It takes a train to blog

I ride on a mailtrain baby…

Short pieces, posts, are not that hard to contrive; but, the time required to mull them over, then to polish them like agates from the beach isn’t a thing that comes easily, especially when one is on vacation. The preceding sentence breaks all kinds of rules for effective blog posting. Perhaps its most egregious trespass is the use of the semicolon. The almost forced adverb usage flies in the face of everything we’ve learned to be true about English grammar since the salad days of Ringo Starr. Things, we understand, are supposed to “come easy,” (unless of course one is engaged in the singing of the blues, in which case, “You know it don’t come easy.”)

Don’t the moon look good mama, shining through the trees…

“Easy come, easy go” is a phrase that has informed the language and driven the adverb “easily” far under ground to a secret place inhabited only by intellectuals and certain toffs and nobs who pride themselves on useless distinctions in locution. Roger Miller contrived a beautifully ambiguous lyric when he wrote “I’m a man of means by no means, king of the road.” The comma placement drives all the ambiguity out, but when you listen to it, when you isolate the lyric in auditory memory now forty years after first hearing it, you can wonder if he didn’t maybe mean that a man of means was by no means the king of the road.

Now the wintertime is coming, the windows are filled with frost…

Yesterday Beth relented on the usual media blackout and permitted a few hours of iPod shuffle. It’s disconcerting to hear the third movement of Beethoven’s seventh followed by a guitar and mandolin number from Tony Rice and David Grisman. The insertion of a Dave Matthews Dylan cover from the Live at Red Rocks album had me scrambling to turn the volume down. But somewhere in there between Columbia, Missouri and St. Charles, the sweet sounds of the “Missippi Half-Step Uptown Toodleloo” embraced us. Later in the day, passing through Grafton, Illinois we spotted a place called the Missisippi Half Step and you know it just fit.

So now, having braved the vicissitudes of a crappy motel wireless connection to dump these words into the ‘sphere, avoiding at all costs the more serious matters that have concerned me of late, I’m ready to head out the door and find a greasy spoon breakfast here in Springfield, Illinois.

Don’t say I didn’t warn you when your train gets lost.

[tags]housekeeping, king of the road, takes a blog to cry, egrets in the swamp,tree shapiro halfstep[/tags]

Posted in Farm Almanac, Verbalistics, Writing
5 comments on “It takes a train to blog
  1. Mike Golby says:

    Sheez… I just love it when you talk dirty.

    Great post, Frank. Music to any old blogger’s ears (that ambiguous enough?).

  2. madame l. says:

    can you hear that over the roar of the tractor engine?

  3. annie says:

    Great song(s)

    Halfstep gets more poignant to me as the years fly by. I have, on occasion, wondered whether my own daddy sat down and cried, when he saw the mark just as plain as day. Maybe I’ll ask him, some day.
    Train-blogging sounds fun.

  4. jeneane says:

    I want to know what you had for breakfast and did it include hash browns? (My Fav!)

  5. Hash browns, eggs over easy and bacon. The salt was damp and I had to open the shaker to get any out.



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