San Juan Cosala Women’s Invitational Writeup in the Guadalajara Reporter

Thanks, Bethany Putnam, for your lovely writeup of the San Juan Cosala Women’s Invitational Retablo show in the Guadalajara Reporter!! The show will remain up for two more weeks. You can view it from 10 to 2 or 4 to 8 Tuesday through Saturday at Isidro’s gallery 1/2 block west of Viva Mexico on Porfirio Diaz in San Juan Cosala. That is the street that runs along the lake side of the plaza.

What Are They? Answers

Harpo Marx’s sperm?

Yesterday I published photos of three objects and asked readers to guess what they were. There were some great answers. Go HERE to see the photos and funny (and sometimes correct) answers.

What they really were was 1. a cluster of thousands of Daddy Long Legs, banded together for protection and warmth. The blob was at least 14 inches long and 8 inches across and stuck out about 6 inches from the wall. When disturbed, they would all scatter, then cluster together again. Those hairy parts sticking out are actually their legs sticking out.  2. The second photo was a clear helium balloon with small LED lights wound around it on tiny wires. 3. The third were actual seeds from a Birds of Paradise flower. Surreal.  To see the answers folks gave to “What is it?” click on the link above. Thanks for all of you who played along by guessing.

If you want to see a video of the Daddy Long Legs from another year, go HERE. They are not, by the way, spiders.

Tofurky Asafoetida Blues

Tofurky Asafoetida Blues

My brother’s new wife has the whole family curious.
Her allegations seem New-Age and spurious.
With the result that grandma is furious.

She turns family gatherings into a podium
where she expounds on the dangers of sodium.
Meanwhile, the whole family is on Imodium .

Off to the bathroom, each one in a hurry
after imbibing in her saltless curry.
Will grandpa recover? We all share the worry.

Her asafoetida and cumin and dahl
have certainly cast an ominous pall.
We hardly enjoy family dinners at all!

She stuffs us with pita and gags us with bulgur
because she thinks regular rice is just vulgar.

But macrobiotic and Christmas don’t mix.
We miss all the old foods she’s certain to nix.

No turkey, no dressing, no cranberry sauce.
And no Christmas pudding, ’cause she is the boss!

For years, family dinners went by with no glitch,
but not so since bro married this tedious bitch.

So Santa, this year it would be very pleasant
if you gave us all just one communal present.

Please, Santa, deliver us from her tofurkey
and restore us to pudding and dressing and turkey!!!

 

Note: Asafoetida is a strong spice with a pungent smell, often used in Indian cuisine. It has been known to cause burping, farting and swelled lips.

Words of the day are ditch, insist , spurious, vulgar and sodium.

 

Not What It Seems

 

You have probably never made the same mistake that Kukla made, but before you giggle at her flub, can you guess what the other three objects are? Points for both the correct guess and  the most humorous guess. I’ll tell you the correct answers tomorrow.

Click on photos to enlarge and see captions giving possible answers.

For the A Photo A Week Prompt: Not what it seems.

Unruly Behavior


Unruly Behavior

His mat of curly snow-white hair his most distinctive feature,
he wore his pelt upon his head like some lanigerous creature.

A trial to this innocent lamb was that daily battle
with his unruly students who milled around like cattle, 
and because he was a gentle man who never used the belt,
they never knew precisely how horrible he felt.
Still, tongues can drub as lethally as bludgeons or as bats
to destroy  a weak opponent. So, without a doubt, that’s
why he walked out on eighth period, and what he did instead
was to resolve the problem with a bullet through his head.

In the early seventies, with its schools grossly understaffed, the Australian government started recruiting abroad, offering airfare and a “settling in” allowance to any chosen foreign teacher willing to emigrate to Australia. I jumped at the chance and days after my graduation from college, I flew to Sydney for a week-long  orientation session, then went on to Wollongong where I finished out the school year as a supernumerary teacher in a special school for the top students in the area, taking over a few classes from each overburdened teacher until I could be assigned to my own schedule the following semester. What happened, however, was that after a few months, I was reassigned to replace a teacher who had been fired for smoking pot with his students at a school in a government migrant housing district in the middle of the steel mill area.

