Posts Tagged ‘life’

Most of us never see artists at work. Most of us never want to see artists at work. The process of visualizing, creating, refining, and polishing is the best left in the shadows. The multiple iterations required to arrive at a completed piece are neither appealing or interesting to most of us. The mental and emotional gyrations which spun and swirled in Van Gogh’s head and hand as he accelerated towards The Starry Night or Café Terrace at Night may fascinate, but they hardly make good viewing. Bach’s endless tinkering with notes and sounds while he composed the Brandenburg Concertos may appeal to the musicologist, but the rest of us are satisfied listening to the music. Nobody wants to see Meryl Streep stand in front of a mirror practicing gestures, accents, and tone while preparing for a role. The image of Anne Coates viewing reels of film in a cramped editing room, then manipulating them in search of the proper pacing for Lawrence of Arabia, is best left to film students. We just want to see the movie. The effort behind (more…)

we watch

Posted: August 27, 2020 in Observations and Commentary
Tags: , ,

We watch the world like it is a video game, full of carnage and mayhem, but never tactile or real. We watch chaos erupt in metropolises, cities, and towns. We watch protectors turn aggressor. We watch frustration turn to anger and anger turn to rage and rage turn to destruction. We watch military grade weapons filter into the hands of the unprepared and unstable. We watch youthful fervor morph into (more…)

New Jersey, along with a large portion of the eastern United States, is in the midst of a “bomb cyclone.” Bomb cyclone grabs your attention, doesn’t it? It commands a serious and dramatic response. It also sounds like a new film by Roland Emmerich or an especially potent libation at “The Bunker”, the Pentagon’s underground officer’s lounge. Naturally, real meteorologists don’t call it this. They prefer “explosive cyclogenesis.” For them explosive cyclogenesis more concisely explains what it is happening. Conveniently, it also helps justify debt incurred through years of graduate and post-graduate study.

Weather events like these are very technical, but a winning topic of conversation among attendees of the annual meeting of the American Meteorological Society. Those folks (more…)


Tom Petty has been gone for three months, but it still doesn’t feel real. Since the mid-70’s he has always been there doing his thing without much fanfare, like bedrock. His songs, especially the earlier ones, routinely pop up on classic rock stations. Whenever that happens the volume gets boosted a bit. Part of the reason is the songs are solid; the other is they offer warm familiarity. This may be true of all music you enjoyed as a kid, but not of all that music endures. Petty endures, like bedrock.

I was never a superfan, but I like a lot of his work – and love some of it. I saw him live for the first and only time in 1979. Back then huge video screens did not flank the stage, so unless (more…)

Man, the years keep on keeping on, don’t they? It seems like just yesterday when 2016 exploded into 2017 and the prospect of the new year brought with it an impending sense of doom which lurked just around the corner of January and 20th. We use “impending” as a harbinger, a warning that it is time to prepare for bad, bad juju because it will soon be spewing from every crevice and pore. One does not think of an impending ice cream cone or an impending night out at the cinema. No sir. Impending is saved for the serious shit – an impending (more…)

Holy shit, nobody saw that coming. Forget about the blindsided pundits and the humiliated pollsters. You know the president-elect, his advisors, family, and many ardent supporters were also shocked. Let’s face it, you don’t froth at the mouth about a rigged election before the actual election if you expect to win. It is interesting to wonder what thoughts lumbered through Donald Trump’s head last Tuesday night as the results poured in. On a purely instinctive level he must have been elated; he had to be. Seriously, what better way to (more…)

Thankfully, Election Day is almost here. The mood is such that by now Tuesday could arrive accompanied by bushels of chocolate covered strawberries, truckloads of bouquets, puppies and kittens for all, the Rockettes, and cures for every known communicable disease – and it still wouldn’t be more welcome than it already is.

During this exhausting year we have all suffered through relentlessness, excessive levels of hate, dismissiveness, abuse, moral and intellectual superiority, highhanded behavior, lies, and degradation. Our anxiety is (more…)

Are you familiar with the concept of “analysis paralysis?” It essentially means decisions and actions are delayed (or never made) because the situation is too complicated or over-analyzed and the choices seem infinite. The search for perfection is often a factor. We all know perfection, aside from ice cream on a warm summer night, never happens. Yet we still strive for it. But when we are bombarded with too much data, when it is relentless and unyielding, it is nearly impossible to (more…)

Fall 1979

Fall 1979

No matter how hard you try, you will never forget that day. You will never forget how the news emerged one piece at a time, slowly at first, and then with a rapidity which was impossible to digest. You will never forget the faces and reactions of the people you were with, disbelief which turned to gasps then to tears then to sobs. You will never forget that the world you occupied, the one a few miles north of the horror, stood absolutely still. You will never forget how (more…)

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