Sunday, August 14, 2005

The Minnow Is Not Lost

I found JRP singing a jaunty tune this morning as he packed for a trip to Ocean City with friends before college starts back up.

J: What's that you're singing?
JRP: Because I could not stop for Death/He kindly stopped for me./The carriage held but just ourselves/And Immortality.
J: Who set Emily Dickinson to music?
JRP: I did, in high school. A lot of her poems fit the theme from "Gilligan's Island." That's how I remember them. But not all of them; Hope is the thing with feathers doesn't work.

The Richmond Chamber Players' pleasant noises this afternoon: Rebecca Clarke-Trio for Violin, Violoncello, and Pianoforte; Lalo Schifrin-Woodwind Quintet "La Nouvelle Orleans"; Brahms-Klarinetten-Trio, Op. 114.

Barbara Ehrenreich in the Times Book Review on business success books: [T]o judge from the blurbs on the backs of these books, they have won the endorsement of numerous actual C.E.O.'s of prominent companies. Maybe the books tell us what these fellows want their underlings to believe. Be more like mice, for example. Or—and this is the truly scary possibility—maybe the principles embody what the C.E.O.'s themselves believe, and it is in fact the delusional, the immoral and the verbally challenged who are running the show.

Clyde Prestowitz in today's Times: The United States consumes far more than it produces and has to borrow money from the rest of the world to finance that consumption.… Like any Ponzi scheme, it's not indefinitely sustainable.… [I]n the long term, it turns you into a sharecropper. To finance the consumption, you keep selling off your assets. You sell the garage. Then you sell the guesthouse. After a while, there's nothing left to sell and you have to go to work and earn real money to pay your debts. Your kids and grandkids will have less opportunity and lower standards of living.

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