Sunday, October 6
i've been seeing a lot of sarah. we did dinner, duke lecture and scrabble together thursday night, and the next morning, when her class was cancelled, we made a trip to trinity. i had already been that morning, with nicole and hannah, but i knew i needed to go back to take full opportunity. so, after a brief labo interlude - it turned out that most of the nifty clothes on offer (best i've seen in a long time) didn't quite fit me right, so i only took a fun lacy white shirt, whose combination possibilities i'm still not sure on. but i did snag a stack of lps, including the harder they come, workingman's dead, moby grape's debut (with awesome huge poster), a 3-lp gieseking ravel set, and recordings of britten, shostakovich, schönberg, and prokofiev.
the marathon of evening activities began at 7. erica cartmill called me from across sharples with an invitation to join her elite band of pterodactyl hunters. of course i accepted, and so she and i, suzanne and andrew, nick goodness and ian kysel all drew bikini tops on our trash bags, and practiced our yodel - we signed up as the swedish bikini team. we managed to rack up an astounding amount of poker chips early, and i think had enough for a p-hunting licence before almost anyone else. the 'dactyls, however, were not playing fair - they had way over the legitimate number of guards, and claimed that each of our seven or so attempts was invalid for some reason or another. it was all very confusing. and it was dark too. hey, it was great fun anyway.
and who do you think else was there but hannah? we sparred a bit with the new-improved styrofoam swords, came back here for verklärte, then spiffed up and met again at paces. speaking of new-improved. or it will be when they do have a mural, and a bar, and food. entertainment by mr. d.l.k.m., and the availables, who, it turns out, are all that and a bag of chips. i was really impressed. sure, their set was loose and rough, they're still sort of new at it, but they have unmistakeable talent - songwriting, instrumentalism (esp. joe on piano, and emiliano on cello, whose voice and songwriting reminded me very much of joe jackson), and stage presence. also impressive range, from serious popsmith ballads to spot-on hilarious anthems of hedonism and self-deprecation. cool.
the olde club party has been adequately documented (wayward zab's awesome new haircut, check! wansom illicitly djing the good-days-sound, check! hannah's friends run away from us, check!) ellipsis, too, are old hat, but tighter than in past performances. vale now has long blond hair. joel has a pink shirt. we caught the end of their set, including numerous covers, my favorite of theirs ("stowaway ophelia"), and the essential "orange blossom special." back to central, more girlz'n'guitarz (merrick and, um, brad mehldau.) and, in the morning, st. germain, which it turns out isn't easy to dance to in a dorm room.
saturday was absolutely beautiful, as were today and friday too. the only problem is that it wasn't like this when we had planned our outdoor party. o whell. the nights are a bit cool though. i read a bunch, including five articles from this book, which all of which were interesting and some extremely so. good scholarship makes me happy, or at least it can. joel and i took in some crumb at underhill. i practiced and stuff. met lsat-drained ben at sharps, and i made myself nachos the real(ish) way.
another full-on-assault evening. we skipped the bcc diaspora labels discussion and read a bit of shrew and listened to the dead. i put on a longer shirt which still had on a walters sticker from the last time i saw gary and carole. the latter's birthday celebration was at the occupied weinstein's house. it was soo nice to be in a living room again. with people. 16 or so of us, and as ben says, the conversation really was nicely laid-back and singular. it broke up of course - i talked to mr. jonas about the cooking club, and alyssa and i shared some tiny moments (bringing in the cakes and candles; keeping a 'secret' of the disturbing green things in one of them) that made me quite happy. a humbly genteel gathering. carole asked "do you guys ever do anything low-class?" there were other good quotes i won't think of now. discussion of classes-in-common, mvnch, and the martial art of breaking things.
we caught the tail end of the wrc coffeehouse; specifically the last three songs of a set by katie davenport, who has managed to assemble, completely without my knowledge, a crack blues trio with mary blair on bass and andrew steel playing the best time i've ever heard from him. they did a great trad-styled blues piece, a hilarious britney spears parody about chemical structures (which one exactly?) and an amusing early work about "the life of the mind." cool. so, apparently, there really is the makings of a swat music scene. katie has a fantastic voice and great stage presence; i'm eager to hear more of her stuff.
