pseudopodium
. . . Cuba

. . .

Who needs food when the menu's so delicious? Department:

"Bare lists of words are found suggestive, to an imaginative and excited mind" - Emerson
Otherwise the quotes themselves are bring-downs. But the table of contents for the online Concordance to the Collected Essays of Ralph Waldo Emerson makes the best poem Charles Bernstein never appropriated:

Adequate to Adults
Advance to Affairs
Altered to Amatory
Amphibious to Anglo-Saxons
Arbiters to Army
Army to Artery
Atmosphere to Attire
Attitude to Autobiography
B--, Aunt to Banquets
Beast, Beauty and the to Becky Stow's Swamp
Birth to Blurs
Bonny to Bosses
Boston Advertiser to Brazier
Budgets to Byzantium
Chilblain to Christ's Jesus
Class to Cloisters
Close to Coldness
Coleridge, Samuel Taylor to Combustion
Compliance to Conducts
Cones to Consciousnesses*
Consubstantiation to Contriving
Control to Copula
Copy to Countless
Court to Creature's
Cuba to Czars
Day, Commencement to Deadness
Deaf to Declaring
Degenerate to Demonstrator
Desirable to Devotions
Distemper to Doctrines
Drank to Driving
Droll to Dyspeptic
Effeminacy to Elicits
Eligible to Employs
Emporium to Enemy's
Energetic to Englishwomen
Eustachius to Everywhere
Evidence to Excessive
First to Fitting
Flowing to Forborne
* Link via Juliet Clark
Foundation to Fowls
Gladiators to Go-Carts
God, Almighty to Goitre
Gold to Good
Good (continued) to Grab
Graze to Great Desert
Habeas Corpus to Handling
Hand-Looms to Harms
Heat to Hemispheres
Hole to Hooted
Hung to Hysterical
Infantry to Inmates
Intrusion to Intelligences
Jabber to Joyfully
Joying to Juxtapositions
Law to Lax
Leather to Leg
Librarian to Life
Line to Littleton
Look to Lost
M. C. to Magnanimously
Maladies to Man
Meal to Mechi
Medal to Memphis, Egypt
Menace to Methuselah
Mince-Meat to Minded
Negotation to Nevermore
Nothing to Nymphs
Once to Opium-Shop
Opponent to Organisms
Organization to Overwork
Ovid to Oysters
Passenger to Pays
Peace to Penury
Permutation to Perspire
Poets to Polls
Pollute to Positives
Proprietary to Puberty
Public to Purlieus
Quack to Questions
Remedies to Replying
Restricted to Revolutions
Revolve to Rigging
Romes to Ruling
Rum to Rylstone Doe
Sail to Samos
Samples to Saxons
Seize to Sensations
Separable to Set-To
Shatter to Short-Sighted
Shot to Sidewise
Sinful to Skills
Sockets to Sometimes
Spirits to Squid
Squint to Stars
Steady to Stimulus
Strong to Subduing
Subject to Suetonius
Surprises to Sweeps
Taverns to Tempestuous
Templars to Testify
Testimonies to Thin
Tidal to Timely
Toledo to Tow-Head
Town to Trains
Truth to Turnips
Ubiquitous to Unexhausted
Unexpected to University, Yale
Unjust to Usages
Vat to Victory
Wave to Wealth
Wept to Whithersoever
Wit to Wolves
Woman to Woo
World Fairs to Wormy
Worn to Writings
Writs to Wyman, Jeffries
Yeoman, Middlesex to Yunani

. . .

A Musical Interlude

A Musical Interlude Doug Asherman says that "Cuba Solidarity: Send a Piana to Havana" "don't know why, reminded me of you. Maybe the rhyme?"

Could be, 'cause my only real knowledge of Cuban music is from when we were stationed at the US military base in Guantanamo Bay and I obsessively played a Roger-Miller-ish novelty single whose chorus went:

Cuba, Cuba, Cuba is my home.
Cuba, Cuba, Cuba is my home.
Fidel Castro, don't you pout,
Six more months and I'll be out.
Cuba, Cuba, Cuba is my home.

+ + +

And I suspect that Beth Rust sent me the following because my own nose was once such a growth industry, although it seems to have stagnated for the nonce:

Believe it or don't, I picked up a CD of Johnny Crawford's -- remember him? The Rifleman's doe-eyed son. According to the amusingly matter-of-fact liner notes, he got coerced into a brief career as a teen idol, having "a pleasant tenor voice". He apparently quit the biz as soon as he got out of high school and went off to be a rodeo cowboy, but no matter how tough he gets there will always be "Your Nose is Gonna Grow" as a reminder of his rebellious youth. "No One Really Loves" (a clown) is a bit on the edgy side for Johnny, but I think he handled it well.

I did a quick check for Crawford web sites; this one's "unofficial" but apparently condoned. I was astonished to find that the guy is running a big band now... There was also something about a new movie, the entire cast of which appears to be former child stars (it is, of course, science fiction).

. . .

Regarding Piana to Havana, Peter Merholz points us to Sarah Harbin's documentary, Sonata for the Left Hand , whose production notes are well worth your while:

To call the Lost and Found office at the airport I had to dial 666231. Each time I dialed 666 the devil came closer and closer until he completely invaded my life.

. . .

September Gurl    
Although a Berkeley resident, I don't feel much team spirit -- dope-smoking morons and obnoxious rich kids aren't really my crowd -- but it is kind of neat how the harmless blather of our little city has made it a scandalous by-word nationwide, like it was Scottsboro or something....

+ + +

There's nothing coherent enough to call a "Left" in American politics. However, if a "Left" were to exist, it would probably be hanging around the Bay Area and Seattle and Portland; and if we try for an empirically based definition of what we find there, we probably do end up with something like synthetic zero's:

"... in the case of the far left, our side is always wrong. The left becomes a mere critiquer of the faults of our own society, and leaves the problems inherent elsewhere to someone else to criticize."
The Objectivist Party, in other words. No wonder it's so unpopular!

As for s.z.'s main point, I'm all for cultural imperialism. The sooner quaint tribal customs like gay bashing and Creationist teachers are wiped out, the better for everyone. I even love the tools of cultural imperialism -- books, movies, pop music, the Peace Corps, TV -- though I guess a disproportionate amount of my financial support goes to the Peace Corps.

The problems are that, first, despite the interest it holds for scholars and tourists, cultural imperialism alone isn't particularly effective: like, "All in the Family" was broadcast for years to Braymer, Missouri, without local attitudes changing. And, second, that the effort put into cultural imperialism is teensy compared with the efforts put into economic and political imperialism. It's generally less important to the imperialized than as a self-righteousness aid within the community of the imperializer.

Reconstruction was slightly about attempting to bring a nonracist society to the former Confederate states, but as practiced was even more about seizing property and power. European-Americans talked of bringing Christian civilization to our Native American brethren and sistren, but mostly brought eviction papers. Why is Cuba a criminal state and China most favored? The policy pivot in banana republics is the banana, not the republic.

So when those good old liberal humanist culturally imperialist banners are hoisted (long may they wave!), it's sensible to look for what might be hiding beneath them. It usually isn't all that hidden.
 

 

 

Copyright to contributed work and quoted correspondence remains with the original authors.
Public domain work remains in the public domain.
All other material: Copyright 2015 Ray Davis.