Sunday, January 24, 2010

Dinner is Finally Served

A few months ago I started a literary-quasi-artistic endeavour. Then I stopped. I mentioned that due to unforeseen circumstances, the morsels of creative sustenance had been devoured, and my plate of inspiration was clear. I had hoped that in a few weeks time I would be able to finish. Weeks turned into months, and my desire to finish waned. However, I can now say that the piece is finished in its rough form (which turns out to be its intended form). It's not publishable to say the least, but it was a fun exercise. No doubt my mother (God bless her), will read the final product and assume that everything in it is absolute truth, as if I was writing biographically. I think it's a parental tendency. In response I give you these words:

There never was a good biography of a good novelist. There couldn't be. He is too many people if he's any good. -F.Scott Fitzgerald

While the story of the character writing this letter is far from over, I am finished with him. Perhaps he'll return in twenty years, or perhaps this exercise has bludgeoned him like Smerdyakov handled Fyodor*. Regardless, here is the final page I will post here on the site. If you want to read the full piece, email ithrewabrickthroughawindow[at]gmail[dot]com for a copy.

*Confused? Go out and purchase a copy of Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov. Please, please, PLEASE read it!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The Discipline of Listening

This morning, while I was making-eating-enjoying breakfast, I slid Side C of the Swell Season vinyl on to my record player, and joyfully listened to the final side - including the vinyl only addition of "Something Good" (which was, well, something good!). There was something calming about the whizz and crackle of the needle sent through the speakers that made me appreciate the sound that much more. Though I wasn't fully focused on the sound (I was after all preparing and eating my breakfast), there was more focus on it than when I'm on my Mac, or doing some menial task. Earlier in the week, I spent a morning listening to my Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Thyme LP, with little to no interruption, and it was beautiful. Just beautiful.

My listening practices are changing...

The last time that I listened to my iPod was on New Year's Day, while flying from Minneapolis to Toronto. There was nobody sitting beside me who I could talk to, and I wanted to hear some familiar songs while journalling about my Urbana experience. With this, I am okay. I write that to say that the days of me popping the earbuds in before heading out of the house are seemingly over. I don't want to listen to music on my iPod anymore. At least not when I'm in potentially social situations (ie; anytime people are present), because I become absent. I want to be present. I want to either enjoy music in the seclusion of a quiet afternoon with myself, or communally with friends. Not when I could be listening to the weather's song outside, or talking to someone on the subway.

I say all this to say...
My listening practices are changing.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Jesus would appear in sky, like the aliens in Independence Day

I have returned from Urbana09. Still processing it all. There were too many highlights to name, but here is one of my favourite talks from the week.

Money and Power: Oscar Muriu from Urbana 09 on Vimeo.