Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Winter Chill

Thanks for Nothing, Mother Nature

7:35 AM CST

I should have known better than to complain about the cold, gray days we've been having lately. I awoke this morning to find we'd received what the NWS refers to as a "light dusting" of snow

10:40 AM CST

...and of course it hasn't stopped snowing yet. That wasn't originally in the forecast either, but I'm sure this "less than an inch" of accumulation won't pose any problems.
"And, like an idiot, you're going to go out in that, aren't you?"

Yes...I don't really have a choice...I'll wait till they've cleared the streets a bit, though...

Feast Day

The Conversion of Saint Paul (1601), by Caravaggio

Today Catholics celebrate the Feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul the Apostle, which commemorates one of the most important conversion stories in Church history.

Fingers Crossed

Tonight one of my current favorite TV series, Suits, resumes its sixth season with Episode 11.

So far Season 6 has been a big disappointment, with the absurd "Mike Goes to Prison" story arc culminating in the departure of main character Jessica Pearson (played by Gina Torres) in the mid-season finale.

I'm going to be pretty upset if the show continues its downward spiral and I have to find something else to take its place.

"You don't fool me for a second. You're not going to stop watching..."

Time will tell...but they'd better get back to the things that made me like the show
to begin with...

Sentimental Softie

Everyone who knows me knows that I wear my heart on my sleeve, as the saying goes.

That said, I would argue that even relatively unsentimental people might find the image shown above emotionally engaging.

It is being widely shared across social media, and it is inspired by the famous scene in the motion picture Field of Dreams in which Shoeless Joe Jackson and his buddies disappear into the cornfield when a game is concluded.

The players represented are big league stars Oscar Taveras (22), Yordano Ventura (25), and José Fernández (24), all of whom were lost to us through unfortunate accidents.

Don't get me started...I'm having enough trouble coping as it is...

21st Century Problems

From the delightfully off-kilter webcomic xkcd, by Randall Munroe, which you should read every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.

Until Next Time...

On January 25, 1858 Victoria, Princess Royal married Frederick III at St. James Palace in London. It was an arranged marriage, done for state reasons, and I'm sure some historian somewhere could spin an interesting tale out of that event, but for me the only noteworthy fact is that the wedding was the first public performance of one of the most popular and ubiquitous pieces of music ever written.

German composer Felix Mendelssohn composed music to accompany Shakespeare's comedy A Midsummer Night's Dream on two occasions. In 1826, at age 17, he wrote an overture intended to be played before the play began. Sixteen years later, near the end
of his life, Mendelssohn accepted a commission to write "incidental music" for the play from Frederick William IV.

1888 sheet music by Oliver Ditson & Co.
One of the sections of that suite of music was written to be played during the intermission between Acts IV and V, and it eventually became Mendelssohn's single best-known composition, even if most people have no idea that he composed it, or why.

"Wedding March" was played for the first time at an actual wedding in 1847, but the high visibility it gained from its first truly public performance at Victoria and Frederick's nuptials caused it to skyrocket in popularity.

Intended originally to be played on a church pipe organ, the piece has since been arranged for piano, strings, brass, guitar, harp, and even full orchestras. 

Today's send-off is a performance of the famous march by the Berliner Philharmoniker under the baton of the late Claudio Abbado, filmed live on May 19, 2013. Enjoy...

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