gossip? naa…. food for thought

The last couple of mornings I have spent time playing through some of the Shostakovich Preludes and Fugues for piano. I was reminded of his work by listening to the 2008 Randy Newman Desert Island Disc program online on BBC.

They are more fun to play than listen to, I think. I feel that way about blues as well. More fun to do than hear.

The ballet class yesterday was interesting in that it preceded the opening night of the rather elaborate winter show called Dance 38. This literally means the 38th year they have presented a dance concert at Hope. Pretty amazing. Eileen and I have comp tickets for next Friday’s performance.

The dancers’ energy ranged from pale fainting anxiety to excitement.

I learned Thursday that my boss’s partner has come out of the closet at Hope. I find this encouraging. I hate working for institutions that are so filled with hate (colleges, churches) so it encourages me when I discover that good things have actually happened.

Of course now my boss and her significant other hold their breath waiting for her to get fired. They have already decided that she is going to quit in two years anyway. That partly prompted the coming out.

I also learned from another colleague that a friend of hers was shot and killed on Wednesday. It is particularly wrenching to watch people dealing with stuff like that.

I don’t mention these people by name in order to be appropriate. However, I found it interesting that in Randy Newman’s interview in 2008 he indicated that if he could come up with a good song and it offended someone he loved he still would not hesitate to make it.

When asked, he pointed to a song he wrote about his first wife, while married to his second. Her reaction was not good. She asked him not to perform it if she was at a concert, but he couldn’t remember if he respected this request or not.

I think he is an excellent song writer and composer, so it gave me food for thought since I do censor myself from time to time in order not to offend people I love or care about.


Allen and Dad Louis

The attic of the past, and other lyrics by Louis Ginsberg

Discovered this morning that poetry was the family business at the Ginsberg household. Allen’s dad published at least two books of poems (the first two rhyme are not terribly great) which Allen refers to in a poem I read this morning.


Selecting a Seatmate to Make Skies Friendlier – NYTimes.com

This is kind of odd, using Facebook to select people you are willing to sit next to. I guess it makes sense if you are traveling alone. I always enjoy travelling with Eileen and would only think about this if I was heading off by myself.


Political Lessons, From a Mother’s Losing Run – NYTimes.com

Thoughtful article about Mitt Romney’s mom who ran an unsuccessful campaign for senate and was a former movie star. Who knew?


How to Halt the Butchery in Syria – NYTimes.com

The Syria thing is out of control. I totally abhor war, but do wonder about how we and other countries do not seem to be able to stop this. This article outlines a strategy.


Guernica / Juan Cole: Logical Errors and Propaganda in Republican Debate on the Middle East

I admire this article which parses public speech in terms of fallacy errors.  Always a useful approach.


Q&A: Nir Rosen’s predictions for Syria – Features – Al Jazeera English

Thoughtful observations from an on the ground observer at one of the world’s finest news organizations.

I love this:

“Law is a culture that puts other cultures, like religion and ethnicity, in a working relationship with each other. The US invasion of Iraq destroyed its legal culture. As a Kurd interpreter said to me in 2004, “Toppling a regime is like toppling a tree; you can’t just make another tree.” I believe law is a culture implicit in each human person. It is the idea that nobody is stupid, not even me, so why not work together on simple things like trash and loud noises?”

from the article at the link


What caused collapse of Mayan civilization? | Fox News

A reduction in rainfall that might have precipitated societal unrest and/or disease.


Are Obama, GOP hopefuls fibbing on auto bailout claims?

More clarity about obfuscation.


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