Here it is, January 3 and I haven’t blogged since way back in December. I’m afraid I am filling up my time with reading, practicing, and other stuff like cooking. The picture above is one Elizabeth drew of me. She was thinking of giving it to me when she informed me that she and Jeremy had bought me a the Trust Fall Quarterly Subscription from Book People Book Store (Texas’s largest independent book store).
Over the next twelve months they will send me four books by new authors they recommend. Cool.
Jeremy and Alex made snow men a while back. The one on the left is Alex’s. I think it’s a snow woman.
Here’s a pic of them a bit later.
Christmas morning there was a huge package under the Christmas tree. I figured it was something for Alex. Nope. It was a reading desk that Jeremy picked out for me.
I quite like it. I can working on my Greek on it or just use it to read. This morning I plopped my huge copy of Don Quixote on it. It works great.
I was entirely spoiled this Christmas. I made a Wish List on Amazon and Eileen availed herself of it. I got tons of books. My brother and sister in law gave me two books I have had my eye on: Harold Bloom’s The Bright Book of Life
and Kevin Young’s African American Poetry.
Both men are heroes of mine.
I listened all the way through Bach’s Christmas Oratorio recently. It is wonderful music. Of course, I love the cantatas and it’s really six cantatas to be done from Christmas to Epiphany.
I received Alex Ross’s new book on Wagner from Eileen for Christmas. After having finished his previous book which I was reading (Listen to This), I plunged into it. I am trying to read more of a book than a few pages a day. I’m on page 84 of Ross (I just checked).
I finished several books I was reading previously and am now starting some of these Christmas books. I am also working on Dante and Don Quixote and others I have on the stack. All this reading is one of the reasons I haven’t been blogging. In fact I am itching to get back to my reading this afternoon.
I ordered the Dover edition of the score of the Christmas Oratorio and several vocal scores of some Wagner operas. Buying these used is very economic. I followed the Christmas Oratorio in a vocal score as I exercised. The score is in English unlike the recording I was listening to but I could still see how the music was working. I know it’s sort of cheating but I find it so much easier to learn about this kind of music in a vocal score. This is one that just has the voice parts and a reduced piano rendition of the orchestra parts.
I also ordered a box of used music from Craig Cramer.
I have been going back and forth between Bach and Buxtehude at work, reading and enjoying playing their music on the Pasi.
I am spoiled and lucky.
I have a new hero: Heather Cox Richardson. There was an article about her in the NYT. She writes a newsletter that is informed by her own background as an historian. She took the title from a book called “Letters from an American Farmer.”
I am enjoying them. Here’s a link to her Substack page where you can read some of them and sign up for her email.