Categories
Events

Went to Capitals Game

Dylan, Yavar, and I went to Capital One to see the Capitals play the Nashville Predators. Lost 5-4. The Caps goaltender accidentally passed the puck to the other team, which resulted in a goal. Whoops.

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Big crowd.

Categories
Books

Portraits and Observations: The Essays of Truman Capote

Categories
Gardening

Planted Winterberries in the Commons

Nancy and I went to Falls Church Merrifield and bought some Winterberries for the Commons (I also got a couple of our yard).

Joyce and I planted them in the Commons.

Categories
Events

Steve Forbert Show

Went with Dylan to the Steve Forbert show at the City Winery in DC last night. He played the Jackrabbit Slim in its entirety, in celebration of the 40th anniversary of its release. His band was truly outstanding! City Winery is a fine place to see a show, more than decent food.

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Categories
Poetry

THE HEART

By Emily Dickinson

Categories
Events

Shin Yun

Saw the Shin Yun troupe at the George Mason Concert Hall. A somewhat strange mixture of Chinese traditional dance and religious cult propaganda. The group is banned in China. Part of the show focused on the repression of free expression in China, religious expression in particular. The dancing was entertaining and the show was educational.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shen_Yun

Categories
Poetry

Much Madness

by Emily Dickinson

Categories
Poetry

WITHIN my reach!

by Emily Dickinson

Categories
Books

THE WORLD According to MR. ROGERS

The book consists of a series of excerpts from various works by Fred Rogers. I suppose it’s fair to say that Mr. Rogers was a bit cornball and simplistic. It’s certainly understandable why have many people, including me, didn’t pay a lot of attention to him.

But after seeing the recent movie, A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, doing some reading about his life, and reading this book, I can see the value of Mr. Rogers. Actually, his thoughts on love and kindness are profound.

Categories
Quotes

I have always called talking about feelings “important talk”. Knowing that feelings are natural and normal for all of us can make it easier for us to share them with one another. – Fred Rogers

Categories
Quotes

The real issue in life is not how many blessings we have, but what we do with our blessings. Some people have many blessings and hoard them away. Some have few and give everything away. – Fred Rogers

Categories
Quotes

If you could only sense how important you are to the lives of those you meet; how important you can be to the people you may never even dream of. There is something of yourself that you leave at every meeting with another person. – Fred Rogers

Categories
Quotes

When you combine your own intuition with a sensitivity to other people’s feelings and moods, you may be close to the origins of valuable human attributes such as generosity, altruism, compassion, sympathy, and empathy. – Fred Rogers

Categories
Quotes

I hope you’re proud of yourself for the times you said “yes,” when all it meant was extra work for you and was seemingly helpful only to somebody else. – Fred Rogers

Categories
Quotes

What makes the difference between wishing and realizing our wishes question what lots of things, of course, but the main one, I think karma is whether we link our wishes to our act of work. It may take months or years, but it’s far more likely to happen when we care so much that we will work as hard as we can to make it happen. And when we are working towards the realization of our wishes, some of our greatest strengths come from the encouragement of people who care about us. – Fred Rogers

Categories
Quotes

Listening is a very active awareness of the coming together of at least two lives. Listening, as far as I’m concerned, is certainly a prerequisite of love. One of the most essential ways of saying “I love you” is being a receptive listener. – Fred Rogers

Categories
Films

Films – 2019

I didn’t see any this year that I would call a great – or even very good. Below is a list of the ones I did see (that I remember), roughly in the order of “goodness”.

  • Marriage Story. I didn’t expect to like this one. Noah Bauckman, I suspected, specialized in upper-middle-class navel-gazing. And I suppose this movie has some of that, but I thought it was overall a very intelligent look at marriage/divorce.
  • Rocketman. Elton John bio-picture. The only movie this year that I felt showed some decent imagination.
  • A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood. Fred Rodgers bio. Tom Hanks made a good Mr. Rodgers. Not sure how it was not nominated for an Academy Award.
  • Richard Jewel. Clint Eastwood picture about the bombing at the 1996 Olympic games. Paul Hauser deserved a nomination as well. The movie was highly criticized for its right-wing politics – unfair – and for its portrayal of the journalist from the Atlanta Constitution as a whore, which was very fair criticism. Entertaining movie though.
  • Ford vs. Ferrari. The story of the rivalry between the two companies to win the race at Le Mans. The real story is much more interesting than the movie, which was a bit stupid. But entertaining.
  • Dolimite is My Name. Biopic of Rudy Ray Moore. Entertaining, Eddie Murphy is always good.
  • Uncut Gems. Adam Sandler is fine in this Sardie brothers film. The story is preposterous, and not all that engaging. Overrated. But good effort.
  • Irishman. Scorsese’s mob movie. Eh.

Categories
Books

Arbitrary Stupid Goal by Tamara Shopsin

Written by the daughter of Kenny Shopsin, the founder of the famously quirky restaurant which carries his surname.

Written in a quirky style, with funky typography. Primarily short antidotes about her family and the restaurant. It starts off kind of slow but becomes a lot of fun about halfway through.

The title refers to her father’s philosophy. Nothing really matters, but dedicating oneself to something actually makes it matter. (I may be wildly mispresenting his thoughts.)

Categories
Books

The Ascent by Volker Ullrich

An analysis of the rise of Hilter. Many parallels to the rise of Trumpism, albeit on a much larger scale.

Really something of a boring book. Probably important for future historians, but too much detail for the average reader.

Categories
Poetry

Success

by Emily Dickinson

Categories
Books

He Won’t Get Far on Foot – John Callahan

An autobiography of John Callahan, who was a well-known cartoonist. His work is pretty edgy, some would call insensitive (I wouldn’t).

He was a raging alcoholic from an early age. He describes in harrowing detail – and humor – his journey through the hell of alcoholism, which ended up with his being in terrible drunken car accident, which led to his struggle with being a quadriplegic, and eventually salvation through cartooning.

Highly entertaining book.

Categories
Books

A Full Life: Reflections at Ninety – Jimmy Carter

Didn’t take notes on this one.

What a great, great man. His life is an inspiration.

Categories
Films

The House Is Black – Forough Farrokhzad

Forough Farrokhzad was an Iranian poet.

The movie is credited for paving the way for the Iranian New Wave. The subject is a leper colony in Iran. Tragic. Her poetry accompanies the video. Very effective.

documentary on her life:
https://www.imvbox.com/watch-persian-movie-iranian-movies/sarde-sabz

Categories
Films

Cold War – Paweł Pawlikowski

Very beautiful movie, liked it a great deal. Plot a clear ripoff of Casablanca (and probably many other films). Doesn’t matter. The camera work is very fine. The director keeps it moving just perfectly. The story, despite a lot of gaps, is compelling. Two thumbs up. Probably watch again someday.

Categories
Books

Book of Luke

Pretty much the same story as all the others.