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Sunday, October 16, 2005

Chicken and rice krispies - I learn something new every day

My favorite neighbor to the north just chimed in. Hi, Gawdessness. Has anyone told you your writing is poetry? Consider it said.

This post will make no sense to anyone who hasn't read the comments on the last two posts.

We have some Irish too; however, most were Orangemen. One of my ancestors was impressed into the British navy and jumped ship in Canada. The family eventually made their way from Ontario to central New York where they settled. I'm trying to figure out how a British ship ended up in Ontario. Possibly made its way to a Great Lake? Or maybe he jumped ship elsewhere, went to Canada (shades of Viet Nam) and then back here. Stories often get jumbled in the retelling.

My birth father's family is Italian, from Lombard in the north of Italy. My adoptive mom is Welsh. Her family has been here (almost in the same spot) since before the Revolution. She's fond of saying that if the Daughters of the American Revolution had been around at that time, they'd all be Tories. She has never forgiven the DAR for their earlier position on race. For that matter, neither have I.

I just went and looked at my refrigerator. I will go buy a new tablet of lined paper and begin my list (after garbage pickup). Most of it is bottles of various sauces, mustard, catsup, all stashed in the door with one lime. Not much meat; it stays in the freezer until ready to use. Please don't make me count the freezer. I have a side by side fridge and a full freezer standing next to it. Is this considered a meme or an exercise in humility?

Bells ringing joyously by girls in church. Our super talented choir director has two bell choirs; one for adults and one for kids.

Let's see - what else. Vesta la Giubba is the aria from I Pagliacci made famous by Caruso. The man dresses in a clown suit and sings and sobs at the same time. So sad. Der Rosenkavalier is a Richard Strauss opera, a romance, and the scene they were performing was called "the presentation of the rose". A mezzosoprano sings the part of the Page who presents the rose; it's about an older but still beautiful woman who is being cast aside, a younger woman taking her place, and about learning to let go. For once in opera, nobody is folded, spindled, or mutilated. Usually, all but one or two of the main characteres die horrible deaths (all except for the villain who then gets to sing for 30 minutes about revenge. Anyhow, Rosenkavalier contains one of the most beautiful female trios ever written. (If you like opera, otherwise it's just three women bellowing). My taste in opera runs to familiar, oft repeated works. All of Puccini, most of Verdi, all the other Italians whose names end in i. Plus Mozart, Bizet, and a few others. I like what I can whistle or at least recognize when I've heard it a couple of times. Very little past the 1920's fits.

I've always liked opera; I was raised with it. I didn't attend a live performance until I was in my 40's even though I lived around the corner from the San Francisco Opera House. I had this mental picture of people in gowns and tuxes sneering down their long, blue, noses at me even though I probably knew as much or more about the music as many of them. My friend finally dragged me to a summer matinee performance (coincidentally of I Pagliacci and Cavalleria Rusticana; a short tragedy about adultery, a jilted woman, and revenge (hell has no fury like a woman scorned) - they're often performed together and called "Cav and Pag". For once, the villain dies. We showed up in our jeans and were in good company. Except for maybe opening night, no one cares. Then I found a friend who worked in costumes at the Opera and could buy orchestra tickets for $5.00. He wouldn't go because all he could see was the flaws - a hemline 1/2 inch to short, an unironed pleat, etc. I got to a lot of opera over the next few years to make up for the many I missed because of feeling less than.

I remember telling the "me and the opera" story before. Before I hit publish, I'm going to check back and see if I'm repeating myself. I didn't see it but as much as I run my mouth, I might have missed it. Oh well. Chalk it up to approaching old age and consider this an encore performance if it's already on the blog somewhere.

Classic Arts has a website and I think it lists the station. It runs here on a small station that shows religious programs the rest of the time. It runs from 11:00 p.m. to 6:30 a.m. here - no advertising and provided free to the stations which broadcast it.

I do apologize to the kids when I'm wrong and sometimes I am. I'm also willing to discuss and change my mind once in a while. That's just good manners on my part. Also, please, thank you, and excuse me go a long way in this world, no matter how outdated some may think they are.

Girls are out playing and generally running amok - Elcie and Carol just made a pan of brownies. Life is uncertain - eat dessert first. I checked to make sure they wouldn't poison anyone. Nope, they're safe.

Most people are nice and most are relatively sane. The ones who aren't make the most noise and get the most press. Sometimes it causes us to be more frightened than we need to be.

L. your code word of the day could be a tranquilizer or it could be a sneeze. Take your choice.


Uncle Roger said...

I too grew up with Opera... I was about 13 before I knew there was anything other than Opera and Classical. Still, I'm not all that knowledgeable. (Despite having performed thrice with SF Opera and having sung with the SF Symphony.) It did, however, give me a great diversity in tastes... My CD collection covers just about every genre you can think of. I really like Rossini and Mozart for opera, but my dad was simply nuts about Verdi.

btw, one of the best lessons I ever learned from my dad was that "Life isn't Fair." Any time I said "that's not fair!" (or anything similar), he'd respond with "Life isn't fair." I think I wrote a post about that once. Anyway, it's definitely true.

I dunno how you manage to post so much! between you and L., I may just have to quit my job to keep up!

Granny said...

And here's another from Roger - the two latest. Two more to locate.

Angel said...

Ohhhh I love opera too! I was 20, had incredible seats for Don Giovanni, and I was hooked. Puccini is my favorite operatic composer :)