With all the cat pictures lately I haven’t mentioned I’ve been on what can only be described as a knitting frenzy–in the last 10 days, I’ve finished legwarmers, a hat, half a mitten, and about seven inches of my vest. Needless to say, my hands were stiff Monday while I was typing at work. But after eight hours of typing about Microsoft I desperately wanted something soothing and intelligent to do. My hands said, “No knitting!” and then I remembered the Goldberg Variations. I remembered how much I love Bach. And I remembered this passage from An Equal Music, which I read in college only once.
This passage ends the book; it’s thought by the narrator as he watches his (married)beloved perform a recital of Bach’s The Art of the Fugue: “Music, such music, is a sufficient gift. Why ask for happiness; why hope not to grieve? It is enough, it is to be blessed enough, to live from day to day and to hear such music–not too much, or the soul could not sustain it–from time to time.”
(By the way, I had copied that passage into an old journal sometime between May 7th and 16th, 2003, when I was moving. And if anyone thinks catching up on reading my blog lately makes them want to “go on antidepressants“–well, try searching through four years of journals to find a passage that asks, “why hope not to grieve?”. That’s all I’m saying.)
This Wordsworth sonnet came up in conversation last week, and I hadn’t thought of it in a long time. It’s a good poem to think of if you haven’t been hiking for a while, or if you’ve been writing too much Microsoft marketing materials, or if your roommate has found a Russian pen pal who wants to come visit. Very soothing poem, I’d say:
The world is too much with us; late and soon,
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers:
Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!
This Sea that bares her bosom to the moon;
The winds that will be howling at all hours,
And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers;
For this, for everything, we are out of tune,
It moves us not.–Great God! I’d rather be
A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn;
So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,
Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;
Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea;
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathed horn.
And in the same spirit, if you feel it’s all too much but you don’t want to read a poem, take a look at THIS:
BoingBoing has been posting some good stuff lately. Excellent.
It just gets better, really: My brother was joking that instead of a dog, I should get a Chia Pet. Then, in true brother fashion, he decided no, a Chia Pet was a bad idea because I probably wouldn’t be able to keep even that alive. So I saw him Sunday and he and his wife had found me this:
It’s a PLUSH Chia Pet, one that cannot be killed, no matter what, and will always “grow” and always love me. Its name is “Puppy.” I love Puppy. Sherlock Bowie loves Puppy. Life is grand.
|So I got the macaroni and cheese made this weekend, and it did not disappoint. (Anything that calls for 3/4 pound combined white cheddar and fontina is going to be good.) I looked for a good recipe online and found one, along with the history of mac and cheese, on marthastewart.com. (Apparently, Thomas Jefferson liked it so much he served it at dinner parties. Who knew?)
“It all started during the age of European colonization, when seafaring men transported dried macarone—one of the few staples that could survive a year aboard ship—from Italy to Britain and to the American colonies.
American colonists did not have the selection of fresh produce and other ingredients that the Italians had; their meals were improvised from a larder of fresh or sour milk, stale bread, and pork drippings. So the imported pasta would often be served with a simple white sauce—milk thickened with flour and butter. Sometimes it was baked in a casserole with buttered breadcrumbs on top. A recipe for a casserole of macaroni, white sauce, and grated yellow cheese was first recorded in the “Boston Cooking School Cookbook” in 1896.”
And look what else you can find online!