And now here’s Cassandra with the weather report

A passage from Christopher Durang's funny funny play,  Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, the best play of last year, according to the Tony Awards. In this scene, the character from Greek mythology, Cassandra, who is cursed with the gift of prophesy, but also to be never believed, gives a weather report on localContinue reading “And now here’s Cassandra with the weather report”

The great and the small: Mary Ruefle

From a spectacular essay in Poetry by Mary Ruefle:  I remember John Moore, another teacher, who did the damnedest thing. We were studying Yeats, and at the beginning of one class Mr. Moore asked us if we would like to see a picture of Yeats. We nodded, and he held up a photograph of YeatsContinue reading “The great and the small: Mary Ruefle”

Horrific Flooding in Asia — as predicted by the IPCC

One-fifth of Pakistan is now underwater, the headlines say. Thousands have died, and this is expected to go down as one of "the worst natural disasters in history." But how "natural" is this disaster, really?  Just an hour ago the Associated Press posted the first news story to look at the flooding in Asia, theContinue reading “Horrific Flooding in Asia — as predicted by the IPCC”

The Confessions of Cassandra

The Ojai Music Festival is known for its adventurous spirit, for its lust for risk — musically speaking. In turn, Libbey Bowl audiences are known for their patience, and often they are rewarded with the  unforgettable. When Steve Reich’s difficult "Four Organs" was premiered in New York in the early l970’s, a near-riot erupted. WhenContinue reading “The Confessions of Cassandra”