25 November 2007

Waste of Time

May I tell you how much I enjoy trick plays like the "Flea Flicker," "The Statue of Liberty," or even "The Annexation of Puerto Rico" as seen in Little Giants. It's things like that that make football enjoyable. I have my first major graduate level paper due on Tuesday and I can't seem to motivate myself to work on it. I think I'm a much better student in the Spring because there's no football to distract me. I can't help but watch the Eagles play the Patriots. The Eagles are currently winning and, though I typically hate them, I would love for them to beat the Pats.

Thanksgiving was lovely. I got to cook a turkey, cheesecake, and mashed potatoes and they all turned out pretty well. I missed the family, of course, but it was nice to have friends and loved ones to spend the day with. And it doesn't hurt that the Cowboys won and the Buckeyes won the Saturday before. Life is good and I'm happy. I'll need some extra blessing in the next few weeks regarding school work, but it'll be just fine; I'm sure of it.

I got a permanent position with the credit union that employs me. My time here has been spent at many different branch, but starting the first week or so of December I'll be exclusively at the brand new branch in West Chester, PA--the home of my graduate program. Hooray!

Sorry this wasn't more exciting, I'll see you soon.

14 November 2007

Your Apparent Reading Level

Since Steven did it, I guess I will too. If you can successfully understand this blog than you have a post-grad reading level. Congrats. I think the soulja boy business brought me down.

10 November 2007

Crank dat Soulja Boy

Instead of spending time reading The Oresteia by Aeschylus (as translated by Ted Hughes, one of my favorite poets) for my mythology class on Monday, I just spent the last ten minutes learning the "Soulja Boy" dance as taught by Soulja Boy on youtube. My life choices are sometimes disturbing. You should probably learn it and we'll have a party. Then, instead of reading, I chose to write about my poor choices here. Let's see if we can do better in the next choice.

06 November 2007

The BQE and Mr. Stevens

Sorry for the hiatus, but life gets busy. It's been over a month since I've written and it's been a busy one. Lots of counting money, lots of reading, and lots of Grey's Anatomy, surprisingly.

Last weekend, Jenna and I trained over to NYC for a nice little two day trip filled with being tourists and lusting over the musical stylings of Sufjan Stevens. We, along with Jordan, had the privilege of seeing the world premier of his BQE at BAM and it was magnificent. Pitchfork has a pretty nice write up, but in typical PFM fashion, they can't really like anything. The suite was triumphant and, if I had any musical ability, I would write exactly what Sufjan did. At times it was no different that a typical Sufjan song with its soaring highs followed by a single piano and an abundance of flute runs.

Let me put this out there--I love Sufjan and I am probably a horrible critic because I love nearly everything but I'm trying to be as objective as possible.

The piece was nice, but what impressed me most was that the musicians were obviously enjoying the music and the moment. I was in the third row, right in front of the speaker on the far right (stage left) of the auditorium and I had a great view of the musician's faces and they all, for the most part, were grinning with glee. I, too, was impressed by Sufjan's abilities at the piano. I had always figured he was just pretty good at all the instruments he plays, but he kicked that piano down. The beginning of the suite the curtain was down and all we could see was the film Sufjan had shot, then the curtain lifted half-way and exposed a scrim behind it so the audience could see the shadow of the performers and I assumed Sufjan was conducting but I soon realized he was behind the piano. The piano carried the piece and was the introduction to nearly all of the movements of the suite, I believe there are 8 but I could be mistaken.

After the 30 minute BQE ended, there was a brief intermission and the 2nd half was titled "Sufjan Plays the Hits" and he certainly did. He opened with "Seven Swans"--a personal fav, went to "Concerning the UFO..." and onto others. Sufjan, who is funnier that I had previously imagined, gave humorous introduction to the song "Detroit, Lift Up Your Weary Head! (Rebuild! Restore! Reconsider!)" about every car coming from Detroit and how he had constructed his own personal world industrial history. After "Jacksonville," he played "Casimir Pulaski Day" and John Wayne Gacy, Jr." back-to-back and it was fantastic. "Gacy, Jr." ended with Sufjan and Shara Worden (of My Brightest Diamond) singing a lovely little "ah-ah" harmony over a subdued banjo rhythm and my heart melted.

After a ridiculous story about oboe camp, flying-oboe-bassoon-wasp-monsters, and morality lessons Sufjan played "The Predatory Wasp of the Palisades Is Out To Get Us!," another fav and followed that with "The Barn Owl," a song I had not yet heard and had to do some internet scouring to find out the title. Apparently it's yet to be recorded and possibly for a new album? Am I excited? Yes.

All through they show, I had been a bit disappointed because Sufjan had been a bit subdued and had quietly dazzled me with his musical abilites, but my eyes had beena bit bored. Luckily, before they kicked out "Majesty Snowbird," (my absolute fav) one of the hula-hoopers brought out his trademark wings and my dream was complete. Sufjan, backed by an impressive orchestra, is a force to be reckoned with.

The set finished with a nice "Chicago," and no encore. I was really hoping for "Come On! Feel the Illinoise!" or "Decatur" but there was nothing. It was, all in all, a fantastic show that I'm very glad I got to see.

Along with the show, Jenna and I did some touristy things. We were briefly on the Today Show, Jenna was interviewed by the Channel 2 news about lip plumpers, we spent a few hours in The Met (and we didn't pay, shhh!), and we walked around Central Park for a bit. We ventured through Brooklyn for a bit with Jordan. It was all of our first times to do so, so that was nice. It was a wonderful trip and we're going to try to make it into the city again around Christmas time. Hooray for the north east.