Thursday, January 30, 2014

Contemplation Until Lunchtime & Spare - time Literary Activity

Early Morning View of Navy Pier as seen from
Northwestern University Arthur Rubloff Building / School of Law,
downtown Chicago ~ 30 November 2012
Photo by Gerry McCartney

How to spend each golden hour? Are you looking to add a little structure to your day? If so, here are some scheduling ideas from a couple of the best novels that I have ever read:

breakfast at ten;
contemplation until lunchtime;
after lunch a nap (one hour),
then coffee, in bed if transportation was available;
flute playing in bed (one hour);
get up;
play bagpipes while marching round the room (one hour);
more bagpipes out in the courtyard (half an hour) . . .

from The Tin Drum, 1959
by Nobel prize winner Gunter Grass

. . . or . . .

12.00. Go, weather permitting, to College, there conducting light conversation on diverse topics with friends, or with acquaintances of a casual character.

2.00 p.m. Go home for lunch.

3.00. Return to bedroom. Engage in spare - time literary activity, or read.

from At Swim Two Birds, 1939
by Irish novelist Flann O'Brien

For additional eccentric literary schedules, check out my new Fortnightly Post

"Good Intentions"

The Fortnightly Kitti Carriker
A fortnightly [every 14th & 28th]
literary blog of connection & coincidence;
custom & ceremony

Monday, January 27, 2014

Sears Home Kit

Complete Modern Home No. 115
Sears, Roebuck & Company ~ 1908 - 1940
Similar to so many homes right here
in my Indiana Neighborhood!

Last spring I included this model home advertisement from Sears on my Fortnightly post about old houses -- "Broken and Beautiful." I like it because it reminds me so much of the house where I lived as a student at Notre Dame from 1984 - 88. See the resemblance:

My house and car (Burnt Sienna Omni) in South Bend.
Another woman lived upstairs and used the front door.
My entrance was on the side.

Gerry & My Cat Jeoffry sitting on my front / side porch;
as you can see, I had a bad landlord
who never painted the house --
but I still loved living there!

Side View

The large front window (behind the tree) and the first, smaller side window around the corner were in the living room. Then comes a larger window & an extra door (a feature I see on many Indiana houses) that were in the study. Facing the street was my "front" door, into the dining room -- with a bumped out window seat there on the right.

When I came across this drawing for Sears Home Kit, Model #115, I felt it was surely the pattern for my grad school rental. I could see some clear connections, with a few alterations -- an extra living room on the first floor, with two additional doors and two additional windows along the side; a full second story on the front of the house, but no second story over the dining room.

I thought it would be fun to expand the original Sears drawing and pencil in the various modifications to make it look like my house:

1. Front door and front window reversed.

2. Three windows on second story front, instead of one.

3. An extra livingroom included in the length.

4. An extra window, picture window, and door included along the side.

5. A second door on the side porch (instead of the window).

5. No second story across the back.

Last week (scroll down to previous Quotidian post: Homes That We Love) I included this updated picture of the same house, taken twenty - five years later, after a striking new paint job and consolidation of the two units into a single - family dwelling. The new owners obviously take better care than my landlord ever did; but I liked it better painted white. Nor am I wild about the fence they put up, which obscures "my" part of the house and all of the interesting details along the south side -- another big window, two doors, porch with window seat, etc.

A close look from this angle shows the vintage (1910 approx)
detail on the front window (downstairs).

For additional views, see my photo album:
Golden Dome

Friday, January 24, 2014

Homes That We Love

There's no place like Grim & Gram's!

I can't believe that it is truly the last week of January, while in so many little ways (such as getting copies of this calendar delivered to various friends and relatives) it seems that I'm still trying to get ready for Christmas. Pretty soon I'm going to have to face the fact that it is too late for that. If it didn't get done in time for 2013, it's not going to happen. Time to turn toward the future and embrace the new year of 2014 . . . before it too becomes the old year!

~ One More Calendar for 2014 ~

Grandma doing a spot of weeding
on her 80th Birthday!

Home Sweet Home
2004 ~

Sam's Place
2013 ~

Ben's Place
2013 ~

Our Second House in Philadelphia
2001 ~ 2004

Our First House In Philadelphia
1993 ~ 2001

Our First House in West Lafayette
1988 ~ 93

Our First House Together

Where I lived as a student at Notre Dame
1984 ~ 88

My Childhood Home
1962 ~ 67

Gerry's Childhood Home
1964 ~ 72

Al & Tee Living Happily Ever After
on Happy Way Road!

click to see
Full Moon Calendar ~ 2014
Full Moon Calendar ~ 2013

Tuesday, January 21, 2014


These pictures were taken about a minute apart,
right at the moment when the light faded.
The sky changed from vivid to gray almost instantly.

