Thursday, August 21, 2008

Not Enough Forward Momentum/What Do You Take for a Headache?

Waking up shortly before noon on the day after my birthday, having spent the prior evening at a Polish bar in Hollywood, Florida (named well after the other coast's Hollywood had made its name for itself (the keyboard I'm typing on has no key for the letter 's' - this is not a problem, as such, obviously (in that there are clearly 's's abounding in the first sentences of this sure-to-be-curtailed post), but it is slightly frustrating, and I'm tempted to avoid words that have 's's ("'s'es"?) - this being a difficult propozition, in fact, az there are quite a few 's's in most words)), I find myself inexplicably in the mood to blog, though have little to blog about, probably (hence the earlier intimation that this post, going nowhere and 's'-hindered as it is, will certainly continue the recent of mild trend of short would-be-pithy posts.

The main issue being that I do have stuff to blog about (can't really type that sentence without doing it to the tune of Mr. Rogers's closing song) - but can't quite weed through the what-is-appropriate and what-is-(mildly)-interesting from the whirlwind of actual hard work that I did for the bulk of July and August.

Did you know that Prokofiev was a Christian Scientist? Isn't that weird?

Has Frank Gehry designed any airports? He should.

I have read some books, about which I have several opinions...

This article, over on, tries to pry into the reasons why Decathlonland is in bad decline, but I think it misses two obviously related things (I think it' ridiculous to blame drugs for the decline of popularity in any sport):

- Microsoft Decathlon. This game, played with great joy by myself and my brothers - mostly at our Grandfather's house, if memory serves me correctly - were it to be updated for the current Millenium, had it been updated all along, would certainly kept the flame of decathlondom burning brightly. Anyone who has tested and trained their keyboard-sporting skills will always reckon with the awesome skill-set required by these tremendous, pixelated athletes. In fact, when I was last visiting Jack, he had put this game on his computer, via some emulator or another, and I would argue that it really holds up over time. Pole vaulting is still way too damn hard (though I did finally, I think for the first time ever, successfully pole vault entirely on my own). Why Microsoft abandoned the decathlon? Not sure, but the sport, surely, has never been the same.

- The general devaluation of public education, at all levels, but especially the high school and college levels, in the US, has precipitated a dramatic drop in the appreciation of breadth of the average would-be educated young person. With everyone so focused on some standardized notion of success - learn one thing and learn it well, or if not well, then, like, good enough to work for your uncle - they have forgotten the value of multiple skills, whether those skills be intellectual or athletic.


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