Sunday, January 07, 2007

Donning gay apparel and riding bike in fake spring

It might as well be spring.

The trees are bright and silver, the way they are in spring.

The Christmas just past may has well have been Oklahoma. Flowers were faked out, there among the hemlocks, the pines along the Holland River where I bike a lot.

Today, I am biking with a group led by a man called Fish. He is seventy and can pass for fifty, younger even.
Though his face is parchment, his fine legs are ageless, almost gay in his tight shorts as he easily rounds the corner of the bikepath and turns his helpeted head to urge the rest of us on.

Wle are an eclectic crew. Frigginbunchaneurotics.

The effort of biking has freed us from pedalling against another load, a pushcart fulll of pain that many of us had been pedalling against, often backpedalling against the awful weight of it all. Everybody in the group is ushing or carrying something.

Baggage from another marriage, the great sprawling novel that hardly any publisher wanted to take, the smoky air of distant barrooms, the white line on the asphalt bikepath reminding you of other lines you had done, and somehow recovered from.

There is the real hop of a steamer on the horizon--that we shall be rescued from this Raft of the Medusa by a jovial, somehow Germanic sea captain. Santa Claus from the season just gone by?

One must be chary of such a notion.

Recovery is miraculous and dramatic. It may come this spring, or it may not. The local Indians will tell you that it is all on the whim of the Creator.

In the meantime, the Indians will tell you to stay away from waterfalls, great confluences of water. And large lakes, like Simcoe, for there is an agepogee in each one, each with its own monster.

We ride side-by-side, some of us. Then uncouple to ride along somebody else. We talk of family, hopes achievements, cycling achievments, dreams.

What has brought us to this bikepath, along a river, along these aspens, along these larches known in Canada as tamaracks. Tamaracks seem to the greenhorn like so many reddened, discarded Christmas trees, but they are not, for these conifers will regain their needles and will again be bright and bushy.
Hopefully like us.
I am talking to a lady lready in capri pants and white sneakers.

Like me on this almost-springtime January, she is a little whimsical, vulerable and kind of shy. But she is in there pedalling for all she's worth, like an out-of-wedlock teenager pushing a baby carriage. Maybe she does push a baby carriage.
God and good people. The people are still good, but this is a dark age and the liberal sentiment proclaims one thing and then practises its opposite. Randy ministers and gay Conservatives.
They have stolen the welfare money. First sign of the Mob getting into government.
They have probably taken my riding partner's welfare money. Lazy woman? No.. Decided to work at McDonald's and they have taken away all her benefits. She barely gets eight dollars an hour now and daycare is hard to get.
She gulps air and keeps her beautifully eyebrowed visage straight ahead.

I move to another party.

And entire family, father in tights and shorts. Helmeted mother in ski pants and yellow top. Little ginger-haired daugher in shorts and sandals, doughtily holding up the rear.

We are all pedalling, moving, moving, past the trees, past the bird, pst the pair of discareded horses of green clay and other small bits of rubbish aling the Holland River. We seem, in all this dormant vegetation, to be already moving toward spring.

Ahead of us is the ringing of Fish's bell. He has seen something on the path. He rings again.
There is a huge snapping turtle on the path. Not impressed by us. Moving in that robot-like slowness. But just stick your toe out!
All turtles were once birds.
Like us.
It is going to take a very long time to fly.

--------30-

18 comments:

EA Monroe said...

Ivan, you have such a beautiful way of expressing yourself.

Josie said...

Wow, Ivan. I can almost picture myself on one of the bikes. It sounds like an interesting group.

That's great, you're out there cycling. We'd probably get blown over by the wind here. What the heck is happening with the weather? Something very strange is going on. Very strange.

Josie

ivan said...

Thanks Liz,
As to you own writing, I am wowed by its authenticity, its originality. And beauty too.

ivan said...

Hi quarks, the two other quarks in our strange state of union.
Hi Josie, denizen of Vancouver, upon which the floodgates of Purgatory seemed to have opened.
"Why us, Lord?"
"BECAUSE I HATE FRIGGIN' BRITS AND
HIP-EYES. YOU THINK IT'S FOR NOTHING YOU NAMED THAT PLACE VICTORIA, BC? GET A HAIRCUT! TRY SHAVING! FRIGGIN MOUSTACHES!"

Yes, a vengeful god seems to be laying flood and fear upon poor B.C.
The god is an Oakie from Muscogee?
He's after that Wookie from Suzuki?

Football is the biggest thing in Heaven?

