About Me

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Split personality. Liking the arts, especially opera, and hockey and Los Toros. I know, I know THAT one is non pc currently. But I can't help it saw some in Spain and got hooked, but good. But on the other hand right now opera and hockey are in the forefront!


Monday, May 31, 2010

Oh no, let me get away...

Last night I watched- well really just listened to, a DVD made in 1981 in Stuttgart of Der Freischuetz by Carl Maria von Weber, below an excerpt which I found rather laughable
it was sung reasonably well, but the staging and special effects appeared ludicrous me, the directions to the singers were so bad it was rather funny, alas.

And so went snooping on YouTube today to find 'opera funnies', not just staging, but maybe singing and encountered this
and then there is this
just to give a comparison, where I feel even a non opera lover can hear the difference. Although the recording has been made several years ago, while the Met's was made just last fall and with much better audio/video equipment. Either singer sings one of the most fearsome arias in a language not native to her.
Enjoy or not, :-D!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

The dark ages may return...

before we get hit with another like last evening, spent almost 4 hrs 'romantically' and precariously with candlelight, which, naturally, was not strong enough to read a book in small print.
So really rushed this morning to finish it before we head back (and the sky is darkening a bit already) to the times before electricity.

And hand held fans, and candles and battery (thank goodness for THAT invention) operated radio.
Which, being honest, was the one beautiful thing last evening.. being able to listen to a Bruckner piece (Partial Final movement of apocalyptic sounds)

followed by - what else in this, his anniversary year -
Fryderyk Chopin (1810-1849)!
Painting of an older Chopin by Delacroix.

Horowitz plays Raindrop prelude by Chopin.

You think "Candles= Romance" - well think again!
Carrying a lit candle to the bathroom to brush teeth by, and perform other ablutions?
Waving a large flashlight (Battery powered-thank God) to light up each row of words just to finish a book?
One's eyes tire rather easily that way!

And it was waayyy too early to hit pillows. So what else to do?
Getting ready to what ever needs done by flickering candle - careful not to extinguish the puny source of light, after all who wants to trip over the, all of a sudden so mysterious,
things that make one go 'thunk' in the dark ;-)!
Hail, wind and heavy rains battered windows and 'drumrolled' on the patio table - not at all that romantic :-D!

Friday, May 28, 2010

Sarcasm 101 for computers

Ran across this article thanks to some friends on FB.. how do they have all that time to root out such things? And it hit a spot. So now, we can identify sarcasm by computer? How amusing that may turn out to be, when it is hard enough to identify sarcasm and/or irony by reading and/or listening ourselves? This may just turn into the funniest read akin to those 'instant' translations which are truly just too funny for anyone who actually speaks the language! A real gobbledygook ;-).
And if one tries to translate the late FALCO's Viennese Blood Song.. watch out. There are lots of dialect phrases and idioms which simply cannot be translated by computer, but hey, feel free to try! LOL!

Just what we need: sarcasm software - tech - 25 May 2010 - New Scientist

Hot diggity Dog!

A new jersey for the collection! As long as it is black and/or purple it's a jersey for me ;-)! And so appropriate for an aficionada de los toros ;-) and hockey, even if not a Brahmas fan, which I could be, were I at home in Ft. Worth ;-)!
This is, I believe and was told, an older Ft. Worth Brahma jersey. There are a few signatures on it, but as usual totally illegible. Not only because of the scribbles but also because black on deep purple simply does not show up very well, and the jersey may have been washed repeatedly. I have idea of its provenance, but it is Purple and I like the Bull image, of course. Thanks for gift, friend.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Believe in miracles...

So, we have to believe in miracles as the Texas Stars overpowered the Hamilton Bulldogs on their home ice in front of 5000 fans!
What an achievement in an inaugural season.
Now they are poised to face the Hershey Bears in the final battle for the Calder Cup!
At Austin June 7, 9 and 11!
So there are at least 2 more games,
but may run to 3, right here in Texas.
And the 'StarsTrekking' begins again! Hockey in JUNE!
Baritone sings a paean to The Stars (Die Sterne ;-)!
GO STARSand bring back to Texas the Calder Cup
"Soft Spot" Matt Beaudoin(Chris Jerina Photo)
got one goal and one assist. Perttu Lindgren one goal and 2 assist, Graham and Benn the other two scorers
while Climie (artandhockey photo)
was peppered with 43 shots stopping 41!
Having added NHL'ers Subban and Maxwell did not do too much for the Bulldogs, although Subban got a goal.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Once upon a time

All stories begin like that....
Once upon a time I vowed to keep this blog as non-egocentric as possible.
But I have to get this off my back...
I broke that vow, once!
weell, maybe more than once - but some of it was in German, and that doesn't count ;-)?
Unless, of course you read both languages!
So let's say thrice.. and now I'm going to it again.
Lately have been perusing several blogs!
They all purport to discuss all kinds of subjects!
But the main, and sometimes, ONLY subject is The *I*!
As in ' I do, I did, I like, I dislike, I love, I hate'!

Yes, of course, it may be interesting to read about your brilliant whatever! Your wonderful whoever.
Your fabulous thingamajigs. Your absolutely stunning whatchamacallits!

