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I had a dream last night that L. was feeding baby wolves and I thought it was a bad idea. Very early this morning I skimmed an illustrated post about lycanthropy.

A little bit later, though still far too early, my creative co-worker gave me a ride to my 8:30 am class (heated seats!) (in the car, not the classroom). She told me about the resort where her son works in the summer, which resort shares its remote island with a family of wolves.

She said the island was once a station for something I had never heard of called LORAN. LORAN was a hyperbolic radio navigation system (so the Internet tells me) implemented during WWII and continued in a confusing series of forms (well, A, B and C) [Edit: I had the date wrong here] Loran-A went off the air in North America in 1980, but apparently Loran-C was in use until 2010.

This island station was paired with one in southern Alaska. It was stood down1 in 1977 “after a fire in a generator room,” according to the labour-of-love website on which I found this information.

But what if it was really the wolves?

I sense a rabbit hole gently caving in under my feet.

Talk of mysteriously defunct signal stations reminds me a little of the CBC holiday tradition of playing Fireside Al's gripping rendering of "The Shepherd" on Christmas Eve, in the Dickensian tradition of eerie Christmas stories.


{rf}

1. That usage seems awkward, but that's how the site puts it.

Crossposted from Dreamwidth (http://radiantfracture.dreamwidth.org/1574.html), where there are comment count unavailable comments. Comments either place are great.
radfrac_archive_full: (dichotomy)
This morning I listened to CBC's Writers & Company -- an interview with British author Samantha Harvey, whose newest novel, Dear Thief, sprouted from Leonard Cohen's song "Famous Blue Raincoat." I went back and forth beween interest and annoyance that Harvey had changed the genders -- made the protagonist and the rival female, the beloved male. There's nothing objectively wrong with this; subjectively, it moves the story out of my zone of preoccupation into someone else's territory.

(Puts Jennifer Warnes' cover of FBR on)

FBR seems emblematic of that preoccupation in Cohen's earlier writing with not only the beloved but also the rival -- the admired, superior, even also beloved and desired rival (see Beautiful Losers). Maybe it's born in the family romance; wanting both to love the father and to defeat him. [ETA] In Cohen this love seems to be a kind of submission, a desire to be subsumed, to merge with the more powerful rival.

It doesn't seem to come in to Cohen's work lately, does it? There's a beloved but no rival -- and the love has a different quality -- more abstract, absolute -- less ego-driven. Rivalry implies ego, I guess. Maybe his rivals are all dead.

Anyway, the novel sounds interesting in its own right -- written in the form of a letter, deliberately ambiguous. I'd read it if I could finally get through Moby Dick. I'm bogged down in the whale's skeleton.

From there I thought about interviews and discrepancies and accidental self-revelations and short stories in the form of transcripts, and made some notes; however, it's now time to mark and prep.

Oh, and maybe shower. The world might thank me for that.

{rf}
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Today I listened to a Guardian Unlimited podcast of a lecturer on the Society of Antiquaries (founded 1707). God damn, there's nothing hotter than a dotty old man. Seriously. He says primly that creativity and intellectual life are withering in the universities, and I have to go get a glass of water.

One of the many jewels of the great podcast serpent's hoard is the archive of NPR's All Songs Considered, teeming with concerts you desperately wish you'd been at. This is how I discover how good the Arcade Fire sounds with the wind blowing through it -- that is, in the looser, rougher arrangements and recording quality of a concert -- which I guess makes sense with the technical direction they've been taking -- which you all know more about than I do, but anyway.

And this, from possibly my favorite Quirks & Quarks broadcast ever. (Their new theme music is also sexy):

The life of the Red Swamp Crayfish is a complicated one... Cut for hot male-male pseudo-copulation. )

Podcasts. The only thing that keeps my brain from being completely taken up with NOC and NAICS codes.

End of the school/work day. Home to try to study. Or more probably to write, since I suspect I'm too thick to absorb anything else about Shakespeare tonight. Being in school always has the paradoxical effect of making me want to do more creative work. It stimulates the mind, which would be fine -- which would be ideal -- if I didn't need to spend seven point five hours a day not writing fiction.

And so on. Not complaining; I'm enjoying it. Just bemused, knowing I'm going to try to fit too much in, and get frustrated, but wanting to try it anyway, because too much is much better than not enough.

{rf}
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Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] stitchinmyside's example, I finally downloaded some CBC Radio 3 podcasts to my Palm. Then my Palm's battery died. It won't even turn on. It lies there, inert, blank, full of untranslateable beauty. I had time to listen to two of the R3-30s and a really interesting discussion with an American poet on "Writers & Company". The end.

My two new favourite songs are:

Christine Fellows - "Vertebrae"

Clear the doorstep of flowers
Throw open the blinds in his empty room
Avert my eyes from his fingerprints
Is there something I'm forgetting...

and

Knock Knock Ginger, "Love Renee"

I'll quote here, though you can't get the full feel without the bouncy, almost anthemic rock sound of the song:
All the misuses
Of the comma by your hand
Made the closing "Love Renee"
Seem like another order or command

In all uppercase
You wrote "LOVE LOVE LOVE"
Like I would change
My mind
If the Ls were bold enough

Now I'm listening to Radio 3 on headphones in my dad's basement office in Gibsons after 8 hours of travel, some quite good sushi in West Van, some quite good delivery pizza right here in Gibsons, and a raucous game of InGenius.

{rf}

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