April 17. World 2,240,191. U.S. 699,706. Canada 32,814. Brazil has now passed Canada in total confirmed cases and Russia is closing in on Canada and will probably blow by Canada within the span of the next news cycle.
Tim Cook called me this morning from California. That’ll be the last time that happens. Today Tim was chuffed about me using images captured from visualizer and cropping them down and using them in my bloggy blogs to create some kind of visual thing to break up the monotonous words when it hasn’t been cleared by Apple Inc.
“I paid you for the machine, Tim. I can do anything I want with it.”
“Au contraire,” Tim said. “We own the cloud and everything in it and if you’d bothered to read the fine print under “What’s inside the box” you’d know that we still own your machine and everything on it and we don’t give a damn about receipts or money or anything. We own everything. How do you think we got to be the richest company on the planet?”
“Tim, I understand you’ve met President Trump. What do you think?”
“Bat shit crazy, Steve. Rook to king one.”
“I’m sorry, Tim. I think you missed it. Queen to bishop three, bishop takes queen, knight takes bishop. Checkmate.”
“Ahgg… ergg…. Looks like you’re right, Steve. I resign.”
I find it generally true. The smartest individuals can have curious gaps in their knowledge of the simplest things. Tim is like this. Thinks he’s a hot-damn chess dude. Not a clue and it’s surprising. You’d think there’d be more there and there just isn’t. I told him life’s too short for chess but he wouldn’t listen. He won’t be bugging me about the visualizer anymore so that’s good. Moving on to spring garden update.
April 18. Kenilworth Ivy. Usually grown as annual. Dainty creeper that may appear uninvited in shadier parts of the garden, sometimes even sprouting in chinks of stone or brick wall…. Smooth leaves 1 inch wide or less, with three to seven toothlike lobes. Blooms mainly in spring with small lilac blue flowers carried singly on stalks a little longer than leaves.
Lewisia. To 1 foot high, 10 inches wide. Rosettes of narrow, fleshy, evergreen leaves bear 10 inch stems topped by large, extremely showy clusters of 1 inch, white or pink flowers often striped with rose or red. Blooms from spring to early summer.
They’re right about Kenilworth Ivy. Grows like a weed. We’ve seen it growing wild not far from here. “Kenilworth” is a suspiciously English-sounding name which meant of course that I was going to look into it. Kenilworth Castle. Of course there’s a castle and of course it’s “Kenilworth Castle” and of course it would be situated in Kenilworth, England. Stands to reason. At least something does. Looks like some of it burned down or something. I’ve never been to Kenilworth, England. I think I flew over it once, but there’s not much to see in heavy cloud at 30,000 feet.
April 22. Yeah, the numbers for the planet. The planet will certainly get to 3 million confirmed cases and the great United States will certainly pass 1 million. There seems to be some dysfunction in the great United States. Sorry about that overused word but I couldn’t think of anything else. A madness is upon the land.
Great American madness. Everything’s going great or things are in a situation where there’s room for improvement. It depends on who has the mic. I think the number of people in the great United States who don’t give a crap either way is trending to zero. It’s all about trends. Everybody’s looking for one and that includes around here.
I was also talking briefly on the phone yesterday afternoon to a lady who lives in Washington State. That’s because she’s an American. She has a friend up in woolly Canada and had arrived here for a visit as she has been doing recently, but this time it was not much more than twenty-four hours before the British Columbia/Washington State border was closed. That was a month ago. She’s been here ever since.
“You’re an exile,” I said to her.
“You can’t go home again.”
She laughed again.
People from the State of Washington are wonderfully joyful people and always laugh at all my little jokes, especially ones with literary allusions in them. And Debbie doesn’t play chess either. It’s also nice that she’s with the person she likes so things are going along okay.
Talking to a real, live person from Washington was so uplifting I resorted to the extraordinary move of acquiring a bottle of “Kung Fu Girl” riesling from Charles Smith Wines in Washington because I’d heard it was tasty and I’d been meaning to try it. It’s very nice with pad thai apparently. Charles Smith Wines
Apologies to Stanley Kubrick and the Sunset Western Garden book. Garden blooms by CS Nicol