"In the plenitude of their poetry"
It's 8 am, but it was early rising today and I've gotten some good reading in: Fernando Savater's autobiography, Mira por donde, and the short stories we'll be discussing in class today: "Volver" by Carme Riera, and Garcia Marquez's "La luz es como el agua". In this latter story there is a great line describing some floating objects (floating in light!) as being in la plenitud de su poesía. I sure didn't wake up this morning feeling in the plenitude of anything, but good reading is a wonderful tonic. Savater writes at length about reading in his memoirs. So now I've got to get on with the day and do work. I'll try to get excited about it, but it's not always easy. If I work hard and efficiently, then I'll have more time to read at the end of the day. If I keep that in mind I'll have a better day. And it will be a little easier having that wonderful image in my head: the possibility of something finding the plenitude of its poetry. Speaking of efficiency, I was just reading Bob Herbert's op-ed piece in today's Times about Obama's job creation plan and the importance of infrastructure investment. He points out that many countries invest 7 to 9 percent of GNP in infrastructure, but that for the US in recent years it's been much closer to zero. I don't know how accurate that is, but I was thinking along those lines Sunday on the train. Here the investment in high speed rail has been and continues to be huge. It takes more political will now because the EU subsidies are gone, Spain having recently become a net contributor to the EU budget. But there seems to be little debate regarding the intelligence of spending generously on big infrastructure projects. It's not brain sugery–you invest to create future wealth. Nonetheless, Spain is on the cusp of a big unemployment problem too. Over the weekend Zapatero announced a huge spending program to try to stimulate the economy, putting more people to work on more infrastructure projects. My fear is that education will get left behind in this mess, and that's the most critical infrastructure of all–our brains! I don't feel too optimistic about the present and future of education here in Spain. More on that another day.