He is surely kicking your backsides.
He sent his Only Province out to have winter.
While the rest of us bike and surf.

Egad, Josie, don't look back, no matter how badly you need the salt--and grocery shopping must be an adventure!
God hates B.C. for some reason.
And El Nino sits on hir right-hand side.
"These things are sent to try us," says my Irish friend.

Josie said...

Ivan, did I tell you I saw a program on CBC the other night where a scientist said that the city of Ur was destroyed by an El Nino? Apparently it lasted for almost a century. That's what this winter feels like it's lasting - a century.

Well, there won't be any more debate about clear-cutting Stanley Park. It's all gone. It's unbelievable.

I'm having Hawkins Cheezies and Cherry Garcia ice cream for dinner tonight. Just feel like it...

Josie

ivan said...

Josie,
I'll have to check out old Ur being swamped by a tsunami for so long. My dim memory of that prototype city seems to have it placed on the junction of the Tigis and Euphrates rivers, up around Baghdad...Can't seem to find an ocean. I can see it happening in ancient Tyre, the original home of the Phoenicians.
Then there was Carthage that the Romans finally destroyed in the Thrird Punic War a couple of hundred years B.C.
Watch it British Columbia--the Pope is gonna lay a Punic on ya!

Better put the bottle away and go to Wikkipedia, I suppose.

ivan said...

Cherry Garcia?

Ur-Babylon?

Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead?

Hawkin's Cheesies?

There used to be women who were after Ronnie Hawkins' shorts.

I do recall in Mexico's Day of the Dead that there were these sort of hot-cross buns in the shapes of people that you could eat.

I'm getting Cherry Garcia mixed up with Jerry Garcia.

Is there a Jerry Garcia gingerbread man?

am I drinking too much?

Josie said...

Ivan, no it was an El Nino that changed the weather patterns all around the world, and caused a drought in Ur, and everyone died of famine. The El Nino lasted a long time, so it happened over a period of years. There were strange weather patterns all over the world then, and they have found scientific evidence of it even in the glaciers.

Very interesting.

Gotta run to work.... sigh.

Cheers,
Josie

ivan said...

Oh yeah.
There was this 100-year-old drought that caused the citizens of Ur to invent elaborate irrigation systems. And El Nino probably caused the drought.
Jeez, I gotta watch my reading comprehension.
I can lie about any subject with great authority, but here and there, there's this great gap.
Ah, B.S. makes the grass grow green.
Hope BC soon turns green as well.
Paradise nearly lost.Stanley Park all but gone.
It's almost unacceptable.

Josie said...

Well, I am wearing real shoes today. Tired of my yellow gum boots.

It's actually not a bad day today, but it's supposed to snow tomorrow.... sigh.

Cheers,
Josie

EA Monroe said...

Ivan, you de guy with the blue eyes? My eyes are blue, too -- Cherokee blue eyes.

ivan said...

Ah Josie,
What an investment those yellow boots were!
Just think. If we had Red Green
duct feet, we'd be quarks, the three quarks. Or, as you may have once put it, quacks. You cerrainly need duck feet around Vancouver.

ivan said...

p.s. to Josie,
I will become a shoe fetishist at once, though for some reason, those yellow boots really turned me on.
Heels?

ivan said...

Got a touch of Cherokee?
Bue eyes?
You a gamblin' lady?
Cherokees I hear of these days are rich, rich, rich.--And it's about time after what Uncle Sam had done to them, so long ago.

...Yeah, I gotta watch where I hang out or where I speed when in Mexico.Just think, a fine-boned pot-bellied little Ukie in a Mexican jail. "Come here, you fat little ...er"

My eyes are actually hazel, but they take on the colour of anything I'm wearing, sometimes blue.
Ah, vanity, vanity. I am old and my penis droops.
No wonder all the girls send me to Radio Shack for batteries.
I phoned an old girlfriend and I heard something whirring.
Egad, the new boyfriend had problems too!

ivan said...

Whoops!
Enegies low.
Gotta do a Doormouse and catch some zzzz's.
Ole boy's gone for a nap.
Or the W.C?

Ah. Ring of Fire.
Dang Pakistani pizza!

There are no more Italian bearing gifts?

ivan said...

The Doormouse is back and on his way to Josie's Boating Party.
Some Frenchman named Renoir gonna be there.
Probably a subversive.
Card-carrying member of the Pointillist party.
Sombitch is a Pointillist.
Paints real purty though.
Like a French hooker.

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