I became insane with long intervals of horrible sanity.
Edgar Allen Poe

The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one's time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.
- H. L. Mencken

Many people would sooner die than think; In fact, they do so
-Bertrand Russell

What I have been telling you, from alpha to omega, what is the one great thing the sigil taught me — that everything in life is miraculous. For the sigil taught me that it rests within the power of each of us to awaken at will from a dragging nightmare of life made up of unimportant tasks and tedious useless little habits, to see life as it really is, and to rejoice in its exquisite wonderfulness. If the sigil were proved to be the top of a tomato-can, it would not alter that big fact, nor my fixed faith. No Harrowby, the common names we call things by do not matter — except to show how very dull we are ...
-James Branch Cabell

June 01, 2012 - 1:23 a.m.

Horvendiles Day

I have so much to write today. I feel I could write an entire book, I even took an extended odyssey. It would be like Ulysses and all take place on one day and every May 31 would be known as Horvendilesday and there would be readings of the entire book.

Of course none of that is going to happen. I could break this up into separate entries, at least two, maybe three or four but I'm too tired to do that. Instead I'll write what I write and divide it into sections with a guide how to find things. Each section will start at a horizontal line.

Section 1: The great apartment hunt wait.
Section 2. The Prospect Park odyssey
Section 3. Snehasish Mozumder and his band Som. He's the greatest mandolin player I've heard and a composer of genius..

The Great Apartment Hunt Wait:

I saw two apartments on Wednesday that I liked. The owner of my first choice told me that she'd get back to me today. As tomorrow is moving in day that's cutting it close. I told her I'd take it an hour after I saw it. I told the owner of my second choice I'd get back to him today. I didn't say I was waiting to hear about another apartment.

I stayed by my phone all day and kept checking my email every five minutes. I didn't want to not get the first choice then be too slow and miss my second. To help me from going nuts waiting I played with Carey on turntable.fm. I don't know what I would have done without that. It was like waiting to find out if the girl you asked out to the prom would say yes. Of course I didn't have a prom so I don't really know what that's like. All I really know about proms is that you have to watch out for hellhounds killing everyone. So yes, this was just like a prom.

At 1:30 in the afternoon I couldn't take it anymore and I called. I was afraid that if I called I'd get her mad for being a nudge and that would make her choose somebody else as a roommate. She clearly was annoyed that I called. She told me that if she had decided she'd have contacted me. A few minutes later I crossed the Rubicon, burnt my bridges behind me, rehashed some other clichs and called choice two and told him I'd take the place. He hadn't rented it yet so all was well. I am not going to be homeless tomorrow. Whew. I had a plan C, and a plan D but I really didn't want to go that far down the alphabet.

I'll be living in what I think is called Clinton Hill, right next to the Pratt Institute. I can see their sculpture garden from my window. That is the best thing about the place. If and when I find my camera you'll get a photo tour of the neighborhood. The apartment itself will not be in the tour. It is nothing to write home about. It's sort of the opposite of my old place which was a nice apartment in an ugly neighborhood.

The new place is not that convenient in terms of the subway. It is near the G train but that doesn't go anywhere I go and it doesn't play well with the other lines, It keeps crossing them but there is no transfer. I decided it's the subway line with bad breath and everyone else keeps their distance.

The landlord seemed to have no interest in discussing money. I think he just wants me for the company. I'll be paying rent but that's clearly not a big concern of his.

And when did she get back to me with her answer if I got my first choice apartment? She texted me at 4:50 with a terse "I found a tenant good luck." How considerate; she gave me 10 minutes of business hours to find a place for me to stay the next night. I'm glad I bailed. As the fact that I liked her was one reason I liked the place made it easier to be happy with plan B. She clearly was not as nice as she seemed. I have a friend with friends in the same unusual occupation she has and they live in Brooklyn too. I've plotted my revenge if chance should bring them together. Cue evil laugh.

