Movie #2: Les Glaneurs et la glaneuse

Yes, another French film has made its way to my list. This one is by the great Agnès Varda, a filmmaker whose birthday I share, which has made me feel even closer to her than I did before I knew–and that is to say, very close. I feel that everything she made throughout her life […]

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The Cowboy

As we leave our dens in this new post-pandemic era, I have found myself thinking about things like commuter rail. My last job was near a train stop, but in the great nation of America, car-free transportation is often inconvenient, if not impossible. Although my last job was a short walk from a T stop, […]

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Book #1: Pale Fire by Vladmir Nabokov

I first read Pale Fire the summer after my first semester of graduate school. I was staying in a grand residence near the Washington University music school and alumni house, house sitting for a math professor on sabbatical. The home was exquisite, despite some wear and tear, with hand painted wallpaper in the dining room, […]

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One hundred

Two nights ago, my daughter asked me about my favorite movies. There are so many I like that I couldn’t narrow it down. Same with songs, and books. After some hemming and hawing, I could think up an answer, but wouldn’t it be nice to be able to name these things? I haven’t tried to […]

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unraveling

I have been cleaning out my house. I’m not going anywhere, as far as I know, but the accumulation of years has been an source of frustration. You see, I am not fond of tidying up. I make messes, and I do my best to deal with the immediate things, after cooking, for example. I […]

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my piano

When I was very young, I had a strange obsession with the piano. We didn’t have one when this all started, probably when I was four or five years old, but every time we visited a friend with one, I liked to sit at the long bench and stretch my fingers across the keys. I […]

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kinder, gentler

The night before last, I found myself on the edge of a field at dusk, watching the spectacle of the male American woodcock. During mating season, he sits near the trees and makes a funny beeping sort of noise, then spirals high into the air before descending as he chirps. I had never seen this […]

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