I guess it is safe to say that what I will tell you today is not rocket science, nor is it anything new, it may have been something that someone has already told you.
If you can find the time, you can do almost anything without sacrificing something else.
My case points to a pile of books that I have. The books that are waiting to be read or have been half started…the main culprit to not having these finished is too much screen time. For me that mainly concerns screen time at my laptop, while there is always work to do, people to get in touch with or a greater frequency of blog posts, it does not mean that everything should take me away from a great book.
I finished Elvis Costello’s autobiography Unfaithful Music and Disappearing Ink this week. It ranks up there Keith Richard’s Life and Philip Norman’s Shout! as must read music books. Like Richards, Costello goes through his musical upbringing with his father, who was a vocalist and trumpet player for several bands in the UK. Both Richards and Costello describe their influences for the music they create and the changes they go through in their musical growth. In books like these it is fascinating to learn influences for particular albums. In the case of Costello I am now determined to pick up his album The Juliet Letters, music made in collaboration The Brodsky Quartet, a collection of tracks considered to be letters. I was particularly moved by the story of the track The Birds Will Still Be Singing a song performed at his fathers funeral where Costello would not be able not sing the vocals. The Brodsky Quartet performed a new arrangement with the quartet “singing” Costello’s words. The story of his fathers death is moving as Costello finds out his father has died on the day of the funeral for his fathers last wife. The sadness of which he writes of the loss of his musical guide and early musical mentor is one I will not forget soon.
This interest to discover peoples motivations for change is not restricted only to music; I recently wrote a review of Fred Litwin’s Conservative Confidential, that book described Litwin’s political and social journeys (you find that review also posted in November here on #RedHeartBlueSign).
There is nothing like one good book to spur me on to another, so next on the list is Bob Rae’s What Happened to Politics, and from there I have Kevin and Alex Newman’s All Out ready to go. I don’t anticipate being disappointed by Bob Rae. I do expect my frequency of phone calls, coffee/beer meetings or online chats to decrease as I reacquaint myself with my hardcover and softcover friends that have been waiting for my reappearance.
I apologize in advance to everyone affected by this shift to be back ‘between the covers’.
I invite you to share your ideas by commenting to this post or any post on my blog. You can also email me directly at email@example.com.
I can be found Twitter @robertdekker, @rdmediaottawa and on Facebook at http://tiny.cc/n5l97.