Of course Bernard didn’t realise the song wasn’t in his key. None of us did. We didn’t know anything about stuff like that. We always wrote the music first, and what I’d always loved about Barney’s vocals was the unintentional strained quality as he tried to fit into the track. Like Ian, he wasn’t blessed with the world’s best singing voice, but it had emotion, passion, and to me the struggle in Bernard’s voice was a major part of the band’s appeal. (I agree with David Byrne, who said, ‘The better a singer’s voice, the harder it is to believe what they’re saying.’)
Substance: Inside New Order
Error of philosophers: The philosopher believes that the value of his philosophy lies in the whole, in the building. But posterity discovers it in the bricks that he used and which others will often make use of again for better building; in the fact, that is to say, that the building can be destroyed and nevertheless possess value as material.
— Nietzsche, Human, All Too Human (1878)
Epigraph found in:
Heidegger in Ruins
Over the past couple of years, I volunteered to teach in the West Tennessee State Penitentiary, where I was part of a faculty cohort that offers humanities seminars to incarcerated women.
The program director had invited me to discuss a play, but I didn’t think I could do justice to a drama in just two brief sessions. So we read Shakespeare’s sonnets instead. Right choice! One student, Aja, was so enthusiastic that she came to the first class having already translated her favorite into her own verse.
The sparse classroom has a corkboard on one wall whose dimensions mirror the shape of a sonnet on the page, giving us a good visual analogue for the form: why would an artist choose to work within such a frame? G. K. Chesterton, who held that art consists in limitation, was only half jesting when he asserted that the most beautiful part of every picture is the frame.
How to Think like Shakespeare
From the footnotes, original source:
Cited by Ian Ker, Chesterton: A Biography (Oxford University Press, 2012), 254.
..here he was on Broadway, his hair iron-gray, his stare wild, his walk unsteady, his hands flailing at the air. His clothes were out of the men’s shelter, and his face so ill-looking you wanted to put him in a hospital for a month before we even discussed the situation.
My mother looked curiously at me. “Why were you afraid of him?” she asked. “You could knock him over with one hand.”
“Ma, he didn’t look like that twelve years ago. Believe me. She continued to stare after him as he shambled down Broadway, bumping into people left and right.
“You’re growing old together,” she said to me. “You and what frightens you.”
Cairo, January 5, 1850
You ask me whether the Orient is up to what I imagined it to be. Yes, it is, and more than that it extends far beyond the narrow idea I had of it. I have found, clearly delineated, everything that was hazy in my mind. Facts have taken the place of suppositions – so excellently that it is often as though I were suddenly coming upon old and forgotten dreams.
Flaubert and Madame Bovary
Most people prefer to have two advisers, one for the hour of danger, when they are afraid—and then, when things go well again, then they would prefer not to have anything to do with him, because the sight of him reminds them of how weak they were, and now they prefer to imagine that they have triumphed by dint of their own strength—not by God’s.
The Quotable Kierkegaard
One evening, more than twenty years ago, Giacometti was hit by a car while crossing the Place d’Italie. Though his leg was twisted, his first feeling, in the state of lucid swoon into which he had fallen, was a kind of joy: “Something has happened to me at last!” I know his radicalism: he expected the worst. The life he so loved and which he would not have changed for any othe was knocked out of joint, perhaps shattered, by the stupid violence of the chance: “So,” he thought to himself, “I wasn’t meant to be a sculptor, nor even to live. I wasn’t meant for anything.” What thrilled him was the menacing order of causes that was suddenly unmasked and the act of staring with the petrifying gaze of a cataclysm at the lights of the city, at human beings, at his own body lying flat in the mud: for a sculptor, the mineral world is never far away. I admire that will to welcome everything. If one likes surprises, one must like them to that degree, one must like even the rare flashes which reveal to devotees that the earth is not meant for them.