hand. And arrived on campus the next morning ....

Give me strength.

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That's it, that's it. I take a vow of celibacy. (Long overdue.)

Many thanks to the Houston Grand Opera for a touchingly beautiful performance of Borodin's Prince Igor.

Infinite thanks to the Sleeptalker.

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the tales