Thursday, December 11, 2008

DIAGONAL CITY BLOCK

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Last Saturday a diagonal city block from here a man in a black Taurus was found dead, shot several times in his chest, and this in the middle of the day.

Then up the street to Casa Batlló, only a diagonal city block away. It certainly stood out from the surrounding buildings, a colorful exterior with a funky exoskeleton of bone-like balconies and window structures. True to Gaudí's dislike for straight lines and right angles, the mosaic-covered facade rippled, the roof line flowed in a nice arc, and the balconies curved out gracefully from the building.

Meanwhile, there were signs that Qwest Communications International Inc., its
headquarters a diagonal city block from US West, might make a hostile bid for the Baby Bell. From their respective corner offices, Qwest Chief Executive Joseph Nacchio, on the 15th floor of the Qwest Tower, and Trujillo, on the 52nd floor of US West headquarters, could see each other's windows.

The Marines set up defensive positions in the alleyways with scrap metal from the building wrecks and the forges. Marines stood in perfectly aligned squadrons, ready for any man or tank to come rolling down to be shot. Also, the Marines stood on both sides of a diagonal city block, keeping the south road from the enemy’s grasp. They stood almost like statues for many minutes, but the silence gave way to some lowering their guns to clean or check them. After twenty minutes of waiting for their approach (they were spotted on radar), they could hear the faint chorus of roaring motors. It was a familiar sound to the soldiers, since the enemy was one of their own.