Monthly Archives: January 2021

Breathless – Review

Why a review of a movie more than six decades old? In this age of living inwardly one gets to view a lot of stuff that would have remained unexplored in a normal time. Jean-Luc Godard (b 1930) was a film critic who decided to practice what he was reviewing.  À bout de souffle (Out…


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The Greatest Musical Composition Ever – 1

Obviously there’s a contradiction in my title. There can’t be more than one greatest musical composition ever written. My purpose is to list music so good that while you’re listening to it, it seems to be without peer – at least until you happen on the next greatest work. My plan for this series is…


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Mario Lanza – 100th Birthday

For all sad words of tongue and pen, The saddest are these, ‘It might have been’. John Greenleaf Whittier January 31, 2021 is the 100th anniversary of the birth Alfredo Arnold Cocozza known to posterity as Mario Lanza; Lanza was his mother’s maiden name. A native of Philadelphia, he was the son of Italian immigrants…


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Spike Jones

Spike Jones (1911-65) was a percussionist of considerable skill who got bored playing the same music over and over again. He gradually drifted into an anarchic style of comedy and music that has never been equaled. He assembled a group of players and singers who were equally adept at performing and inspired silliness. This madness…


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The Ghost in the Machine – A Cautionary Tale

This article is almost a quarter of a century old. I wrote it for a print magazine and then published it here more than a decade ago. It’s buried in the site’s archives. I thought I’d give it fresh exposure and accordingly am resurrecting it. There’s a companion piece that I may also renew. It…


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The Case Against Children

Fertility rates are below replacement levels in every country in the developed world except Israel. While the leaders of these countries view this decline with alarm, it represents a logical response to the realities of the modern world. Below are a few reasons for this infertile phenomenon. My discussion is pertinent only to the modern…


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Finale 27 – The Marriage of Figaro Act 2

The famous finale to Mozart’s comic opera begins when the door to the closet in a room Count Almaviva’s estate is opened. Both the Count and Countess think Cherubino, the Count’s page, is in the closet. The Count is about to break down the door and then decides to use his sword on the page…


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Happy New Year

A few thoughts to start the New Year. 2020 was an annus horribilis – the worst since 1968; a year that had riots, the murders of Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy, and a presidential election accompanied by civil unrest about as bad as the year just ended. COVID-19 appeared and kindled both the best…


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