Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.

 

Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").



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   muddy arm of the sea
Wednesday, April 6 2005
I crossed the Hudson River today on the Kingston-Rhinebeck Bridge and as I did so I looked down to see what the water looked like. It was much browner than usual and not frozen (as it would have been not many weeks ago), but the most interesting thing about it was that it was at the same level it always is, that is, sea level. All that water pouring into it from the thawing of the snow and recent monsoons is able to escape so quickly out into the ocean that it doesn't have a chance to pile up, not even slightly. What little change all this runoff might have caused was quickly obliterated by the coming and going of the tides, which go north as far as Troy. This is the reason Henry Hudson thought he'd found a secret ninja path to China when he first sailed up the river that would later bear his name. This is because it isn't a river at all; it's an arm of the sea, a fjord.

The weather had been cool and cloudy this morning but by late afternoon, when I was coming home with sixty feet of drainage tile, I saw on a bank's digital display that temperatures had reached 78 degrees Fahrenheit. Originally I'd planned to give my battered hands a rest today, but when I got home I couldn't keep from chiseling away at driveway ditch, taking down the high spots and narrow places. At this point it looks like a scale model of the Grand Canyon. But unlike the slow, steady work of the Colorado River, I'm finding that rock removal actually goes relatively rapidly with a hammer and a chisel once you've mastered a few techniques. It's all about the intelligent targeting of the forces you apply, like the martial art where you softly touch an opponent in a weak spot on his neck and he falls over dead. (Okay, I'm exaggerating; obviously a lot of people would accidentally be killing each other and themselves if this could really be done.)


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