Valentine’s Day and Other Snowstorms

darth vader valentine

“Let Love Be With You”

Apparently, the most unlikely people manage to fall in love…even Darth Vader, that star-trotting imperialist from a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, etc. Nevertheless, Happy Valentine’s Day to all you romantically ambitious and/ or contemplative types out there. Insofar as I’m concerned…I’m married.

At present, my wife and I are attempting to disinter ourselves from the fourth (or is it fifth or sixth?) snowstorm of the season.  We’re waxing philosophical between shovelfuls of snow and ice, pondering the unanswerable; as follows:

Why is there something rather than nothing? Why does the universe, the laws which govern it, exist the way it does and not in some other way? Why does it exist at all? Or is everything that we perceive merely a will-o’-the-wisp of human expectancy: philosophy’s anthropic principle?

According to the latest weather report, we should expect 3-4 more inches of snow tonight. Isn’t it romantic? I presume Darth Vader would think so!

Photo: Cinémur

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Goodbye to The Colonel

Internet Mourns Death of Colonel Meow
Stop for a meow-ment of silence — Colonel Meow has died.

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Dickensian Under Snow

New York City - Snow - Janus - East Village Lights

                                   New York CityEast Village in the Snow

The Village is one of those places that, when it snows, transforms itself into a winter scene out of Dickens. Any neighborhood that could show such respect to my lifelong favorite writer deserves my utmost congratulations. Having said that, this is one helluva cold winter we’re having!

Photo Source (Full Gallery) NY Through the Lens


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A Modern Marvel Remembered


My first computer. Seems like only a few downloads and a flurry of crashes ago. Initially, I couldn’t really make heads or tails of this gizmo. However, I soon learned how to issue it commands that would give me a bang for my buck…and, with a price tag of $2, 495, I was expecting quite a bang.

Macintosh Computer (1984): Debuting 30 years ago today, the Macintosh 128k was Apple’s first personal computer where users didn’t rely on text commands. Instead, they could access their programs by clicking on icons with a mouse.

Source: ABC News (for more photos of oldie but goodie computers.)


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Threnody For A Dying Piano

Big Apple Dayze

solopiano2 On a cold winter morning, a lone piano stands curbside in New York City. Passersby slow, stop, and play. Some play well. All day long they collect and disperse, and into the night they measure and shove and deliberate. What if…? Can we take it? Who abandons a piano?

Plinking slightly out-of-tune over the white noise of Broadway’s cars, buses, trucks, and sirens, the piano awaits its fate. Solo, Piano – NYC is a 5-minute film [NY Times video] of the last 24 hours of a once-wanted piano. Source: Anthony Sherin

As a musician (a pianist; guitarist, too), I found this clip to be extremely poignant; a provocative elegy that is intensified simply by being understated.

A piano; an apparatus of wood, steel and ivory…but much more than that. Sharing an integral part of the human spirit, conjoined in music–even at the end, its last feeble, desperate…

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Wringing in the New


“Le meilleur de tous les mondes possibles.”

Let me begin by wishing everyone a Happy New Year. Here’s hoping that 2014 will be a whole lot better (or, at least, not any worse) than 2013. Of course, since I’m a quietly amused pessimist, I invariably expect the worst if only to allow for less disappointment and increased surprise. But this probably stems from the fact that I’ve read the complete works of Voltaire (in the original French…er, sort of) with whom I share a spirit of skepticism along with a passion for coffee.

However, we here in NYC began the year with a snowstorm and a snow job (namely, Mayor de Blasio); the latter, I predict, will be much more difficult to dig ourselves out from under. Nevertheless, after 12 years of the Emperor Bloomberg it was only natural that the imperial opposition of crackpots should have their turn on the throne…at our expense, of course.

For those of you who might have wondered where I’ve been over the past year, oftentimes disappearing from blogging for months at a time, I’ve embarked on a series of studies. Coursera and edX offer an incredible panoply of free online courses of which I’ve indulged myself. Everything from Music to Classical Studies to Architecture, Philosophy to Literature to History (a few of my favorite things) were there to illuminate and delight me. Indeed, I never had such a workload of course material since I attended college/ university in physical form, some three or four decades ago (yes, I’m that old).

Again, Happy New Year to All. Best Regards from me, my wife Steffie, and our fascinating if inscrutable cat Zoltan. See you soon. Ciao!

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