Daily Office:


Matins: Five movies in one afternoon and evening — I tacked on Rushmore at the end. Even though I still haven’t got to the bottom of the NuLytely literbox, I’m ready for bed, and no longer hungry. The munchies passed at around nine o’clock, long before I started in on the Sauvignon Blanc.

Nones: Well, that’s over — and LXIV and I celebrated with a lovely lunch afterward. Just when I was getting good at remembering Versed, they changed the anaesthetic to something called Propothal, about which I can find nothing very official on the Internet.

Compline: Somehow, I managed to squeak through on the Book Review front. This week’s look, at Portico. Oremus…

§ Matins. I must have been drunk the first (and only) time I watched Wes Anderson’s leading movie, because, this evening, there was so much that I found appealing. Not least the settings, all of which appear to be in Houston. St John’s is so obvious a set that I can’t believe I missed it — or perhaps I was in one of my deep-steeped I Hate Texas moods. Everybody I know loves Rushmore. I’m not quite sure why, although, this time, I rather liked it myself, especially Olivia Williams, whom I wanted to run off with.

Often, when I’ve had a lot of wine to drink, I strike preposterously stupid arguments with Kathleen about things I can’t even remember ten minutes later, much less the next day. By then, though, she’s asleep, and it’s Too Late. Tonight, however, my grievance continues to make sense, at least to me, even if it will excite nothing but contempt among readers. I asked Kathleen to reserve a car to take us to the stadtpalais where the colonoscopy will be performed. It’s often impossible to find an empty taxi in Yorkville between the hours of eight and eleven, and I am never keen on trusting to good fortune. Kathleen somehow didn’t hear this request. So I may be taking the subway down to 69th Street tomorrow morning, because it’s hugely more reliable than standing out in the street like an overgrown aspidistra, trying to wave down a stray cab.

Kathleen cherishes the right to hail a taxi anywhere, but my own mind much prefers cab stands. It’s amazing that we’ve stayed together all these years.

§ Nones. Not that I ever, at any time, “screamed through the whole procedure. I remember a doctor who was chintzy with the Demerol, but all I have to remember of that is a certain discomfort. Maybe I moaned a bit. But now, with these amnesia drugs, I don’t remember a thing. It’s all over in no time.

What made my day (my morning, anyway) was a double-take moment on the way to the prep room. What are you doing here? we both said to ourselves, so palpably that we might as well have spoken aloud. With whom should I cross paths in the corridor but Cathy, the nurse who administered my Remicade infusion last week at Ruptured & Crippled! Cathy attended me in recovery, and we had — or I had — a grand old time. We talked all about Megan’s wedding, thanks to Propophal, the absence of which had left me too shy to raise the subject the other day in the Infusion Therapy Unit.

§ Compline. Taking things slow, I didn’t get to the Book Review (which I had, however, read over the weekend) until the middle of the afternoon. Taking things pleasant, I wrote my little review outdoors, on the balcony. Most agreeable! At first, I had a very hard time keeping track of the cursor, but as the evening set in the screen became easier to read. Now it’s the keys that I can’t see, at 8:16 EDT. I don’t need to see them to write this.

You’d think I’d be all movie’d out, what with watching five-count ’em-five very different videos yesterday, but the immersion seems to have whetted my appetite. I’m keen to watch the more difficult films, such as The Bicycle Thief. The ones that you really do have to watch. I’m trying to make up my mind about Antonioni’s Le Amiche, one of his early, not-famous movies. His style and some of his trademark situations are on hand — I was often reminded, without knowing quite why, of La notte — but the narrative is almost melodramatically clear. Clelia, the central character, seems make a rather serious about-face in the last reel, without batting an eyelash or — more disconcertingly — extinguishing her polite smile. The last scene echoes that of David Lean’s Summertime, but in a very minor key — there’s nothing bittersweet about it.

Meanwhile — since you are probably more interested in my doings than in my views — Kathleen is working late for the third night in a row; she’ll do the same, she expects, on Friday and Saturday night. What shall I do about dinner? Well, for starters, I’d do well to head into the kitchen — with a view to coming back out with a tray later on. It’s almost too cold to sit still out here, but shivering slightly is one of the joys of spring!

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