Sound and Clouds and Thunder (4)

[‘Tis the season for Messiah, falalalalalalalala.
Okay, so the Offshot Savior/Leader Narrative is possibly what got us into this mess in the first place, but Sara Mingardo envisioning fire in streaming warmth that never veers into ideological barking is a sound to behold and politically responsible. – The clip with thanks to lalagonegaga]

Faced with a Cabinet of Horrors arranged around the core question of “who is the most inept by conviction for this department?”, this is your weekly reminder that, no, some things are not normal and should never be normalized.

On a much larger scale of directly life-threatening horrors that are being glossed over is the continued genocide in Aleppo. And this week, again, some big players will shirk responsibility, and I will not do enough, either, but I will get to do my Christmas shopping, which this year boils down to ‘everyone on my list gets a donation given in their name’.

This is not really a non-sequitur. Tonight, I’ll get to hear Pergolesi’s “Adriano in Siria” at TADW, which includes finally hearing Romina Basso live! *fangirl mode on* It also includes Franco Fagioli (whom I heard in spring in “Lucio Silla” at the same house) and Yuriy Mynenko.

But it is a spooky sensation to go to the opera tonight, safe and sound, for a plot on love and politics in  Syria, featuring prisoners in a besieged city. It feels frivolous, and it feels like stepping on someone’s grave, although people are still alive and will, hopefully, against all odds, stay alive.
Today is one of these days where I feel helpless and guilty. And where I find the Savior Descending From Above To Melt All Guns And Instead Have Food and Medicine Raining Down Narrative very, very compelling (not just in Syria, but in far too many places around the globe). And, since I am in no way above pettiness, where I also nod at Refiner’s Fire.

And on that note, it is viscerally satisfyling to listen to Delphine Galou threaten fire and brimstone in this take of “But Who may Abide”. And to then head out and reach out and try to do some good to rack up a bit of Holiday Spirit.

[clip with thanks to Classical Explorer]

19 thoughts on “Sound and Clouds and Thunder (4)”

  1. Bonsoir mes Cherie Bottes,
    De nombreuses annees se son ecoulees despus notre dernier tango. Je suis comme toujours votre JCayan. Beaucoup de baiser chauds a ma belle danseuse


    1. Que vois-je, mes yeux? Un phantôme? What a surprise. JCayan! It has been what, fifteen years? I hope they have treated you kindly. I am not dancing anymore at the moment (but there was a decade of much tango, in fact, and I miss it), but as you can see, I am still writing. On lots of opera, too.



  2. Burn, baby, burn.

    (tomorrow [Monday] is the electoral college decision (we’re a very odd duck of a democracy). who knows what will happen but I can never remember electoral voters refusing to vote for the electoral-college-winner person, or asking for intelligence briefings. we are in uncharted territory here…)


    1. Right, I forgot about that. Not holding out much hope, though props to the few people who have already declared to go with their conscience… on a larger scale, though, if the college did demand further information, I’d expect rioting and further division (even though all unlawful disagreements between presidency and private business tie should be publicly addressed). Look at the disgusting happenings in NC, with people voted out of office trying to damage their successor out of spite: this is not caring about the people, this is pettiness and mindless greed for power, and a culture having led people to believe that this is apparently okay, or not worth or too dangerous protesting.
      I am foreseeing escapist music for this week’s edition of SCT… *sigh*


      1. all of that. still in process here but the truth is, we’re in deep shit regardless. And at any rate, institutions (run by and for the powerful) will never EVER save us. As my beloved says, solo el pueblo salva el pueblo.


        1. smart wife you have there.

          it will always depend on people not putting themselves first, and there wil always be too few of those and too many who kick at others to further themselves.


          1. and mostly, too many in the middle wringing their hands claiming they either don’t know what to do or aren’t responsible or…(fill in the blank, it’s a long ridiculous list)


            1. yes. More then ever, not doing anything is doing something, and it’s the wrong thing
              (she types, as she read the Berlin liveblog and worries about the populist vote next year)


          2. the not doing anything (or going along as if nothing has changed as if people are dying/threatened/targeted coughUCCgoddamitcough) is actually what infuriates me most. spent a loooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooong time in spiritual direction about this. (note to self: you don’t have to save the whole world and in fact you can’t, go with the ones who are with you and get to work).

            do you have people in Berlin? are they ok? just barely have seen a headline here.


            1. no one in Berlin close enough to send me messages about it. Thanks for asking.

              That ‘whole world’ thing is true, and it’s so very difficult to assimilate… *sigh*


  3. “‘Tis the season for Messiah, falalalalalalalala.”
    With a triviality unworthy of the previous comments, I note that Deck The Halls (fa la la la) is metrically interchangeable with Beethoven’s Ode to Joy, and so the words of one song to the tune of the other. Something to attempt on New Year’s Eve, as a drinking penalty game.

    More in line with the previous comments, to the tune of preference:

    An die Schadenfreude

    Schadenfreude, constant pleasure,
    You light up the darkest days.
    You can turn life’s trash to treasure;
    You deserve our hymn of praise.

    When the overweening stumble,
    When they mumble their excuse,
    You laugh while the cookies crumble,
    Cackling wilder than a goose.

    Schadenfreude, child of foresight,
    Comfort of the powerless,
    Besserwisser, grant us forthright
    Glee in failed self-righteousness.

    You who spare the meek and humble
    Love to see pride tumble flat.
    You laugh while the cookies crumble
    And the great fall on their prat.

    Schadenfreude, strong whenever
    We grow weak and show regret,
    You teach us the duty never
    To forgive or to forget.

    When they bumble, “Mustn’t grumble,”
    Fumbling with our very lives,
    You laugh while the cookies crumble –
    Laughter cold and sharp as knives.


    1. defense against the talents… Oh, that is good. I will have to think about that.

      (but what of cases where the only talent is the private life?)

      I do notice a difference in my thinking about Brecht (who despite opposing grand stagings used some of the same mechanisms in his decided non-stagings) these past months: his starkly moralist take feels a lot more palatable than I can remember, which has me consider nicotine, too, as I ponder the state of politics (then again, one of my former bosses – freshly retured – wrote me for Christmas, “has it really ever been better?”, but I do lack the seasoned calm of her age set)

      Drinking games with Messiah do sound like the perfect end-of-year plan… that, and a drunk reading of “Ode an die Schadenfreude”, which is one of my favorites of yours and I never before realized it is supposed to go with THE TUNE. Of course it does.

      Liked by 1 person

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