I wish I lived closer to Ravinia Park so I wouldn’t have to drive an hour west toward Lake Michigan every time I wanted to hear the Chicago Symphony Orchestra play. I listened to the CSO perform Gustav Holst’s The Planets yesterday. Don’t tell anyone, specifically the CSO’s lawyers, but I recorded one movement as a souvenir, and I’m posting it for whoever is bored enough to read this blog. During the performance, you’ll hear a trumpet player botch a note, as well as me acting surprised and unaware, almost girlishly so, when an usher near one of the entrances to the main stage asks me to put my iPhone away.
The video, I admit, is awful. First I filmed the CSO from the perspective of my right nipple, which I’m told is the better of the two, as I attempted to record the piece surreptitiously with an iPhone in my left hand while my arms were folded (I guess my right nipple was looking at this old woman and the pavilion’s ceiling for most of the time). After the usher caught me toward the end of the movement, I changed the framing to offer a glimpse of the world’s greatest orchestra from the viewpoint of my well-deodorized armpit. Whatever … when I saw Riccardo Muti conduct a rehearsal a few weeks ago, he said society had become because too visual anyway. It’s music; do you really need to watch brass players’ faces turn tomato red and string players’ bows shooting up and down? Not really.
If only the Avengers’ Helicarrier would airlift Ravinia Park and drop it on top of Sleepy Hollow’s Sabatino Park. In my part of Chicagoland, the only form of entertainment involves sitting outside a strip mall and watching all the businesses quickly deteriorate, subsequently go out of business and be replaced by Cash4Gold stores or campaign offices for state senate candidates whose political experience includes marching in parades and marching in parades. It makes the peppiest of people crave powerful anti-depressants.
I’m still waiting for something in the mail from the Cook County Records Office about my great-great-grandma, and who knows how long it’ll take for the genealogy department to look for my great-grandfather’s stuff. I’m wondering if I should get a summer internship or job in the Cook County Records Office just so that I have access to the place after hours.
That’s a bit excessive, isn’t it. But when you live in Illinois, sometimes you have to fight corruption and inefficiency with pure, unadulterated insanity.
P.S. – I’ve been noticing that my international audience has increased recently. I’m not sure if you’re actually reading this or you’ve just stumbled upon this page while you’re searching for something completely different. Anyway, thanks to those in Luxembourg, India, Australia, the UK, France, Hungary, Iceland, Germany, Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Panama, Canada and Austria who are reading or mistakenly clicking on the link to this page. It makes me feel very, well, maybe this: