never came across my mug
    in no hard copy's back cover?
  neither did I, yet – relax!
this here autograph tells more
         than a pic no one cares for...

The Ficuses in the Open

:from the personal
a graphomanic


head header

January 3

You can whip anyone. Just find out your strong point. I, for one, have by far outdone the great Michelangelo. You bet, I have!

The guy was well over fifty when in one of his verses likened his teeth to the piano's keys. I am considerably younger (at the moment) than him at that reverend age, but one of my incisors is dangling even now all over the mouth like a harness bell.

(...naturally, for giving out such a passage the electricity has to be on and so it is since half-past-five pm...)

But in the morning it was so cold in the Renderers' that I never had got the nerve to take my coat off.

The paper's big cheeses sallied out to the Printing House because the last issue had not been released. Yes, blackouts, bombardments but—among other reasons—the workforce feels dissatisfaction with their wages. Who could ever have imagined we would live to witness such issues being settled by negotiations?

Historically, the Editorial leaders' strolling to the Printing House more forcibly signals the end of the Soviet Empire than its subjects cutting the throats of each other while the Soviet Army troops just keep ticking over.

Alya, a typist, came to the Renderers' to pick up her staple topic: why us? Today, she prayed to tell her why on Earth one has to suffer horrors at a nationalistic war without even knowing their own nationality. Her progenitor grandpa was a foundling of undiscovered origin.

At that point, Rita, the Secretary, entered the room and responded to the cue by the declaration that nationality is a toy for fools, while all sage men choose to become shoemakers. Even if in somewhat obscured way, her statement, on the whole, did sound profound, I can tell you.

Another Rita, of indistinct position among the staff but of homely-abundant proportions, joined our half-frozen company and, while her nickname stepped out for a second, she dropped her finger-ring on the floor. Was it a test of my gallantry or some esoteric sign for the enlightened?

One hour of the verbal 'amour de quatrein' in that ice-cold fridge of a room followed. I was delivered from my mixing services by Arcadic's return from the Printing House to announce a layoff till Monday.

After lunch, so as to avoid staying in the cold house, we took the kids and their sledge and went out. Sahtik, in a newly knitted white hat, looked a teenager.

The street got turned into a merrymaking hillside. Joyous yells from turbulent strings of kids bob-sleighing in helter-skelter past the Twin Bakeries between the sparse posts of their too bashful parents.

After an hour of that Bruegel-wise winter frolicking, all were shooed off by a succession of missile blasts. They sounded somehow strange and distanced, as if exploding beyond the town though not too far. Sahtik took the kids to the Underground.

Yoga. Supper. Water-bringing.

Now, I am alone.

Icy roads and the domesticated noise of machine-guns outdoors.

Half-past-nine pm is a bit too early, yet... Good night to all.

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