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An outpost of civilization

It isn’t always easy being an IU Hoosier in a wilderness of Boilermakers (often shortened to boils by the cognoscenti). And yet, like this brave farmer, we stand tall, with our heads held high, and say, “Wait ’til next year!” We may not have to say that about the men’s basketball team this year; at least I hope we don’t.


I have to confess that I have let the political climate this year get to me. All of the distortions, mischaracterizations, and hypocrisy have both angered me and saddened me. It is probably the reason my left eye has been twitching for the past two days. Both Tuesday and this morning I found myself commenting on and about other people’s Facebook postings concerning politics. Why do I bother? I won’t change any minds. We all choose to believe the best about candidates and “pundits” whom we choose to follow, and to disregard what is said or written that doesn’t go along with what we believe. I’ll be glad when Tuesday has passed. I’m sure I’ll be happy about some of the results, and that other results will give me something to rise above. I can deal with that…as long as the Supreme Court doesn’t choose our next president.


I have to tell you, as broad-minded as I am about music, I don’t get opera. Over the years I have tried to appreciate it, believe me, I have tried. I don’t appreciate it. I can listen to an aria on a compilation album, or in a movie, and be moved by it. When I try to listen to an entire opera I am in agony. I try to tell myself that opera is just another form of musical theater in order to make it more accessible to me, but after the overture, it goes downhill. I tend to like the score, but the lyrics…nope. It isn’t the fact that most of the operas I’ve tried to listen to are not in English; heck, I like a lot of songs that are in Spanish, or French, or other languages. No, it’s more that to me it sounds as if the singers are often speaking, forcefully, while music is playing in the background. For me, they seldom go together. This morning I tried to listen to Madama Butterfly because I have listened to individual arias and have enjoyed them, but the whole opera was wasted on me. I found myself skipping from track to track trying to find something I liked. I guess I’m just not civilized.