Mira and our mutual friend Tina have a paper-grading-and-bitching party planned for tomorrow night, so by special request I have prepared a bitchy version of the Kaddish tonight and will do so again tomorrow.
Here’s how I explained it to them:
I thought I’d get a jump on tomorrow’s assignment of preparing a bitchy Kaddish for your paper-grading soundtrack. I’m having another little nose surgery tomorrow late morning, and since I have a meeting with a prospective client at 9, there’s a good chance I won’t have time to make a recording beforehand. After surgery, I have a few hours free, in which I’ll record if I’m not drugged out of my mind and/or forbidden to play, in which case, I’ll have to wait until after a series of commitments stacked up into the late evening and/or figure out a hornless, voiceless way of pulling this thing off.
The dailiness of daily ritual becomes tricky at times.
Notes on your first bitchy Kaddish:
I envisioned the despair of confronting a huge pile of papers unlikely to contain much if any good writing. I began playing with wary resignation. As I enumerated the many faults of sloppy thinking and incompetent expression, I grew angrier and more frustrated. Finally in “that THING” (Tina, this is Mira’s name for the stopped horn passage, and it has become my name for it, too) I spat out condemnation of the mush that passes for brains among students these days. Afterward, I attempted to regain some composure and made an attempt at affirmation. Students these days might be terrible writers, but they’re doing a lot better than my generation did at some other things; accepting differences on the sexual identity spectrum comes to mind. My optimism was short-lived, however, so the second part of the statement of affirmation is a tentative echo, with clams. The last notes fade out in dismay. With more clams.