The occasional observations of Carolyn Kephart, writer

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Unexpected Treasure

3:05 PM PDT, May 20, 2009

I was lucky this year. My pink Minuet peonies were fat spheres packed with promise, on the point of bursting into huge cabbagy bloom right as I was about to leave for a week-long jaunt to Florida, and I deeply regretted that I'd miss them at their peak; but fortunately the weather was unseasonably cold, and kept the flowers in stasis until I got back. Today they're in full perfection, and I have two of them in a vase here at my desk, where I can admire their Fragonard lushness and heavenly fragrance.

To the Chinese, the peony was queen of the garden, a sentiment I share. I can't grow roses because the deer eat the buds, but I add to my peony collection as much as I can. So far all I have are the bush varieties that flaunt their splendor far too briefly, but a friend recently told me that there's a tree version which yields longer-lasting flowers. I shall find, select, and plant straightway, to enjoy at next year's springtide. Mono no aware is an increasingly painful sensation as time passes, and All Now is becoming more and more my slogan.


Friday, May 08, 2009

The TMI Age

7:17 PM PDT, May 8, 2009

I spent far too much time today ridding my computers of the obnoxiously ubiquitous New Folder virus, and now know more about regedit, msconfig and autorun than I ever expected or desired to. But that's the price one pays for having a second self--and the computer has become just that, prone to its own versions of all the frailties human flesh is heir to. I shrug, and cope. Read the Merck Manual, and you'll wonder that anyone's alive at all.

The Police had it righter than they could ever have wanted to know, back in pre-Internet 1981 with their all too prophetically titled album 'Ghost In The Machine' featuring the eerily apropos 'Too Much Information':

Too much information running through my brain
Too much information driving me insane

Overkill, overview
Over my dead body
Over me, over you
Over everybody

Never in mankind's bewildering history has communication become so rife. I'd call it a global group hug, but it often feels more like a desperate grasp. Look at me. Listen to me. Make me matter.

I'm on Facebook, Goodreads, LibraryThing, Blogger, discussion forums, this site, my site...the other day I was actually thinking of becoming one of Stephen Fry's nearly half-million Twitterfollowers, but fortunately the yearning passed. Time is very flexible, but even Silly Putty snaps.

And now I'm thinking of another Sting song, about the hundred million bottles washed up on the shore...all with a message in them. Did the castaway feel the need to read every single one?



Who's also Kindled, and loves her books being digitized.