In the Chronicle a couple of days ago, article about recent publication of the collected letters between Gary Snyder and Allen Ginsberg, which included a photo of the outdoorsy poetical man at the famous '67 Be-In in Golden Gate Park. Not necessarily a book I'd rush out to buy, tho' I'm something of a student of the field and the time...read part of The Dharma Bums a while back - the "Japhy Ryder" character is based on Snyder. Kerouac would often (or always) base characters on people he knew, and alter the names somewhat. Snyder still around, one of the few of the Beat era still kicking - must be living up in the Sierra Nevadas, away from the funky shit going down in the city (reference to "Jet Airliner", by the Steve Miller Band - sometimes changed to "funky kicks" for airplay friendliness...)
Snyder and Ginsberg said to have first met in 1956, at the suggestion of Frisco literary maven Kenny Rexroth...he's one I should study more - interesting lit figure of the time and place. Held a saloon in Frisco - I mean, salon - where the Bohemian literati gathered.
A note from California attorney general Jerry Brown, somewhere in that Snyder article, I think: says he never visited Tim Leary in jail. Wants to distance himself from the notorious Dr. Tim, I guess. (Oh, the digital voice note I'm working from said that in one of his letters to Snyder Ginsberg maintained that Brown did do that, and Brown wants to clarify the matter.)
Snyder commenting on the texting thing happening now...in terms of the literary, he said "the important stuff continues", even tho' it comes and goes out of fashion within an eye blink...he suggested that the grandchildren of parents today may possibly be very into writing letters on paper using quill pens. Been meaning to write, handwrite, letters, but may not get to that...but it's a very personal form of communication, one that takes time, unlike your usual e-mail.
Another article in the Chron about how many in Hollywood are very into Malcolm Gladwell's ten thousand hour theory of competence. It said that Gladwell, in his Outliers book, doesn't really believe in innate talent, and if it does exist it plays a small role. He more believes in practice and effort contributing the most to excellence.
Want to note the showing of rarities in film by Orson Welles at the Pacific Film Archive in Berkeley - presented with the participation of the Goethe-Institut in S.F. Footage to be shown from TV shows the man was involved with, such as Around the World with Orson Welles, and Orson's Bag (doubtless where he kept that wine that he wouldn't drink before its time)...also, something about the different approaches Welles took to his treatment of The Merchant of Venice. Not long ago got into a 24-hour Welles biography, and so have the man somewhat in mind...a friend offered the Welles Othello to me, but told him I wasn't interested...I'd be more interested in his later stage TV appearances and his commercials for wine and other more plebian products...
On the radio the other day, the author of Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience, by (thank you, Internet! Would not have gotten the spelling without you!) Mihaly, uh...Yabazabazoodee. Got the book title right, anyway...had the book a while back, interesting topic, worth your time, whoever's reading this. Wikipedia defines flow as: "the mental state of operation in which the person is fully immersed in what he or she is doing by a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and success in the process of the activity." Works for me...topic of the radio show, I think, was: "What are you grateful for?" Mihaly said his body, that it worked pretty well.
Am wrapping up a seven-night stand, so to speak, away from my crib in the city, at a friend's house in South San Francisco...got a lot done, mind-wise...and tuned in a lot of public TV kids programming, some of the best stuff on the air, especially compared to the general dearth of interesting material on the local channels. Also, ate a whole lot of calories, a lot of animal protein...for sure this year will be focusing on eating better, and spending a bit less time with my good friends Carlo Rossi and King Cobra. And as I've said before, am seeking a source, or more than one, of cervical mucus. There seem to be providers of this substance walking around the streets of the city, and my intention is to more actively seek them out.
It's been mostly warm and sunny here in South City for my week here, and this at the very end of December. Was able to expose some skin to the rays, even, and not feel a chill. Maybe the next couple of months will get colder and wetter, but I like that well enough, especially when I've got a comfy crib to get to, and as much hot water for sensual bathing as my little heart desires...
And noteworthy, pears from Sacramento, from a relative of the lady of the house, my hostess with the mostest - a holiday gift which I shared. Received at the perfect ripeness, too. More fruit, another resolution for the new year, and less potato chips. Could lose about five pounds and achieve a desired streamlining of my body. Planning to buy a bicycle from a friend, and once on that, will be shedding unwanted pounds and inches with that intenser-than-walking aerobic exercise. And also with the surrounding movements related to the ingestion of the aforementioned cervical mucus. Breaking a sweat behind some pelvic thrusting not a bad way to while away some time.