Fiddle Sticks

March 5, 2008 at 8:07 pm (Arts, Family, Music)

When asked by people what my fondest dreams are, I list “learning to play the fiddle” right at the top. It’s a bit bizarre, I know, although my being bizarre shouldn’t surprise people anymore. As for why fiddle, as opposed to piano, or guitar, or whatnot, well, I come up with excuses about it being more portable, etc., but that really isn’t it. A number of years ago, while at St. Paul the Apostle over in Westwood, we sang a particular hymn called “The World Is About to Turn.” Now, I’m fairly confident I’d heard that hymn before, but for some reason, on that time, the rather unique tune really caught my attention. Glancing to the top of the page, I saw that the tune was based on an Irish Traditional called “Star of the County Down.” Once I got home, I googled that song until I found a recording of it, and by the second verse, was dead set on learning to play the fiddle, just so that I could play that song. Read the rest of this entry »

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Classical Cartoons

February 28, 2008 at 9:11 pm (Arts, Computers, Education, History, Movies)

Good things come from Down Under. A friend of mine recently showed me this educational website from the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Focusing on Ancient Greece and Greek mythology, the site has games, activities, cartoons and resources aimed at kids ages 6-12. However, the videos themselves are at least as entertaining for adults as they are for kids! I especially liked their take on the story of Orpheus and Eurydice, which casts Orpheus as an indie rocker, and the whole quest as a music video. Click on the link for “Storytime,” then on the link for “Orpheus and the underworld.” If you actually read this blog, then I’m pretty sure you won’t regret it. :o)

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Creepy birds are appropriate for “Valentine’s Day,” right? Right?

February 14, 2008 at 11:21 am (Arts, Books, Horror, Humor, Movies)

Bryan over at Infocult clued me in to this particular gem:
Nothing says undying love to me like, well, undying love. Actually, now that I think about it, that undying love thing is a little creepy…

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Just Desserts

October 24, 2007 at 11:04 pm (Arts, Horror, Humor)

When I managed to miss Tom Wait’s “The Black Rider” twice, I decided that I would never again hesitate to buy a ticket for any spooky, dark or macabre-sounding show that came through town. So imagine my anger when I thought I’d missed Erik Sanko’s “The Fortune Teller,” currently playing at UCLA. (a) I was leaving for Connecticut halfway through its run and (b) by the time I heard about it, all of the shows that I could attend were sold out, anyway. But a series of fortunate events (realizing that my plane reservation was for Friday, not Wednesday, and being the first person in line for rush tickets) allowed me to see the show, thereby assuaging my guilty conscience and returning to some semblance of self-respect. Read the rest of this entry »

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Digital Locative Storytelling

October 24, 2007 at 2:45 pm (Arts, Books, Comics, Computers, Movies, Travel, Writing)

I’ve been thinking rather a lot about geotagging lately, not only because my new job is with a project to map cultural heritage data, such as archaeological sites and antiquities collections, onto Google Earth. In fact, it really starts with my recent trip to Spain (which maybe I’ll blog about one of these days, if I can ever get over my perfectionist streak), namely, the possibility of geotagging my photos to construct a locative narrative. For those of you who don’t know, “geotagging” is the act of adding longitude and latitude data to a photograph (or any digital object, really), which enables it to then be plotted on a map. And “locative” is a great linguistic term referring to units which mark a noun as a place at which something happens, and which I’ve borrowed to also describe any narrative in which geographic location is an important component (not just that the actors in the narrative travel, but that the viewer of the narrative travels, as well). I have two main questions. The first is, “Why?” and the second is “How?” Read the rest of this entry »

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A Dramatic (and Surprising) Week

March 19, 2007 at 8:37 pm (Arts, Comics, Family, Horror, Languages, Music)

In case you haven’t figured this out, I love being the center of attention. When I was a child, I was involved in musical theater; once I hit junior high school, I dropped out of that and got into Speech and Debate instead. And, one of my first acts upon arriving at UCSB to start my MA in Classics was to join the Middle Eastern Music Ensemble, which was a rocking good time if there ever was one. However, since coming back to LA, my opportunities to perform have been rather limited. So, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that, when given the opportunity to participate in a play with a budget that might possibly include negative numbers, and in German, no less, I leapt at the chance. Read the rest of this entry »

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