Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Max Drove on the Deserted Beltway

  • So last night on the Beltway, roughly a half-mile short of where my car was shot in February 2019, my right rear tire blew out *JUST* before the big curve uphill toward Old Georgetown 
  • I was in the 2nd lane to the right, managed to get it to side of road where it sat all night (I'm typing this now, masked, in the Waiting Lounge of the Suburu dealership waiting to hear what additional damage besides new rear tires I might have) 
  • I walked home, Earthgirl's car broken too, she couldn't pick me up 
  • I will never drive up the big hill towards Old Georgetown again and not think of last night, hoofing it up the two miles of 495 with the speeders and eighteen wheelers zooming by.
  • On a positive note, I finally got the night photo I always wanted, once upon a time I wanted the signs to be this shitty blog's banner, that's the sidewalk-less 355 bridge over 495/270

  • Maryland's route shield is lame if the banner doesn't say Maryland
  • Walked up Beltway to Old Georgetown, Old Georgetown to Beech, Beech to Linden, Linden to Pooks Hill, Pooks Hill to 355, 355 to Beach, Beach to Franklin, Franklin to Saul, these signs a major metaphor of my past, current, and possibly future life (as is the tire blow out and walk home)

  • These links fished yesterday before the walk home for another post that now doesn't exist
  • This: What sociology offers, and what my writing hopefully offers, is an awareness of broader and longer-term trends, within which crises come to make some kind of sense. Marxism is probably the most prominent such theory, inasmuch as it treats change and conflict as normal features of capitalism. I'm not a Marxist, though I am Marxian in some of my approach and thinking. The importance of such work, as far as I see it, is to demonstrate that chaos is not as chaotic and inexplicable as it seems; that irrationality has its own underlying reasons and logic.
  • The insidious workings of the political ratchet: motherfucking Democrats
  • Ending the war against the climate movement: motherfracking Democrats will not save you
  • Was upbraided by a Democratic voter today when I said, of course Democrats are cheating gangsters
  • Algorithms and you
  • Stanley Moss' lovely new (I think) autobiographical note, Satyr's Song, cameos by Ted Roethke, Dylan Thomas, and others
  • There's a new Lambchop album coming, new song here:


D. Gilson

The night Max wore his wolf suit
made him infamous, bred the child star
never sent to bed. Middle school,
Max started drinking. Not in my house,
his mother begged, No, no, no, wild thing.
Max reminded her who bought
this condo, who paid for her meds.
Freshman year, Max raved. Roared
his terrible roar, rolled, and almost
wound up in a warehouse dead.
Where, oh where, do the wild things
go? To rehab in high school.
To college on residual book sales.
Max kept his head down. Laughed
at drunken frat boys. Bro, let the wild
rumpus start. Max said, No thanks,
and volunteered for the Peace Corps
instead. Two years in Kenya, one
in Belarus, the president thought
Max might be of some use. Max
moved to Washington, appointed
at the State Department a cultural
attaché. One important day Max wore
his wolf-gray suit, then drove home
well past rush hour in a freak snow storm.
Max drove on the deserted beltway,
thought it his throne. Yes, Max belted,
this is where the wild things roam.


  1. "(Don't Go Back to) Rockville" by Noturfaves:

  2. 1)i walked home from a car problem about six months ago - just before the pandemic closures - it took me an hour - i got a blister - it was afternoon - i had come out from the supermarket and found i had locked my key inside the car - among my purchases was some chocolate ice cream, which i gave away to another person in the parking lot also coming out from the same store - this person was of a different gender, ethnic background, and age group than i am, not that there's anything wrong with that

    2)the "algorithms" story you link to is from, which i have decided to subscribe to - a year ago i subscribed to macleans, another general interest canadian magazine - part of my effort to canadianize myself - adding a u to words ending in -or, saying PROE-gress instead of PRAW-gress

    in the pandemic briefings that i watch on youtube the chief medical officer of nova scotia says SHEDyule instead of SKEDyul - i'm not quite sure about adopting that usage

    watching british nature documentaries, i have noted that david attenborough says GLASS-ee-er instead of GLAY-shur - but my canadian oxford dictionary says that the canucks and the yanks agree on the latter

    3)as long as current conditions continue i will not be able to enter canada - for me to do so would require that the government of canada either

    a)permit resumption of visits from american tourists, currently not allowed -


    b)grant me the citizenship by descent that they have given me reason to believe i am entitled to

    4)the poem seems begin in the context of the movie of the sendak book

    i didn't like the movie, and it made me wonder if i really liked the book

    i did like sendak's book about getting a puppy - some swell pup; or, are you sure you really want a dog?

    1. 1)i read the other poem by d. gilson that the poetry foundation makes available - like this one here it is a Bildingsroman in miniature, although set in california, not our local area - coincidentally it refers to apple trees, a recent topic here - speaking of which, the co-founder of moco landmark butler's orchard in germantown has recently passed away at the age of 91

      2)returning to wild thing max, i wondered if he really could have been stationed in belarus while in the peace corps - apparently not - countries in eastern europe with peace corps contingents are

      Kyrgyz Republic
      North Macedonia

      13% of peace corps volunteers serve in this region

      3)gilson reads both poems mentioned, and the editors of poetry magazine discuss them, for eleven and a half minutes, in a podcast available at

      4) and now, dueling quotes

      nothing can stop what is coming

      "If you see ten troubles coming down the road, you can be sure that nine will run into the ditch before they reach you."
      Calvin Coolidge

      where we go one, we go all

      There's so many different worlds
      So many different suns
      And we have just one world
      But we live in different ones

      "brothers in arms", mark knopfler