It’s been a gorgeous weekend in Mondoville; I spent enough of yesterday afternoon outside to get pinked up, though not scorched or sore, and I’m currently in my office with the window open and the TeenBeat Mayhem stream providing my soundtrack. I have papers I could grade, but today feels like a good afternoon to procrastinate, so…
Yesterday’s solar exposure was the result of the Mondoville women’s lacrosse match, where our crew knocked off the Railsplitters of Lincoln Memorial U (the college one town over from the Mads’ new home). Later, the men completed the sweep for the home teams, but having had enough sun for the day, I bailed after game 1.
I seem to have become the semi-official faculty rooter for the women’s squad. I try to get to a variety of events each year, both athletic and otherwise, because I want the kids to recognize that I’m interested in them outside the classroom as well as in. But last year I went to a couple of lacrosse matches, and I was impressed by our women’s coach’s positive, energetic sideline demeanor. Even when we didn’t win, I liked how he stayed upbeat and encouraging. Since Coach Kelly was new here at the time, I sent him in an e-mail letting him know that I liked his style, and I’ve made a point of getting to games when I can.
I still have remarkably little understanding of the game, and appreciate none of the sport’s subtleties. (In point of fact, I realize I understand remarkably little about even the sports to which I’ve had more exposure. But that’s okay — I know other stuff.) But there’s something to be said for naive spectatorship as well, and I’m not there as an analyst, in any case. I just sit behind the Wolves’ bench, applaud when we score goals, and listen to the spectators who know more about what’s going on. Now if I could only find a team T-shirt in my size.
Spring Break starts next weekend, and while I had originally planned to head to Nashville, I got an invitation from the Spawn to visit her new digs in the greater Terpville area, and there was no way I would turn that down. So Nashville will wait until term’s end in May, and I’m heading north instead to crash with the Spawn and Squeeze. Reports will follow.
Meanwhile, I showed my Shakespeare class an RSC production of Macbeth this week, and it occurred to me that this semester is going to be a version of the Ian McKellen Film Festival, as he’ll be playing the title roles in Richard III and Lear, as well as the Scottish Play. My students are more used to seeing him as Gandalf or Magneto, which won me a few chuckles when I intoned “Duncan, Thou. Shalt Not. Pass.”
On the sillier side, we’re watching the play on YouTube, with auto-generated captions (at the request of a student who isn’t a native speaker.) The captions sometimes leave a lot to be desired. For example, in Act II, Scene 4, the Old Man tells Ross, “God’s benison go with you.” The captions read, “God’s penis on you.” And I thought the Porter had the funny lines.
Just a reminder that my story “Bear Hunt” will be appearing in the April issue of Dark Yonder magazine. Quite a few fine writers will be in the issue, including Alice Archer, Kevin A. Brown, S.A. Cosby, Joseph Hirsch, Preston Lang, and Meagan Lucas. Of course, it helps when the editors are Eryk Pruitt and Katy Munger, so quality is simply to be expected. Keep an eye on the quarterly’s website — and you might even want to pick up the first issue to get caught up.
A couple of weeks ago, I offered a review of William Kotzwinkle’s new Felonious Monk novel, Bloody Martini. I was delighted to hear from Mr. Kotzwinkle this weekend, asking to use my review at his website. I said yes, of course, but in the meantime, you can find it here.
I have to say that one of the things I enjoy most about my writing sort-of-career is that it has allowed me not only to make the acquaintance, but to earn the respect, of writers whose work have shaped my own life and world. I never would have seen that coming, and I’m grateful. My folks would have gotten a kick out of it too.
I’ll wrap this one up with a track I heard yesterday. While the mid-60s in the USA produced garage rock, the British and European version was presented under the heading of “freakbeat”, with its own share of obscurities and one-hit wonders, including this one.
Sun Dragon was a British studio project from producer Derek Lawrence. They cut a few singles, but are today best known for the presence of Jon Lord (keys), Ian Paice (drums), and Ritchie Blackmore (guitar), who would soon become much better known as three-fifths of Deep Purple. This track reminds me more of a bubblegummy version of the Move than the Purps, but I like it, and thought I’d share it with you. Here’s “Peacock Dress.”
See you soon!