A Luminous Halo

"Life is not a series of gig lamps symmetrically arranged; life is a luminous halo, a semi-transparent envelope surrounding us from the beginning of consciousness to the end." --Virginia Woolf

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Location: Springfield, Massachusetts, United States

Smith ’69, Purdue ’75. Anarchist; agnostic. Writer. Steward of the Pascal Emory house, an 1871 Second-Empire Victorian; of Sylvie, a 1974 Mercedes-Benz 450SL; and of Taz, a purebred Cockador who sets the standard for her breed. Happy enough for the present in Massachusetts, but always looking East.

Thursday, April 26, 2007


Although I've seen the parade of fiberglass cows in several cities, I always associate them mainly with Brussels. Alas, they're gone forever from that city. I particularly miss the pissing bull fountain in the Place Agora.

So I did a double-take today, in Bradley International Airport on my way to Brussels again, when I saw these fiberglass Huskies--an obvious take-off on the CowParade. Apparently there are Huskies all over the greater Hartford area.

The Husky is, of course, the symbol and mascot of the University of Connecticut at Storrs. UConn's sports teams are nicknamed the Huskies. It's appropriate--although apparently a coincidence--that "UConn" is a homonym for "Yukon." However you spell it, it's the home of the Huskies.

The actual live husky mascot is always named Jonathan, in honor of Connecticut's first governor, Johnathan Trumbull, Sr. I think they're up to Jonathan XII now. I didn't have time to figure out whether these puppies were named Jonathan or not. I had a plane to catch.

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Even the Cops Want to Hang Out at the Mardi Gras

Boston and Providence have movie trailers; Springfield has the Mobile Command Center, an impressive vehicle the Police Department parks weekend evenings on Dwight Street, next to the Mardi Gras Gentleman's Club. That's right in the heart of the Club District.

I spoke to two cops stationed next to the vehicle the last time I was walking past with the dog, around 1 a.m. I asked them what it was for, said I lived in the neighborhood and wanted to know what was up. One cop, looking at Taz, joked, It's a mobile dog pound. The other, more serious, said, It's a mobile command center. We can book people from here, or do anything else we'd do from the station. But mainly it's a deterrent.

All the raunchy online forums will tell you to steer clear of Springfield if you want to buy drugs or sex. The Mobile Command Center might be one of the reasons why.

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