Friday, September 3, 2010

Earl the Pearl

So, what happened? Last week we were besieged by this heat wave. Then along comes this hurricane, Earl, bowling out of Africa. Rolls on up the eastern seaboard. Everyone freaking out because we seldom get a visit from a hurricane, even a glancing blow. Eeek! OMG, etc. And then it turns out to be harmless, no wind, spritz of rain, and of course people sneer: unimpressive!
booo! call that a hurricane?

But what did it do? Plenty! Sent that heat wave spinning like a ten-pin strike! Pulled in a cold front, a cool nighttime breeze ("good sleeping weather!"), and restored the normal status of September as the golden go-between, bringing summer to fall, ripening the apples, stepping up the pumpkins, sweet corn: 12 ears for two bucks. Beckoning the fall warblers hither and hopefully kettles of broad-winged hawks boiling over local peaks like Wachusett, Watatic, and Pack Monadnock. I say Earl, birdy Earl, set September right.

And this morning, past my open window, a little child was chanting, "Hello! Kindergarten! Hello! Kindergarten! Hello! Kindergarten!" September's theme song? Could be.

Not that there's anything wrong with "September Song," especially when it's played instrumentally in the style of Django Reinhardt by Dave Grisman and friends. (The lyrics are a little downbeat for September, I think. Sounds better uptempo, without the bittersweet words about playing the waiting game and days dwindling down to a precious few.)

Anyway, thanks to Earl, the weekend sparkled. Friday night's Red Sox game was rained out, and on Saturday, three providential Red Sox tickets for the make-up game materialized (with the help of friend Charlene) four rows behind the visitors' dugout! So what if the Sox lost? We were that close to Manny Ramirez and Ozzie Guillen! The sky was blue! The sausage was delicious! The beer was okay.

And on Monday, Labor Day, the Spinjam crowd came to Davis Square in Somerville at dusk, with liquid crystal poi and hoops and juggling pins and sexy acrobatics. And darned if they didn't notice old friend Matt sitting next to me on a bench and sent a pretty girl to coax him into grabbing a few juggling balls and lending his silhouette to the performance, which he did!

So Labor Day was what you like it to be, a day to put your ear to the shell and hear the ocean, a slightly foreign day, Italian maybe, with a gelato for the stroll home and, okay, "September Song" sung in Italian:

Oh, è un lungo, lungo tempo da maggio a dicembre
Ma i giorni crescere breve quando si raggiunge settembre...

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