Friday, August 17, 2012

Miscellaneous half dozen

71 blogs a day from 71 friends: might actually be doable  - as you may know, I found my motivation to write a blog surged when some friends accepted it into their mailboxes daily and sometimes responded.  I was indebted to them for sharing their attention, a valuable and much sought resource these days.  I realized I was writing and they were receiving.  Was I receiving?  I imagined all 71 getting the writing bug, expecting me to receive and digest each nugget.  Then, I thought," I have handled classes of about 200 students online.  Surely, I can handle 71 blogs."  So, write away!

social network of automobiles - it pays to keep your eyes open for new areas of our lives that are becoming successfully computerized.  Writing, filing, calculating have been done for 30 years.  Then, photography.  Many other areas I can't think of or don't know about but I do know about driving.  Driver-less cars, cars that are communicating with other cars.

the internet of things that is emerging - Ok, my car is in touch with my refrigerator and the two of them realize I am nearly out of milk, bread and eggs.  As I approach my favorite grocery, the fridge tells the car to remind me to pick those items up before coming home.

the value of indifference - a weak place in American life is the opposite of gung-ho.  Ho-gung, quietude, serenity, calm appreciation of ourselves, our lives, our good luck.  We tend to salute rah-rah, energy, charging up the hill, fighting our way through, on and on.  I may start supplying reminders for a small fee to slow down, to practice indifference and an attitude of Who cares?  Just writing that feels traitorous, unAmerican but I am convinced that much good comes from genuinely not caring, knowing that in 100 years it won't matter

how to create a filler chorus for an opera - I really like lots of music that was written for operas.  Most of them are not in English and I tend to listen without paying attention to the words, the meaning.  Robert Greenberg of The Great Courses company can fix that with his fiery, animated delivery and full knowledge of music history and practice.  I do have "The Elixir of Love" in English and I listen to it often.  Recently, I found a libretto of the opera for Kindle.  It includes a short synopsis that helped me understand the details of the plot better.  

Along the way, I find an interesting clue as to how 2nd rate operas
fill-in choruses are created.  I learned from Greenberg that opera has had various sorts of rules and formats.  The libretto said that these fill-in choruses are sometimes recognized by containing a group of people with the same occupation singing about the delights of their work.  Thus, we have happy farmers tickled with their lot, smiley fishermen signing about the joys of their lives, etc.  

Finally, two fun, light books at low prices are "Cloaks and Veils" ($2.99 in Kindle format on Amazon) by J.C. Carleson (a novel by an ex-CIA operative in real life) and "Our Husband" by Stephanie Bond (99¢ in Kindle format on Amazon), a novel of a married man who goes ahead and marries two more women, none of whom are at all happy with his action. I read Carleson and we are halfway through the wives' problems.

Main blog: Fear, Fun and Filoz
Main web site: Kirbyvariety

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