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WritingSummary 07/06/2023

Lucian and Mary Brown:
Untitled [baby reaching for typewriter] (1950)

We Almost Exclusively Worship Mammon
General Electric, the once proud exemplar of mid-century industrial America, spouted its motto: "Progress is our most important product" in grandiose television advertisements. Productizing progress seems a fair portrait of our post-war arrogance, one still firmly held by our more conservative neighbors. GE's pride prefaced their fall at the hands of another CEO who firmly believed himself brighter than everyone before him. The ones since he retired have found ample reasons to wax their vitaes, too, since history seems to see old Jack Welch as short-sighted now. Such is vision when it confronts experience. It becomes so much schmutz on the old eyeglasses, eventually in the way of seeing what's right before one and whatever's behind. I exclusively wend my way. I take my time. I'm in no hurry to arrive; Lord knows where. I'm more of a journey-focused person. I feel fortunate to have stumbled into my present and even to be dragging my considerable past behind me. I gratefully do not have to drag all that much progress behind me. It might be that the Chamber of Commerce's mid-century characterizations of the future coming, featuring flying cars driven by Spandex® citizens, helped me better appreciate how it was rather than worship progress. I'm down on my knees most mornings whispering prayers of thanksgiving that this nation was not founded Christian. We almost exclusively worship mammon here, if we can think of that as any kind of organized religion.


Weekly Writing Summary
I began my writing week asking myself difficult questions after realizing that I could actually answer them with Discernment. "What sort of an author shall I be now? Now that I've realized that I'm in charge? Now that I perceive what I once aspired for some gatekeeper to see in me first?"
Charles Ricketts:
The Hermit; illustration for Oscar Wilde’s ‘
The Teacher of Wisdom’
(c. 1890–1924)

"Success and failure now come to me for definition."

This proved to be an awful tough week justice-wise and I felt moved to write about justice
Arcing. "The Arcing path makes it impossible to determine if we're closer today or further away. Our judgments have fooled us in the past."
Aaron Bohrod's America, its history (1946)

"We shall overcome because the arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice. "
–Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.,
“Remaining Awake Through a Great Revolution.”
Speech given at the National Cathedral,
March 31, 1968

" … thinking ourselves especially blessed."

I cleaned out my garage as well as my soul in
Garge. "My center compromised; I hardly know myself. I become an alien presence until one morning when I decide I've had enough of my self-imposed third-class existence and set to tidy up my center. It's long-cycle respiration."
Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin:
The Attributes of the Arts and the Rewards Which Are Accorded Them

" … I tidy until my soul can breathe again."

I imagine myself continually Honing my coping abilities and feel most proud of how skilled I've become at
MakingDo. "We stock up on those increasingly rare occasions when we need to visit civilization, and we revel in the many local oddities that those living in the world's greatest cities will never find on their shop shelves. … We can make silk purses out of damned near anything and do."
Lewis Wickes Hine: Making Pittsburg Stogies (1909)

"Envy us."

The Fourth of July stopped by to remind me that I am not now and have never been a
Dandy. "This year we're home, celebrating in the city park, The Muse campaigning for election as a plainspoken representative of The People, not as anybody's Dandy …"
William Nicholson: An Alphabet: D is for Dandy (1897)

“ … not as anybody's Dandy, Yankee Doodle-Do, or died.”

The Muse provided a textbook class in
RetailPolitics. She's running for elective office. "The Muse is selling nothing other than the future. No politician ever sells more."
Russell Lee:
Group of residents of Weatherford, Texas,
listening to politician speak


"This just seems a fait accomplis."

I ended my writing week confessing that I cannot seem to keep my glasses clean in
OutOfSight. This posting proved most popular this period. "I had been cast unawares in the role of Mr. Magoo. I feel reasonably sure that I became the butt of one of those unkind jokes professionals share in the course of their days, one about some absolute idiot they came across, one they wondered how they got along in the world, one I've poked fun at myself over the years."
Collection of
Barnett and Annalee Newman:
Eyeglasses, in case (20th century)

" … everything becomes clearer."

This writing week surprised me. I began the week realizing, re-visualizing what I have been up to for a long time, one of those perspective shifts that make a significant difference. The world seemed indifferent and continued disappointing at a distance as if to remind me of my deepest intentions. I cleared out my spot, which seemed to help a lot. I reveled a bit in my often under-appreciated abilities at MakingDo. I celebrated, too, not having managed to become a Dandy in any sense and The Muse's exemplary skills in RetailPolitics, which might eventually contribute to saving all our butts. I ended the week more blind than I began it, happily regressing, for writing weeks tend to progress circularly, even Arcing. Thank you for following along!

©2023 by David A. Schmaltz - all rights reserved

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