“Sluggish”

On wet mornings, like this morning, it’s typical to find a slug or two on the asphalt of the driveway. They come out of the ground and oh-so-slowly inch along toward the flower beds, and when I see them I use a leaf to pick them up and take them to a location away from the flowers, where they can nosh away on the weeds and random bushes in the no man’s land area between our house and the house next door.

I don’t mind slugs, or snails. Nevertheless, after observing them around here I have a different perspective on the word “sluggish,” and would never want that word applied to me. But seeing this little guy this morning made me think of a classic Steve Martin appearance on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson in which the word “sluggish” figured prominently. It gave me a laugh on a misty morning and made me realize how much I miss the old Tonight Show and its legendary host. The clip is below.

Amidst The Mist

Fog is a curious phenomenon. For one thing, sounds seem to carry differently when Stonington is socked in by a heavy fog, as it is this morning. The growling sounds of the lobster boats heading out to sea seem to be amplified by the moisture in the air, so that it sounds as if the boats are very close by when it is clear they aren’t. And familiar scenes look different, too.

But the visual effects of fog can also be surprising, and varying. Sometimes it renders things, like the boats at anchor above, blurry and indistinct, like a grey aquatic dreamscape. In other places the fog acts as a kind of backdrop that frames the structures in the foreground, giving them a different cast. The old dock and green boathouse below, located next to the post office, are a good example of this effect. I’d never paid much attention to them before, but amidst the mist they look spindly and delicate and haunting.

Fog makes the morning walk more interesting for me, but makes the morning work more treacherous for the lobstermen.