Saturday, April 26, 2008

In Which I Clutch My Head

Remember how I took a picture of this flame sculpture yesterday in the rain? And I said I was glad because it wasn't snowing?
This morning, it's snowing.
Sigh.
I do not know why this sculpture is called "P.S. Wish You Were Here," unless it's an ironic commentary on how misery loves company.

I was plenty miserable last night, for a while.
About 10 p.m. I realized I hadn't seen Barrett's favorite cat, Henry, whom I'm cat-sitting over the weekend, for many hours. I idly looked around. There was the other cat, Carrington, but no Henry.
So I started to look more seriously.
I shook the bag of greenie treats and climbed under the beds. No cat.
Pretty soon I was moving furniture. No luck.
I couldn't imagine how he could possibly have snuck out of the apartment, but I put on my raincoat and walked around the block, twice, calling for him. Nothing.
Then I called a neighbor to ask her to keep an eye out for Henry, and I put a "Lost Cat" sign up in the hall.
Not wanting to bother Barrett in Tucson, I went to bed to read, feeling sick with dread.

About twenty minutes later, Henry appeared in the bedroom doorway. He gave me a disgusted LOLcat look, reading, "U R NOT MOM," and turned and walked away.

Reprieved from having to throw myself into the Mississippi (just across the street!) but too wired to sleep, I was up late reading The Quest for Proust (1950), by André Maurois.
Lee and I've been e-mailing about the anxiety of writing things that are probably unpublishable, so I copied out the following bit for him about Proust's hard time with publishers. I especially liked it because I have the same feeling as the quoted publisher when I've tried to read Proust. Also when I've tried to find a large but invisible orange cat.
I may never have gotten past the first thirty pages of Proust, but I'm greatly enjoying reading Maurois on him:

Round about 1911, believing himself to be within sight of the end of his great book, Marcel Proust must have been ruefully wondering whether any publisher would ever be willing to undertake it.

If [he] had found it difficult to get a few essays …published, how much more difficult would it be for him to find a publisher willing to undertake a long work…running to twelve or fifteen hundred pages… the fashion at that time was for short novels….

[A publisher] wrote:
"Dear friend:
I may be thicker skinned than most, but I just can’t understand why anyone should take thirty pages to describe how he tosses about in bed because he can’t get to sleep.
I clutched my head…."

2 comments:

Krista said...

I drove by the today while running errands, recognized it from your posts, and was totally all "Fresca!" Mister Husband thought I was nuts (until he got an explanation).

fresca said...

That's great! This really IS geography of place.