I really want to get this going....

Each day's listing is an excerpted edit from my work. These are numbered and sub-headed for ease of read and isolation from full body of continued text. Each small excerpt is a single-themed piece culled from a much larger whole. Please follow the heading numbers down to #1, or click on 'archive'. The highest numbers are most recently posted, obviously. If so interested, for follow-up, you may contact via e-mail shown - perhaps for discussion or annotation needed.

Monday, March 12, 2007


132. SADLIN'S WATER CAFE (In the American isles):

'Too much salvation to accumulate too many points of origin to trace and the long wide train from the New England hills has gone off the track long ago'...
"As we passed, out of Chester today at Old Dutch Road the Forbes Estate there was a flatbed truck just arriving with a brand new beautifully cream-white Rolls Royce with a black convertible top being transported up their roadway and it had the austere smell of the capital rich about it the almost legimate means of wealth and nobility which was allowed - in the American episodes - to prosper and grow as men after each other and their storied women too instead allowed themselves to turn attention to the quest for gold and read the numbers and ride the markets up and down in and out until they amassed great sums and margin-sums of fortune and as shakeouts came and went they were each able to make alliances and ride the doom-bells and find the new crests and make their fortunes so that deep in the woods in places like this and in townhouses like that vast hidden mansions of fortune were built and today's world is a remnant of all that swaddling new money made old and not a whimper was ever really pronounced and no one has really ever objected either and they could live lives of privilege and you know no matter what else is done I do suppose it's always been true that as they say 'there is no culture without a standard of altruism of regard for others' but actually that MAY have once been true but I have my doubts about it now - and even then - because I've found that mankind does nothing - singly or en masse - unless first some self-interest is being served and money itself by its very nature or at least the quest for money always seems to replace any introspective energies or passionate intellectual quests and just as well any code of self-sacrifice or immense hope and I always figured that's pretty much what was meant by 'the love of money is the root of all evil' though I find that as well very unsatisfying and not nearly encompassing enough as a saying" and he was writing in a notebook between his bouts of talking as I'd come upon him at Sadlin's Water Cafe which was a curious and small place on the east edge of Chambers Street near where the Collect used to be and now was all government civic and welfare buildings family court and all the rest and the beleaguered place was a real nowhere - in between as it were the tentacled expanses the vivacities of Chinatown the financial district and the area around City Hall - so that it was amidst all these places but had nothing of its own to speak of - occasional bums passed out or just waiting where the pond used to be (a true mess) financial and bureaucratic careerists passing through and the prison traffic of The Tombs and all its guards visitors cooks and sanitizers all passing around and to but no one other than commercial beings really traversed the area and when they did it was the indigent the hurting or those in need - real need - the five-kids-with-no-food kind of need the stuff Family Services stepped in and took control of and the 'Water Cafe' as it was named although all water had long ago been taken away was set between two much larger buildings with brick and mortar and high glass windows and everything towering over Sadlin's with its small posture and darkened shadowed nooks where people sat - often just staring - and this guy who'd said long ago his name was James - James Madison in fact - just stayed in place writing and talking whenever the urge struck and it's always amazing the leeway people get when they're adduced to be 'smart' or 'genius' or eccentric even and no one ever stopped this guy from going on in his own way about whatever he wished (it wasn't the first nor even the tenth time I'd seen him) and he had already gotten to know me from previous sit-in's and he'd in fact offered the coffee I drank a few times already - bought and re-bought and I never said no to any of that and he said "I was almost a lawyer you know - right over there at John Jay - but I always had more of an interest in philosophy and the two don't mix very well - law and philosophy that is - always at odds with each other one thing bumping into another and turning into the next so that I couldn't really do justice to either so I just quit all that and found a way VOILA! to be here and there instead and now philosophy's a wonderful thing and made just for me - I harbor no man's passions and work hard at making my own and it can't be beat and BY THE WAY did you know that in the long history of religion the one obvious and dangerous fact that jumps out is probably the most simple one too : Christian religion and Judaic tradition and all the old enforced religions have simply cut off prophecy and new revelations as if the old and new testaments had simply one day STOPPED and ended and with that too ended ALL of God's workings in the world as if He'd forgotten all about mankind and simply went along elsewhere on His way but there are newer religions now - Mormonism among them - which enforce the creed of a still-active prophesy and a working God present in the world today and even the Muslims don't do that and with this thought in mind you realize that ALL doors which were once long ago closed and then simply worshipped are once again all opened and given new life and possibility with the idea of NEW prophesy coming through constantly and the titular 'head' of the Mormon Church is considered a Prophet and because of that apt at any point to tap once more into the active work of God and find himself decreeing anything new and original all over again and the millions of Mormon followers now would go to death enforcing that new prophecy or regulation or creed - and isn't that really an amazing thought the very idea that we could at any time be back on the cusp of new words from God - with new details on things and new commands and energies to go forth and do something ANYTHING to enforce again the real life of this miserable world!" and I said "no I hadn't realized that" and he smiled and said back "think of it as this way - at any time we can be led once again into new revelation which would change everything we may have thought until now and to me that's amazing incredible and worth everything in the world to know" and I said "well then am I to assume you're a Mormon?" and he said "no not by any means - just an active observer right now and waiting" which I of course found puzzling but then most of the things about him puzzled me as it always seemed he never really had anything to do but say what it was he was doing - very odd - and the more I thought of the revelation stuff the more I realized that yes it was truly fraught with possibilities but who would listen to what was considered really no more than a strange sect an offshoot of more realizable religions in a country which pretty much had considered that long ago it had settled all accounts with religion of any sort - and now here was this new guy saying it could all start again at any time and I wondered to myself 'is this true ? who else has known of this and not mentioned it ? how prevalent is this knowledge?' and most importantly 'how correct is it?' - answers I never got but then any evaluation of religion is usually unsecured and it ends up being based on whatever it is you want to believe so I felt 'no matter' to that and then I asked him "all well and good but how is any of that philosophy?" and he said "well you see ANYTHING can be made to be philosophy if you phrase it so and dwell on it enough in those terms and all philosophy is really is a broad approach to finding a point of view with which to justify acts and means" so I stayed around and listened to this Mr. Madison who for all I knew could have been the guy who invented all the bullshit on Madison Avenue because sometimes he really sounded like it but I knew from observation that at heart he was really in earnest and onto something and it reminded me of the way prisoners sometimes - when they write letters or start talking about things - use obscurely large and unnecessary words in stiltled and overwrought prose as a means of merely parading their self-taught knowledge in front of others which it usually isn't - knowledge or self-taught - because they miss the entire point by burying themselves in a few textbooks of law or grammar or whatever and then swallowing them whole regurgitate the entire edifice back out into people's faces and that never works because - you see - the essence of knowledge and true education is in knowing the means of intuitively caressing and portraying - sometimes without 'saying' - the essentials of what you're trying to portray or impart and it's usually smooth glib and attractive whereas the self-taught motivator's schtick is usually slow obtuse obscure and annoying too and Mr. James Madison here sometimes came close to that but he kept a certain elan alive by just touching on things and then retreating into questioning or transferring to some other point so that nothing ever was nor seemed tiresome and belabored - and that made all the difference even if it probably NEVER would have washed in a court of law - so he'd probably made a good decision on that count BUT I still never knew what he did for a living or how he managed to stay in place.


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