Random snapshots as summer comes to an end here in Cineville:
-- I walk to weekend brunch and spot a young man playing banjo on the corner by the coffee shop, a dire sign. Some places mark the turning of the seasons by leaves changing, or football practices starting up again: here in Cineville, faux bluegrass players and sparsely populated political protests are our versions of a fall Punxsutawney Phil (do you think these earnest young gatekeepers of "old-timey music," as one flyer last year described it, will ever realize that O Brother Where Art Thou was being ironic?)
-- At the Cineville Market, enjoying a "summer club" sandwich (mmm, avacado), as a group of three elderly men and a serious-looking young woman discuss their environmental change plans. At least, I think that's what they're discussing, at rather loud volume, one table over; it's hard to say, as the thread seems to get lost in a web of sub-Sorkin references to Churchill, Castro, and "anticipating the future." The older, white-haired man in the Great Lakes Brewery shirt, sitting at the center of the table, seems to dominate the conversation; the young woman just smiles and nods a lot, and takes notes.
--Why does my laptop have a Poltergeist? This is the third time I've had to take it to the nice people at the Cineville College help desk. They are very friendly and extremely professional, but man...I hope this thing stops freezing soon. Marshall suspects it's an easily fixed software problem, and suggests I leave it for them to do "voodoo" on (his term). I'm forced into the network of computers in the library in order to check email and read blogs, at least until I get home.
--Wandering the library stacks to find articles to xerox and get online for class next month: eerie, quiet, practically empty, except for one older, bearded scholar, who gives me a suspicious look as I walk by (guess I'm lucky he didn't know I was searching for books on something as jejune as animation-- his eyes might've shot out piercing lasers or something). The Cineville College library has been undergoing renovations all summer, closing off the mezzainine level entrance, forcing us to head to the basement, then take elevators upwards to the stacks. I can see the men working outside, wandering around lumber and plastic barrels and scaffolding, the rhythm and detail of their work opaque to me. Of course, call numbers are opaque to me, too-- wait, I need to be on the FOURTH floor?? I do like the process of wandering, though, the possibility of finding a book that will toss your ideas in a completely new direction.
--Home: that Algonquin Round Table, ESPN's Around the Horn, is starting. Noted feminist Woody Paige is talking about the ethics of suspending someone (in this case, Michael Vick) from a job for bad behavior. Who says irony is dead?