1. My friend Mike sent me this recording of some stuff by Arvo Part, which I'd never heard before; it's been lingering in my head for the past week or so. I just bought a copy for my mom; Dad, if you're out there, I will send you one as well, I just don't have your mailing address, for some reason. It's not changing my DNA the way that Steve Reich's "Music for 18 Musicians" did last January, but it's been hitting me in some pretty deep places all the same.
2. Speaking of old recordings: on Friday, I got an e-mail with the mp3s of my high school rock band's EP, which we recorded in the summer of either 1992 or 1993, I can't remember which. The bassist managed to track down the recording engineer who still had the master tapes in his new studio in Colorado; for a nominal fee he mixed them down and burned us a CD. I'm debating putting it up on my Vox site. On the one hand, it's more than a little cringe-inducing; on the other hand, I was 17 years old and didn't know anything about anything, and so in that respect it's kinda charmingly naive. And to be perfectly fair, there's one song that we recorded that I still really, really like, and our recording is actually pretty good.
3. Got to spend some time yesterday playing with my M13, and I'm even more in love with it than I already was. I was sorta dreading having to spend hours setting it up with all the sounds I want, but it's actually really easy to use and - coolest of all - it saves your settings automatically. Certainly you really get into it and set up really elaborate templates, but for the most part it works really intuitively and it's rendered all my existing pedals thoroughly obsolete. Still dying to try it out in a loud room, though.
4. Finished Anathem last week. Overall, I liked it; it didn't quite do everything I hoped it would, but it was a pretty enjoyable read.
5. Which reminds me. I guess the thing about Infinite Jest that really knocked me out was that it actually did do all the things I hoped it would, and then it did a bunch of other things that I'd never even thought possible. I'm very strongly considering picking it back up again, although I do have The Corrections arriving via Amazon in a few days (along with the Godfather Blu-Ray set).
6. The New York football Giants are 3-0! Granted, they've only played lousy teams thus far, but still. I gotta say, though, Eli Manning may be a 4th quarter messiah and a Superbowl MVP, but I still have a hard time putting my faith in a QB who looks like he's 14 years old.
7. Watched a little bit of last night's Yankee Stadium Farewell game. I have 3 special Yankee Stadium memories, all of which involve jongre .
The first was in... hmm... I can't remember the year, but it was late in the season and we were down by a few runs. My brother and I are blessed with the unfortunate ability to make great things happen by having to leave the room and pee; at this particular junction in the game, I acknowledged the duty I had to perform and went out to the men's room. Sure enough, I heard an enormous roar and felt the stadium rocking back and forth while I was in there; somebody went ahead and hit a home run that put us back on top. The batter took a curtain call, but Jongre and I both knew that it was really me who took care of business.
The second was on closing day, 1998. 1998 was an amazing year to be a Yankee fan, and yet closing day was pretty laid back - mostly because we had clinched the division in late August and so there wasn't a tremendous amount to play for. Shane Spencer was doing his Roy Hobbs impersonation, hitting his 10th home run of the month, and so that was pretty exciting. Midway through the game, Jongre and I saw some empty seats in the front row of the level we were on, and so we moved down. Shortly thereafter, the Jumbotron announced that Mark McGuire had just hit his 70th home run of the season; we decided to stand up and applaud. This isn't especially newsworthy, but the following Monday, everybody we saw said they'd seen us on TV at that particular moment. Even more odd, there was a Joe Torre special at the ESPYs that year, and the video package for that tribute had the two of us in it as well.
Finally, we were at the Stadium for Game 4 of the 2000 World Series - the last WS the Yankees won. It's the only postseason baseball game I've ever been to; it was freezing cold and the place was absolutely electric. There were some drunk college kids behind us who had painted Z-I-M-M-E-R on their bare chests; they didn't last past the 4th inning. After the final out, the place went nuts, and none of us left; we all stood and cheered and hugged and soaked it all in. The image I remember most, though was after the game; I remember finally leaving the Stadium about an hour later, and the street underneath the subway was as packed as it could possibly be; thousands and thousands of people crammed together, delerious and pretty much totally unable to move. Normally this would send me into a bit of a panic attack, but I was still blissed out, and chose instead to simply go with the flow.
Goodbye, Yankee Stadium.