Winds have shifted, which slowed the advance of some of the fires today, and the big fire in San Mateo and Santa Cruz counties expanded by only about 4,000 acres. But that was still a total of 67,000 acres burned in this fire, and 77,000 people have been displaced, although only a few dozen houses had been reported lost as of this evening. It could still get a lot worse. Meanwhile, on the other side of San Jose another complex of fires burning mostly in uninhabited areas has burned close of 340,000 acres.
The lightning fire complex stretching north through Napa and Solano counties into Lake ad Yolo counties has topped 325,000 acres, and is expected to continue growing. as it is only 15 contained. The air mass left over from a hurricane in the Pacific is still headed toward northern California, and is expected to bring more electrical storms Sunday night through Monday afternoon, and perhaps into Tuesday. Today brought news of a moderate-sized meteor (about 6.5 feet across) that has a slight chance of hitting the earth the day before the election in November. If it does crash into the planet it might as well hit California, as by then there will be nothing left here for it to destroy.
There was ramen for dinner again tonight. I still don't feel like doing any actual cooking. Ramen saves on beer, too, since I don't drink beer with soup. I was seriously considering arranging a ride to go shopping this week, but again the markets have very little on sale that I'd want. I do need to get to the bank soon, though, and I need to get another utility bill mailed already, so I will have to get out soon. I have one more supermarket ad to check, where there might be some sale items on Monday, and it's next door to my bank which would be convenient. Maybe I'll try that, maybe I won't. It's along way ahead to be planning.
Track 5: Summertime
by Jericho Brown
as performed by Janis Joplin
God’s got his eye on me, but I ain’t a sparrow.
I’m more like a lawn mower . . .no, a chainsaw,
Anything that might mangle each manicured lawn
In Port Arthur, a place I wouldn’t return to
If the mayor offered me every ounce of oil
My daddy cans at the refinery. My voice, I mean,
Ain’t sweet. Nothing nice about it. It won’t fly
Even with Jesus watching. I don’t believe in Jesus.
The Baxter boys climbed a tree just to throw
Persimmons at me. The good and perfect gifts
From above hit like lightning, leave bruises.
So I lied—I believe, but I don’t think God
Likes me. The girls in the locker room slapped
Dirty pads across my face. They called me
Bitch, but I never bit back. I ain’t a dog.
Chainsaw, I say. My voice hacks at you. I bet
I tear my throat. I try so hard to sound jagged.
I get high and say one thing so many times
Like Willie Baker who worked across the street—
I saw some kids whip him with a belt while he
Repeated, Please. School out, summertime
And the living lashed, Mama said I should be
Thankful, that the town’s worse to coloreds
Than they are to me, that I’d grow out of my acne.
God must love Willie Baker—all that leather and still
A please that sounds like music. See.
I wouldn’t know a sparrow from a mockingbird.
The band plays. I just belt out, Please. This tune
Ain’t half the blues. I should be thankful.
I get high and moan like a lawn mower
So nobody notices I’m such an ugly girl.
I’m such an ugly girl. I try to sing like a man
Boys call, boy. I turn my face to God. I pray. I wish
I could pour oil on everything green in Port Arthur.