September 30, 2009

That's Some Serious Stop Motion


September 29, 2009

On Iran and Nuclear Warheads

While I worked in Arms Control (1996 - 1999) we saw both India and Pakistan become nuclear states. I do understand that it was probably my fault, I didn't work hard enough.

That said, these are two countries that are next door to one another and have active conflict in border areas nevermind having had all out slugfests in the not-too-distant past. In doing so, these countries took on significant budget-burdens in maintenance, security, etc. but also seemed to end up better off in the international scene when all was said and done.

Now Iran... Iran is believed to be developing nuclear weapons, and I'm sure I can get with that assessment. But their neighbor Israel is widely believed by experts to have upwards of 50 nuclear weapons (and some think the number may be in the hundreds). I saw these numbers from experts (the Arms Control Association where I worked, but also at other reputable institutions like the Federation of American Scientists).

Meanwhile, while Iran was party to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty which aims to limit the spread of nuclear weapons (though they have violated it in the past and probably are now), Israel has never even signed on to the treaty and maintains complete international opacity as to what they are holding. Which came first, the chicken or the egg? I won't pretend to know.

So why isn't there a diplomatic option to pursue here that includes Israel signing the NPT and disarming? They've signed non-nuclear weapons pacts in the past, but let's face it, if a country ever got into a situation where they thought they needed to employ such weapons all those pacts would go out the window in the blink of an eye.

I understand that Israel is a much closer ally than anyone involved in the India-Pakistan situation at the time (though that nuclear stuff does tend to have widespread effects you know), and that warrants a much stepped up response in comparison... but it just seems like such an easy solution. "I'll disarm if you'll disarm." "I'll subject to international monitoring if you'll subject to international monitoring."

I'm pretty sure we have a strong enough relationship with Israel that they fall under the aegis of our nuclear deterrent and don't really need to fret carrying this on their own. And they seem to lose a lot more by Iran having weapons like that than gain by keeping a hold of their own.

I know this is quite a random post compared to what usually occupies this space. I feel my past rearing on up. I'm hoping a pretty picture I took in Adams Morgan helps to mitigate any jarring.

September 26, 2009

Sweatpants at the Whole Gallery (H+H Building, Baltimore) Tonight

Playing at a gallery opening along with the Ten Elevenths and a buncha great art work. Doors at 8pm, playing at ???

The details:

September 23, 2009

From the Baltimore City Paper... contribution to "The Storytellers: 27 Writers on 27 Short Stories from 27 Authors"

Ernest Hemingway's "Hills Like White Elephants"
The American, the girl, a flat conversation, a nearly featureless landscape. Every quiet adjective, every sparing adverb cherry-picking silenced ache from the lives you've lived. It's happening somewhere right now. My life as a writer has two phases: what came before "please please please please please please please," and what came after. Gaps that can't be bridged or forgotten. (Jamie Gaughran-Perez)

Other contributions include Adam Robinson on Ryan Call's "I Pilot My Bed Deep Into the Night"; Justin Sirois on Breece Pancake's "Trilobites"; and many other quick 60-words-or-less bits worth reading. Go go go, aleady.

Mine is way too American Poet Voice, huh? C'est dommage.

September 22, 2009

Can You Feel the Fire in a Boy’s Eyes?

(To Autumn, John Keats, and George Herbert)

Zippers, buttons, and snaps;
Buckles, sashes, and ties.

Memorials wrapped tight
Around lightposts ’round here.

Then geese back and forth.

Cups and saucers and coffee.

A shout enveloped in his cape.

Good hope, Ann and Elizabeth.
The horn by the ocean.
The Providence Sparrow.

September 15, 2009

Charles Darwin reaches the Galapagos Islands

It doesn’t crush. It doesn’t hold.
I don’t want to make this seem horrible. She scanned the shelves for just the right mustard and found it. She knew her available balance. She was dressed well for the weather. It’s almost fall and the days mix from cool to too warm for a jacket and back again. She used to walk to school.

It doesn’t hold so it doesn’t crush again.
I don’t want to make this seem hopeless. She used to buy records at record stores, but does that online now. They aren’t records anymore. She has good friends and many acquaintances. Things come together, change, and then come together again. Rent is reasonable. September is my favorite month and is always followed by October. Her birthday will fall on a Tuesday.

It doesn’t crush what it doesn’t hold.
I don’t want to make this seem to be something it isn’t; but am afraid it might be.

September 12, 2009

My Fantasy Football Team

Something tells me I missed a memo.

September 9, 2009

9.9.09 // 9:09 (p.m.)

I was thinking about something. Then I had a moment of something else. The day continues. Twelve more if by sea.

9.9.09 // 9:09 (a.m.)

Squeezing into spaces.
The good side of right-sizing.
Not about failure.


It's a lot harder to change gears on a dime than I thought it'd be. At midnight I wasn't in the middle of anything except having the idea to do this. Let's see what happens at 9:09pm.

9.9.09 // 00:09

Earlier I wrote, Hubris is not a river in Iraq. Who first made use of a rudder? I'm sure Wikipedia could help you with that. The early Egyptian pillow was more a wooden headrest. I've written about that before, too. This life requires more sleep. Pay attention when you drive.


First of what I hope will be three 60-second pieces written today. This one at 12:09 am or 00:09, the next at 9:09 am and then last at 9:09 pm. I haven't looked at my morning schedule to see if I have a meeting conflict wanting to get in the way. What's a minute?

September 8, 2009

Hubris is not a river in Iraq

September 4, 2009

For the Price of a Cup of Coffee Everyday

There is this great scene in 21 Jumpstreet. It's the moment you realize Johnny Depp will be not only a lifelong crush, but a star. He's dealing with the death of his wife in a corner store robbery, and the small window of time he had in which he could have reacted and saved her. He's standing in front of a mirror with a stopwatch and seeing that he could take off his pants in that amount of time. He's beating himself up.

It's Friday and there is a lot to do beside looking back at years of scorched earth. I wish I got more time outside the past few days. I do love September.

September 3, 2009

And So Captured

And so captured when less than least expected. Like walking by the corner liquor store, Baltimore 2008, and seeing a robbery in progress. But just continuing on down the street like it didn't happen. That didn't happen to me or anyone I know.

But the other night, after some rain, someone aggressively passed me on a three-lane road, black quasi-sporty car, no doubt pedal pressed to the floor. Ten or twenty yards after swerving back into my lane they lost control, wobbled, smashed along the left rail and then bounced right off the road and car-length-deep into the woods. The stopping wasn't a spectacular tree wrapping, it was a quiet thing. In the rearview I saw someone else stopping, so I didn't. I imagined a drunk and belligerent individual hot with somehow it was my fault. Another car behind me didn't stop either, and I burned with the shame of not-stopping until that other car turned off down the road a bit later. This did happen.

Every time I open a page. Every time I pass someone on the street. Every time I turn on the TV. Every time there is sunshine or rain or wind or snow. Every time I play a card. Every time I stub my toe or fumble in the dark. Every time I hold on or hold out or let go. It will happen. I will do more.