The Good Life ®
La Finquita del Bujo, our CSA, put on their annual Harvest Festival last Sunday. And such a day for it – clear skies with that certain, crisp autumn sun. The farm was open to all subscribers, friends, neighbors, for a potluck feast and four hour festival. The farm’s outdoor, hand-built brick pizza oven was fired up: Lyn and Juvencio, the farm’s owners, provided homemade dough, sauce and cheese and attendees brought toppings to share, and everyone provided encouragement to those whose dough-rolling skills were less than professional.  A friend of the family was making fresh pupusas on an outdoor griddle next to the oven, and the farm dogs and cats wandered from lawn chair to lawn chair, having a grand old time feasting on everyone’s food offerings.
Entertainment included performances by Hillsboro’s Baile Folklorico Mexico en la Piel , a local bluegrass group, and The Helvetia Alphorn musicians. I’d never seen alphorns up close, or “live” (Ricola commercials don’t count). They looked just like this. Exactly. Well, minus the alpine background. And the lederhosen. And the featherduster hats.
Have I Got an Expression (Line) For This
I found this blast from the past while searching my files for…I forget. For something else:
1-7-09, doing post-exercise cooldown. I ejected the workout DVD and caught the tail end of a local noon news program. As I moved into downward facing dog pose, the news gave way to a paid programming/extended infomercials, hosted by an aging TV actress (Victoria Principal?) who was shilling her line of anti- wrinkle/anti-aging skin care products (“Reclaim”). Reclaim, the grotesquely preserved still-beautiful performer declared, will “reverse the signs of aging,” smooth away “visible forehead wrinkles” ( yeah, we’re not too worried about the invisible ones) and even get rid of those pesky “expression lines.”
Hitch up your loincloth, Mahatma Gandhi, and Melinda and Bill Gates, quit your whining about malaria—there’s a new humanitarian in town, and she’s out to rid the world of expression lines. You know, the lines that come from using the muscles in your face to do something other than to don a mannequin’s smooth-checked, slit-eyed, I-wish-I-could-crack-a-smile-but-I’m-too-busy-reversing-the-signs-of-aging mask.
Expression lines – the ones evince your years of loving your children and laughing at their elephant jokes; the ones that accentuate your reaction to your spouses’ latest pun or your sports team’s heartbreaking loss in the playoffs; the ones that form when you can’t believe your brother-in-law told that story in front of your grandmother, or when you hear yet another Republican elected official make yet another ignorant remark about human biology. The ones that let the world know you are alive.
I’ll sell you a no-cost, sure-fire way to stop the signs of aging: die young.
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Why I am Postponing Reading the Latest Issue of P & W
The November/December Poets & Writers magazine arrived earlier in the week. This issue’s cover shot is of an extremely self-satisfied looking  author Elizabeth Gilbert. I somehow managed not to read Gilbert’s bestselling memoir, Eat, Pray, Love, despite having been chased in airports during the past seven years any time I had a flight booked, by security personnel who screamed, “If you board the plane without a copy of this book in your hands, the terrorists have won!”
So. We return to our magazine, and to Gilbert’s beaming visage, below which is the title of the article (The Eat, Pray, Love Phenomenon), and then a question: What Happens After an Author Sells More Than 8 Million Copies?
Assuming the question is not rhetorical, WHO FUCKING CARES?
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More Reasons to Go On Living:
Two Thumbs up for one Finger Up
You gotta love the intersection of art and political dissent. This week I loved Czech artist David Cerney’s salute to Czech President President Milos Zeman, in the form of a giant purple  hand, middle finger prominently extended, floating on a barge in the River Vltava, facing Zeman’s presidential headquarters in the Prague Castle.
Cerney is – surprise! – not a fan of President Zeman. Zeman is a self-proclaimed ex-Communist who accepts the likelihood of the Communist party regaining political power, thus enraging Cerney and other Czechs who hated and openly defied the Communist rule of Czechloslovakia (1948-1989).
My Pretty Purple Toe Award ® has got nothing on Cerney (“I just enjoy pissing people off”) and his Purple Finger of political Defiance.
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Wishing y’all a finger-friendly, thumbs-up weekend, and may your own particular brand of purple hijinks ensue.
Thanks for stopping by. Au Vendredi!
 We make pizza often at home, and I proudly claim that my amoeba-shaped pies are deliberate, as well as artistic. And MH set out to make a calzone, not a pizza. That was his intention; the fold-over was not to fix the holes. Yep.
 Instead of “Say Cheese!” or “Smile!” the photographer’s prompt was, “Royalties and residuals!”