Happy Father's Day, o fatherly readers. Let me sit upon your knee! I sent nothing to my father except a postcard with an oil-pastel of lupines on it; in his youth, he was wont to wander Mt. St. Helen's & sketch them. I'm going to visit him next weekend, and figured I could transport whatever fatherly gift I could think of there; and since I'm entirely broke, due to unexpectedly huge phone bills, whatever fatherly gift I can think of is likely to be another postcard of lupines.
It's been a good weekend. I had a dinner party last night, and spent all day pureeing different things in my blender: kalamata olives, cilantro, pine nuts. In between pureeing I cleaned, talked on the phone, and read teen novels on the sofa in fits of languor, as the blood seeped out of my body and made me feel dizzy and vague. People were invited for 8:30, and by 8 I had my salad and sauce made, and flowers in the vases and the floors swept, and my lipstick and half of my eyeliner on, but the appetizers had not been assembled and my big pasta pot was missing and I was shoeless. But once the eyeliner & the shoes were on I was comforted, for you're allowed to be cooking when your guests arrived, but if they arrive before you've put your face on you're not allowed to ever put it on. Think how tacky you would look!
But when my first guests arrived, with mozzarella and heirloom or hopechest or whatever kind of tomatoes and basil, and white wine, and then another guest with red wine, I had the crostini ready and we were all drinking wine and chopping things in the kitchen and being convivial, and then we all repaired to the dining room and ate the crostini and the mozzarella and the salad, which had spinach with papaya and hearts-of-palm and a dressing that was just lime juice and cilantro and salt, and it was fun except that sometimes the ladies talked about shoes and did the dishes while the gentlemen practically smoked cigars. But I think everyone had a nice time, particularly when we played some drinking game that involved counting but saying "buzz" when you got to a multiple of seven or a number with the digit seven in it.
And today I went to see a Bergman film and I'm not sure I like it, but I am sure I liked the day, which was mild and bright and breezy, and was kind and coaxing towards my mild hangover. After the movie I went to the Park--not the one w/ the cougars but the other, grander one, rich in fountains and ponds and brass statues and also greenish statues of Columbus that prove me right: he wore a big tunic and leggings under his knee-length fur-trimmed coat, not Francis-Drakey slashed breeches, as my ancient neighbor Mr. McGowan insists he wore. And I gloried in the statues and fountains, and the glory of Great Works, meaning municipal endeavor. And when I had had my fill of walking I lay me down on a hill called Cedar Hill, but on the slope where there were no cedars, only thick clover and thicker grass, and among the babies and the sparrows I read the Iliad, which I have just begun to read for the first time. It seems odd that I have reached my age & state of life without reading the Iliad, and a little sad, but on the other hand I'm lucky because I get to read it now. I always thought it might be boring, that it would be all battles and all catalogues of names, and it certainly is full of battles and catalogues, but what I'm stunned by (besides the gorgeousness of the battles and the bronze tearing through the perfect circles of the shields and the dark mists rising over the eyes and the stones rupturing the sinews in a mortal spot where the collarbone is interposed between chest and neck) are the sudden, specific, surprising details--usually domestic details--like Hector's helmet scaring his baby and Andromache feeding the horses sweet-hearted wheat and wine when her heart inclined to it and Patroklos setting out the bread while Achilles serves the meat. And the gods all having their own separate houses in Olympus that Hephaistos made for them. And Zeus sleeping next to Hera in their bed. It strikes me that these aren't unusual elements to have in a book--all books talk about what people ate and where they lived and what they wore--but here they seem miraculous, and touching, and profound. Happy Father's Day, Hector! Kiss, kiss, kiss.Posted by anonymousblonde at juin 20, 2004 10:26 PM