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Lifetime Piling Up

I Remember Days and Crazy Nights

Name:
I Was a Human Bomb for the FBI
Birthdate:
20 June
External Services:
  • scholargipsy@hotmail.com
  • scholargipsy@livejournal.com
  • launfal622 AIM status
Schools:
Update: Pretty much this whole journal is locked now; I've been going through a sea change in my attitude toward the utility and relevance of LiveJournal in my life for some months (years?) now, and there doesn't seem to be much purpose in keeping the archives open to a largely disinterested -- no offense taken -- public any more. The last inhabitants have moved on to sunnier climes, the doors and windows are all boarded up; maybe now some interesting ghosts will come and haunt the place.

As you were:

It's the fragment, not the day;
It's the pebble, not the stream;
It's the ripple, not the sea,
That is happening.
Not the building but the beam,
Not the garden but the stone;
Only cups of tea, and history,
And someone in a tree.


What began as a one-year Nihon no otaku tour in Japan finally, some four-plus years later, reached its terminus. Like the protagonist of Mark Helprin's "Ellis Island," I found myself rocketed (back) into New York City to make my way amid immigrants, miracles, rabbis, and one lovely wife. Along the way I landed yet another in a moderately long line of high school humanities teaching jobs and ate a lot of vegetarian dumplings from Ollie's. Next? We'll see.

Oh, and in case you're curious about where the name comes from:

In The Vanity of Dogmatizing, Joseph Glanvil recounted an old English folk legend: the scholar-gipsy (sic) was an Oxford student circa 1661 who, finding he couldn't afford books or tuition, left the Dreaming Spires and took up with a roving band of gypsies. From them, he learned the occult power to shape men's thoughts.

The poet Matthew Arnold, writing in 1853, imagined that the scholar-gipsy's relentless pursuit of esoteric lore had, in fact, granted him a sort of effective immortality. Free of the spiritual erosion of everyday life, the scholar-gipsy had not aged, nor never would, so long as he pursued one aim—and so long as he fled all mundane company.

I don't flee mundane company, and my thinning locks let me know I'm nowhichways immortal. And to pursue one aim, no matter how profound, would mean giving up the eighty zillion other things that interest and/or provoke me. But I like the legend, the poem, and the name...and I do sometimes wish I could run away with the gypsies the next time their wagons roll into town.

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