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October 31, 2020:


Bruce Kimmel Photograph bk's notes

Well, dear readers, I don’t know about you, but I’m thinking this is the last day of October.  Yes, you heard it here, dear readers, I’m thinking this is the last day of October.  And that means several things, doesn’t it?  For example, it means that tonight is Halloween and the little and bigger folks will be out trick or treating, although for the first year in many my front porch light will be out, as I don’t think it’s a good idea for me to keep opening the door repeatedly.  Of course, some would say my front porch light has been out for years.  We didn’t have many folks in this neighborhood anyway.  I thought about buying candy and just leaving it on the porch, but I also don’t think that’s a good idea.  But in solidarity, I shall have no candy here and therefore shan’t eat any. Another thing it means is that Daylight Savings Time is over so we must set our various and sundried clocks back one hour.  And finally, it means that tomorrow is a new month, namely November, and it is my fervent hope and prayer that November is a month filled with health, wealth, happiness, creativity, and all things bright and beautiful.  And let me tell you, we need every one of those things, every single one.  Otherwise, I’m sitting here like so much fish, as I have been all evening, listening to Szell do many composers. I cannot tell you how much I love this set and these performances, and yet I have indeed told you exactly that, haven’t I, and rather repeatedly.  I finished the first half of the box – fifty-three CDs – in the early afternoon, so I’ve spent a lot of time uploading the other fifty-three CDs into iTunes – only about twelve left to go. Now playing is a magical performance of Debussy’s La Mer.  There is no shortage of great La Mer performances and I own many of them.  It’s hard to go wrong.  Munch’s is fantastic, but this Szell is pure magic and I’m hearing things that I’ve never heard before.  And the sound is spectacular.  As you know, I wondered why Columbia would have relegated Szell to their subsidiary label, Epic Records – I’m guessing they didn’t want him to compete with Ormandy, who recorded a lot of the same music.  But somewhere around disc 72, it’s over for Epic and Columbia finally puts him where he always should have been, on Columbia. I made an interesting discovery – I’d bought the Szell Brahms symphony set from Japan – SACD – but as to the CD layer of that CD, I was amazed to find I like this mastering much more.  Go know.  The last of the Szell stereo discs is the posthumously released Mahler 6th, which he apparently didn’t want released due to sound issues.  The other seven discs are almost all back to mono and early Columbia stuff he did with the New York Philharmonic rather than his Cleveland band.  But enough about Szell. The evening is no longer young, and neither am I.

Yesterday was a completely weird day that I could never quite get with.  I did get nine hours of sleep – that was good.  Once up, I answered e-mails, approved another master, had a telephonic conversation, did a little futzing and finessing but Word was being weird, too, and I had to finally quit out of it while correcting some stuff in the second set of liner notes. It’s so irritating when that happens – having to retrieve all my working documents, and sometimes it just refuses to open a document from the actual Word list of stuff you’ve had open – that was quite scary because it wouldn’t open the project one document.  Thankfully, when I went to the actual document it opened fine.  Whew.

Then I decided to do Maria’s Kitchen for food.  I’ve been meaning to for ages.  So, I called and ordered the carbonara and a side Caesar salad.  They told me it would be twenty minutes.  Now, I always think Maria’s is right at Woodman and Ventura, which is, of course, where I drove.  Only it’s not there.  Nor is it the block before or the block after.  At that point, I thought I was losing whatever sanity I have left and finally had to ask Siri for the address – and it’s nowhere near Woodman – it’s actually two blocks from Casa Vega.  It was a real comedy of errors it was.

Once home, I ate the cabonara, which was very good but not quite great.  And the side Caesar, which I ate after that, was also very good but not quite great. But it was very filling, and I enjoyed it and that was it for food, save for some grapes.

Then I did some work at the piano, some Kritzerland show stuff, and then began the long uploading Szell process. I tried to watch a motion picture at six o’clock – Tora Tora Tora, but I’m afraid I found it a bora bora bora and fell asleep for about thirty minutes. At seven-fifteen, I went to the mail place where, happily, all important envelopes were there, so that’s one less thing to worry about.  Then I went across the street to Gelson’s and got some hamburger meat for today and tomorrow.  Then I came home and the long listening spurt began and the rest you know and you know the rest.

Today, I’ll be up when I’m up, I’ll do whatever needs doing, and then it will be mostly futzing and finessing project one.  I’ll eat – most likely some bow tie pasta, two cups or so, with red sauce, meat, and onions.  Then I’ll see if there are any packages to retrieve, otherwise the rest of the day and evening will be ME. But no trick or treaters.  If I were a kid, being as perverse as I was as a child, I’d probably go as Covid.  Then I’ll watch, listen, and relax.

Tomorrow will be more of the same.  I will, of course, have set my clocks back one hour and I don’t care who knows it.  Then this week will be very busy with Kritzerland show stuff, announcing two titles – now, we were going to announce on Tuesday, since it’s the birthday of one of our composers, but that’s election day so I may have to rethink that little thing and maybe do Wednesday.  What do you think?  And then we’ll head into the weekend and the November Kritzerland show – I will, of course post the links here and I do hope all you people out there in the dark will join us for what I hope will be a fun show.

Well, dear readers, I must take the day, I must do the things I do, I must, for example, be up when I’m up, do whatever needs doing, futz and finesse, eat, see if there are packages to retrieve, have some ME time, and then watch, listen, and relax.  Today’s topic of discussion: What are your favorite memories of Halloween?  What was your best costume?  Let’s have loads of lovely postings, shall we, whilst I hit the road to dreamland, wishing everyone a nice and safe Halloween, as we bid October farewell and usher in a new month.

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