Monday, September 13, 2010

"I wasn't prepared for the poverty."


That's what my downstairs neighbor said when I cheerfully asked her how her trip to India was.

5 comments:

anna-am said...

hello to you, gasket. made it over here finally, have been browsing and have to say your writing's right fine, which is to say i eat my stupid ill-considered words whole. you have a delicate style of expression, measured and precise, with a hesitancy and poet's eye distance that's graceful and resonant. or, in other words, very writerly -- which of course warms the cockles of my english major heart. i liked also the way you have with description, very evocative of color and texture and you use them well to create a mood. like in the winter piece, the sky and the threat of snow. the pinwheel imagery in the morning poem was lovely. the drowsy feeling there, the hesitancy to wake and the hazy spinning of the pinwheel put me in mind of donne's the sun rising. more at some point. write more!

gasket said...

WOW! Thanks, anna! I'm thrilled to have a reader like you. Thanks for stopping by, thanks for taking the time to read my scribblings here, and thanks especially for the lovely comment. There's no need for the self-censure; my political wranglings were admittedly (and deliberately) indelicate.

But this place is different. I am not ready to blow a gasket here, I am ready to take my writing seriously. I kept the name so that TPM people could find me if they wanted to.

In fact, I was going to repost a 9/11 piece I wrote at TPM (and still intend to), but I got so disgusted by the protests at Ground Zero on Saturday, that I ended up boycotting the day: didn't watch the news, didn't read the blogs, and certainly didn't want to write about it. Then on Sunday I volunteered at the Brooklyn Book Festival. Turned out to be an extraordinary weekend, which I am working on blogging about.

Anyway, thanks for the praise and encouragement. It means a lot to win your positive feedback!

Mike M. said...

Had the same experience in Nigeria. Very humbling. Though I still want more stuff.

gasket said...

Ha! Well, I've caved to the realization that I'm hopelessly American too, Mike M. For me, it was during a trip to Canada, although I'll be dammed if I can pinpoint exactly what made me realize it.

I'm at a curious point in my life where I'm simultaneously lusting after stuff I don't have and trying to unload stuff I do have. That's because I put my stuff in storage a few years ago and just recently retrieved it. Going through the boxes now is like opening a hundred boxes of Christmas and birthday presents all at once: Some of it I really like, and some of it makes me hate myself for buying it, and all of it makes me queasy. It's a strange experience, but I'll be glad when I've whittled it down to a less grotesque quantity. For example, I used to work for the biggest book publisher in the world, and I regularly raided the free book shelves for every imprint...

I still dream about going from floor to floor gathering cool books I'll never read.

Thanks for stopping by. Love your comment. ;-)

Miguel de las Animas Perdidas said...

"I wasn't prepared for the poverty" could easily become the sobriquet of many Americans over the next 40 years. Hi Gasket.