No news is not good news. It’s just no news.

We are in a slow news period. It’s not as if nothing is going on. It’s just that nothing is going on in which anyone is especially interested.

2014’s elections were the usual vicious, contentious, nasty business. We used to get outraged, upset, furious about elections. Now, they come. They go. Everything changes, but nothing is different. This time, when the elections ended, it got quiet in a hurry. Bring on Christmas.

72-birds in the bush_029

The holidays came and went. All through February, the weather (pardon the pun) has been the hot topic. And who Prince Harry is (or isn’t) dating. “Deflategate” is being beaten to death on the sports networks, but is anyone listening? Do we care? As memories of the Super Bowl fade, spring training begins. Can the Sox pull themselves out of the tank? Is there hope for 2015? That’s the most interesting question on the news horizon.

We’ve had a lot of snow.

snow window poster february 2015

I’m sure a national calamity was predicted for this year, but I forget what it was. Rumors to the contrary notwithstanding, the sky isn’t falling, unless that’s really what all that white stuff is … the sky falling, I mean.


So there are no fresh disasters. Whichever huge controversies were with us last year and the year before are still lurking, along with a few tired, sleazy scandals. It’s the same old, same old. Back to the everyday struggles of a tired population hoping things will get better and suspecting they won’t. A new year is rolling along. Oo-bla-di, oo-bla-da.


It was an interesting year, in the sense of that apocryphal Chinese proverb, “May you live in interesting times.”

May you live in interesting times” is actually an English expression which pretends to be a translation of a traditional Chinese curse. Despite its having become so common in English as to be known as “the Chinese curse”, the saying has no actual Chinese source. At least none anyone has ever found. The nearest related Chinese expression is “太平” (níng wéi tàipíng quǎn, mò zuò luànshì rén) which suggests it’s “better to live as a dog in an era of peace than as a man in times of war.”

Winter December Sunrise

Last year was the definition of an interesting time. From its beginning, waiting for my heart surgeon’s schedule to free up so he could fix me — and I needed a good deal of repair — to the long-running (tickets still available) show titled “Marilyn’s Recovery,” to the melodrama of our well going dry. Also known as “Jack and Jill went up the hill, but came down with an empty bucket.” From the miracle of friends to the rescue to the subsequent resurrection of the well. Never a dull moment.

There were long weeks of glorious autumn as we traveled through a glorious New England. Two great concerts. Friends from the past, new friends from afar. Good friends we laughed with and the lost friends for whom we mourn.

I posted nearly 1000 times, passed 200,000 views. Took an uncountable number of photographs. Bought another computer. New Kindles all around. Bonnie’s teeth took on a new shine.


Today, the calendar has flipped. It is 2015. Like the opening on a thousand sleazy movies, I’m living in an un-imagined future.

I remember being a kid and learning about how Haley’s Comet would be coming around the year I turned 39. I couldn’t imagine being as old as that. Nor could I ever have imagined I would see the comet on my 39th birthday from a rock in the Judean Desert, just outside Jerusalem.

I certainly never imagined 2015. The big movie of my young adult years was 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968). That year came and went 14 years ago. 1984, Aldous Huxley’s dystopian future, has come shockingly close to reality yet life trudges on. At some point, I got kind of old. Which surprises me less than realizing my friends are old, too. How did that happen?

The Beatles sang about “When I’m 64” and I’ll turn 68 in a couple of months. Gee. Life is a lot stranger than any fiction I might have written.



A bit of great music from the very young Beatles and an apology.

I can’t do this. It’s a challenge I can’t meet. Maybe I just don’t want to. This is supposed to be a writing challenge. I have no idea how to write in single syllables. I’m doubt I ever did. I can’t even write my name in a single syllable. Or that of my husband.

So, enjoy the Beatles. It’s a song in as close to single syllables as I could find. We very recently watched “Hard Days Night,” and it was as much fun as the first time we saw it. Sing along why don’t you?

One at a time, Daily Prompt

72-Beatles-Imperial_02This was the sound of my youth. Now, The Beatles are elevator music, Paul McCartney’s first band. It’s a bit alarming to hear the rebellious music of on’s young years called “oldies” and “classics.” Age is irrelevant. It’s great music.

Hey Jude

This is a remix of “Here Comes the Sun.” I don’t usually like remixes, but this is not bad.


Obladi, Oblada (Life Goes On)




Once upon a time, music was very different. The Beatles hadn’t played yet. We hadn’t heard them. Sure, there was rock and roll … but not like now. Not like it became after the Beatles. They made sounds we’d never heard before, not anywhere.  Maybe sounds that had never even existed on earth.

They didn’t only play instruments and sing. They played a recording studio. They literally introduced completely new sounds, mixing guitar, Dobro, drums, vocals, synthesizers to change music forever.

Younger generations … even my son’s generation, the Gen Xers … they were born after it all changed. They don’t get it, that before the Beatles, music was different. The world was very different.

Music was much more important to us … me, my friends, my whole generation … than music is now. We lived and died with the music we loved. Maybe you had to be there.

The Beatles changed our music and music changed our world.  And we, my generation — we changed everything.


I grew up playing the piano. My brother started lessons, but it was obvious he didn’t have an ear for music. I was four. When he finished a lesson, I would sit down and play it with 2 fingers. My mother let Matt go out to play and gave me lessons.

I was pretty good, but never good enough. I got to that frustrating place in the classical music world where I was “almost concert quality.” Almost is surprisingly far from “good enough.”

For my first 18 years, classical music was my world. I played it, hummed it, studied it, listened to it. My friends played instruments, we talked music and went to concerts. When finally knew I would never bridge the gap between concert and “playing well,” I stopped playing at all. For a long time, I just listened to the music of my generation and it was good. The 1960s, the years of Baez and Dylan, the Stones, Beatles, Woodstock … A great time to be young and I joined the party.


Decades passed. Sometimes I had a piano and would start to practice, get my hands back. I would remember how much I had loved classical music. Then life would close in and more years passed. One day, I heard in my mind’s ear a melody. A theme. Where did I remember that? Oh, I know … that’s the second movement of Beethoven’s Sixth Symphony. I bought a boxed set of the symphonies. But didn’t get to listen except in the car. The television was always on, no time for music … and I can’t listen to symphonies while driving. They sweep me away.

Music was tucked away again until last autumn, I got my new Kindle Fire HD. For $6.99 (and I had discount coupons too, so thank you Amazon) with instant delivery by WiFi, I got all of Beethoven‘s symphonies. Every night since, I have drifted off to sleep to the infinitely perfect harmonies of that symphony, floating with the swelling of the orchestra and becoming part of the music. Beethoven’s 6th Symphony. Just click on the video and listen. You might just like it.


There’s Music In the Air