Steps in Rome


Not to say ‘toward’ or ‘from.’ No need to be so speculative at the top of a New Year.
The Cavour is a neighborhood just to the north of the Coliseum. Steps leading down to a small street from the large excavation of the Imperial fora, backing up from the Trajan forum specifically.
The name Cavour seems to relate to the ancient neighborhood, Suburra, which has become kind of hothouse stand-in for over-charged criminality with new film and TV depictions. I had heard it was kind of red-light district in earlier times. Colleen McCullough mentions it as a densely-populated neighborhood of working people and perhaps a dozen or more different ethnicities where Gaius Marius bought apartments for his wife Julia. The area is still home to a lot people and not a few chic new restaurant of at least a dozen ethnicities.
But before you descend the steps down to the those places, or toward the metro stop of the same name, from the Via Cavour you can look back over those large holes of ruins and see Victor Emannuele and the remains of the Republican Forum and the Palatine Hill.
It was just that, turning around for another look prior to descent, which occurs now. We look up as we go down, even in the Eternal City. Remembering the way, learning, forgetting again old acquaintances, seeing them through the lens of the new.
Whether steps are old and cracked or well cared for, lead us forward or back, down or higher – they deposit on the fringe of a new space. There for decisions to then be made about joining the madness, skirting the trouble, perusing the menus or busting in and asking for a table. Reservations? Sure, you may have them. But don’t let that stop you.
Excelsior. And step lively.

Image: Plan of Rome and the area in question, approx. 350 A.D.

Subsidy Sunset

This is one way that they end.

John Boehner courageously supported ending taxpayer subsidies to Big Oil for 12 hours, as Climate Progress noted yesterday.

But then he gets called on the mat (do they still say that?) by chez Big Oil and Limbaugh, and immediately flips back. But the writing is on the wall.

Again, not hopeful. They are posting the last of the massive profits, and they know it. The same way the House of Saud knows things are changing.

I cut my finger really badly two days ago, and the first two times I changed the bandage, the wound gushed blood, like crazy – I could barely take it, or staunch the flow. But this morning, I soaked the wound in warm, soapy water and slowly cut the bandage and dried blood away, until after a (long) while I had all the gauze out down to the clean wound with no hemorrhaging and noticeably less pain. It took a while, but… it worked.

Just saying.