Ephemeris by Norm Sibum

Morning. Nikas. Outside, goofy globs of descending snow. Inside, a silly and sentimental Irish Harpy. Unnerving. Not only has she a crush on Eddie the cook, but now the new waiter – Alex – is in for the treatment. Otherwise, our heart is just not in it right now. For some time I have not had my old regular sources of input: Labrosse, Thistle, Literary Thug #1. In fact, last evening, the Moesian speculated as to whether Literary Thug #1 would ever again light up the darker recesses of each our sorry existences with his nothing can knock me off my centre of gravity insouciance, and he the offspring of a preacher man. And yet, last evening, I found myself saying to the Moesian something I would not ever ordinarily pronounce on account of superstitious scruples, but that literature in which mind and mind only holds sway is ultimately an empty literature, and yet, trick ‘heart’ out in too cute a costume, and one may as well blow one’s literary head off; one will have trivialized and betrayed and strangled and sold very short. As soon as I spoke the words I hoped that either the Moesian was not paying attention or would overlook my damn near cloying sincerity in the matter. E, in the course of the past week, had brought over Anna Christie to watch, but we only watched a bit of it, as she wished to sound me out for my thoughts on family dynamics; and I had to respond that I was a poor sounding-board for her in that regard, seeing as I am the proverbial three thousand miles distant from the old hearth, and without frequent flyer points. The first half hour or so of Anna Christie is perhaps notable more for the quite engaging performance of the Canadian-born actress Marie Dressler as a toper than for Garbo’s first ‘talkie’ utterance – gimme a whisky; even so, I have since read that the film is otherwise rated as dull and perhaps a touch absurd. Oh dear. Miss J told me that on first receipt of the news from Connecticut, she nearly upchucked everything that was in her gut, and that she did not wish to discuss the event. Nor did I want to add grotesquery to the grotesquery, so we did not kick that can down the road. For all that, it will prove interesting to see of what presidential power truly consists now that Current President is on record as suggesting something has to be done. I have been idly reading Sebald’s Vertigo that has captured neither my mind nor my heart, but every once in a while a sentence of Sebald stops me in my tracks, the latest one being: But barely three weeks later Anna Goldsteiner, who in the end, to her own amazement, could no longer even remember the names of the three husbands she had survived, died of a slight cold. Life, eh? Ah, love. Golden Girl threw an all-night soiree at her place where she informed me she was not happy with her appellation. She did not, however, provide me with an alternative. So Golden Girl it is for the nonce. MH regards me as daft for thinking that the area around St Louis Park on St Denis, despite the Ram Chargers coursing about, puts me in mind of Paris, as, no doubt it is meant to—Alright, I will back off. Sure, tell us another. Much discussion of film ensued at Golden Girl’s soiree. McGravitas was wearing his best Cheshire leer as any number of us tucked into Fat City or The Philadelphia Story or A Man for All Seasonsand that flick about the love-swacked poet – what was his name – oh, right, Zhivago, McGravitas quietly goading the heavenly choir in Golden Girl’s speak-easy basement into full-throated baying at the moon—