Yes, of course, we do feel for you in your sorrows! Or hatreds! Or complaints!

Yes, of course, it just might be interesting to know what you think. Or what not you thought.Did or did not do. Yesterday or even today. To be honest, I don't mind hearing about your trials and tribulations, occasionally! But do you have to keep on doing it..I, Me, Mine ....and on and on?

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Bulldogs nipping at Stars heels

It was a massacre, a shut out for Hamilton 3 Stars 0... despite Climie doing yeoman's work on hands, knees and other body parts, trying to keep the puck out. But when defense is absent even a super goalie would be hard pressed and Climie, while very good, is no superhero goalie. Alas.

Hamilton just skated faster, badgered and peppered Climie, frustrated Dogs started fights, when a goal-presumed goal by Desharnais, was not counted. Despite having at least 9 skaters of the Scrapper Type (under 5ft 11) Hamilton was the stronger team last night!
Hamilton got on the board early and kept the pressure on through all three periods.
Beleaguered Stars goalie and some defense men around?
Bulldogs celebrating first goal
and some fights, this one caused Sawada's expulsion from the rink.
Bulldogs Sanford is not impressed with Stars offense ;-),

And The Sharks went out of contention this afternoon, a somewhat biased referee did assist the Blackhawks IMO . And tomorrow Habs vs. Flyers. If Habs loose this round, Flyers will face Blackhawks and I shall switch allegiance to FLYERS! So there!

The two Bastrops....

So we drove through the Bastrop, in Texas, on the way to Austin and the Stars' game 5 vs. Bulldogs, of which more later.
Named after spurious Felipe Enrique Neri, Baron de Bastrop,
actually the commoner Philip Hendrick Nering Boegel, born 1759 to Dutch parents in Dutch Guiana who moved with him to the Netherlands. In 1782 was married there and had 5 children. He worked as a Tax collector in Friesland, where he was accused of embezzling tax funds for personal use (history does repeat itself, eh?). So he fled Europe for America and settled for a while IN BASTROP, LA(Spanish Louisiana)Parish Courthouse andTheater in Bastrop, LA.
Where he introduced himself as Baron de Bastrop! There he was engaged in land deals making a fortune on the way, which he later lost, only to die without any funds.
Southern Living at its most gracious - hardly comparable to Bastrop, TX ;-).
After the Louisiana purchase he moved to San Antonio,Texas in 1802 posing as loyal Spanish subject and even became Deputy Alcalde in 1810. Since he had met Moses Austin some 20 years earlier in Missouri, he helped him, and later Stephen F. Austin, bring Anglo Settlers to Texas. Neri (shortened for Nering) later served in the Legislature of Coahila y Tejas and served there until his death in 1827. Much later he was revealed as Nering Boegel. But his service to and for the original families of Texas,"The Old Threehundred", was important, otherwise Texas would most likely not have been settled by Anglo-Americans.
Bastrop, TX, Courthouse and Jailhouse built 1891-92 - - one of the few Courthouses with a surving jailhouse attached. It served as such until 1974, housing guards on the first floor, cell blocks are on 2. and 3. floors, in the facade view these appear to be just one floor.
This small quaint town lies on the Colorado River, spanned by the old, for pedestrian only, bridge besides the new highway bridge, just outside the town.
and boasts of an opera house-historic landmark, as is the jail.
A bit of Texas History in a nutshell..
BTW Bastrop, TX was used to film"The Texas Chainsaw Massacre" in 1974, "Home Fries" in 1998, "Courage under fire" in 1996 and others. Bastrop, TX is home to a former TX Supreme Court Chief Justice; the bullrider, Sis Steiner; WWE wrestler "The Undertaker" (just what you wanted to know) as well as Tres Womack (singer/songwriter) and author Carolyn Banks.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Win & Loose

Win: Stars over Bulldogs in OT, again! Standing Stars 2 Bulldogs 2.
Lost: Sharks to Blackhawks in OT 2-3, Standing Sharks (alas)0 Blackhawks 3

LOST among a huge crowd at Miller Outdoor Theater! Truly, the hill behind the theater overflowed with people sitting in beach chairs, lolling on blankets! Even several homeless persons sprawled among their earthly possessions in rapt attention.
WIN for HGO's Reprisal of TOSCA, the opera by Puccini with
as Tosca, Vasquez as the evil Baron Scarpia

Cioffari in dual role as Angelotti and Jailer,

ably conducted by Eric Melear, soon to head for Vienna Staatsoper.
and Dolgov
back to reprise his outstanding performance as Cavaradossi!

Here is Scarpia (on Scaffold) at mass in the cathedral at the TeDeum,

during which Scarpia sings of his desire for Tosca.

And that gives you the gist: Revolt, prisoner escapes, abnormal jealousy, greed, heated desire, love, art, religion, attempted rape, murder, political killing and, finally suicide, THE END!
All that set to stirring music, sung with passionate abandonment and acted out superbly.
Clayton in for the original Tosca of Racette, sang convincingly with a bright and strong soprano, credible as the alluring opera singer Floria Tosca, consumed by jealousy over imagined betrayal by her lover the Painter Cavaradossi, and so easily led by Scarpia to reveal the hiding place of the escapee Angelotti.

