Saturday, 12 December 2015 09:13 am
freckles_and_doubt: (South Park Self)
I am incautiously excited for the new Star Wars movies, and open to having my heart, once more, broken if it comes to that, which it very well might given JJ. (Current favourite anecdote: John Boyega being hailed by Samuel L. Jackson at a party, with the salutation "Hey, black Jedi! you my SON!")

I also very much enjoyed having Tracy visit a few weekends back, so that her daughters might variously (a) peruse my graphic novel collection (eldest; made off with Captain America, I'll get her into Digger too, see if I don't) and (b) noodle around on my piano (youngest: is starting lessons soon, accepted guidance on practising scales). It made me realise that I miss playing my piano, and should get back into it.

By way of synthesising paragraphs (1) and (2) above, I love this very, very much.

I shall allow it to sustain me through today, which, while being a Saturday, is also a four-hour review meeting of all the students who've been academically excluded by these exams. It does good and useful work, and is uniformly depressing.
freckles_and_doubt: (South Park Self)
Things Which Feel Odd:

  1. Climbing back into your driver's seat after picking the car up from the car wash. Someone else has driven it. The seat and the rear-view mirror are in the wrong place, and it inevitably takes me about three traffic lights to adjust them so they feel right. But the whole car has a strange air of the indefinably alien. Something's different, but you can't tell what it is. It isn't your space any more. (Although it's certainly cleaner).
  2. Spending a happy half hour noodling around on the piano (currently I'm trying to play Arcade Fire, a project doomed to failure owing to their texture fetish, which means you actually need six hands, twelve people and a violin to have any stab at reproducing the sound) and then trying to type. I both type and play with some facility, fast, and without looking at my hands, and apparently cross-wiring happens. My fingers keep trying to do arpeggios instead of QWERTY. I have to consciously rein them in for a bit before all the right circuits click in. Very odd feeling.
  3. Christmas in July. Particularly when we're even more disorganised than usual, and it was actually Christmas in July in August in September in October. That is, last night. Roast chicken and ham and all the trimmings and Jo did barszcz and uszka for starters (garlicky Polish beet soup with mushroom dumplings, for both of which I have an unholy passion) and I made chocolate berry trifle (because Christmas pudding is of the divvil), and we ate and drank too much and pulled crackers and exchanged ridiculous presents in large quantities, and listened to Annie Lennox sing English Christmas carols. It feels odd and wrong, though, because it's all the good bits of Christmas, and none of its socially-mandated unpleasant ones. No enormous awkward obligatory extended family jamborees with added fighting and guilt trips, or expensive present expectations which entail battling the consumerist hordes through acres of tinsel and product-pushing. Although I did go forth and buy myself an actual Blu-Ray home theatre system this morning, to replace our almost-defunct hi-fi, which was a conscious decision to spend my November bonus early and thus was almost Christmas-shoppy. Except for me, not other people. Feels odd.

Subject line from Arcade Fire's "Wasted Hours", which is for the most part not actually thematically appropriate at all but was on my mind and is a gentle, wistful, beautiful thing. Also, I think googling how to spell "barszcz" has infected me, I keep trying to blockquote this paragraph by typing "blokqvote".
freckles_and_doubt: (Default)
Much as I enjoy noodling around on the piano reproducing pop tunes as my wayward fancy takes me, it's all too often that I encounter Actual Pianists who rub my nose inescapably in the fact that it would be extreme hubris to even think of myself as a two-bit hack. This is another Youtube discovery not entirely unrelated to yesterday's Piano Guys. Apart from being a rather fun piano piece all on its lonesome, as a distillation of a full orchestra it's quite something. (It's also reminding me of quite how much of the Skyrim music is ripped off from this, or from LotR). His Harry Potter version is also lovely, but I rather like the ending on this one.

It's also obscurely comforting to discover that the guy's a professional who does this sort of score-creation for Yamaha. I'm able to vaguely think "ah, corporate shill" and go my merry way with the inferiority complex marginally mitigated.

Apropos of nothing at all, a random concatenation of ideas has just reminded me of last night's Salty Cracker (La Boheme in Sea Point, lovely food) at which the usual wayward puppy conversation suddenly reminded me of a dream I had the other night. I dreamed I seduced C.S. Lewis at a garden party, more or less directly as a result of feeling horribly embarrassed. I'd just spent twenty minutes declaiming to this amiable bespectacled gent about fantasy novels, finishing up with a condescending supposition that he'd probably never heard of C.S. Lewis's Ransom trilogy, but they're very interesting books despite their overly heavy Christian bit, at which point I suddenly realised I was talking to the author himself. (I plead in mitigation that he's been dead for a while, I wasn't to know). Shamed and irritated, I seduced him, presumably as a form of distraction (or possibly a subversive attack on the overly heavy Christian bit). Memo to self: do not recount this one to therapist, I'm not entirely sure I want to know what it means.

Words cannot express how grateful I am that it's Friday. My exhaustion levels form an interestingly steeply-pitched graph that starts at "manageable" on Monday and then wantonly climbs to the weekend.

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