Someone is dead.
Even the trees know it,
those poor old dancers who come on lewdly,
all pea-green scarfs and spine pole.
I think . . .
I think I could have stopped it,
if I'd been as firm as a nurse
or noticed the neck of the driver
as he cheated the crosstown lights;
or later in the evening,
if I'd held my napkin over my mouth.
I think I could . . .
if I'd been different, or wise, or calm,
I think I could have charmed the table,
the stained dish or the hand of the dealer.
But it's done.
It's all used up.
There's no doubt about the trees
spreading their thin feet into the dry grass.
A Canada goose rides up,
spread out like a gray suede shirt,
honking his nose into the March wind.
In the entryway a cat breathes calmly
into her watery blue fur.
The supper dishes are over and the sun
unaccustomed to anything else
goes all the way down.
[ellipses in original]

~ Anne Sexton ~
[Also on my post: "As Darkness Falls Into Light"]

The next morning, 22 January, Gerry took this one:
"Sunrise, a new day"
That's the comforting thing about the sun:
unaccustomed to anything else, it goes all the way down;
then, the next morning, it comes all the way back up.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

A Thousand Globes

“Each friend represents a world in us,
a world possibly not born until they arrive,
and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.”

~ Anaïs Nin ~
The Diary of Anaïs Nin
Vol. 1: 1931-1934

. . . even snow globes . . .

. . . other side . . .
see the Philadelphia Mummers?!

Len says:
When I see a snowglobe, I always recall Citizen Kane

. . . and that reminded me of this scene
from one of my favorite movies,
an incredible faithful adaptation
of one of my favorite stories . . .

"The human heart is vast enough
to contain all the world

~ Joseph Conrad ~

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Snow Was General

The New Year has begun with a great series of coincidences, all revolving around "The Dead" -- the final story in the sequence of fifteen stories that comprise James Joyce's Dubliners.

For the full sequence of connections, see my latest post:

"Snow Was General"

The Fortnightly Kitti Carriker
A fortnightly [every 14th & 28th]
literary blog of connection & coincidence; custom & ceremony

"A few light taps upon the pane made him turn to the window. It had begun to snow again. He watched sleepily the flakes, silver and dark, falling obliquely against the lamplight. The time had come for him to set out on his journey westward. Yes, the news­pa­pers were right: snow was gen­eral all over Ire­land. It was falling softly upon the Bog of Allen and, fur­ther west­wards, softly falling into the dark muti­nous Shan­non waves. It was falling too upon every part of the lonely church­yard where Michael Furey lay buried. It lay thickly drifted on the crooked crosses and head­stones, on the spears of the lit­tle gate, on the bar­ren thorns. His soul swooned slowly as he heard the snow falling faintly through the uni­verse and faintly falling, like the descent of their last end, upon all the liv­ing and the dead."

from "The Dead"
by James Joyce

Likewise, all I have to do is look out my window to see that
just as it was for the Dubliners, a century or more ago,
the snow this week is general all over Indiana.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Too Pretty to Put Away

You can see Gerry just pulling into the garage at 5:30;
yet it's still so light! The days are getting longer!
Does that mean it's time to take the tree down?

Well, everyone knows that the greens
don't have to come down until next month! Right?

Time yet for holiday tea with a friend.

'Tis the season for stretching a few more weeks out of the season! I'm still listening to my Christmas music and very slowly warming up to the reality of putting the decorations away. Should I be thinking about taking the big tree down? No, not yet! I'm dragging my feet because it all seems just too pretty to put away! Every ornament reminds me of something I don't want to forget. The branches are stuffed with all the year - end cards and photographs -- Malcolm S. Forbes calls each one a cheerful handshake -- reminders of loved ones and pen pals, far and near. I need to live with those images just a little while longer. Looking forward, looking back!

Happy January!

In the dark days of December,
we really needed all the extra light we could get!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Never Quite the Same

Full Moon Reverie
by Burnetta Hinterthuer

The light in Indiana is a little different than the light here in Arkansas.

Kitti’s moons shimmer in bright light,
vibrate in the colder northern air,
illuminating the landscape, with other worldly luminosity.

Her tree limbs reach out,
touching the people who walk beneath the branches,
attempting to alert them: watch out, walk softly, take your time.

Holidays glisten with still life arranged to celebrate the daily beauty.

Vegetables, fruits, flowers, garden implements, goblins, the little things that are taken for granted, until a day when rationality and identification demand that we look on our daily lives as parts of a puzzle, a desire to make sense of senseless life.

What is in a photo that gives us comfort and peace?
The moon, the trees, the things we use and throw away,
The light that is never quite the same.

~~ Thanks Burnetta! ~~













click to see
last year's Full Moon Calendar
this year's Homes That We Love
for 2015: Time for a Moondance