I think the high concentration of mold in the air is making both of us tired; we didn't go on the naked bike ride last night, alas. We walked slowly to a Mexican restaurant and then trudged to a used book store and then to a trifling Alain Resnais movie. I don't recommend it, especially if you go to French movies in order to see Paris. There is no Paris in the movie, only interior shots and snow. Modern interior shots. I think he might have been trying to make an American movie. It was based on a British play.

I was the subject of a newspaper column today. I heard from two people who saw it, one of whom works for the paper. I think this means that it's true that newspapers are dying.
The columnist, a friend of a friend, called after I sent her an e-mail invitation to the Diary Night reading I'm doing Thursday. She read my posts on cronicas and was interested in public/private aspects of writing about breast cancer. I'm interested in that too. Her questions were very good and made me think a lot about the history of writing about (one's own) illness. I felt renewed after talking to her. I will read and write more about illness essays and memoirs. I might put together a non-credit class on them. I also realized, on my own, before the interview, that I don't have to grasp for subject material. There is so much I haven't written about the body, my body, my breasts. I think in a breast cancer blog you should write more about breasts.
I'm realizing, too, that I need to do a lot of rewriting to make this into a book. The working title now is: "The Farewell-to-My-Left-Breast Party: a Body in the City." I am a body in the city, not in the country or wilderness. I'm not getting strength from nature's wisdom, etc. Rather, I feel better if I can see some nice Italianate architecture. One of my favorite buildings in town for that is Hotel St. Benedict Flats. Hmm. I think of it as Italianate, but the city of Chicago landmarks site calls it Victorian Gothic. Anyway, I love coming up from the Chicago Avenue stop on the Red Line and seeing that building. I react to old buildings the way other people react to favorite paintings.

Today we rode our bikes and stopped for sandwiches at Red Hen Bread on Diversey, which is in another favorite building, the Bewster Apartments. L got a Diet Dr. Pepper at the White Hen across the street. I don't know which came first, the red or the white. Clarice Lispector wrote three cronicas about eggs and chickens. From one: "The chicken exists so that the egg may traverse the ages. That is what a mother is for. The egg lives like a fugitive because it is always ahead of its time: it is more than contemporary: it belongs to the future."

L. and I sat outside the Red Hen to eat and saw a man and a woman come out of the building next door on Pine Grove and walk to a tree near us and peer in at the undergrowth around it. The woman explained that they were looking for the results of an experiment. Someone had brought six cicadas from Evanston to that tree, which sat on a square of dirt and was covered partly with greenery. They couldn't find any cicadas. I thought they should check in another 17 years. Later in the day at the Little Hardware Store down the street from us we saw a young brown and white beagle-ish dog that the owners denied was part beagle, averring that it was part basset. Then a bald man walked in with a large yellow and blue parrot, with big black beak and painted-looking face. The bird was clutching his hand from below. The man was in a rush and when I asked if the parrot talked, he said, Yes, too much, and kept walking. I think that a person who carries a large parrot shouldn't pretend that he's not carrying a parrot. Nonchalance in this situation will always seem feigned. The man did stop in the aisle where the dog was and held the bird just above the dog. The dog barked at it. I supposed the parrot guy didn't want to bother talking to anyone who wasn't with an animal.

Yesterday I received in the mail from my friend in Kentucky an article about a minature dachshund who had been rescued by the fire department along with two humans when their house filled with carbon monoxide. The people were taken to the hospital. The dog was, too, after being given oxygen in a mask especially for dogs, donated by the local kennel club. The masks come in three snout sizes. The link will take you to the article, but without photos, which is too bad, because they were darling. To see beautiful dachshunds in need of homes, click here.