Monday, October 31, 2005

all treats, no tricks

I thought tonight was going to be a total loss in the Halloween department. Nary a trick-or-treater - and thus a nearly-untouched bowl of candy - until the doorbell finally rang (and Scout freaked out) around 8:20. These two kids already had a quarter of a pillowcase of candy each. So they got to add to their stash, I got to say I had at least one trick-or-treating family...everybody's a winner.

Meanwhile, I feel as if there are still bits of weekend residue left unmentioned, a few loose ends yet untied....

First, the interesting lunch conversation I had with Andrew Corsello. We were continuing a dialogue about music and silence that we had begun the weekend before at the retreat. The gist of the conversation is summed up in my October 18th post - namely, that the ability to record music has completely changed the way we think about music and the way music affects us. I should mention that Andrew is a pianist of near-professional caliber on top of being an exceptional journalist. He had the opportunity to interview several of the world's greatest pianists (Emmanuel Ax, Stephen Hough, Sviatoslav Richter, etc.) for a GQ article a couple of years ago and was kind enough to pass on a partial transcript of his interview with Stephen Hough. There's a great portion in there about how one loses taste for things when stimulation is unending. Comparing the easy access of recorded music to a constant eating of chocolate, Hough says, "I adore chocolate, yes, but all these musical influences — it's like having a chocolate mouthwash. You can not keep the same excitement for the flavor." Consequently, I decided to spend a couple of days avoiding music whenever possible. The effects of this self-inflicted musical famine were twofold: I found that a few moments of quiet, especially while driving, really did re-awaken my dulled senses. It forces alertness. And when I finally sat down to break the musical fast, it was deliberate. The music was beautiful. It tasted like candy again.

On a completely different topic, I was planning to launch into a much-too-lengthy description of a bizarre Friday night and Saturday...but it's really summed up fairly simply. The Friday night band party/Halloween kegger was in a weird low-ceilinged second floor practice space overlooking some small parking lot downtown. It basically consisted of costumes ranging from a guy wrapped entirely in duct tape to a frightening Smurfette, not to mention a U2 cover band that was dead on...except for the singer. The party was still in crescendo when we took off about 2:00 AM. The mandatory next-morning greasy breakfast commenced around 11:00 Saturday. There was a waitress we thought was really cute until (and maybe even after?) we noticed she was slightly cross-eyed; there was a tech geek/serial killer-looking guy sitting at the next table downing Budweisers; Colin dissected a botched Western omelette and removed all the mushroom "tumors" with surgical precision; and the rest of the day was devoted to college football and not yardwork. Pretty satisfying.

Happy Halloween, one and all.

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