Saturday, February 9, 2013

Snow day reading

So just after I clicked on the mouse to send yesterday's post to the blog, it started to snow. It was a little fitful at one point a couple of hours in, but it recovered and snowed well into the night. I'm guessing we got about a foot and a half. Certainly, enough that it piled up to the bottom of the sign for St. Michael's Episcopal across the street.

I've told you about St. Michael's haven't I? You can't just say "St. Michael's" because we have two of them - one is Catholic. The one across the street used to be downtown next to the Congregational Church, but was moved to what must have been the edge of town in 1953. Well, the edge of the civic section of downtown  anyway. Most of the houses around here (big showplaces for the leading families) were built long before that event. I have a scan of the move around here somewhere.... ah, there it is. Where St. Mike's used to be there is now a bank and office building - the (now closed) local IRS office used to be in it at one point.

I've no real information on why the congregation moved its building a little over 5 blocks north. Were they securing a trust fund to maintain the building?  Maybe it was the lack of downtown parking? It used to sit back a bit from Main Street, with the Connecticut River and Mt. Wantastiquet as its backdrop.

At least the white spire of the Congregationalist Church is still there downtown, very Peyton Place.

It's a beautiful morning here in Brattleboro. Until just about an hour ago there wasn't even any auto traffic on Putney Road, but sadly things are starting to pick up a bit. Too bad, I was enjoying the quiet.

It's not like I don't have things to do. I still have a good bit of work left on my radio show to get done. But it's the kind of morning when one just wants to sit around in one's bathrobe, fresh ground freshly brewed coffee in hand, occasionally glancing at the view while lazily perusing a magazine. People around here are pretty good about dropping their magazines off at all the local coffee shops and doctor's offices. There's always a few things of interest one can pick up...

Friday, February 8, 2013

Storm Warnings and facebook perambulations

It has become my custom these last couple of months (since I took early retirement) to log onto my news servers in the early morning (which has been my custom for many years) and then wander over to facebook. In case anyone is wondering, I know 'facebook' should be capitalized, but that would show a level of respect for it that I just don't have. Don't misunderstand, I greatly respect the achievement. It is easily the largest most important internet portal in existence. The facebook experience is equal parts admiration versus frustration, discovery versus obfuscation, digital democracy versus totalitarian tool, enjoyment versus stupification. It is a labyrinth without Ariadne's string. It can be useful. One can find old friends, stay in touch with our family members kept at a safe distance, or our neighbors and friends we seldom see in our all too busy world. Of course, we don't see some of our friends because they are lost in facebook's hypnotic maze and branched pathways.

Last night on facebook there were many locally oriented posts regarding an imminent blizzard. This morning, the posts informed me that most of the area schools were closed due to snow. Our local almost a movie palace announced that it would be closed tonight and will have no matinees tomorrow. It is now 10:45 in the morning, and we have yet to see a single flurry. The facebook experience is rather like a blizzard with no snow, it is the moment of waiting for the chalice to be raised.

Many people or groups post incessantly. One post isn't enough for them, so they post several times. Every hour. If one political page has a graphic, all of the political pages have it, or make variations of it. Spurious quotes and statistics are commonplace. But so are wonderful graphics, stunning pictures of far away places, and iconic images of pop cultural history and/or cultural trash esthetics. Think of hundreds of WordPress pages displayed in a continuous scroll. I've added to my collection of extraordinarily bad art, abominably cheesy album covers, pulp book and magazine illustration, etc. While some of these are highly enjoyable, there are also a number of images which I wish I hadn't seen.
Naturally, I have the overwhelming urge to share them.

Have a great day.