Happy Valentine’s Day, Monday. Six days to surgery.
One additional post earlier this week, Welcoming Afghans Feb 11.
We attended Friday’s Minnesota Orchestra program, and it was phenomenal, especially the final piece, the original 44 minute reading of Stravinsky’s “The Firebird”. Orchestra and conductor earned the ovation they received. (The You Tube rendition from 2011 by the Vienna Symphony can be watched here. The Minnesota Orchestra program about Composer Igor Stravinsky is here: Stravinsky.) (See Postnote below as well.)
Valentine’s Day is tomorrow.
As I was listening to the orchestra Friday night, I looked through the program booklet for February, to see if there was anything with a Valentine’s Day theme. The closest I came was a marvelous Essay “Washing for the New Year,” by Mao Kalia Yang, a tribute to the Chinese New Year, which began Feb. 1. The Essay is here: Washing for the New Year. It is a single page, concluding with this: “That in all the bitterness of the world there remains: a source of sweetness in our lives, love. Always the love, first and last, a love that lasts”.
That’s a powerful Valentine wish for all of us.
Personally, acknowledging the deep dysfunction in which we live these days, what this boils down to for me is that all of us, wherever we live on this planet, are part of a single community which is ours, not mine, not them (whoever that is), or any artificial divisions. Our contemporary society, seems easily led to revere competition over cooperation, to the detriment of us all.
Today is the ultimate and annual example of our national top priority: the Super Bowl, this year, LVI. Tomorrow, someone will have won…but what? And for how long will it endure?
LVI? That’s 56 in English. Even the vocabulary reminds us of the late, great Roman Empire, which didn’t last.
Do have a great Valentine’s Day, and make it a beginning of a really good year for everyone.
The youngsters lived about two miles apart. The handwriting: “Because I love you, if there were paths to Fairyland or to the brightest star, I would turn from them all and go the road to where you are.”
My date with surgery seems set for Feb 18. The week to come will be busy. A Caring Bridge site has been established for updates. Don’t expect anything until Feb 18. I guess I’m Dick Bernard-Mn at Caring Bridge.
POSTNOTE: The officious review of Stravinsky in today’s Minneapolis StarTribune doesn’t agree with me, but, so, what else is new? I was in the same hall, heard the same performances, and saw and felt the reaction of everybody else. Reviews are always personal opinions!
COMMENTS (more at end of post):
from SAK: Many thanks for the uplifting post for Valentine’s – lovely card by the little girl (with help from mum).
Stravinsky is one of my favourite composers. He is music’s Picasso: different styles but hugely successful in all.
Picasso when asked about style said: “God is really only another artist. He invented the giraffe, the elephant and the cat. He has no real style, He just goes on trying other things.” May God carry you safely through the week ahead.
& like you I wouldn’t worry about the review of the Stravinsky concert – has any statue been put up for a critic!?
All the best.
from JSD: Best of luck with your surgery. I pray that you will do well like I did. I have been 14 years cancer free of colon cancer.
from Judy: such lovely thoughts. My prayers are with you as surgery approaches. God’s blessings to you.
from Lee: Good luck with your surgery Dick. I will be keeping you in my thoughts.
from John: Sending love and healing thoughts. There are many of us who will be thinking of you this week and always.
from Jeff: Good luck Mr B….i have no doubt a stout German Frenchie like you will come thru just fine….blogging from your recovery bed…thinking of you….
from Larry: Dick, back when I was teaching storytelling and video, I would tape the Superbowl, then isolate some of the most fun ads that were appropriate for kids to watch (obviously in my opinion, because many of them would have already seen all of them). Then I’d show some of them and talk about how much companies paid for a minute of advertising time (back then it was “only” a million dollars a minute. Then talk about a few things, like people being homeless, and a decent house, nothing fancy, was then about $100,000. Then ask them to think, IF YOU HAD A MILLION DOLLARS TO SPEND, WHAT WOULD YOU DO, IF YOU WEREN’T TELLING EVERYONE TO BUY FRITOS? Some papers were pretty self indulgent, but a fair number would also be quite socially conscious, etc.
from Jerry: Dick, thanks for reminding us of your surgery date. You know I will be praying for you and checking on Caring Bridge. Get well quickly as we value your input with FAHF as well as your blogs,
from Beth: Star Gazer will be looking after both of you this week.
Star Gazer resides on my kitchen table and “Looks Out” and “Looks After” me, and people I care for. “All will be well”
from Kristi: Wishing you all the best for a smooth surgery and a fast recovery. Please let me know if I can do anything to help you.
to Kristi from Dick: Many thanks. It’s Monday, and absent changes, the surgery is Friday. No one knows for sure what the future holds, for myself, themselves, or anyone else, or for our nation and world – this is a very troubled time. You and I and many others shared a lot of time over the past 20+ years since 9-11-01 in the Minnesota Alliance of Peacemakers and then Citizens for Global Solutions, and other related common ground, and regardless of what my personal future holds, let’s keep working for a better and more workable world. It is possible, but it will continue to take effort, lots of it. I’m an optimist, but my optimism is tested these days, not for myself, but for all of us, everywhere. Keep on, keeping on!
from Jermitt: I appreciate your comments on what we value in life. Each of us are different, but our basic interests are the same or at least similar.
Portion of letter from the Minnesota Orchestra to subscribers Feb. 14: “Happy Valentine’s Day! I’d like you to have Besame Mucho from the Minnesota Orchestra. It’s the classic love song “Besame Mucho.” Written in 1941 by Consuelo Velazquez, this achingly romantic tune became a global phenomenon performed by The Beatles, Elvis, Frank Sinatra and dozens of other artists. Trumpeter Charles Lazarus and the Minnesota Orchestra teamed up to make this rendition part of the 2021 Symphony Ball, with Tommy Barbarella on piano and Music Director Osmo Vänskä on the podium.With gratitude for your generosity and all you do to sustain the Minnesota Orchestra, I hope this adds to the sweetness of your day.”
from our next door neighbor, a photo of a rainbow, with best wishes.
from Kathya: I know your surgery is on Friday, so I wanted to say that I have been praying for you, for the doctors to do a perfect job and for you to be promptly recovered.
from Sandra: Best wishes for your surgery.
from Paul: We will be thinking about you while you have your surgery and recovery. Wish you the best possible outcome and look forward to hearing from you soon.
from Sue: Best wishes, Dick. Your first name will be added to the prayers for the prayer group at Assumption.
from Mary Rae: Hope all goes well for you. Take your time to recover as I think there may be spring/summer to enjoy this year (I hope).
from Denise: Thinking of you during your surgery and recovery.
from Annelee, Feb. 16, 2022
Annelee spent the first 21 years of her life in Germany, leaving for America in 1947. She knows of what she speaks, at 95.
I’m just letting you know I have my altar area all set up With the blessed Virgin Mary, candle, and rosary. I will be praying for you tomorrow for your surgery.
Remember…All things work for good for those who love God and are called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28