Greenpoint, October, 2015

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Raz na wozie...

In my previous post, I referred to the Polish proverb, "Raz na wozie, raz pod wozem," which I translated, "One time riding the wagon, the next time under it."  Every time I have an unexpectedly smooth run on the BQE, I think "Raz na wozie..."  as a kind of memento mori for the return trip.

I've been trying to think of an English language equivalent.  One site offers, "Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose,"but that doesn't quite do it.  The Polish Wikipedia site gives us the French: "un jour c'est blanc, un jour c'est noir," but this loses the connection to travel and its unique travails and tortures.  I hate to think the best we can do are the 1971 Jerry Reed song, "When you're hot, you're hot/When you're not, you're not" or the Grateful Dead's "When life seems like easy street/There is danger at your door." That song also came from 1971--what was it about that year?

The photo at right is from Batory Expres, a Polish-Hungarian traveling art extravaganza project.


  1. Some times you are the pigeon, sometimes you are the statue...

  2. Thanks for writing. As the Stranger (Sam Elliott) in The Big Lebowski says, "Wal, a wiser fella than m'self once said, sometimes you eat the bar and sometimes the bar, wal, he eats you."