Monday, November 7, 2011

U Can't Touch This (Echolocation)

blind, Echolocation
pointed me toward
the razortipped ringfence
around the hole 
in your heart


  1. Curtis, weird coincidence greeted this already extremely spooky post: an hour or so before I discovered this, the night caught me distractedly imagining what it would be like to be inside a submarine with depth-charges pinging-about outside the hull, as in those WW II era movies.

    Echo-chamber was the word that wrote itself across my mind.

    Followed by: "echo-location".

  2. This was occasioned by a news story Jane saw about a blind young man (I think he's been blind since birth) who apparently shows remarkable echolocation powers. His hearing has been tested and it's completely within normal ranges, i.e., it's not one of those stories where in any "normal" (or at least measurable) sense the loss of one sense amplifies or magnifies another. Interestingly, Caroline's mother, who was a wonderful woman who loved to go to the movies with us when we visited had two inviolable rules about the types of films she wouldn't see: 1. No submarine pinging sounds. (I have no idea where that came from, but she was a person of clear expression and certain practice.) 2. No "Belushis." (This was a catch-all term for a style of comedy/comedian she objected to.) She was a great, somewhat unpredictable movie companion. Although she was quite elderly by then and very proper and straitlaced, she really liked the comedy/drama Midnight Run, excessive profanity and all. She knew that the profanity (on the lips of everyone except Charles Grodin's accountant character) was essential to the story. She also made us sit through the entirety of Reds in a freezing cold theater in mid-winter (you may recall that the film was exhibited with an intermission) even though none of us cared for it. I'll still never understand that. Curtis

  3. Like insects, bats have been a part of my life since childhood. They have always interested me--it looks as if they bounce on air, the way they swoop and dive and lift so quickly--and the way one or two have found their way into our house, squeezing in. Sometimes a young one has tried to make a home in our basement in fall, hanging upside down and looking like some kind of ceiling ornament. If it's cold enough, the bat doesn't even move when I take it down and outside. I worry about it--and once I took a bat to a wildlife specialist to nurse it through the winter . . . Of course I know this will gross out a lot of people . . . My husband calls me when he finds one, and if I see one, I just say I saw a black butterfly, so as not to freak anyone out.

  4. Nin: It was a friend whose extremely handy and practical husband built bat houses on their property to attract bats and protect fruit trees who alerted me to bats' appealing qualities and I've been a fan for quite a while. Watching them fly around our property in the early evening is just magical. Obviously, I would prefer not to have them enter the house (so far, so good), but I think highly of them. At one point, shortly after Hurricane Irene, I posted something called Bats Like Birds, which described the incredible bat flights we saw at that time. Caroline's surmise was that the hurricane had moved the insect populations around and that had excited the bats. I'm sure she was correct about that. The post, as I recall, then devolved into a screed contrasting my positive feelings about the bats against some very negative things I had just seen pop up on my Facebook page -- real hate postings that seemed to emanate from the dark places some people incorrectly associate with bats. I originally joined Facebook so that I could monitor my daughter's world there and make sure that she didn't get into any trouble, that she could still be president one day if she wanted to. (Actually, I guess she cannot under current law; she was born in China.) The funny thing is that Jane's postings are utterly benign -- "Yay, Phillies" -- that sort of thing. But the some of my adult friends (and their friends) were just hideous. Finally I "defriended" some of these people and felt much happier and incredibly contemporary in the process. Curtis

  5. Tom: I wanted to mention (before I deleted my previous re-response because I'm descending into "unskill" faster than I ever acquired skill) that the coincidence fascinates, but doesn't totally surprise me. I've felt it before. Today was a see-saw day, but the important things (Andy's appointment, principally) went exceedingly well and my trip to Manhattan was postponed for a couple of days, which suits my energy/fatigue schedule well. (I've probably mentioned it before, but Andy's recovery simulates closely the experience of having a human baby in the house.) Hope your day went well. Speaking of see-saws, I guess everyone has a different idea of which see-saw position is the positive one. Curtis