Saturday, September 01, 2007

A Night at the Opera, and other stuff

I've just been getting out and about all over the place, this week. Last night was the opening of ART's season, with a fascinating thing called "Don Juan Giovanni." It's a combination of the Mozart opera and one of the (many!) plays, and it's staged with opera singers doing the, er, singing, and actors doing the...acting. On stage at the same time. And talking to each other. In fact, Don Juan's sidekick Sganarelle and Don Giovanni's pal Leporello end up marrying each other, which is quite sweet (after the two men are wed, they say in unison, "want to watch tv?/yeah, all right.").

The singing is magnificent, soaring, breathtaking, beautiful. Not a weak spot in the bunch. And Stephen Epp as Sganarelle pretty much steals the show, for me. You will think me odd, but the guy who both vomits and urinates on stage is the most sympathetic character of the evening. Favorite line: "Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil? Bullshit! I'm terrified!" I tend to over-intellectualize when I go to the theatre, and last night was no exception, but it's still a really interesting show. No sexual violence, which was a relief. I got the sense that the artistic vision behind it was as lost as Juan, as far as having any genuine feelings about the substance of the play--sort of detached, and not genuinely passionate or fearful (except Sganarelle) or anything. So it's an evening where you think about the puzzle of Don Juan rather than experience any sort of catharsis. Don Juan says, "well, give God the finger, and see what happens," and he's not angry, or even particularly curious. It's strange.

Also this week, my local Board of Selectmen voted to appoint me to the Community Preservation Committee (yes, it does sound kind of silly, but the name is in the law). So I'm back in local government, folks, this time in an oversight capacity over some specific funds legislatively defined for use with affordable housing, conservation, or historic preservation. It should be fun, not a massive workload, and with any luck, no one will be calling for my head.

But where oh where is the neuroscience? Ah! It is here, for the moment: a very small boy now out of the woods. I'm still floored by the whole story. Terrified by how deep in the brain the surgery had to be, and absolutely in awe of the neurosurgeon, the little boy, and his mom and dad. So many things could have gone so badly wrong, and it looks like none of them did. Sometimes, when the universe dances, it is a thing of beauty.

Otherwise, I'm okay. I have little talks with myself now and then. Here's one:
How are you doing?
Intermittently lousy. Mostly I just get on with things. The cognitive impairment thing seems to be ebbing.
It certainly does!
:) thanks.
So...this is you, impaired?
Apparently not. I can’t tell, though, until after I’ve done something really weird and then notice it.
Are you being weird?
I have no idea. I built a glutamate model today to try and see what the decarboxylase does.
All right, so you’re being weird.

Until next time, all.


Blogger Lucia said...

Congrats on the CPC -- the town crank will mutter at all the "unnecessary" things it spends money on, but other than that, it's pretty cool, as far as I can tell. We have one too, a CPC, that is, and also a town crank, which is how I know these things.

You don't look weird to me. That's probably not much of a recommendation.

10:44 AM  

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