Monday, December 10, 2007

winter reading list

I am agitated.

Let me begin with yesterday. I met a Nigerian/German who could have been my favorite philosopher except my favorite philosopher, everyman, is wholly Nigerian--it was only his character who was German (mother?) and Nigerian (father?), but I took this to be a sign, nonetheless, and launched into a discussion of literature about which my new acquaintance knew nothing. He spoke perfect German, however.

But I could NOT retrieve the title of Ondaatje's Coming through the Slaughter which was where I had packaged this association along with a recommendation from "not my real name," Allan Smithee who had also recommended I read this. A woman at the party who might be this Nigerian German's wife tells me that the brain is shrinking because of Google.

But let me tell you what I will read over the break, if my brain will hold up:

Condorcet, Progress of the Human Mind or what some may know as Tableau of the Progress of the Human Spirit

Hugo's Notre Dames de Paris, and Thoreau and Emerson in small doses. I am still struggling with Emerson, and what seems to me to be something that today would look like a mental illness.

Meanwhile, I will work on my operatic singing. Every time I hit a high note my five-year old hugs me. She says it is because she loves it when I do that, but I wonder if it might not be simply self defense. So far the dog has not howled. I try not to think about the fact that my best arias are written for a tenor...

Most of all, do not sit around this holiday and drink beer and eat cheetohs (as was recommended by one of my classmates). Life is too short, and although I subscribe to both beer and cheetohs, have them over Condorcet of Virgil, or Hugo. We'll all watch the Big Lebowski in heaven...