Recreating (and advancing) pk’s censored domains:
Knatz.com / Personal / Stories / By Age / Grad School /
My Dancing pk quotes reports that I once saw my forearms swell up like Popeye’s, that with reference to the claim by Dickens’ housekeeper that she’d interrupted the novelist while his head was swollen twice normal size: let me explain:
First: Dickens kept his studio separate from his home, gave strict instructions never to be disturbed while working, but the new housekeeper didn’t know: knocked on his door, said the master opened in a fury, swollen up like a monster.
Now, Popeye: In the early 1960s, when I was in the army, or out of the army and in grad school, I was visiting my mother in her wonderful apartment on the Freeport River. The landlords, an old German couple, kept their stucco house very nice, with roses. The back lawn ended in a dock which hosted yachts renting slips. The old man kept a rowboat with an outboard which I fished from daily. The kitchen had a lovely view of Jones Beach, and the stock car races, and a navy reserve yard … and a landfill dump: what a mix of things, with clam boats and marine storage on either side of the house. Anyway, one day Mom asked if I’d wash her curtains for her. I filled the bath tub with soapy water and proceeded. I washed, and washed. And rinses. By the second rinse, twisting and squeezing the rinse water through the drapes, my arms started to tingle, then burn. Then, like balloons, they inflated! Right before my eyes.
Scared the bejesus out’a me.
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