tracks [birthday party]

These are for a birthday party that is themed as a 50s cocktail party. It’s highly anachronistic but should set the mood alright. I sort of threw these together, so they aren’t so coherent and I gave too many artists double-duty. I think the 2nd CD turned out much better.

Volume 1
1. Cafe “La Humedad” (Roberto Goyeneche)
2. C’est Si Bon (Don Byron/Mickey Katz)
3. The Best Is Yet To Come (Frank Sinatra)
4. Frasquita Serenade (Don Byron)
5. Girl From Ipanema (Getz/Gilberto/Gilberto)
6. Speak Low (Billie Holiday)
7. Good Grief, Dennis (Chico Hamilton)
8. Orange Colored Sky (Nat King Cole)
9. The Late, Late Show (Dakota Staton)
10. I Get Ideas (Louis Armstrong)
11. My Favourite Things (Dave Brubeck)
12. Giant Steps (John Coltrane)
13. Summertime (Miles Davis)
14. Royal Garden Blues (Don Byron)
15. I Get A Kick Out Of You (Ella Fitzgerald)
16. Mary’s Ideas (Mary Lou Williams)
17. Salt Peanuts (Joshua Redman)
18. All The Thing You Are (Lennie Tristano)
19. Blue Skies (Cassandra Wilson)
20. Blue Rondo A La Turk (Dave Brubeck)
21. Beyond The Sea (Bobby Darin)

Volume II
1. Everybody’s Bobbin’ (Lambert, Hendricks, & Ross)
2. Autumn Leaves (Wynton Marsalis)
3. Hocus-Pocus (Lee Morgan)
4. Blue Monk (Thelonious Monk)
5. Pent-Up House (Sonny Rollins)
6. Love Walked In (Ray Brown)
7. Night In Tunisia (Bud Powell)
8. Lester Leaps In (Count Basie)
9. Oh, Good Grief (Ellis Marsalis)
10. Daphne (Django Reinhardt)
11. Rendex-Vous Sous La Pluie (Jean-Fred Mele & The ‘Jazz Swing’ Zepilli)
12. A Foggy Day (Dakota Staton)
13. Outra Vez (Stan Getz)
14. Desafinado (Ryuichi Sakamoto)
15. Last Tango In Paris (Gotan Project)

teaching evaluations

I got back my teaching evaluations — by and large I scored pretty well, although I was hammered by many people for being underprepared for section or review. That’s to be expected though. I was often underprepared — for some reason it took me too long to get the knack of spending just the right amount of time. Of the few students who bothered to make comments, I got some kind words, some encouragement along the lines of “usually helpful… occasionally causes more confusion.” However, one person was very unhappy:

– he’s a sarcastic fuck –> it’s condescending
– he tries to go fast in discussion/review sessions, but screws up almost everytime, then wastes time trying to redeem himself

I have to admit, I’m a bit hurt by that. I’m pretty sure I know who wrote it, which is probably a bad thing, all in all. Even though you can’t please all the people all the time, you can still shoot for not displeasing all the people all the time, right?

and yet, I hate memes

But just for Sin‘s sake I’ll do it.

Number of books I own: Definitely in the hundreds, and if you count the books at my parents’ house that I lay claim too, perhaps a thousand. Though I don’t really think that you can count each individual Choose Your Own Adventure as its own book.

Last Book Bought: The Scar, by China Miéville. So far so good, but I’ve only really had time to read it on the bus.

Last book read: A Miracle of Rare Design, by Mike Resnick. This one was lent to me and I didn’t like it. It’s a sci-fi musing about a writer who is surgically altered to go undercover among all sorts of alien societies. It combines the anthropological sophistication of a bad Star Trek episode with profundity-via-inexplicable actions.

Five books that mean a lot to me:

  • The Phantom Tollbooth — this is a classic and should be read by all children and adults. You’ll never look a boredom in the same way again.
  • if on a winter’s night a traveler — I first got this book because Pari Zutshi saw it in one of the used bookstores in Champaign-Urbana (I want to say Jane Addams, but I honestly can’t remember) and she insisted that I buy it. Later she claimed that it was hers, at which point I surrendered it — a bad move on my part.
  • The Good Person of Sezuan — The first really political play I had really done, this gave me a concrete example of how the theater can engage the audience on a political and intellectual level beyond word games.
  • Theater of the Oppressed — Probably the first book that asked me to look critically at playmaking and to question the whole endeavor of the theater from the script to the presentation.
  • One, two, three, infinity — George Gamow is cool.

No more memes though. Really.

amusing paragraph

From a paper I’ve been trying to understand:

It seems to us that the aforementioned capacity theorem is one of the most complex coding theorems ever proved. Its proof not only involves the techniques of AVC theory but also some of the most advanced techniques from multiuser theory… Fifteen years ago such a capacity theorem must have been out of reach, but now it serves almost only as a demonstration for the power of certain methods. It is even conceivable that soon a much simpler proof will be found. This shows that there is hope also for several of the harder problems in multiuser theory, which seem to resist all efforts for their solution. Some problems can be solved only at the right time; the time is right if the methods are mature.

Corollary : The author is a super-genius.

city of industry

While tracking a package today I learned that there is actually a place in California called City of Industry. That is, the city is actually called “City of Industry.” For some reason that sounds more ridiculous than Industryville, Industrytown, or even Industriopolis. Perhaps it is because those actually sound fake, like something out of The Phantom Tollbooth (c.f. Digitopolis). I think a contributing factor is that City of Industry demands a sort of booming TV-announcer voice whenever you say it. Cityyyyy of In-dussssstryyyyyyyy. Ok, everybody try it now.