While I’m trying to build up enough steam to write a not-too-extensive post about our trip last week to Mexico City, here is an über-bitter snipe about the teen-rape allegation against the United States Supreme Court nominee.

Brett Kavanaugh and his team need to get together with Justice Clarence Thomas to come up with something catchy like Thomas’s “high-tech lynching” to scare off the naysayers to his own nomination.

The problem is, I don’t think there is anything coequal for a person with a history like Kavanaugh’s of just being a little garden-variety entitled prep school asshole.

We watched the memorial for John McCain staged in Washington DC today.

I was moved by certain thoughts and quotes, and certainly certain music triggers, but truth be known, the whole while I was interspersing the experience of my own father’s funeral, fifty years ago this coming April.

The one thing I was particularly struck by at my father’s funeral was the measure of bewilderment in the demeanor of the people there.  The implications of that were a comfort to me at the time.

Senator McCain apparently planned the structure and details of his own funeral.  Fortunately, the luck he always said he’d had in life was with him to the end, as nothing fell apart in the execution.

Stand-alone, it seemed a ‘tonic’ for the nation’s psyche at this time.

I share with John McCain the sense of having been lucky in life.  If there is a point to this post, perhaps it is to share that fact with you.

In all honesty, I have been unnaturally lucky.  I may, in fact, have come by some of the luck you were due.

I would appreciate your not holding this against me.

As I approach my ninth anniversary (October) here on Domani Dave, to say you may have noticed that I’m running out of steam would be a tad presumptuous.

I am rawther (to borrow a spelling) fatigued.  Not remotely ‘because of’, but we are headed to Mexico City in two weeks.  The newly retired Stephen wants to travel.  I have myself turned into one of those can’t-leave-the-house sorts.  Well, almost, so the idea of this voyage is wearing me out.

I’ll be delighted when we get there, but now, I’m a pain in the ass.

I’ve been absent in the comments of my blog pals, and here, and while I in no way consider the attached pictures ‘place-holders’, I have even less to say than usual, so here is at least something.

All photographs ought to tell a story, some kind of story, but I want more — something like a small movie, apparently.  I love all three of these pictures.

Two gentlemen peering outside at the protesters at the recent G7 in Canada.  Donald Trump’s physician scurrying.  And John McCain.

All three are clickable; please do.

Seems if I’m not mentioning Martin L here on DD, I’m mentioning Franklin A.

Franklin is as lovely and centered and bright a person as you’d ever want to know.  He is also very wicked.

Recently, he sent a link to a video, summarizing with only the three words ‘bittersweet and poignant’ in the email.  The video begins:

‘In Toronto, Canada, in a little room above a beauty parlor, a woman dies.’

I replied:

My Very Dear Franklin –

Merci for this, which I watched before slumber last nuit.  The piece brought back to me images of my own charmed childhood of wealth and privilege, but also the likelihood if not the inevitability that I myself will die alone in a room above a beauty shop.

– David H, the 63rd Earl of Shrewsbury

[BTW, ‘spellchecker’ wanted to substitute ‘wrath’ for ‘wealth’ in the above.]

–     –     –     –     –     –

He replied that his hopes were that all our eventual rooms above a beauty shop were at the very least ‘well-appointed and air-conditioned’.

That cannot be asking too much.

Ever seen Alfonso Cuarón’s 2006 movie ‘Children of Men’?  Plot conceit: global infertility sets off the apocalypse.  I don’t know how I would react to it today, but in 2006 I didn’t very much care for it, the movie, that is.  I’m pretty sure I won’t care for the apocalypse either, but you never know.

The picture eventually winds toward conclusion with a sequence glorifying procreation.  I recall it displaying reverence reminiscent of a Fifties Hollywood ‘Biblical Epic’.  That may be a teensy bit of an exaggeration, but there was an iridescent blessed madonna vibe afoot.

For a world that has come to ignore overpopulation, this ‘beatification’ of birth pissed me off. There is, however, one aspect of the film that redeems it, but only compartmentally.

A scene occurs wherein our protagonist visits a government minister, cloistered away from the decay and chaos of the collapse.  Within the scene, on the wall behind the two men, Picasso’s Guernica, and off to the right in the background, Michelangelo’s David, held together with connecting armatures.

Whether this backdrop was conjured during Production Design or Art Direction, I cannot know, but I’m crazy about a brilliant ‘throwaway’ in a film,

So, on the subject of bleak despair, here’s a downer for your consideration.  Since reading it myself, unearthing these memories of ‘Children of Men’, I’ve seen it pop up a number of places online.

Maybe someone will read it to pOTUS, and he’ll want to go to Mars.  Soon.

Went online this morning to discover who designed the ‘Baby Trump’ balloon, now flying over London.  Graphic designer Matt Bonner.

From the standpoint of a straightforward caricature, this thing is phenomenal.  But then, with the refinement of adding the ‘trademark’ tiny hands and the pale tanning bed goggle circles around the eyes, it achieves perfection.

Generally when we sit down for breakfast or lunch, I’ll flip on the television and say ‘Let’s watch some bad news!’  This morning, we got the opposite.

Watching the London protests, I started to tear up.  Why this particular spectacle has given me hope when other protests have not, I cannot say.

Only one thing spoils my delight over the UK’s reaction to Trump’s visit.

Though from the perspective of protocol, apparently the Palace is doing the very minimum, still the idea of the deranged white trash and his mail-order bride even touching Her Majesty’s hand makes my skin crawl.

