In Animals, Artists, Local projects, Music, Revision, RLB trivia, The Crab Walker, Theater on July 1, 2014 at 6:36 am

Family is about continuity. An observation scribbled down while having coffee on a terrace in Albi yesterday. A Dutch family prompting the scribble: father, mother, two teen-aged daughters and two dogs (the mother’s and the father’s).  The daughters: one much prettier than the other, and waspish to the point of disruptive, the other somewhat sullen and wistful. Who sits where? Who orders what? How do the dynamics play out? The beauty of not understanding a single of the words exchanged between them: gestures, facial expressions, intonation stand out, crisp and vivid. (I happen to run into the same group later; the pattern holds – first daughter walks with one parent and dog, second daughter with the other.)

An unusual day for me. Clothes shopping, for one. The dazed, zombie-like expression on the faces of several women in one store. In search of the item, the way a drunk searches for the one drink that will make all the difference, or a book hound, for the book pointing to the next stop on the way to the Holy Grail. (Except book hounds don’t look dazed.)

An Indonesian musical duo I would not have searched out on my own. The musician setting up an intriguing melodic line; the singer breaking in with  astounding bouts of shrieking. Something like someone breaking in with the news of a Murder Most Foul in the midst of a Society Tea.

Continuity of a pattern – including patterns of discontinuity. Of behavior, of expectations. The stories people share. The ones they don’t. How people express the conventional (official speeches at an exhibition, social patter). How people react to an unexpected disclosure.

Scribbled notes. New books. New clothes, and a pair of sandals to replace the ones that lasted me close to ten years. Back and forth between two languages; living in one, writing in the other.


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