The Scarpia of Baritone Hector Vasquez was convincing in his relentless sexual desire, fed by Tosca's refusal to submit, he sang with sonorous voice and exhibited truly evil demeanor.

HGO Studio artist Bass Adam Cioffari (remember him from his well sung comic portrayal of the servant in XERXES, recently?) used his rich voice and considerable acting talent, with no holds barred, as the escaped prisoner Angelotti. And also in the cameo role of the jail guard in Act 3.

But the night belonged to Tenor Alexey Dolgov, who simply shone!
His voice soared above with a beauty of sound, in the famous arias in act 1 and 3. His acting ability was rather better than one expects from Russian singers. And deservedly he garnered the most applause. A night to remember, for sure.

Having sat through mayhem and more, one left with emotions spent, happily surfeited with the power of music!

Thursday, May 20, 2010


Trekking to Austin
Celebrating Stars
Game 1 at home
Warming up

Practising close shots on Bachmann (BUG)

A gladiators entry with 'shooting stars - fireworks'!
Calmly waiting Climie!
Besieged Climie - defense hoovering?
Bulldogs came into town with a 2 -0 lead.. but Stars managed to win the game just a few minutes into OT with the winning goal by Graham (Nr. 21), First *of the game - his first goal in play offs.
The other scorers were:
1. period Hamilton' s White ( 25), Stars' Lindgren (17)on a PP.
In period 2 Stars' Benn (14) Second * of the game, on a PP
and Gagnon (11) on a PP,
Hamilton's Glumac (15)
In the 3. period Hamilton Trotter (19) Third * of the game, on a PP and Russell (20) on a PP,
Stars' Peters (25).
Sandford in goal for Hamilton,
Climie for the Stars. here he is taking a much needed break..
(sorry Ms. C. and other goalie fans: No bottles in sight ;0)
Bulldogs seemingly faster skaters, Stars had more SOG in the 1. and 2.
Being outshot by Bulldogs in the 3.
Bulldogs Nr. 51 Desharnais reminded us quite a bit of The Scrapper (Daoust) ...
Ex-Aero Shawn Belle made his presence known and got away IMO with a few 'un-noticed-by-the-referee infractions( ref: Rehmann - who, BTW, got lots of catcalls "You s... Ref", etc.). and we'll trek there again for the 3. home game...
GO STARS - bring the Calder Cup home again to Texas!
All photos artandhockey

Stars went..

in OT Texas Stars won the first home game vs Hamilton Bulldogs 5:4 in front of raucous crowd, And how raucous... well customer services passed out earplugs on demand :-).
Once back and pictures downloaded, more to post.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Driven to that...

not quite yet, even though all three of "my" teams have lost the first 2 games.
AS A MORALE BOOSTER - Enjoy an old clip from a Habs Vs. Flyers game

And a, so positive, clip about the Sharks..

and Texas Stars vs. Aeros game clip.. sigh!

Believing in miracles? Weellll....

Monday, May 17, 2010


Photo:Chris Jerina
I really had BIG plans for today's post on a non-hockey subject,
BUT then I read that the WILD signed Chad Rau=WOW to a TWO YEAR contract
Chad Rau Goal in SO.
And it hit me - someone must've read my earlier post ;-)...
Now am just waiting -perhaps not exactly
all tied in knots - [;-D - like that-
(Art:Blattgestalt Nr. 1 by Antje Rietsch -photo artandhockey)
for them to sign others mentioned positively there.
Maybe just - wishful thinking?
When it comes to wishful there is more keeping fingers crossed and holding breath time for The Stars, The Sharks, and The Habs - one must believe in miracles!!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Spent the afternoon...

switching back and forth between
Stars vs. Bulldogs game (photo Chris Jerina)
in the race for the
Calder Cup (second oldest cup establ.1936)
ALAS: Bulldogs beat Stars 3-1.
Now Stars head back to Cedar Park for 3 games there starting Wednesday May 19, 21 and 22 and if needed 2 more at Hamilton ;-).
And Sharks vs. Blackhawks in the race for the
Stanley Cup (1893)
Nabokov in goal-photo-artandhockey
Alas, Sharks : 1 loose to Blackhawks : 2 in regulation at the "Sharktank"

(Video shows the OTHER goalie - ;-) - not Niemi) despite the pulling of Nabokov, and a last minute powerplay of 6 vs 4 due to a penalty on the Hawks.
In all, Niemi with 45 saves of 46 held the Sharks at bay. Nabokov had 38 saves of 40. Blackhawks seemed to start slow, warmed up in 2. which was the best period for the Sharks re shots on goal, but then really outskated and outshot the Sharks in the 3. Their speed was greater and their defense (say Niemi) rather effective. Byfuglien and Sharp the scorers for Hawks and Demers for the Sharks on a PP.

Today am not betting 100%.
Stars lost their 2. game vs Bulldogs.
Sharks their 1. vs Blackhawks.

Tonight it's Flyers vs. Canadiens. GO HABS for me!