Rhyme of the Day

Various meanderings with a rhyme in there somewhere.

Shot Dead
A barber got shot dead by the police in my old neighborhood - the neighborhood I left 50 years ago. It's rougher now. The local people were up in arms about the shooting, but the police released some body-cam video today. For some reason there's no audio. But you can see that the police have stopped this guy, then they try to arrest him, but he breaks away. There's very clear footage that he's got a semi-auto pistol of some kind on his pants. He runs sort of haphazardly, flailing his arms. You can see where you might think he's reaching for that gun. And one of the cops shoots him down.

If you're a real 2nd-amendment absolutist, the police shouldn't have stopped him in the first place, since they were stopping him for looking like he was carrying a gun. At least that's the current report. Apparently, according to Illinois laws, he shouldn't have owned a gun, and he shouldn't have been carrying it around in public either. Didn't have the right cards and permits. You can see where he might not want to get arrested and searched.

Maybe had a good reason for being armed, even though he didn't have the right permits. So, provisionally, I feel bad for him. But once you start resisting police arrest and once you start looking like you're grabbing for a gun, your life expectancy is unfortunately shortened. It's a brutal fact of life in the big city.

Think very hard before you resist arrest.
Compliance with the law is usually best.

Over in Washington State
"Burglar breaks into escape room, can't figure out how to escape"

No matter what
You want to take out,
Don’t break in
If you can’t break out.

At races I need to crank up my acting
Crossing the finish line.
My photos often I look like I’m dragging
Rather than feeling fine.

On Wabash Avenue
Warm sun is in the sky
And we have snowballs in July.

Triathlon Creatures
I wish
I could swim Ike a fish.
And it would be swell
To run like a gazelle.
But there’s no faster species to like
When it comes to riding a bike.

Lake Zurich Triathlon
There's a Lake Zurich in Illinois. That's where I did this triathlon today. I didn't go to Switzerland, where the more famous Lake Zurich is.

The last time I did this race was 2005. They had changed the design a bit. They used to have you swim point-to-point, across the lake, from one beach to another. I liked that, except it meant you had be bused from where you left your bike to where you started your swim. I didn't like that part.

The run portion is a run around the lake. For the distance I was running, you have to do that twice. I like running around the lake, it feels natural somehow. But somehow the second loop was a lot harder than the first today. I started off fast and slowed way down.

I've reached the age where my age group is a lot smaller than the younger age groups. The number of people who are 65 and up, who do this sort of thing... well, age takes its toll. I feel lucky to still be able to do it. Yes, some of this is my doing, but not all of it. I feel that I've been lucky with my knees, for example.

Knees, if you go bad,
I'll try to understand,
Treasuring the fun we had
Traversing water and land.

Poe At Sea
I came across that Emerson quotation about Poe, because I was looking at books about Poe at the library, because I was reading a couple of stories by Poe: The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket, and A Descent into the Maelström. I remember that I was supposed to read them in college, for a seminar devoted to Moby Dick. I neglected to read these works back then, so I decided it was time to make up my coursework belatedly. These 2 works are often thought to have influenced that mega novel about the Great White Whale.

Poe wrote many a big-whopper tale
But none, I believe, involving a whale.

Jingle Man
Perhaps Emerson was being small-minded about his competition:

'Emerson, irked by Poe’s lack of moral gravity, called him “the Jingle Man.”'

The linked article mentions the strange phenomenon that the American critical establishment has never much cared for Poe, while the French critical establishment raved about him. It's an earlier version of the Jerry Lewis controversy.

I'm a poor student of Emerson's poetry, which I find boring. But two poems of Poe's I always find enchanting - The Raven and The Bells - so I periodically reread them with pleasure.

I like moral gravity well enough,
But not as all-in-all.
When Poe unleashes his jingly stuff,
I fall into his thrall.

After the first cloudburst,
Homeward I scramble.
Maybe I can escape the worst.
Of course, it’s a gamble.

Long Live The Revolution
Glad to be back to the states!
Other nations’
4th of July celebrations
Are not that great.


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