Monday, Stephen took me on a ramble.  (All following images clickable.)

When we use the word ‘ramble’, we almost alway garnish it with an accent, as it is a term we picked up from our friend Corbett C, who is a courtly and somewhat inscrutable Southern gentleman.

On a tipoff from friends Bruce & Betsy G, we visited the Kettle Creek Battlefield, an American Revolutionary War site in nearby Wilkes County.  It is relatively remote, and somewhat difficult to ‘acquire’, so the peace there was one of the selling points, so to speak, of our friends’ recommendation.

Here is the solitary monument on a knoll nearby a somewhat token cemetery.  The picture does not do it justice, as it is not as brutal as it might appear here.

Though it may be standard-issue for this kind of monument, ‘picked from a catalog’, I liked the interlaced slabs and capstone construction.  The whole thing struck me as almost noble?  Maybe?  It’s something like twenty feet tall.

My mother passed muster (!) for membership in the DAR, the Daughters of the American Revolution.  I don’t know that she ever attended a single meeting.

Also present onsite is a very large slab, a granite record of the men who fought in this battle, names that could be certified through various official records.

Do you know the term ‘Forties Bomber Crew Names’?  Here is a slice of ‘Revolutionary War Names’, with a single ‘exotic’ blip: Benijah Noridyke.

Our travels yesterday also took us past the nearby house of great-grandparents Edwin Vincent Arnold and Anna Elizabeth Turner by name.  I had never set foot in the house, as it ‘passed into other hands’ a couple of years before I was born.

The new owners — I don’t know how many intervening — apparently people ‘of means’, have restored the house and all the outbuildings.  After I gathered some pluck, rang the doorbell and introduced myself, we were invited a short distance inside.  The interior has been teased well past any state it would have known in its day.  Beautiful light flooding the original switchback staircase, though.

Here is a photo sent to us by the daughter-in-residence, who asked for my email address.  Apparently a setup for a wedding, with a hyper-menagerie of chairs.  The cynic in me thinks this came from a wedding planner ‘idea book’.

We took a [backlit] selfie, but how do you get two people and a house in a selfie?

Vacating my workplace office fourteen years ago, I stripped the place like that gang of women descending on Madam Hortense’s rooms in ‘Zorba the Greek’.

The only things left — rather like poor Madam Hortense herself, lying there still warm — were the desk, the desk chair, and the computer.

As part of our ongoing search to lighten our load, I discovered in a closet the bulletin board which I had spirited away, the push-pinned items on it still in place.  I’ve reassembled on the scanner the mosaic of postcards as they once appeared.  (Clickable)

Clockwise from the top left, Lyle Lovett from the cardboard sleeve in which CD’s once came packaged, woman in flowered hat (Henry Clarke), Andy Warhol giving John Lennon a peck on the cheek (Christopher Makos), This Photograph is my Proof (Duane Michals), three monks (Stephane Sednaoui), David Byrne (Robert Maplethorpe), and Dani et son fils, Paris 1944 (Henri Lartigue).

Turning each card over, I discovered that one was from a gentleman ‘who wasn’t even my type’ upon whom I expended prodigious emotion eons ago.  I enjoyed seeing his handwriting again.

Speaking of which, I wish I could claim good penmanship.  I’m full of envy when comes the closeup in movies of a pen nib working away with not even gorgeous, just serviceable handwriting.

The single good thing about mine is that it is unforgeable.  Yippee.

We watched a Portuguese film from about a year ago called ‘The Ornithologist’ last evening.  The first sentence in the New York Times review of the picture says, ‘You do not have to be a Portuguese Catholic to appreciate The Ornithologist, but I imagine that it really helps.’  The synopsis therein is also a spoilerish leg up.

The title role in The Ornithologist is played by an actor named Paul Hamy.  If you  should ever find yourself researching the subject ‘Dave’s Cup-of-tea’, a viewing of The Ornithologist will be of sizable scholarly benefit.  (Photo clickable.)

While the use the word ‘opaque’ appears in the remarks of a couple of online reviews, I found that I eventually grasped what was going on.  The only part I didn’t quite understand was toward the middle of the film.

It involves two naked men rolling around on the sandy bank of a river.  Here is a snippet of that portion of the movie.  I’ve isolated it, as I know how distracting rump can be, even in the midst of absorbing prose.

I sense a heightened popularity of this post over the recent several.

Professionally, over the years Stephen received endless catalogs featuring the square-cut-or-pear-shaped, many of them more than a bit let-them-eat-cake.

Not long ago, he made an inquiry online to a ‘entity’ called Luke Irwin about a carpet he’d seen, and received without warning this rather impressive ‘volume’.

The ‘parcel’ came via the ‘post’, all ‘Brown paper packages tied up with strings’, and included a nice note.  (And at this point, it must be revealed that ‘Jack’ is Stephen’s first name, ‘Stephen’ his second.  I call him Jack, but you mayn’t.)

What’s this all about?  These days, apparently I’m so starved for manners, I’m fixing on a pleasant exchange over a catalog.

My guess is that you’ll probably agree that there seems to be some sort of inverse proportionality afoot on Domani Dave these days, the less interesting a subject, the more I’ll write about it.  It’s pretty much the same in conversation in person, but I don’t think I’m dangerous.

Why am I telling you this?

I started blogging in 2009, but in October 2016, I ditched the previous posts in a fit of cyber housecleaning. Some of it was really nice writing, but alas, as my old friend Susan once said: ‘Compulsion is a cruel master’.

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