the good life


I definitely feel that I have had a good life so far. I can see a relationship to the boy who was the wedding janitor for West Court Street and the old man who haunts Grace Episcopal church. And it’s a good one for me.

Spending time alone in a large building dedicated to the weird proposition of church is something I’ve done all my life. Different buildings, of course.

Being allowed to quietly pursue my passions is a privilege. The boy in the Flint in the all white church from a small denomination loved poetry and music. I listened to records and read poetry.The old man in Holland, Michigan loves poetry and music and learning. He studies Greek, improves his piano technique, learns and performs music regularly on piano, organ and conducting choirs.

Yesterday, my  violinist emailed the cellist and me that she couldn’t make the previously arranged time for our rehearsal. Could we make it 4:30? The cellist and I readily agreed. When we arrived together, the cellist offered to go over music for the upcoming Pentecost celebration I have invited them to play. Naw, I said, let’s play Beethoven. The music for church was easy and didn’t need much prep. It was more about checking to make sure I hadn’t written a wrong note or rhythm here or there.

At 4:30 we turned to this music and rehearsed without the violinist. At 5 PM she showed up. However, I told her we needed to reschedule because I had to go (Had to go home and see my fam and have a martini but I wasn’t specific about this, heh). We rescheduled for today at 4:30. We’ll see if we all make it.

Working with people in this day and age is challenging for me. People seem to think nothing of doubling booking their lives (peace to my violinist, she and all the people who do this to me are doing the best they can…. but it seems to have shifted at least with the people  in my life). My cellist told me that she and her sister would be missing a swathe of rehearsals and services in October due to a pleasure trip to Stratford. She was gratified when I mentioned I would be in England looking at my new grandkid.


Things come up. And it’s dangerous to think too much about the fall with the kind of spring I have experienced this year in my church work. But I am thinking of pulling back on the complexity of what I schedule for my choir. Soon we will not even have the organ to use, because the old one will be gone and the new one not yet installed. I am expecting this to continue throughout the entire fall season and into the next year. I’m also not too worried about it.


Eileen and Sarah have been enjoying each other’s company as you can see above. It’s been a good time together for all of us. It has brought home my own rapidly diminishing energy pie. This might have something to do with where I am in the church/work year. But I do think it has changed.

Today I have a funeral at 11 AM. I looked around last night for bulletins for it. They were either not prepared yet or well hidden. My boss has already emailed me so I have an idea of what the service will be. But it’s nice to see what they put in print. I am planning to go over at 9:30 to do some prep and piano practicing if it’s not too intrusive on the mourners.

I do feel like I am living the good life.

A Soldier’s Challenge to the President – The New York Times

While Congress languishes the Presidency continues to expand powers. As much as I support most of what Obama has attempted to do, I am still cognizant that he has expanded presidential powers and has authorized dread drone attacks world wide.

BBC Faces Turning Point in Mission as Pressures Bear Down – The New York Times

Making a new charter for this valuable institution. I hope they keep it excellent.

A Russian Concert in Syria? I Took a Bulletproof Vest – The New York Times

What is it with this use of music?

Tomgram: Nick Turse, It Can’t Happen Here, Can It? | TomDispatch

I’m putting a series of links here from the left that I plan to look at more closely when I have time. This apparently provoked some of Chomsky’s observations in his new book. If you scroll down you can find Turse’s observations on Trump while covering Sudan.

Tomgram: Noam Chomsky, The Challenges of 2016 | TomDispatch

 Tomgram: Noam Chomsky, What Principles Rule the World? | TomDispatch

Parts 1 and 2 of excerpts from Chomsky’s new book.

Tear Drop 9/11 Monument :

Did you know there is a Russian monument to the dead of 9/11 in New York City? I didn’t.

Franklin D. Roosevelt, Four Freedoms—January 6, 1941

 Abraham Lincoln, Capitalism and Labor—1861

Two important speeches from our past. From footnotes in People Get Ready  by McChesney and Nichols.

2 thoughts on “the good life

  1. I did not realize Sarah was pregnant until the photos you posted from Mother’s Day at Gma Hatch’s. For this reason, and some others, I still consider Facebooger a positive more than a negative. Congrats to you & Eileen on the upcoming arrival of your next grandchild!

  2. Yes. I consulted with Sarah before posting those pics for that very reason, knowing that she hadn’t been talking about it on social media. She thought it was fine and okayed the pics.

    And I agree with you heartily that Facebooger is a more positive than negative, at least it is in my life. Not only has it enabled me to stay in better touch with the Jenkins clan and my nieces and nephews (especially on the Hatch side), but I am connected to a host of musicians and writer that I admire and colleagues in music who post and talk intelligently about many subjects that interest me. Facebooger is kind of weird and bumpy, but I find it helpful.

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