• an equal opportunity assessor •

“When I’m out on the street,
regardless of age, race, creed, sexual orientation, size, gender, what-have-you,
I pretty much always use the same unbiased assessment,
with everyone I meet:
‘Human being, human being, human being, human being,
…asshole…
human being, human being, human being’.”
~ Tim Burchfield
8/3/17

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• the hitching tie •

Decided it would be remiss of me to send the boy into the world without knowing any knots, but he wasn’t interested (at all), so I decided, instead, to add to my own rope repertoire. I pretty much, already knew (more or less), all the ones in the Boy Scout Handbook, “Be prepared!” (The Boy Scout Motto) (Does my nerddom know no limits, eh? MmmmmmmmmmmNo. No signs of flagging enthusiasm to this day!)
What’s the old saying?
“Better to know a knot and not need it, than to need a knot, and not know it.”
(Try saying that, ten times, fast.)
(And, yes, I tried that one on the boy. Not impressed. Oh, well.)
But some knots are so purposeful and elegant and ‘job specific’, when you find one like that, that you simply must learn it. And found one, I have, and it’s a beaut: the ‘Hitching tie’!
Need to secure your canoe to a tree? It’s just the thing. Or to tie your stringer so’s your ‘catch’ doesn’t swim away? Ditto, compadre.
Remember, in the old westerns, when dusty cowpokes would tie their horses to a rail by the watering trough before sidling up to the saloon, and how the knot they used seemed to take no time at all? Yup, you guessed it, the ‘Hitching tie’!
It has even worked its way into our language. How about, “Wanna get ‘hitched’?” Or, “Hey babe, let’s tie the knot!” (Who could resist such an offer?) If not for for this lovely little knot, it’s likely you would have never heard these colorful sayings.
Hence, the ‘Hitching’ tie.
One simply must know this elegant little knot.
So easy to do, and, what’s more, it ‘comes out’, like a dream, too.
Got a piece of rope? A two-footer will do. Now, get along, and have a bit of fun. You can thank me later. I’m pretty sure you’ll want to.
~ Tim Burchfield
8/2/17
the ‘hitching’ tie

• my doggies •

When I’m around people,
I sometimes think that they can ‘sense’
that I’d rather be spending time with my dogs.
I really do like their guileless, open, fuzzy faces,
their apparent enthusiasms, transparent wants,
attainable and palpable satisfactions,
and their unconditional and continual willingness to love.
Plus, they have swishy tails,
and wonky, wagglety butts.
~ Tim Burchfield
7/10/17

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• the role of a friend •

You are no friend, friend.
You only pretend to be a friend,
always with the passive aggression,
always with the snide retort.
Let me tell you about friends, friend.
Friends don’t hurt for fun,
or rip each other’s guts out for sport.
Friends don’t laugh at your pain,
enjoy your embarrassment,
exult in undermining your satisfaction,
poo-poo your gains,
remind you of your past failures,
and follies,
winnow out your weaknesses,
and worries,
all the more, to underscore.
A friend won’t hobble your confidence,
with the teasing jibe,
the unwarranted witticism,
the stinging barb,
the bad report.
That’s not the role of a friend, friend.
That’s what family is for.
~ Tim Burchfield
5/22/17

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• young jack kerouac holds forth on death •

But for the green light emitted by the radar screen, it was dark in the wheelhouse that enveloped the sea air that enveloped the two men. The Captain was taciturn, and concentrating on his course correction. Young Jack Kerouac was the greenhorn on the boat. He had been holding forth, now, for a bit yet.
“I realized that I had died and been reborn numberless times but just didn’t remember especially because the transitions from life to death and back to life are so ghostly easy, a magical action for naught, like falling asleep and waking up again a million times, the utter casualness and deep ignorance of it,” confessed young Jack. “I realized it was only because of the stability of the intrinsic Mind that these ripples of birth and death took place, like the action of the wind on a sheet of pure, serene, mirror-like water,” Jack opined. “I felt sweet, swinging bliss, like a big shot of heroin in the mainline vein; like a gulp of wine late in the afternoon and it makes you shudder; my feet tingled,” gushed Jack. “I thought I was going to die the very next moment. But I didn’t die…” ** Jack paused, taking a long drag on his cigarette. An orange glow illuminated his dark eyes, one green and one red, like the the running lights of an oncoming push boat, bitterly relentless and unswerving. What was the old adage about ships passing in the night? Red right returning.
But for the comforting drone of the twin sixteen diesels down below, a relative silence enveloped the two men. Finally, the Captain craned his neck to take in the kid, perusing him with a salty eye, and half a grin. Jack was slouching against the hatch, silhouetted by the moonlight washing back and forth over his lanky form, draped in bliss and youthful profundity. Jack was blowing smoke rings, and tapping his foot, as if listening to a cool jazz riff.
The captain pursed his lips in his signature expression, sucking up all ‘the silence in the room with withheld witticism, and unspoken irony. After a bit, he picked up his spit cup and spit, loosing a stringy stream of steaming brown treacle, observing, “Talk a lot, don’t you?”
~ Tim Burchfield
4/21/17

** (From Jack Kerouac, holding forth, ‘on death’.)

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