defunctbrowser: (Wilma Burgess)
Having nothing to say at present, I'll just post a boring list entry. My incuriosity is pathological, so perhaps a weekly posting of musical discoveries I should've made long ago will prove a useful exercise, in the intermediate run, at least.

Yeah, that's not very likely.

Björk, "An Echo, A Stain - Time to read Sarah Kane. (Sorry.)

Karen Dalton, "It Hurts Me Too" - I can't make great claims for this, but it can't be a good thing that I made it 99.7% of the way to 36 without even having heard of this highly talented and idiosyncratic singer.

Enrique Santos Discépolo, "Cambalache" - John Gray would sell his cat to be able to write something like this. It's due for renewed appreciation and popularity in the Anglophone world, surely.

Dr. Buzzard's Original Savannah Band, "Sour & Sweet/Lemon in the Honey" - As with their other recordings, it's heavy on the latter from each pairing, with slightly more than homeopathic quantities of the former. In their best songs--and this is one of them--that's no bad thing, and I defy you to name a song in which the movement of bees is evoked to more charming effect.

Future Islands, "Light House" - Brilliant lyric--and the vocals are nearly as good.

1. The Bostonians, Henry James
2. In the Heart of the Country, JM Coetzee
3. Persuasion, Jane Austen
4. Pincher Martin, William Golding
5. The History of Rasselas, Prince of Abissinia, Samuel Johnson
6. The Sound and the Fury, William Faulkner
7. Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte
8. Northanger Abbey, Jane Austen
9. Intruder in the Dust, William Faulkner
10. Howards End, EM Forster

Poetry and Drama

1. The Ruba'iyat of Omar Khayyam, translated by Peter Avery and John Heath-Stubbs
2. All's Well That Ends Well, William Shakespeare


1. The Subjection of Women, John Stuart Mill
2. A Room of One's Own, Virginia Woolf
3. A Grief Observed, CS Lewis
4. Ingredienti: Marcella's Guide to the Market, Marcella Hazan and Victor Hazan

Children's Books

1. The Well of the Wind, Alan Garner

Currently Reading

1. Hard Times, Charles Dickens (Should be finished with this one in a couple of days.)
2. Postwar: Europe Since 1945, Tony Judt (Only God knows.)
From the NYT obit for Tyrus Wong, artist and art director, whose work on Bambi made it, in my view, the greatest of the Disney animated films:

[...]Tyrus traveled to Los Angeles to join his father, who had found work in a gambling den. They lived in a vermin-infested boardinghouse sandwiched between a butcher shop and a brothel. After school, Tyrus worked as a houseboy for two Pasadena families, earning 50 cents a day.

His first art teacher was his father, who trained him nightly in calligraphy by having him dip a brush in water and trace ghostly characters on newspaper: They could not afford ink or drawing paper.

When Tyrus was in junior high, a teacher, noting his drawing talent, arranged a summer scholarship to the Otis Art Institute in Los Angeles.

By his own account an indifferent student in public school, Tyrus found his calling at the institute, now the Otis College of Art and Design. When his scholarship ended he declined to return to junior high.

His father scraped together the $90 tuition — a small fortune — to let him stay on as Otis’s youngest student.

He studied there for at least five years, simultaneously working as the school janitor, before graduating in the 1930s. Not long afterward his father died, leaving young Mr. Wong entirely on his own.

From 1936 to 1938, Mr. Wong was an artist for the Works Progress Administration, creating paintings for libraries and other public spaces.
Lindsay Ellis' video review-essay on the musical and movie of Rent runs to just over 45 minutes, but is nevertheless efficient in making the case against the source material, Chris Columbus' film, the Reagan administration's response to the spread of HIV/AIDS (which, like the Clinton administration's response to the genocide in Rwanda, wasn't just a matter of failing to save lives, but also of obstructing others' constructive efforts), and quietism in the present moment. Also, it's a pretty entertaining take-down and works as a listenable podcast for anyone who would rather not multi-task in silence.

What fun!

Jan. 1st, 2017 03:51 pm
"Do not taunt Deplora-ball."

Myriad flowers of joyless spontaneity will bloom, but don't expect an invite unless you're alt-establishment and already rich. Just a hunch.

I suppose that now is as good as time as any in which to admit that I never can see "MAGA" without hearing Paolo Bonacelli screaming it.
What I got out of reading Dexter Filkins' fine and frightening New Yorker article on the possible collapse of the Mosul Dam is that the greatest number of casualties attending both Hussein's despotism and US policy toward Iraq in the last century may include hundreds of thousands of people who were not yet born when the 2003 invasion began.

Seal the wall and make the Americans pay for it. We won't, but we should.
Ringing in the new year the only way I know how.

My New Year's resolution is to keep a LiveJournal on a regular basis for so long as I have regular access to the internet.

I'm as dull as the profile page suggests, but I'll probably add your journal to the friends' list if you ask (or add my LJ to your list).
"Two years or even a year ago it could never have happened, for then if nothing else there had always been a topic in the outrageous state of the nation. 'How do you like this Oppenheimer business?' one of them would demand, and the others would fight for the floor with revolutionary zeal. The cancerous growth of Senator McCarthy had poisoned the United States, and with the pouring of second or third drinks they would begin to see themselves as members of an embattled, dwindling intellectual underground. Clippings from the Observer or the Manchester Guardian would be produced and read aloud, to slow and respectful nods; Frank might talk wistfully of Europe--'God, I wish we'd taken off and gone there when we had the chance'--and this might lead to a quick general lust for expatriation: 'Let's all go!' (Once it went as far as a practical discussion of how much they'd need for boat fare and rent and schools, until Shep, after a sobering round of coffee, explained what he'd read about the difficulty of getting jobs in foreign countries.)" --Richard Yates, Revolutionary Road
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