Spanish Poetry and A Chinese Refrigerator

Is it I who walks tonight
in my room or is it the beggar
who was prowling in my garden at nightfall?
I look around and find that everything
is the same and it is not the same ...

Was the window open?
Had I not already fallen asleep?
Was not the garden pale green?
The sky was clear and blue ...
and there are clouds
and it is windy
and the garden is dark and gloomy.

I think that my hair was black ...
I was dressed in grey ...
and my hair is grey
and I am wearing black ...
Is this my gait?
Does this voice, which now resounds in me,
have the rhythms of the voice I used to have?

Am I myself or am I the beggar
who was prowling in my garden
at nightfall?
I look around ...
There are clouds and it is windy ...
The garden is dark and gloomy ...
I come and go ... is it not true
that I had already fallen asleep?
My hair is grey ... and everything
is the same and it is not the same

(Juan Ramon Jimenez)

I was thinking about this poem today. It was in one of Castaenda's books, and so I searched to find out if anyone has collected the poems in his books, and found a site with this one and some others. This led me to searching for the poems of Jimenez on the web, and eventually I ordered a book from Amazon, with the idea of giving it as a gift. So of course I was quickly involved in Spanish language poetry, ordering also Lorca, Neruda and Vallejo.

The other thing I was looking for was a movie (The Woman Chaser) I saw in limited release in San Francisco, and thought was howlingly funny. But when I tried to find it there was no disc release, just tape. So I ordered it on tape from a third party selling on Amazon. It was brilliant, but of course it was from a book, which I didn't realize until I looked at the related products. The book is by Charles Willeford. I'm looking forward to reading him after reading about him.

Today has been a wasted day except for one thing: I realized that Sears has degenerated into K-Mart, which I didn't realize bought the company. They are obviously just milking out what they can from the residual good will of the name, Sears, and have no serious customer service at all. Our refrigerator at the San Francisco residence has been out for over a month. The compressor struggled to make the warranty expiration date but didn't quite I guess. They said they would cover it, as it went out while nobody was there: date uncertain.

Instead of the repairman having a compressor to replace the bad one, he told me they would ship it to the address and somebody would show up to put it in. Unfortunately it would take a week and I would be out of town. So having spent one day waiting for him, I would have to figure out how to receive the compressor, as nobody would be at the apartment. I suggested they send it to a different address, but he said the repairman would then go to that address. So somebody had to go to UPS and get it and take it to the apartment. And the of course somebody had to be there to wait for the repairman, who was scheduled between eight and noon today.

Clay agreed to go over and wait today for the repairman. He got up early and took the compressor over there and of course nobody ever showed. I called the number I'd been given for questions or problems and they had no record of any repair. I reminded them that the problem had been diagnosed and I had a compressor which they had sent to me, so there has to be some record.

But there was not. The refrigerator continues to rot, uselessly, and nobody at Sears is concerned with that, or with the fact that their refrigerator was a piece of Chinese crap not worth the powder to blow it to hell. I hate to complain like this but it does make me feel better to publish this information for anyone who thinks Sears is the same company it used to be. It's a subsidiary of K-Mart now.

An email from Linda:

I was looking at a couple consumer review sites and Sears has no good reviews anywhere.  The ownership by Kmart has taken a toll on them for sure.  We need to put Sears in the same category as Walmart - we don't go there, we don't buy there unless there is absolutely no other choice.

I have to find a Christmas tree this evening. Mike the gardener is going to go with me and I'm going to let him trim the tree. He is very happy with that because he wasn't able to work outside today and he's got Christmas, like everybody else.

Sammy and I went into the woods, in the snow, this morning. I couldn't find the cross trail and had to backtrack to the truck. Sammy loves the snow.

Posted: Thu - December 18, 2008 at 04:54 PM