Monthly Archives: January 2015

Sound Bytes: Love and Death in Puccini’s “La Bohème”

One of the primary reasons for La Bohème’s tenacious hold on generations of hearts and minds is its deep exploration of the relationship between desire and disease — or, more broadly, between Eros and Thanatos: love and death.


Flute and Painting: Finding Inspiration for Music in Visual Art

Trying to replicate Turner made me realize how difficult it really is to paint, and how much thought needs to go into planning and finishing any piece of art. Eventually I would get frustrated and be done for the day, but not before realizing that I actually DO have the ability to do all that contrast and shading… but on my flute instead of with paints. No difference between dark and light a boring painting makes; no difference between loud and soft a boring performance makes, right?

Kate Does the New Year, Part 1: How I Feel About Resolutions

I tend to be a non-believer in the idea of setting resolutions at the beginning of every year, because really, if you care about something enough, you shouldn’t be waiting until the beginning of the year to actually take action on it. Yet there have been a couple of things that have changed recently in how I think about both the annual pageantry of setting resolutions, and about goals in general.

Book Review: The Forever War, by Joe Haldeman

I greatly enjoy science fiction as a genre, but I haven’t read nearly enough sci-fi novels to be considered any kind of authority on the subject. So when my boyfriend handed me The Forever War and said, “Just read it,” I shrugged and said, “Okay,” thinking it was going to be action-packed light fare, its pages riddled with technobabble and laser beams.

Gentlepeople, naïveté is a dangerous thing.

Book Review: I Love Dick, by Chris Kraus

I Love Dick is a maddening memoir-epistolary novel-performance art hybrid that defies definition and doesn’t shy away from anything. Its publication in 1997 resulted in blazing controversies in the intellectual community, for good reason.

NObook: Why I Quit Facebook

I’m pleased with my to deactivate my Facebook account, but the most common reaction I get from other friends when they discover I’m gone from Facebook is surprise (and sometimes consternation). How could I possibly delete my profile and be okay with it!? In order to address this question, and avoid sounding like a broken record, I thought I would clear up the reasons why I quit Facebook cold turkey.

Travel Tips: Road Trip Edition

2014 was the Year of the Road Trip. I went on 5 of them, all of which were lovely except one (you’ll see why in a minute). Road trips teach you a huge amount about yourself, the country you’re driving through, and about people in general… and there’s no way I could include everything I learned on my various journeys in a single blog post. But on snowy, frigid days like this one, I find myself thinking back and quantifying a few salient lessons that are worth passing on.