The Prospect Park Odyssey:

After I took the apartment I decided to enjoy the beautiful day and explorer Prospect Park. I ended up walking for nearly three hours. I never found the waterfalls I was looking for. Things are not well marked off and there are very few maps. Now that I have a better idea of how the park is laid out I think I can find them. I'll have all summer to do so. I intend on going back to taking many long walks and getting in shape.

I was supposed to feel good after getting the apartment right? Well I didn't. Just as I did after getting my stuff out of storage I was depressed. That was part of the reason I went on the walk. I don't have an apartment I have a room. That's a huge step backward for me. I'm not going to be living as well as I had. I am going to have to make adjustments. I realized that I felt the same way when I moved from my house to my apartment. I was depressed then too. I walked around my ugly new neighborhood and felt awful. I grew to love the neighborhood even though it was always ugly. I discovered the inner beauty. I always shake my head when people look for the geographic solution to their problems. Moving will not make you happy. You bring your problems with you. The opposite is also true. Moving won't make me sad. I'll bring my cheerfulness with me. I will adjust. Things will be rougher but I know I can be happy. I actually have a talent for it.

So what about the park? I tried to stick as much as possible to the trails through the woods. I like nature. I had a dream for years of filming a boreal adventure story in the New York City park system. Imagine Robin Hood or a fantasy then at the end you reveal it's all in the City.

Other than not finding the waterfall I did a pretty good job off navigating by dead reckoning and the sun. I started at the southeast corner and went about two thirds of the way to Grand Army Plaza, up the east side then down the west. For the most part I avoided the meadows and ball fields in the middle. Sometime after passing the band shell I decided that I had enough of communing with nature and wanted to commune with ices. I was hot and I was hungry. I left the park and immediately found a large ice cream and ices stand. I was a bit disappointed that it wasn't as good as I got on Queens. Of course I've been spoiled by the Lemon Ice King of Corona. We also had great ices in Bayside.

Snehasish Mozumder and Som:

After walking 3 hours I was exhausted. All I wanted to do was lay down and relax. I didn't. Why? Because I had seeing Snehhasish Mozunder (just call him Sneh) on my calendar. I had only seen him one other time when I caught the end of his set when I got to Rockwood early to see someone else. He immediately mesmerized me. As you might have guessed from his name he's Indian. He plays a two necked mandolin, one witht 10 strings the other with 8. He plays with genius. He is accompanied by a bass, a sax, a tabla or mridangam, a western drum kit, and a keyboard/piano player.

He went smoothly from tuning and warming up to playing the show. There was no announcement or clean break. The sound just started to grow and to become more coherent. It started simple and repetitive. It was reminiscent of new age or even ambient music but there was something else. You felt that it was just a prelude. If so you felt correctly. The music built and built on itself. Sneh must listen to everything. There were ragas of course but also hints of klezmer, lots of jazz, and western classical music. It is classical music. This was not simple melodies to guide your emotion. Every note built on what came before. This music was developed. Even as the styles changed from movement to movement and section to section there was unity to the piece. Often it the common theme was rhythmic. That helps when you have two drummers.

Sneh took me to places that I had never been before. He's the best mandolin player I've seen and I don't think that's where his greatest genius lies; it's in his composing. In the early 20th century classical music reached a crossroads. There was still exciting music being written that the audiences could still follow without a guide to the theory of music in their hands but for the most part classical music became and academic exercise, not something that could entertain an audience. To many people chose the second road. Snez's music would have been an interesting way for classical music to go. His music is complex but exciting. It sounds good but when you listen carefully it sounds amazing. The pieces build. They have a beginning, a middle, and an end. They grow like living things. He shouldn't be playing tiny Rockwood Hall he should be headlining Carnegie Hall.

He plays and composes with passion and intelligence and expects the audience to think along with him.

I am now and official hard core fan. Who is going to see him with me next time? I had planned on writing about how said it is that I can't expect everyone or even most of my friends to love his music.. He is such a clear genius but I know most people don't view music the same way I do. Still you'll want to give it a try.

I'm about to collapse so I better get to sleep. Tomorrow is moving day. I'm sure I'll get depressed again.

I signed the Pro-Truth Pledge:
please hold me accountable.

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Horvendile June 01, 2012
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