Sunday, January 9, 2011

What I'm reading now:

Begin Again: A Biography of John Cage by Kenneth Silverman. Thoroughly enjoying this. A nice feature is that key musical tracks discussed in the book can be listened to at the publisher's website:

The Passages of H.M. by Jay Parini. This is a lovely novel about the life of Herman Melville.

The Shortest Shadow: Nietzsche's Philosophy of the Two by Alenka Zupancic. "...Freud was startled to realize that the intruder was his own reflection displayed in the mirror hanging on the open door. Freud emphasizes that he thoroughly disliked the appearance of this man in front of him, and that, rather than being frightened by this 'double,' he failed to recognize it as such. And if he finally realized that he was looking at himself, it was not on account of the image he saw in front of him, on account of noticing the resemblance and recognizing it; he identified the elderly man as himself only because he realized that there was a mirror attached to the door."

Correspondence Course: An Epistolary History of Carolee Schneemann and Her Circle edited by Kristine Stiles.


What I'm thinking about now:

Possible retirement in the coming year and significantly reduced economic circumstances. Much about my job is becoming untenable. Come June 1 I'll have been with the Department for thirty-four years. I'm close to having reached my physical and emotional limits.

Wondering what I still have in me to write. Wondering if the time left to me will be adequate to do that work. Wondering if I am adequate to the task.


What I've been feeling lately:

Pretty depressed, for a variety of reasons. Bright spots: Crag Hill's and Rebecca Loudon's brilliant interactions with my question piece; and, of course, music, and books.


What I've been listening to lately:

John Cage (particularly his 1958 25-Year Retrospective Concert at Town Hall, New York),

Mavis Staples (with Jeff Tweedy)

Norah Jones' new CD of duets. I particularly love her version of Baby It's Cold Outside with Willie Nelson

Sheryl Crow

Keith Jarrett

Buddy Guy

Rolling Stones


B.B. King

Robert Randolph and the Family Band

Booker Ervin


What I'm sipping now:



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