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
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
January 29, 2014 - 11:18 a.m.
Yesterday's edition of Wise Madness was outside the usual fare. I did not recount my day. I wrote about Pete Seeger. I made it personal but it was not part of the continuing narrative. So now in a sense I have two days to catch up on. I also have a headache so this might not be easy.
OK I'll skip Monday and write about yesterday. I didn't do much on Monday anyway. I still don't have my textbooks. Between classes I went to the library and photocopied some problems so I can assign homework and know what I'm supposed to teach. This is ridiculous. I have wasted so much time in class because I don't have the books. And to make it worse I had the Finite Math book and it's gone. One of my books was given to a student, I think it must have been that one. It was not returned.
I went to the post office and found that my copy of the 2014 Baseball Prospectus had arrived. I buy it to prepare my Fantasy Baseball team but the first thing I always read is the section on the Mets. Most years it says how terrible the Mets' organization is and I sit there and agree. Sometimes it's optimistic and I say, "are you nuts" and then get to feel smart when they are proved wrong. Right now the Mets have some good young arms and competent ownership could build around that. The key word is competent. The Mets have no idea how to build a team. They overspend on old guys, fail, then decide to not spend any money, and fail. The times are few and far between that they have the patience to spend their money wisely and then develop the talent they have.
After school I did week two of my new tradition, the Tuesday afternoon movie. I finish at 3:30 and had plans at Rockwood Music Hall at 8 so I went to the movies in between. I like my system of picking a movie. I use the Fandango app on my phone and see what's playing nearby with a time that works well. This week it was one of the films I really wanted to see, Saving Mr. Banks.
I love Mary Poppins. It is my favorite children's film I saw in a theater as a child. It's pure magic. That means Saving Mr. Banks is treading on thin ice. The distance between loving and hating it could be small. I loved it. It would have been nice if it wasn't produced by Disney so I wouldn't suspect it's been cleaned up to protect their reputation but it needed to use some much material from Mary Poppins that nobody else could ever get the rights to it. But that's about accuracy, not about the film itself. It's two things I love, the story of an artist's inspiration, and a comedy of redemption.
Oh I guess I need to give a bit of background. I usually assume I'm the only one that has not seen a film and that everyone knows the story but that doesn't have to be true. the film is the story of the making of the Mary Poppins and the struggles of P.L. Travers, the book's author, It runs on two tracks, "the present" when the movie is being made and her childhood back in Australia. You see elements from her childhood appearing in Poppins. But the larger focus is on Walt Disney and the writers of the film trying to figure out her problem. And it's a big problem. She gives them trouble from the get go. She seems to not want the film made. But it's more than that. She's never happy. She's crushed by an unknown burden. Figuring that out is the central theme.
I'm a suck for stories of redemption and I don't know why. I don't feel a need for personal redemption. I'm with the Who; "I don't need to fight/To prove I'm right/I don't need to be forgiven!" But still redemption always resonates with me. It's the ultimate dramatic release of tension. There was great acting, great direction, great use of music The film clicked on every level
After the movie I headed down to Rockwood to see the last show of Jean Rohe's residency. This one was Jean and Liam Robinson, a rebirth of their old duo, Robinson & Rohe. They did a combination of new songs and a tribute to Pete Seeger. I love Jean for the most part different part of my brain than I love Pete but there is commonality too. They both try to bring the audience into the show. It's about participating as much as listening. Jean's parts just tend to be more difficult.
Jean has such range. Some of the original songs were so different from the ones with the End of the World Show. Some are cowrites with Liam. One was a Liam original. The entire show was very much a work in progress. I always get the feeling that like Leonardo da Vinci Jean's mind is always racing off in 20 directions at once. She has more ideas than anyone could hope to develop and she wants to do them all at once. I wonder if she has plans for a flying machine someplace.
Why was nobody I know at the show? This was Jean doing things she doesn't normally do, a show to not be missed. Missing this will reflect on all your grades.
Oh I have to go back a bit to Monday. I had a Crohn's attack. After I finished writing Wise Madness I found I couldn't eat. I immediately took 20 mg of prednisone. I went to therapy and didn't have my therapy meal Finally in the evening I had a peanut butter omelet to catch up for the day. I was not happy with my meal last night. I went to Burger King and had their new spicy chicken sandwich and "satis-fries." the fries are lower in fat and taste much better than the usual ones. They are the reason I went in. But I am still not happy eating fast food. But I didn't have much in the house. tonight I'll make soup again. I have to remember to buy garlic and a potato or some exotic tuber.
OK, today I have to do laundry then meet someone for coffee. Not a very fully day but I know that I will have trouble with the timing. It's hard for me to get started.
Brother Brothers in Arms - October 01, 2017
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