From the category archives:


One of my four Great-Grandfathers was Ernest Bobbitt Bourland (1875-1949). E.B. was a minister from various cities around Lexington, Kentucky. He and his wife had one child: my father’s father. My parents recently gave me this book and I decided to scan it and make it available. The music is from my FOUR PAINTERS: Thomas […]


Trying to get naked

July 7, 2010

Last week, I had an entire day at home to myself. No pressing school work, my various compositional projects are all waiting for someone else to provide me with various things before I can move forward: a perfect day to do NOTHING–maybe watch some movies, and kick around the house. It turned out to be […]


PBK like peanut butter

June 11, 2010

Yesterday I had the honor of being initiated into Phi Beta Kappa. I’m not sure what I did, but was happy to be among this august group. There were 256 graduating seniors who stepped up to the microphone, said their name and major, and what they will be doing next year. It was amazing: many […]


Being busy is

June 6, 2010

Diary entry: This is a busy time of the year for teachers. Final lectures, final exams, final meetings, deadlines for various and sundry things, parties, and grading papers. I lectured last week, the last week or the term, in MUSIC HISTORY, CULTURE and CREATIVITY about orchestration. The class must orchestrate a little piano piece I’ve […]


Big Sur Wedding

May 25, 2010

I fell in love with Big Sur as a senior in high school. I discovered two books: “Gestalt Therapy Verbatim” and “In and Out of the Garbage Pale” both by Dr Frederick Perls–aka Fritz Perls. He looked kind of like a Jewish Santa. Mischievous, outgoing, pushy, loving, confident, outrageous, and ultimately a very smart man. […]

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Glenn Watkins friended my on Facebook the other day. And I thought: hmm, who is Glenn Watkins? I looked him up to find he is the author of “The Gesualdo Hex” which I read about and bought right away. I’ve always been a Gesualdo fan, and my former student and friend Dante Silva (music) and […]

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Doggy duties

May 12, 2010

For the past week, Daniel and I have been in dog purgatory. Both of our dogs have mast cell tumors near their Achilles tendon, both malignant. Both have now been operated on. Giacometti has almost fully recovered and ready to be a dog again. Cody’s wound is larger and more fragile. Our job for the […]


Bad news can…

April 27, 2010

Bad news can really knock the wind out of you. Bad news can make you feel sick. Bad news can ruin your whole day, sometimes longer. What is bad news? News of death, poor health or scary maladies; news of financial, personal, or emotional loss; news of someone’s hostility for someone or something; news that […]


Growling together

April 6, 2010

Every day, our dogs require two important activities: catching the ball (Giaco can go forever if we could do it), and playing TUG. While playing TUG, Cody usually growls in a pulsating way: RRrrrrRRrrrrRRrrrrr with accents on the tugs. Giaco is more soft spoken but joins in. I too join in on the growling. They […]


Looking down

March 31, 2010

I learned how to walk on railroad tracks in college–not in class, but by walking from my apartment to the campus and back. The secret, when trying to keep your balance walking down a rail, is to NOT look down. Don’t watch each step, or you’ll lose your balance. • When I find out who […]

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