Music Speaks, No Mistake

In Twelfth Night Shakespeare dubbed music the food of love. Beethoven considered it a higher revelation than wisdom or philosophy. Nietzsche said without music, life would be a mistake. To him, and he wasn’t the sunniest of guys, music exalted the soul. Little wonder few topics get writers going–or even squabbling–like how music fits into…… Continue reading Music Speaks, No Mistake

I Have No Idea if There Were Communist Go-Go Parties (or, Balancing Research with Creative License)

I have written Communist go-go dancers. Not in a comedy, either. Technically, they were recruits among honors-level university students, but they broke into go-go dancing as the Party’s party night deepened and the drinks mounted. The setting was early ’70s Budapest, and the Happiest Barracks in the Iron Curtain reveled in its post-crackdown decay. Our…… Continue reading I Have No Idea if There Were Communist Go-Go Parties (or, Balancing Research with Creative License)

True Splat: Behind “La Tomatina”

There are rules to the Tomatina. In their great wisdom, the Spanish have come to publish guidelines for their annual by-the-thousands tomato fight. No whipping soaked tee-shirts as weapons, for one. No throwing shoes or anything of beanball substance. Just squished tomatoes. Those you can throw at anyone in sight. For one hour. It takes…… Continue reading True Splat: Behind “La Tomatina”

Sentence First, Verdict Afterwards

‘Let the jury consider their verdict,’ the King said, for about the twentieth time that day. ‘No, no!’ said the Queen. ‘Sentence first – verdict afterwards.’ ‘Stuff and nonsense!’ said Alice loudly. ‘The idea of having the sentence first!’ ‘Hold your tongue!’ said the Queen, turning purple. ‘I won’t!’ said Alice. ‘Off with her head!’…… Continue reading Sentence First, Verdict Afterwards