Saturday, January 30, 2016


Weather Report

"I have no idea what I'm doing, but I'm highly paid."
Just a couple of days ago, the weather forecast for Monday night wasn't promising. Snow was expected on Sunday evening continuing into Monday. This had everyone freaking out about how it would affect turnout for Monday night's Iowa Caucuses.

Those of us who actually live here, of course, knew better than to press the panic button. You know the old cliché: If you don't like the weather, wait five minutes.

Sure enough, as of this morning the forecast is completely different. We're supposed to have a high of 61 degrees (on February 1!), and some rain in the afternoon.

That doesn't mean this forecast can't be wrong, of course. The same people telling us this told us there'd be no White Christmas, then that we'd only get a "dusting" of snow on Christmas Eve. We got 6.5 inches that day.

I don't expect weather to be much of a factor for the caucuses. I certainly plan to be there no matter what the weather is doing.

"Admit it: You're hoping some Trump supporter calls you a 'cuck,' aren't you?"

Well, it has been far too long since the last time I kneed someone in the groin, so yeah...

Boola Boola

7'6" center Mamadou Ndiaye is the tallest player in NCAA Division I.

We're in a lull in sporting events
I care much about right now, so I'm throwing in a mention of my wingman's favorite team, the UC-Irvine Anteaters.

They're having a fine season so far, 17-5 overall and 6-0 in the Big West conference standings, good for first place.

For a game back in December, they rolled out a starting five that was the tallest in NCAA men's basketball history. Pretty amazing.

They've won their last seven straight games, and 10 of their last 11. The lone loss was on the road versus then-No. 2 Kansas. No shame in that.


"You know that 'Boola Boola' is a Yale thing, right?"

I'm using it metaphorically...

We'll Let You Know Monday, Asshat

From the pen of Lisa Benson, whose editorial cartoons you should read often, as I do.

Until Next Time...

Although I am a lover of classical music, I am no expert. There are certain composers with whose works I am quite familiar, and of course certain compositions are so widely popular that it is virtually impossible not to know them. But much of the time my awareness of or interest in a composition is tied to its connection with some other art form.

One such piece is Frédéric Chopin's famous Nocturne in C sharp Minor. Composed for his older sister Ludwika as a piano exercise, it became one of the most popular short works for solo piano in the classical repertoire. It has been featured in many motion pictures and television programs, and it was a favorite piece of mine to use for journal time with my students.
Original 2002 "one sheet" poster
By far my favorite cinematic use of the piece is in director Roman Polanski's 2002 drama The Pianist. Polanski used it to open the film, and to set the somber tone.

The screenplay, by award-winning playwright Ronald Harwood, is based on Polish pianist and composer Władysław Szpilman's memoir by the same name. The film tells the story of Szpilman's experiences surviving the German occupation of Warsaw.

Harwood won the Academy Award for Best Screenplay Adaptation, Polanski won for Best Director, and Adrien Brody's performance as Szpilman won for Best Actor (at 29, Brody became the youngest Best Actor Oscar winner in history). The film was also nominated for Best Picture.

Today's send-off is a splendid live performance of the Chopin piece by Jan Lisiecki.
It was his encore at the 2013 BBC Proms at the Royal Albert Hall. He was just 18 years old at the time. Enjoy...

No comments:

Post a Comment