and your bird can sing

Mmmm, thirteen games of bowling with Brion Abel for $14. Scheweeet. Bowled a 143 (1245 total) and *almost* made the sweetest 7-10 split I’ve ever seen. 🙂

Ok, so, I watched American Beauty ‘last’ night, the 18th. I dunno if you’ve seen the movie, but there’s one part of it where Ricky Fitts shows Jane Burnham “the most beautiful thing I’ve ever filmed” — a video clip of a plastic bag blowing lazily about the leafy ground in front of a red brick building.

The thing that freaked me out is this:

Six days ago, Jan 14th, I went ‘cycling around UD’s campus, looking for… scenes that speak silently, without words. Composition is one requirement, but it goes beyond that. Karl has it down, I’m still working on it. Anyways, I was down by Alison Hall, I think, DuPont and Evans, the corner of the building just north of the tree there off the Green. An area of campus that’s usually lightly but constantly trafficked during the fall semester, but completely deserted in the winter. So I’m there, and I see this white plastic bag just… meandering. A word that doesn’t get much use, but it’s the right one. Up and down, around and around, I watched the bag for three or four minutes. Partly because it was windy enough to make cycling a bit trickier than usual, but something about the motions of the bag resonated with me. It just seemed so pure and carefree, I guess, something most long to be and few are.

I don’t remember now whether or not I actually explicitly thought of it then as beautiful. I think I did, but that might just be me rewriting history. I do remember thinking of Mary’s away message — “I was just afraid that if you rolled away you might not roll back in my direction real soon” — when the bag blew over to me and pressed itself against my leg for a few moments before resuming its wandering.

It’s one of those days when it’s a minute away from snowing, and there’s this electricity in the air. You can almost hear it. This bag was just… dancing with me, like a little kid begging me to play with it, for fifteen minutes… That’s the day I realized that there’s this entire life behind things, and this incredibly benevolent force wanted me to know that there was no reason to be afraid… ever. Video’s a poor excuse, I know, but it helps me remember. I need to remember. Sometimes there’s so much beauty in the world, I feel like I can’t take it, and my heart is just gonna, like, cave in…
— Ricky Fitts

Pictures are an even poorer excuse, I guess. They all came out blurry, but they do at least give an idea of what I saw.

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Something about the yellow tube in the corner of this picture makes me like it.
Too bad it’s out of focus.
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And here’s a chaser, for getting this far:

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5 thoughts on “and your bird can sing

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