what's-her-face showed up shortly after, and it seemed we had a saturday-nite foursome with ben and vicki, but the former never re-emerged after we went to his room for ear-plugging cottonballs, and the latter came and went, mostly went. so it was just we two; after a rocking set by skeleton key (jumpsuits! grunge-machine-funk! kerosene tanks and fire extinguishers and chains and wrenches on a hanger!) (they drove their van right up onto the ivy beside olde club, and took about an hour to load up all their gear) we wandered with the vague thought of finding company in danawell. instead, we found $17 on the path. not much to do in that situation besides take it, as odd as that feels. we figured it would be best to spend it that night, but instead maybe we'll put it towards a nice dinner or something. clearly, it will have to be spent on something frivolousish, and together.
tanakh made us sit down and threatened to put us to sleep too, so we came back here. we shared some yogurt (peach). the music (because you know that's how it goes): point, chet baker, and workingman's dead. we danced to the second. we even talked for a while - dredlocks, communities… anyway, we agreed it was comforting that we had things to talk about.
and then it was today. i remembered in time for my nine o'clock terpsichore rehearsal, for sarah gladwin and greg holt's piece. that was great fun. fun other dancers (dale, steve, jessie, sarah wood, hannah's friend adam, and another freshman hannah), fun dance phrase, fun weightsharing and lifts and even crunches and pushups at the end. two-hours-worth took a bit out of me, after come to think of it not too much sleep. but it felt good, and was a nice headstart on the day.
i neglected sunday pants again and just stayed in the same white ribbed shirt and green dancy pants through breakfast (with k. davenport, and then with sarah and sarah), back here with hannah again to listen to george crumb's "star child" (we listened to george clinton's "star child" too, by way of contrast), and to then underhill, reading and napping in the barn porch hammock, and to acme with elena and steve. i stocked up for a week of baking and semin breaks. i even got some double-sided tape.
ben came to reclaim his shakespeare. i burned a disc of latter-day b&s singles. i read more interesting n.y. dada articles (a bit overboard with the wordplay and genderizing, but hey, it's all in good fun.) a firedrill got me out of the room, and i kept on going, to the co-op where i didn't buy a $6 bottle of walnut oil, and to dinner with the always-amusing britta and her roomfolks. swung by weinstein's again, for a mixer and spices.
and then: the concert. what a way to culminate a weekend full of music and musical discoveries, especially for hannah, who was there for all of it and must have been about overloaded. david crumb's piece, though quite a show-offer for tony, was disappointing next to the other pieces of his we listened to for class (esp. the lovely cello and orchestra variations). prelude de l'apres-midi was gorgeous of course, and the mahler was really cool too, although i couldn't help nodding off at the very end.
inflight, nori, joe, and hannah relocated to the consipicuously empty front row during intermission, so as to get the full effect of the crumb premiere. i don't know what to say, but it was awesome. bizarre, to be sure; less so for its inventive textures (yeah, yeah, chisel on the piano strings, clicking stones together, scrapy owl-sounding thingy) than for the weirdness of folk tunes, sung "in a folk style" (which of course could never be if it had to be prescribed like that) by crumb's broadway-starring daughter ann (formidable and scary facial expressions), purposely "made strange," and even though 'embraced' into the classical arena, totally destroyed and reduced to parody, inadvertently, in the process. an interesting conundrum (far more than "how can there be a ring that has no end?")
if you think it seems like i spent an awful lot of time with hannah this weekend, you'd be right. yeah… it's good. she's a good kisser. i bought her a toothbrush today. i think it's getting better as we get to know each other, and hopefully the social integration aspects will come about, gradually. she definitely feels intimidated, and with good reason. but okay. it's an unusual position for me. but i'm second-guessing myself less, and just, i'm really happy.
i convinced her that she didn't need to stick around and help me with cake and invitations if she felt like her bio needed to be done. and so i baked alone, in the frustratingly understocked worth kitchen, with the practical and pleasant sounds of the beck album streaming from the next room. pumpkin-walnut ring, only not a ring and without walnut oil. but it came out really well, i think. i guess i'm not going to ice it.
oh my. i've got a busy, if probably quite enjoyable, week ahead of me. and then another, which needs to be provisioned for. my room is getting messy again. for instance, there's a cake on my bed. but my bed is made (mysteriously, in my absence.)
you, you, and you: you're invited to my party thursday.
this is just a modern rock song
this is just a sorry lament
we're four boys in corduroys
we're not terrific but we're competent