Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Vixens, and Ceremonial Running Shoes

Wow... an entire month without adding to my blog. I have
an excuse! I was working like a maniac on the final draft
of a paper for
in Tallinn, Estonia. I was then in Banff for
a math conference,

Densest Packing of Spheres
. Tom Hales and Sam Furguson
were both there. I met
Noam Elkies .
While all his
mathematical, musical and chess accomplishments were
astonishing, my favorite trick was when
and he showed me how he could whistle and hum at the same
time... different voices of Bach fugues!.

Now I'm back in Pittsburgh, for about 10 days. I'm off
to Yellowstone with Barnaby and then home with my family for
a week. Why does the summer feel like it's almost over?
It's not even June.

I spent the last couple days putting my neglected cd
collection in my computer. I found a bunch of stuff I
hadn't heard for years that I forgot I love (the Bernstein
Mahler set), and some
things I owned but never listened to. One of these
is Janacek's The Cunning Little Vixen. Amazing little
opera! This discovery alone repaid my work tenfold.

Here's an IM conversation I had recently. It made
me laugh.

"Do you have tennis/running shoes?"
"ummmm, yes but no"
"i do but...they're more symbolic than anything"
"We could go running... with your symbolic running shoes"
"we could, but we will not. They're ceremonial"

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