It is almost 6:30 AM. It is light outside. J phoned in sick. I may have slept four hours. The subtext of exhaustion that dogs my life persists. I will go back to sleep eventually
I am watching Episode 4 of Kenneth Clark’s Civilisation. He discusses the Renaissance in Florence, Urbino, Mantua. Figures like Alberti, Castiglione, the Dukes of Urbino figure in the story. This episode provides me an opportunity to “should” all over myself. That episode concluded, I am now contemplating the beauty and symmetry of the Brooklyn Bridge.
Allow me to talk about the Bridge as a reflection of the American character. The goal of the Bridge was to expedite movement between the cities of New York (Borough of Manhattan) and Brooklyn, for, at the time of construction, Brooklyn was a separate city. Great risk was involved in its construction. The laborers in the caissons used to construct the pilings in the East River, risked contracting the “Bends’ or Caisson Disease. It is the outcome of working in a pressurized environment and not allowing the nitrogen in the blood to slowly depressurize. It could affect anyone who worked in the caissons. Washington Roebling, the Bridge’s designer, contracted the bends. We learn in this country that great accomplishments often involve taking great risks in bringing them into reality.
With the Broklyn Bridge we see beauty wedded to functionaliy, a driving characteristic of modern life. The stone towers of the Bridge from which hang the steel cables supporting the road bed, are inspiring verticals, much like the spires of a great cathedral. But we are directed not to God but to the mundane tasks of getting to work and home again.
And so now, I need to sleep. desperately. When I awaken, I hope to read real books in real time, and get some housework done. And write something that will make a difference.