— From EF —

So we’re done with Ko Festival (Amherst) and are headed for Cleveland in the rain. We’re getting pretty psyched about getting home – pant, pant. We’ll probably be home next Sunday night, then, since we know we can do Milwaukee to Sebastopol in three huge jumps.

The Ko workshop was nothing short of fabulous. On the last day a couple of us sprung for bottles of cold prosecco, and the whole group got pretty happy. One woman had a couple of congas in her car and brought them in and then the party really cooked. The eldest was 80, the youngest 24, and a fine time was had by all. At one point I suggested we all howl together, and it was heard several buildings away in the theatre. When I said something about it that evening (we went to see this weekend’s play), the festival organizer said, “Oh, that was the WORKSHOP folks?”

We had 13 participants, and by the sixth day everybody was in love. People did extraordinary work, taking big risks in a circle of perfect trust. More than a few said it was life-changing. Wow. There were people who had a track record of performing in some way, whether it be singing or storytelling or in theatrical performance. And there were people who would like to do that, but hadn’t yet. There were those who had been on a track with momentum and had been slammed with a severe physical challenge, and there were those who had always kept their nose to the grindstone of the day-job, but did what they could to keep lighting the flame.

But they all, every one, had stories that needed to be shared. Needed, not wanted. We explored, together, the many ways in which that could happen. And it happened.

— From CB —

Today we’re visiting a friend in Cleveland. Out to a coffee shop, then to walk in the cemetery where her husband is buried. The epitaph on his gravestone: “Life’s about women, gigs, and being creative.”

Later, we walk uphill to the huge mausoleum where President Garfield is buried. I like Harvey’s marker a lot better.

And I like these people: Joyce, her friend Lee, her daughter Danielle, her cuddly, insistent cats. How long has it been? Twenty years at least, maybe thirty. We sit, continuing talk as if we began ten minutes ago.

 — From the Fool —

My friend Lester carries around a bug-eyed puppet. He doesn’t talk a lot about it, but I guess there’s some kind of relationship. It’s none of my business.

But we got into a discussion about Gaza and Ukraine and some of those other countries where they shoot each other a lot. I wondered what was the good of people dying all over the place, and how much it cost, and it seemed just plain icky. But he said, “Well, what about Joe Sno-Cone and Mr. Dingaling?”

That didn’t ring a bell, and he said, “That’s the point.” He said, “The media is all biased for Jews and Arabs and Russians and Talibanistans, but they never dig into the news that’s right there staring like a sore toe.”

So he gives me the whole story. There’s a guy who drives a Joe Sno-Cone truck, and he’s been on this route a long time. So one day shows up another truck that’s Mr. Dingaling, going dingaling, dingaling, and giving out free samples of Dingalings. So Joe says, “Hey, this is my territory, and the frosty-treat market is still in recession.” “No,” says the other, “this is free enterprise, and growth is what it’s all about.”

So they go round and round, yelling and screaming, then banging on each other’s trucks, and then flinging some of the goods and services at each other. And a crowd gathers, and traffic jams up, and the cops come and cart them off, and the judge hits them both with a big fine for disturbing the peace.

There was a good side, though, says Lester. They were so pissed at the judge that they went out together for a beer and bitching about their Constitutional rights. “But that goes to show,” he says, “that something like that, that’s right close to home, the media covers it up.”

“How’d you know about it?”

“I read it in the paper.”

Next time I think I’ll ask him about the puppet.


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© Bishop & Fuller 2014


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