2002 Notebook: Weak XLVII
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20 November 2002
No. 3,279 (cartoon)
Why do you waste your time with these stupid cartoons?

I don’t.

21 November 2002
Spooky: No Other Word Will Do
When I walked by Maria’s desk, she asked me if I’d seen her keys anywhere.

“Aren’t those your keys on top of the monitor?” I asked.

“I can’t believe I’ve been looking at then all this time!” she replied.

“It’s like Martin Mull said,” I sympathized, “None is so blind as he who cannot see.”

After I typed the above into my computer, my computer told me that I’m repeating myself. It turns out that I used the same quote on 7 March 1998 and on 14 July 2000. I ignored the warning; I repeat myself all the time.

Now here’s the spooky part. The computer added, as an afterthought (do computers have forethoughts?), that 14 July 2000 was 860 days ago, and that 7 March 1998 was 860 days before that.

This is spooky; no other word will do.

22 November 2002
Another False Economy Fiasco
I’ve been really busy lately, and so I decided to save time by addressing my friends by the initials of their first names. My friends went along with my ridiculous idea; what are friends for?

My plan worked pretty well for a while. By not pronouncing unnecessary syllables, I was able to use more adjectives and adverbs. My conversations became more colorful, even zesty.

And then E called.

I hadn’t talked with E in years, and we had a lovely conversation. E seemed shocked to hear about some of my tawdry mischief, especially the incident with M. (That, of course, was the intended effect.)

It wasn’t until we’d been chatting for ten minutes that I realized that I was talking with Eleanor, not Eliza. That means I’m in trouble, since I promised M that Eleanor would never learn about our little escapade.

As a result of yet another false economy fiasco, I’ve gone back to using all the syllables in my friends’ names. Even so, M refused to join me in my latest rollick.

23 November 2002
Art After Death
I just read that Gunther von Hagens performed the first public autopsy in London in one hundred and seventy years, more or less.

The doctor used a standard approach: a Y-cut across the seventy-two year old cadaver’s chest and down the pelvis. He removed the corpse’s heart and liver, then used a circular saw to cut open the skull and extract the brain.

I hear von Hagens shocked and annoyed a lot of people; that’s always a good strategy when it cones to art. (Oops, I forgot to mention that the good doctor conducted his autopsy in an art gallery.) Such performances were popular in sixteenth century Britain, and they still are. Von Hagens performed before a sellout crowd of five-hundred people.

I have no problem with corpse art. In fact, I’d like to be corpse art after I’ve died a more or less natural death. Specifically, I’d like someone to make a time lapse movie of my decomposing body. Ideally, the film would be less than a minute long; it would depict my lifeless body decomposing into a skeleton.

I hope someone with a good camera implements my last wish.

24 November 2002
Artists’ Uncoöperative
Harold asked me if I wanted to join his artists’ uncoöperative.

“Does it involve bitter disputes about trivial and inconsequential matters?” I asked.

“Of course,” Harold responded.

“Personal rivalries manifesting themselves in vicious betrayal and senseless revenge?”


“Egomaniacal idiots with delusions of adequacy?”


“Monetary shenanigans fueled by greed and avarice?”


I told Harold that I’d consider his offer. I did not tell him that I probably wouldn’t join his artists’ uncoöperative; his venture sounds very much like a traditional artists’ coöperative.

25 November 2002
Planetary Size Considerations
Gary, a brilliant friend who lives on the outskirts of nowhere, sent me a thoughtful missive. I haven’t Gary in years, and his distant location means we probably won’t get together any time soon.

“I wish the planet had the surface are of, say, France.” I replied. “That way we’d always be within visiting distance. And drinking better wine on a good day.”

“Our planet is just about the right size,” Gary responded. “If we lived on a planet that had the surface are of, say, France, people like you and me would have our feet nailed to the floor while the French farmers from your parallel universe shoved crap down our throats to make another batch of foie gras. And your liver would be in even worse shape than it is now.”

I miss all my dear, distant friends, but this planet may not be too big after all.

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©2002 David Glenn Rinehart