The classes were not only overfilled, with 38 students per class, but they were also ability-grouped, with top students in the A group and the lowest-performing students in the D through F groups. As a new teacher, I was assigned mainly to these low-performance classes which in truth meant that I was also teaching the classes with disruptive students who displayed the most behavior problems.

So it was with Charles, another teacher recruited from the states—an older man who after flying to Australia and furnishing his apartment,  one day in the middle of an especially confrontational class session with his 3F class, walked out the door, packed his bags and flew back to the states that night, leaving off the keys to his apartment at our apartment on his way to the airport, directing us to dispense with its contents as we saw fit.

I was reminded of this on Facebook today when a fellow-teacher marked the 50th anniversary of that wild year by sending me a photo of kitchen utensils they had culled from Charles’s apartment—which they use to this day. My roommate and I scored his dining room table, a single mattress which we put on the floor in our living room to use as a couch, and a woven tablecloth we hung on the wall above the “couch.”

Although some of the details have been changed to allow the prompts to be used, (our Charles was bald and thankfully figured out a less-violent solution to his problem) this poem was inspired by the memory of his action. I, on the other hand, finished out that year and re-upped for another, completing  that year as well before becoming one of the notorious “Berkeley 14,” who prompted a district-wide walk-out in protest to teaching conditions. But that is a story for another day, another prompt.

Here are the only photos I have of my Australian crew of friends, all of whom taught at the school where I taught as well. You can see Charles’ table, his mattress (floor couch) as well as his bedspread we hung on the wall in our dining room. My friends did not always dress this strangely. This was a Bazza McKenzie party–and guests were to come dressed in the worst possible taste to reflect Bazza’s stereotyped Australian personality. The guy in the “revolutionary” outfit complete with steel-wool beard and pineapple grenade (compiled by us, to reflect his anti-Bazza personality) is Chuck–one of the instigators of the Berkeley 14 protest. Can’t remember how many others in this group were part of it. I think I’ve explained it in another post. If so, I’ll include a link.

Prompts today are lanigerous, belt, innocence, drub and battle. The photo of the sheep is by Sulthan Auliya on Unsplash.

Poetic Reconstruction

Although this was published, it isn’t showing up in The Reader, so I’m trying reblogging it.

lifelessons - a blog by Judy Dykstra-Brown

Poetic Reconstruction

I’m going to the hospital. I’ve made a reservation,
for I am much in need of a creative restoration.

I need an operation to regain my way of seeing.
I’m going to regain my glow–the fiber of my being.

I suffer from prosaism. Triteness clogs each vein.
My poetic diagnosis? Derivative. Inane.

The abundance of my poems does not refute the fact
of the originality that lately they have lacked.

So, take me to the hospital. I’m ready to be cut.
I’m ready to be lifted from my creative rut.

Unveil my eyes, unblock my brain. Clear pathways to my heart,
but as you improve parts of it, please leave the broken part.

For all the pleasures of the world do not make up a whole.
It also takes some sorrows to feed a poet’s soul.

Prompt words today are abundance, hospital, fiber, prosaism and

View original post 2 more words

Poetic Reconstruction

Poetic Reconstruction

I’m going to the hospital. I’ve made a reservation,
for I am much in need of a creative restoration.

I need an operation to regain my way of seeing.
I’m going to regain my glow–the fiber of my being.

I suffer from prosaism. Triteness clogs each vein.
My poetic diagnosis? Derivative. Inane.

The abundance of my poems does not refute the fact
of the originality that lately they have lacked.

So, take me to the hospital. I’m ready to be cut.
I’m ready to be lifted from my creative rut.

Unveil my eyes, unblock my brain. Clear pathways to my heart,
but as you improve parts of it, please leave the broken part.

For all the pleasures of the world do not make up a whole.
It also takes some sorrows to feed a poet’s soul.

 

Prompt words today are abundance, hospital, fiber, prosaism and glow.