March 19th, 2008



It is a Japanese word, and is used for several things. In chanoyu, what most people call Tea Ceremony, it refers to the sound of the kettle at boil, because that sound is similar to what the word says. Rather onomatopoeiac it is. It also is the title of a shakuhachi (bamboo flute) piece, and again onomatopoeiac, this time reaching for the emotional state which matsukaze can bring; not really meloncholy, but contemplative, sometimes even healing.

Matsukaze. The wind in the pines, the wind in the evergreens.

Five years ago today, I sat eating lunch in a lounge in the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place watching news on the television and listening to a bunch of people crowing over something they didn't understand. I'd gone to Chicago for my annual AORN meeting, and in fact this trip is the first time I ran for an elected office in AORN. The yahoos around me bounced about and slapped each other on their backs and congratulated themselves about what another group of our countrymen and countrywomen were doing at that very moment, half a world away.

I recognised one of them as one of the reps from a company we do business with. He came over and asked me, 'What, you're not excited? Our guys are gonna kick ass.'

'Yep,' I replied, 'indeed, for a week, two at the most, they're going to kick ass as you say. They're going t knock them over and not even take numbers.

'Then, it's going to get ugly.'

Damn, I don't like that memory.