Saturday, March 01, 2014

Closing tabs

I have been increasingly conscious, in recent years, of the sense that I am leading exactly the life I should be, and how fortunate I am in that - I like all the things in my life very much, the only problem is that there are too many of them! Today I am basically so tired that all I can do is lie in bed (I am trying to finish reading a book manuscript I need to write a reader's report on this weekend, working in bed is contraindicated from a sleep hygiene point-of-view but sometimes it is the only way to get anything done).

(I always think that if I were a mathematician, I would often be working in bed with my eyes closed!)

Flew back from Cayman Wednesday evening, got my first set of shots at the new allergy doctor Thursday morning, taught Thomas Jefferson Thursday afternoon, had my demanding Friday-morning meeting and then after nap and regrouping met G. at the Public Theater in the evening for a grippingly watchable Anthony and Cleopatra (not a perfect production, slightly too many disparate elements that don't quite gel, but you can't take your eyes off it - I really loved it) and dinner afterwards at the very nice newish restaurant there.

At that point it was after midnight and frigidly cold, but it proved impossible to get a cab, so I walked G. home via Greene St. and then headed across town on foot to the 1 train. Got home around 1:15, but it takes a couple hours for me to wind down after that and go to sleep - got to sleep finally around 3:30am, didn't wake up till 1pm, and went back to bed after some breakfast - I had unrealistic hopes for exercise today, but really I just have to dig in and get this work done, tomorrow will offer some opportunities too....

I finished rereading the last of the four Arthur books by Mary Stewart; as I dimly remembered, the fourth is much less good than the first three (she has various narrative and story conundrums to deal with, and the result is that she's working in a sort of chronicle mode, very readable but much less deeply satisfying than the first-person narration of the main trilogy).

I really like having a multi-volume sequence of novels to read or reread - might ponder what from the archives could be revisited over the next two weeks as I attempt to survive the workload between now and spring break.

(I will get a few days breather then, but unfortunately can't go and see B., as I have to go to Colonial Williamsburg at the end of the week for my eighteenth-century studies conference, grrrr... not looking forward to the eight-hour train ride each way, and am sorry to say that I am mean-spiritedly intent on skipping the masquerade ball - it is simply beyond what I can face, and I am thinking I will have a happy introvert's dinner instead at home alone in my hotel room with a book!)

Closing tabs:

At the LRB, Adam Mars-Jones on Beckett's "Not I."

Elaine Scarry's voice in the wilderness.

10 reasons to celebrate The Roots' Things Fall Apart on its fifteenth anniversary. (This is really one of my favorite albums, in fact I am feeling a strong desire to listen to it right now!)

The elusive role of dance in modernism.

Nobody said that then!

You can't see Bitcoins. (Via BoingBoing.)

The culling of zoo animals.

Finally, an excerpt from Juliet Macur's forthcoming book on Lance Armstrong - I'm keen to read this one, it will be published Tuesday. Am currently dug in on the to-me-curiously-not-relevant-though-still-interesting MFA vs. NYC: The Two Cultures of American Fiction.


  1. (I always think that if I were a mathematician, I would often be working in bed with my eyes closed!)

    Yes, this! One cannot answer email so one is free to do mathematics. You stay in bed with your eyes closed as long as possible and then get up and try to write it all down quick as you can.

  2. I saw that production of 'Anthony and Cleopatra' in Stratford last October and loved it. I thought the verse was better spoken than almost any other production I've seen.