friday random eleven: “academia and artistic expression” edition

06 Oct

As I mentioned earlier, I’ve been plowing through class work all week to the point that Earned Value Management formulas are dripping out of my ears (my nose is too occupied by the mucus – I ran out of zyrtec this week, replaced it with a claritin for one day, and I think that was enough to require my system to readjust – I’ve been sneezing and sniffling like crazy with allergy symptoms the last 48 hours), so I haven’t had time for much else (besides the work crap -putting out fires and saying nice things about myself for the end-of-year self eval for HR- I had to do as well). I am learning some things, and I’ve made some new virtual friends with my team who I’ve been spending about eight hours on the phone with each day during my eleven or twelve hour shifts this week.

That said, I did get end up finally hitting close to the mark that Kirsten wanted on a demo track for her new tune that I quickly knocked out Monday evening, and I didn’t totally embarrass myself at ceili class – I’m reasonably competent at the Fairy Reel, Walls of Limerick, and Bonfire Dance now, with just three classes under me. I don’t know where my feet go most of the time, and I still spin the wrong way about sixty percent of the time, but I’m getting better. Thankfully, we all have fun doing it. It was actually kind of what I needed Thursday night to knock out some of the stress, since I only got ten miles in on the bike this week (though each of those miles averaged between four and five minutes, so I was really pushing), and the 150-250 push-ups or so I’ve been doing every day (to work upper body and tighten up the loose skin I’m left with after the weight loss) the last two weeks aren’t as enjoyable as the biking.

Also, apropos of nothing, in a certain post by a certain daughter of mine on social media, women I know are debating the merits of my ass on the internet. This is a weird, weird thing, and it’s absolutely the last thing I’d ever expect to happen. I suppose this means my fitness program is working.

Friday, I spend the morning wrapping my class, taking the exam around lunchtime (hopefully it won’t take too long – the review feels like it’s pretty targeted), then hitting the road for Chestertown MD and its annual Harry Potter Festival. Humdingers are on at 7pm tonight, and play shows tomorrow at 1pm in the park and 7:30 or so in the pub. It should be fun. I’ve been trying to make this one for years now, and I’m finally going to do it (though i don’t necessarily like my timing, exam running on central time is a pain). I’ll still have five or six hours to cover 200 miles or so (even with Friday DC traffic in the way), so I should be good, but wouldn’t mind some positive thoughts or offerings to the traffic gods on my behalf this afternoon.

Today’s tunes aren’t bad; nice mix this time, though number four (and six a bit, actually) mostly makes me think of This guy (and his various copycats), who always make events like Dragon*Con so much more interesting:

  1. “Back in Black” – AC/DC
  2. “Heavy Duty Judy (live) – Frank Zappa
  3. “Love Is A Battlefield”- Pat Benatar
  4. “Careless Whisper” – Wham!
  5. “Lonely Boy” – The Black Keys
  6. “If You Leave” – Orchestral Manoeuvers in the Dark
  7. “Dancing With Myself” – Billy idol
  8. “Aqualung (live 2003)” – Jethro Tull
  9. “One Way or Another” – Blondie
  10. “Svarta Ankan” – Falconer
  11. “Big Sur” – The Thrills

Finally, with the loss of Tom Petty this week, this video’s been popping up a lot. So much talent on that stage. Everybody loves Prince’s barnburner of a guitar solo, though my personal favorite bit is Dhani Harrison on acoustic rhythm guitar there in the back. As things really get rolling, he’s there doing his thing with a big shit-eating grin on his face, like he can’t believe that he’s up there playing music with all these amazing talents. Even though he’s a Beatle’s kid, he still looks like he feels like I would if I was in his place; in awe of (and maybe a little intimidated by) all these rock gods, but ridiculously excited and grateful to be small part of it. Dhani Harrison is us.

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