The birthdays keep coming: today Uncle Zach marks another year in his progress to a venerable age.
The little bunny rabbit of hope, which was slammed back into its hole last week, is hesitantly thinking about emerging for this cease-fire in Palestine. There is always a chance.
Last night, after Vu's party at Adagio, I came home drunk and did my part for the economy by making massive online music purchases: so now good people are packing Low, PJ Harvey, Aphex Twin, Nick Drake, Tortoise, Of Montreal and sundry other good things into a box for me. And I cleaned my apartment, and I moved one of the orange chairs into the bedroom because its feng shui was bad, and fine-tuned the prose rhythm of "Javelinas," and generally I am working to reestablish an ordered life.
The First Anglo-Afghan war lasted from 1839 to 1842 and ended in a disastrous British retreat. On 2 January 1842, 4,500 troops and 10,000 followers left Kabul and began the week-long march south, through mountain terrain filled with Afghan fighters. One man, doctor William Byron, survived.
I'm also reminded of the passage in Heart of Darkness where Conrad dramatizes the obtuse European idea of somehow making war on an entire continent:
Once, I remember, we came upon a man-of-war anchored off the coast. There wasn't even a shed there, and she was shelling the bush. It appears the French had one of their wars going on thereabouts. Her ensign dropped limp like a rag; the muzzles of the long eight-inch guns stuck out all over the long hull; the greasy, slimy swell swung her up lazily and let her down, swaying her thin masts. In the empty immensity of earth, sky, and water, there she was, incomprehensible, firing into a continent. Pop, would go one of the eight-inch guns; a small flame would dart and vanish, a little white smoke would disappear, a tiny projectile would give a feeble screechand nothing happened. Nothing could happen. There was a touch of insanity in the proceeding, a sense of lugubrious drollery in the sight; and it was not dissipated by somebody on board assuring me earnestly that there was a camp of nativeshe called them enemies!hidden out of sight somewhere.