Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Tiger Woods

This one's going to be about sports-I'm branching out .

I have more respect for golfers than I do any other kind of athlete. I feel like golf is probably the most difficult sport of them all to master, and it's probably the only game where a person's greatest competitor is himself--anyone who's played 18 holes in 100 degree heat can attest to how challenging it is.

Golf's greatest lessons are-- humility and integrity. It's also a game where grace and form are more important than brute strength. In another sense, golf courses are like "mini nature preserves" in the heart of almost every urban setting.

For all these reasons--I believe golf is the perfect sport.

And the guy who embodies everything that's wonderful about golf is Tiger Woods.

I was watching the PGA Championship this past Sunday, and Tiger had already won the tournament by the time he started playing the back 9. It was remarkable. He simply didn't make any mistakes, and he kept his composure, continued to play well, and won by a large margin despite being in a postition where he could have relaxed.

I guess the thing that I think is remarkable is the fact that 10 years ago he was miles ahead of everyone, and he remains miles ahead of everyone.

It's a cool thing to watch.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

The Hollow Men

The Hollow Men
T. S. Eliot (1925)


We are the hollow men
We are the stuffed men
Leaning together
Headpiece filled with straw.
Alas! Our dried voices, when
We whisper together
Are quiet and meaningless
As wind in dry grass
Or rats' feet over broken glass
In our dry cellar

Shape without form, shade without colour,
Paralysed force, gesture without motion;

Those who have crossed
With direct eyes, to death's other
Kingdom Remember us -- if at all -- not as lost
Violent souls, but only
As the hollow men
The stuffed men.


Eyes I dare not meet in dreams
In death's dream kingdom
These do not appear:
There, the eyes are
Sunlight on a broken column
There, is a tree swinging
And voices are
In the wind's singing
More distant and more solemn
Than a fading star.

Let me be no nearer
In death's dream kingdom
Let me also wear
Such deliberate disguises
Rat's coat, crowskin, crossed staves
In a field
Behaving as the wind behaves
No nearer --

Not that final meeting
In the twilight kingdom


This is the dead land
This is cactus land
Here the stone images
Are raised, here they receive
The supplication of a dead man's hand
Under the twinkle of a fading star.

Is it like this
In death's other kingdom
Waking alone
the hour when we are
Trembling with tenderness
Lips that would kiss
Form prayers to broken stone.


The eyes are not here
There are no eyes here
In this valley of dying stars In this hollow valley
This broken jaw of our lost kingdoms

In this last of meeting places
We grope together
And avoid speech
Gathered on this beach of the tumid river

Sightless, unless
The eyes reappear
As the perpetual star
Multifoliate rose
Of death's twilight kingdom
The hope only
Of empty men.


Here we go round the prickly pear
Prickly pear prickly pear
Here we go round the prickly pear
At five o'clock in the morning.

Between the idea
And the reality
Between the motion
And the act
Falls the Shadow

For Thine is the Kingdom

Between the conception
And the creation
Between the emotion
And the response Falls the Shadow

Life is very long

Between the desire
And the spasm
Between the potency
And the existence
Between the essence
And the descent
Falls the Shadow
For Thine is the Kingdom

For Thine is
Life is
For Thine is the

This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.