I've been struggling to fill this space of late. What's the word for "when things are good but they don't feel good?" Yes. That. That is exactly the word I'm looking for. Anyway, I haven't been wanting for ideas so much as failing to turn them into anything but ideas. My notebook is full of little half-stories or bits and pieces to use in something larger, but that's the extent of my production right now.

Well...that's not strictly true. I did complete a little something for a contest. I've no clue if it's good enough to win, but when I compare it to the other things I've submitted, I think it's easily my best effort yet. The trajectory is good, and that's very satisfying.

It turns out that A Confederacy of Dunces* is every bit as good as its reputation. Writing comedy is so rarely done well, but this one has more than its share of laugh out loud bits. The funny thing is that I remember first becoming aware of this book in high school and, as it was an "instant classic," I assumed it was much older than it was. 

I doubt I'm giving anything away when I say that the book does a marvelous job skewering the worldview of every character in it. Sure, there's one primary target, but no one gets a free ride, and this is doubly true of any character who takes themselves seriously. What's funny is that I find myself more sympathetic towards the characters whose views are closer to my own, regardless of how brutally they're portrayed in the novel. That's odd, isn't it? From a political standpoint, I'd think that I'd judge more harshly the people who poorly represent my values than someone who is obviously a buffoon but doesn't claim to believe as I do. 

Or maybe not. It's tough to say, and maybe I'm just trying to draw too broad a conclusion from a single reference point. I'll file that one away in the notebook. 

I'm currently listening to "Divenire" by Ludovico Einaudi. It's an incredibly soaring work which constitutes part of the soundtrack for the Netflix version of a short film called Moving Art: Flowers. Weirdly, the non-Netflix versions have a different soundtrack. I'd never heard of Einaudi before, but apparently, he's quite well known in Europe. He reminds me of George Winston, another solo pianist. It's melodic and probably too "pop" to be properly classical, but it's gorgeous and it'll get stuck in your head if you're not careful. Check it out:

It's the kind of music that's often described as "sentimental," but I unabashedly adore sentimental music and this is the most sentimental of seasons, so it seems appropriate. I hope you enjoy it.



* I'm too lazy to Google this right now, but what is the best way to indicate the title of a book when your text editor doesn't permit underlining? I've seen people use underscores before and after the title and I hate the way it looks, regardless of whether or not it's correct. I'll look it up later.