Monday, August 29, 2011

Just One More Cnidarian, Pulsing On Through To the Cambrian

Some of us just know where we come from. 

This Cnidarian, whom you may have been introduced to as a  "jellyfish", is just pulsing her way on back through time towards one great fandango with her ancestors in the Cambrian Explosion, the fantastic era that was.
     Did you miss your evite to that hot past-times party? It's not too late to locate your own time portal and swim on back yourself. For a little pre-travel cultural encounter planning, check out Plain, Simple, Primitive? Not the Jellyfish.

And if traveling back 540 million years leaves you a little giddy, just drop by Steinhart Aquarium in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park.

Oh and click on the illustration above to get a little more up close and personal.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Another Time Travel How To

Jennie Strong was the grandmother-in-law that I never knew. She died in the 1930's. But her large photograph is on my dining room wall and on the other side, in the living room, is her 1903 Chickering parlor grand piano. 

McDowell's piano piece, "To a Wild Rose" from Woodland Sketches, was one of the most popular pieces in America during Jennie's young womanhood. From the amount of marked up music I found in her piano bench when we inherited her piano, I'd be willing to bet she played this tune herself many times. 

Sometimes, just before I finish playing this piece, I think I hear somebody singing along, just on the other side of the wall.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Time Coordination: Saffron Finch

With a little help from a friendly yellow finch in the Rainforest Exhibit at the California Academy of Sciences, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco

No matter how ultra-sophisticated you are, or how many times you've visited a real live rainforest, the wait in line for this exhibit is still worth it.

Friday, August 5, 2011

My Heart Beats Faster: A Pair of Pointe Shoes

Judy pointed out that having neither the skills, physique, nor training, to pursue my own pair of pointe shoes, I’d be much better off sticking with my cello. Not being really that all interested in learning to plie, pirouette or execute rond de jambes myself, I agreed. She added in her usual practical style that Andy Klepper’s mother had just started him on trumpet lessons, and we could all play in the ballet’s orchestra together.

This month I'm working on the Kindle edition of "My Heart Beats Faster in Past Times", an Imperial Russia-based time-travel romance novella with music and ballet themes.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

My Heart Beats Faster: Larisa's Programmes

I had settled down to work in Silicon Valley. After ten years of marriage, it turned out that there was a little more to romance than simply putting on the right outfit, and heading out for a pas-de-deux with my dancing partner, but I learned to be happy on my own. I raised my daughter and joined the small local “Ohlone Symphony” as a low-ranking second cello. I also visited the San Francisco Opera House innumerable times to listen to the professional cellists play the classic compositions, and watch toe-shoes turn on the sprung hard wood stage in performances like Swan Lake, Giselle, Rodeo and – well a whole shelf of my living room bookcase holds my scrapbooks filled with old programmes.

This month I'm working on the Kindle edition of "My Heart Beats Faster in Past Times", an Imperial Russia-based time-travel romance novella with music and ballet themes.