For some strange reason my normally boring existence has been pretty busy these past couple weeks. There are so many things I want to talk about, but I fear I will forget before I have time to do so. So, here is the short version, possibly to be revisted later. To make a short list, here is what I have been up to:
The Battle of the Hyacinths
Viewing the The Exorcism of Emily Rose - Just as quick aside, I've gone to more movies in the past month than I probably have all year. I don't know what's possessed me, though I do know that my pre-Emily Rose self-creep out of wondering if I could handle the movie in all of its demonic creepiness was way scarier than the actual movie was.
Liederabend der Romantik (with Heidrun Kordes and Thorsten Larbig). I'm going to admit right now that Romantic Lieder are not necessarily my favorite genre of music. I really enjoy Romantic piano pieces. Vocally, the Lieder are sometimes just too much for me. Even though I appreciate the level of difficulty in singing them, I tend to prefer vocal music of a simpler, more melodic structure.
That said, the Lieder do have some definite plusses. The piano accompaniment is almost always gorgeous, and they mostly borrow their lyrics from Romantic poetry, which I do love. Best of all, though, is that they tend toward the gloriously melodramatic. Even the tortured soul program title "Let, oh world, oh let me be" was melodramatic. My favorite piece by far was Brahms' Mädchenfluch (A Maiden's Curse), which features lyrics like:
For, you see, Jawo has
Muddied the water.
How, then, o dear mother,
Could I have bleached it?
Curse him, mother, dear mother!
I will curse him too.
May God in bright heaven grant
That he might hang himself
On a terrible little tree...
On my white neck!
May God in bright heaven grant
That he might lie imprisoned,
Imprisoned deep in a dungeon...
On my white breast!
It goes on with the cursing from there, but I think it gives a good taste of the piece. In fairness to the performers, there was more to the evening than melodrama. Both really were incredible musicians. The particular style of music just isn't my favorite. Still, I am glad the I went. It was an interesting experience and I did learn a lot about the genre that I did not know, which is never a bad thing.
Seeing The Corpse Bride
Visiting the Shanghai Tunnels
Continued visits to the gym (Soon I will be so buff, no one will recognize me! Well, either that or I will look a little less weebilesque.)
Taking the Northwest Earth Institute's Voluntary Simplicity course
Attending a performance of The Lion King
I know I said I would revisit this later, but while the feeling is still new, I just have to say WOW. The whole production was incredible. It even overcame my Disney prejudices! The costume design was beautiful and innovative in the most of the time I was not thinking "Huh. I'm spending two hours watching a grown men dressed up and pretending to pounce around like lions. Greeaat." The costumes were proportioned in such a way that, for example, the actor's face became the chin of the mask. The costumes managed to avoid being cumbersome and really did just become part of the characters.
Will I expound on all of these things as planned? Probably not, though hopefully I'll get around to a few. Either way, I have accounted for my whereabouts for a good portion of the past week or two.