1. Can you remember the big push in the mid-to-late 70s for America to go metric? There was an ad with teenagers driving down a highway and a cop pulls on the siren. A back seat passenger asks, "How fast are we going?" To which, the driver responds "100", then explains she means 100 km/hour which is about 65 mph and just fine back then. Well, the Carter admin didn't convince us to go metric and now I'm learning that when someone says it's -18 degrees (Celsius), it's cold but not as bad as it sounds. There are no trees in Jackson Hole, Wyoming waiting to explode,as it's only about 0 Fahrenheit outside. I was worried about frostbite, as Beijing doesn't seem to report windchill.
2. New and improved address on the sidebar.
3. Slowly making my way, one story at a time, through Milton Crane's (ed) "50 Great American Short Stories" for work. This thing is woefully about 40 years out of date, but it does have some gems, and is readily available in the Foreign Language sections of Beijing bookstores for cheap (30 元, ca. $4.40).
4. I have recently decided that I have rested on my critical laurels a little long and that I need to redouble my efforts in this direction.
5. I keep telling my Beijing friends that the recent surge in my interest in Godzilla movies, Kung Fu flicks, and Ultraman in any medium is 1) a longstanding devotion/fetish [true] and 2)"research" for a project [quite possibly true, trying to nail down some perameters].
6. I hate when I am between projects. I am a project based person. This is why I prefer to be working on at least two things at once. During the re-transition to Beijing, I only had one fire cooking. Now that I am left with deciding which of many paths to follow from scrawlings in my notebooks, it seems somewhat, not overwhelming, but uncomfortable, as I usually just continue the project that didn't get finished first.
6. The theme song to Satoshi Kon's anime series "Paranoia Agent" has been in my head all week. I don't understand Japanese but can sing half of the song, it's that embedded in my brain. That's what happens when you watch all 13 episodes on your day off, then again the next day before work.
7. Ideal/Real=Art. I remember nearly failing an exam in Philosophy, but I wrote this equation to sum up the thoughts on art of some 20th century thinker (can't remember, Heideggar? I doubt it). Basically the idea was that the divide between the ideal (whatever that means) and the real (whatever that means) is art. I only wrote the equation, left no commentary. I passed. But I'm still grappling with the terms that come before the equals sign: A/B=Art, A-B=Art, etc. . . . I'm so glad instead of making Art, I've decided to make Kultur.