Friday, November 30, 2007

Friday's Feast 1

I haven't posted here in a long time. The past weeks have been so work-filled that I can't come up with anything hugely imaginative, but did feel like reviving And So Forth with a post.

What could be better than Friday's Feast to get back on track? I've subscribed to their prompts on Google Reader for weeks, but never seem to get around to looking at them until Saturday.

Appetizer: What is your favorite carnival/amusement park ride?

Huge, old-fashioned carousels.

Soup:How do you react in uncomfortable social situations?

I usually stay in the background, but am capable of intervening directly if I feel the discomfrot stems from somthing really important.

Salad: On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being highest, how much do you enjoy discussing deep, philosophical topics?

Three. I got annoyed with "heavy, deep and real" conversations back in high school and haven't gotten over it yet.

Main Course: Did you get a flu shot this year? If not, do you plan to?

No. No. Is this really the main course?

Dessert: Approximately how many hours per week do you spend watching television?

Zero. We don't have a television connection, just a TV set to watch videos and DVDs.

That was fun! See you again one of these days...

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

So British?

I just love having access to the British press on Internet.

Between reading the news on the BBC and getting in-depth information from the Guardian, I can also run into pearls like this.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Dylan's Best?

I have been trying all day to listen straight through Blood on the Tracks without too many interruptions. It's 7:30 PM and I'm practically halfway into "Shelter from the Storm," so I think I'm finally going to make it.

If not, I think I can do without "Buckets of Rain." It's one of the two songs on the album that doesn't do it for me, along with "Meet Me in the Morning."

Those two songs aside, though, I don't think I will ever tire of this album. Sometimes I think it's Bob Dylan's best. And I have to disagree with Jon Landau when he wrote in 1975:

"Blood on the Tracks will only sound like a great album for a while. Like most of Dylan, it is impermanent."

So why does it ring so true 32 years later?

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Ten Songs That Bring Back Memories (and why...)


I get notifications for Ten on Tuesday, and it always sounds like a good idea at the time. But putting together a list of ten of anything ends up being quite a challenge.

I might be better at a blogging event called "Four if I frickin' feel like it."
I had to do this subject, though: "Ten Songs That Bring Back Memories (and why...)"

In a somewhat chronological order:

1. I Want to Hold Your Hand: This could be one of my earliest musical memories. Thanks to my mom, I met the Beatles.


2. Crimson and Clover by Tommy James and the Shondelles: This was the first record I could call my very own. Naturally, I listened to it...over and over...



3. The Flintstones Theme Song: At some point in my early childhood, my parents only had black and white TV. But my grandparents, who lived across town, had COLOR TV! My great folks used to drive my sister and me over there, mid-week, to watch our favorite cartoon, which I loved all the more because it had a character named Betty. For some reason, the show was on in the evening, so we were usually put in our jammies before we left. A memory right out of history...



4. Crocodile Rock: This song was covered a lot by bands at the junior high dances I went to. I have good memories of hopping and bopping to it.



5. Stairway to Heaven: This song was also covered by a lot of bands at the aforementioned junior high dances, usually as the last "slow dance." I have bad memories of lurking on the sidelines while it was playing.



6. Gold Dust Woman by Fleetwood Mac: No comment.



7. It's the End of the World as We Know It (and I Feel Fine) by R.E.M.: When I was a high school debate coach in Olympia, my students introduced me to R.E.M.. Later, the word got out that "It's the End..." was actually about debate tournaments. Were we ever excited! I remember spending hours with my debate students analyzing the lyrics (which we had to transcribe...no Internet, remember?) to try to prove our theory. A debatable theory which is now all over online R.E.M. forums, of course.



8. Life During Wartime by the Talking Heads: My strongest memories of this song postdate its release by many years; I listened to it obsessively during the first weeks of the current Iraq war. "This ain't no party, this ain't no disco..." It sure ain't.



9. Let Down by Radiohead: The first time I heard this song, I listened to it about twenty times straight. A chemical reaction, I guess.



10: Unchained Melody: Undefined memories.


Sunday, November 11, 2007

Sunday Morning Grace

Just because I want this song on my blog. No other reason.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Temperature change: a burning issue?


First, I'm going to play Miss Smarty-pants and point out that I speak both Celsius and Fahrenheit, although I'm not absolutely sure I'm spelling them right.


Maybe they have a point...which, by the way, would be a comma if a malevolent world government forced everybody to read temperatures in French.

This could be a slippery slope situation. First Celsius, then kilometers, then kilometres...where would it end?

Holding our silverware European-style, being required to learn a foreign language, having a decent health care system?

Some changes just scream out "danger."

(Photo extracted from a site that looked like it was called Physical Science , and as such was definitely not going to be bookmarked by this blogger!

But it turns out that "Physical Science" is part of Learner.org, a pretty spiffy-looking site for teachers. Just what I need! Another bookmark!)