Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I learned a new word today: lagom. It's a Swedish word which encapsulates the concept "just the right amount". A precept of mine.

Life is not in balance lately, because so much energy goes to working. There's no question that I require the income, but there's also the empty feeling which comes from being on the clock so much. A lot of the time, I stay home and cook.

Pasta with red pepper, pesto, squash tian

This past week, I did get out a bit. I caught the end of Cold Turkey, the John Lennon tribute at Nietzsche's.

Party Squad Experience

Since I had to work until midnight, I did not perform, although I thoroughly enjoyed the sing-along after. I heard Brian Eno say recently that singing with other people is one of the best things you can do.

"Well, there are physiological benefits, obviously: You use your lungs in a way that you probably don't for the rest of your day, breathing deeply and openly. And there are psychological benefits, too: Singing aloud leaves you with a sense of levity and contentedness. And then there are what I would call "civilizational benefits." When you sing with a group of people, you learn how to subsume yourself into a group consciousness because a capella singing is all about the immersion of the self into the community. That's one of the great feelings — to stop being me for a little while and to become us. That way lies empathy, the great social virtue."

On Saturday, after a wild-goose chase through BECPL microfilm for a non-existent obituary,

Party Squad Experience

The Musician and I went to the Grand Opening of the new Burchfield-Penney Art Center (warning: sound), a 31-hour event (PDF). I was pleased to go, happy to be part of such a sweet move up for Buffalo and art. As I felt about the new Erie Canal terminus, it was well-done, feels like something from another city. (By which I mean, I think, easy to navigate, pleasant, not worn in yet, not broken, not rusted.)

Burchfield-Penney inside

It also felt rather like Wegman's, where you see everyone you ever knew in your life, but don't really chat with them. I saw folks I knew from probably every decade of my existence. It's my town.

And then it was time to get the hell out of there and have a Manhattan at The Place.

Tom & Jerry party