Survivor’s guilt

The pandemic was good to me.

I thrive alone and so, even as the wife was not in her best place like most others in the world, though I was distraught by what the global “We” were going through, I could deal. Even before the pandemic I worked from home and spent many non-work hours in my office doing non-work things. Not necessarily a very guy thing but just a very introvert thing. I actually have fond memories of the isolation because within that isolation there was, without a better phrase to express it, a warm online camaraderie of artists who gave their time to create that warmth.

The 11th of this month was the four year anniversary of the start (as I noted here when it started).

On 8 May 2020, Andy Serkis read the entirety of The Hobbit in one, nearly 11-hour sitting. I would jump in and out during the work day; it was always on in the background but didn’t have my full attention for the entire performance. When he got to the end it was absolutely moving both for the story, his contribution, and the fact that I was one of thousands sharing it live. What would have been a gimmick (a wonderfully entertaining gimmick) at any other time became sublime.

Later that month, on Sun 24 May 2020, Yo-Yo Ma performed Bach’s six cello suites in one sitting, pausing in between to briefly comment on each one.

I commented on it in one of my Coronavirus update posts that I’d write for Future Me to understand what had happened. Future Me has mostly avoided them. They were always equally depressing and anger-making so I usually ended each post with the most recent MST3K miscellany that had entertained me. During the pandemic I also developed a Saturday-morning-MST3K-with-a-breakfast-sandwich habit that kept me sane-ish. I think Future Me maybe needs to go back through the pandemic posts just so I can to scroll to the bottom of each and revisit that weird joy.

Finally, I started watching performances of the Berliner Philharmoniker, periodically purchasing one week for $10 and getting a few concerts in. Bargain. Highlights were the Ligeti Violin Concerto with Patricia Kopatchinskaja, the Ligeti La Grand Macabre (video above of Audrey Luna performing the Hitchcock-ian “Ahh!… Secret cypher!” from Act 2, Scene 3) directed by everyone’s favorite enfant terrible Peter Sellars, and a beautiful performance of 4:33 (video above) from the day that they found out they were shutting down again after a renewed pandemic surge. There were many more and just recalling these makes me want to purchase another subscription. I felt somewhat guilty that I wasn’t supporting an American orchestra but, as per the subject of this post, it’s easy to feel guilty about everything.

Finally, Crow with an egg on his head:

Crow explains why he has a bird nesting on his head (and later has to shoot at weasels trying to steal his egg).