November 11th, 2008

Remembering

night
I was all set to be off to work without much more thought, but I refreshed my LJ one more time, and the pile of Canadian posts on Remembrance Day caught me short. I need to remember, that when people ask a difference between the US and Canada, that I say, Remembrance Day here is not much like Veterans' Day in the US, it's quite like Armistice Day as Kurt Vonnegut wrote:

I will come to a time in my backwards trip when November eleventh was a sacred day called Armistice Day. When I was a boy, all the people of all the nations which had fought in the First World War were silent during the eleventh minute of the eleventh hour of Armistice Day, which was the eleventh day of the eleventh month.

It was during that minute in nineteen hundred and eighteen, that millions upon millions of human beings stopped butchering each other. I have talked to old men who were on battlefields during that minute. They have told me in one way or another that the sudden silence was the Voice of God. So we still have among us some men who can remember when God spoke clearly to mankind.

Armistice Day has become Veterans' Day. Armistice Day was sacred. Veterans' Day is not. So I will throw Veterans' Day over my shoulder. Armistice Day I will keep. I don't want to throw away any sacred things.


-Kurt Vonnegut, in Breakfast of Champions.

Bike Wrap-up


I've decided I'm done biking for the season. This evening, not only have I lost my ear-protection (second set this fall) but my front light died and my derailleur seized up. Also it needs a tune-up badly.

Last year, I put away the bike away on November 15, just after buying the AirZound horn. Since then I've used it zero times in traffic, which is a statistic I'm OK with. This morning's near-miss, I was close enough that my voice alerted the driver, and I was too busy steering and braking to honk.

[Total mileage: odometer has [5]895mi now, had [5]035mi at the start of the season, which was mid May. 866mi = 1390km since then, or 7km a day. That seems high, except I biked to work nearly every day, 7.2km, and the Quaker meetinghouse is 9km, and I biked to various evening events once or twice a month too.]

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Daniel Allen
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