Saturday, November 22, 2008

Baby, it's cold outside

Glistening drifts veiled by wisps of blowing snow, icy breath, muddy, treacherous roads -- and the anticipation of a roaring fire and good food. For a multitude of reasons, I've always associated the baroque period with winter. You won't find a better soundtrack -- well, maybe some Norwegian black metal if you're feeling extra evil -- for watching the frigid winds whipping outside your window as you search beyond the frosted glass for a unique flake to match an individual note, knowing that symbiotic pattern of nature and human creation is out there waiting to be discovered.

Okay, so we haven't been hit with foot after foot of the white stuff just yet -- just a glaze of an inch or two the last couple of nights -- and I don't have a fireplace and will probably be frying up nondescript ham and eggs tomorrow morning, but l'hiver vient. And I've got my CDs at the ready.

Veracini's overture in G minor by the late, great Musica Antiqua Köln.


MRMacrum said...

I punched up the video before I read your post. Being more than a little ignorant of music from the days of the long hairs, as my father called them, I would say that this tune definitely has the feel of a winter storm and snow swirling.

And though my snow blower stands ready for the inevitable onslaught, it's inner workings having been adjusted, cleaned and caressed, I hope that it's role will be more of an uninvolved peace keeper rather than an active participant for what might, no.... what will definitely be coming my way.

As you can tell I live in a fool's paradise. Only a fool would waste time hoping that winter does not do what it always does. Not a fool living Maine anyway.

Excellent tune. I played it three times.

anita said...

wundervoll !!!! i woke up this morning really depressed, and voila !! this piece just lifted my sagging spirits. thanks. seriously.

we had about 10 minutes of snow during the middle of the week and that's about it. although, right now it's 18 degrees out ... guess it's too cold for snow?

i guess i should get a snow blower. but i see that as the first step towards getting a dread LEAF BLOWER. and on that, i MUST stand firm. i JUST SAY NO to leaf blowers.

snow blowers, well, maybe not so much.

Randal Graves said...

mrmacrum, I would imagine that you get hit a hell of a lot harder than we would, even though we have Lake Effect Snow® and the robot newscasters get more histrionic with each passing year. "IT MIGHT SNOW TOMORROW! WATCH FOR SCHOOL CLOSINGS! SEE OUR DOPPLER 5000 FOR DETAILS!" Yeesh.

Veracini, Locatelli, Vivaldi, all those I-talian dudes wrote some lovely stuff. The incessant, though varying, patterns always struck me as falling snow. Good stuff.

anita, if you'll forgive a cliché, that's the power of music. It's a magical thing.

18° too cold? I seem to remember last year - or was it 2006? - where it was bloody cold in the teens and we got covered so a pox on your theory!

Leaf blowers should be illegal. Snow blowers? I can see where they would be a necessity if you've got a long ass driveway or land and, you know, might need to use your car that would have problems going through 18 inches of the white stuff. ;-)

Now, if I could only convince my fellow suburbanites with the short driveways that they should be using a shovel. Wankers.

Mauigirl said...

Snow...brrrr. Here in NJ we have been having quite cold weather for this time of year but no snow so far. I'm sure it won't be a mild winter, though - I have a feeling we're going to get hit with the white stuff soon.

okjimm said...

I have no love for winter.....I think it has something to do with all the coldness. Winter would be fine without the coldness thing. Without the goddamn snow drift shit. Why can't we just mellow out Winter? Make it milder. Ya know, Minter instead of Winter. I think I could tolerate Minter.

Sal Kilmister said...

Great tune.

KELSO'S NUTS said...

GRAVES: Veracini on the youtubes but Tom Waits in the headline, si o no?

It's late spring down here which means 95 degrees, 99% humidity, torrential rains, but I've got the A/Cs set to nippy New England early spring, so other than the headaches from the low barometric pressure, I'll take CdP over CLE right now. We don't have an NFL frachise nor anything in the way of Polish or Hungarian butchers, but we do have a German place and a Swiss place here, both of which have abbreviated Hungarian menus, too.

When my folks are here, my father wants to go to the German place practically every night so he can speak both Yiddish and Spanish to the chef/owner, Sr Don Herr Leitner.

Incidentally, there was a small informal cash market in Vegas as to whether either McCain, Palin or both would utter the actual word "nigger" at some point in either a debate, speech or interview. The price was 6/1 against.

I had thought of a more interesting proposition. I was hoping that at some point campaigning in Cleveland or Western PA, realizing that the "Reagan Democrat" union workers loathed him, he would get that smirk on his face and tell this specific joke: "How do you take Polish census in America? [We know how much Walnuts loves immigrants]. Count the basements in Cleveland and multiply by 15!" Ha ha uh ha ha...slight pause...cut away to CNN, booming laughter from Wolf Blitzer and Blitzer saying "whoa...that's controversial stuff, Colonel, but you ARE known for your straight talk."

All I wanted was to take 250,000/1 on the proposition!

susan said...

Nice choice for a piece of music and you've reminded me of a choice we're looking to make about where in Canada to go in the next two years.. Halifax, NS with long, somewhat bitter winters but closer to our son in RI as well as my favorite ocean? ..or return to Vancouver, BC with weather not too different from Portland, OR? I never feel completely comfortable where I am but all the rest is unknown except the fact I detest snow blowers, snow shovels and leaf blowers.

Distributorcap said...

so the republicans are right - there is NO global warming!

Tom Harper said...

Good point about Baroque and winter. Or anything Germanic for that matter. It's hard to picture Germans or Austrians sitting around fanning themselves in the heat.

Anonymous said...

All this talk of winter is making my fingers cold.

P.S. We watched you on Adult Swim last night. Always entertaining!

S.W. Anderson said...

Ah, that snow amidst the majesty of mountains. It's awfully beautiful — and beautifully awful.

May the 4WD be with you.

La Belette Rouge said...

I so miss the Lake Effect Snow®. This post rhapsodizing about the beauty of snow is to get me back for the Peggy Noonan comment, isn't it?

No fireplace in the Midwest? How do you survive it? You are a brave man.

Our Juicy Life said...

argh...snow! When I lived in Michigan 20 years ago I left for sunny southern california and told myself that I would NEVER scrape my windows again...well here I am in France and I have had to scrape "claudes" (that is what we named our french car) windows twice. I'm not doing well with the cold and rain, chills me to the bone..make a fire every morning and it goes all day/night. I like the idea of Minter....i sure wish we had so cali weather here in the Aveyron. Here's hoping.

KELSO'S NUTS said...

GRAVES: I found a google image of the poster of that French movie I liked. And I put up the two classic CHARLES TRENET youtubes in your honor.

Suzan said...

Merci, Randal,

For the sublime birthday present (love that Musica Antiqua) - and you didn't even know.

We had snow last week here, the first of the year (of course), and school was delayed for two hours(!) due to the dreaded quarter-inch on the ground.

North Carolina - not the most well-grounded place.

Again, bonne idee.

Suzan (too lazy today to search for the proper accent marks (or gender?))

Utah Savage said...

Sublime music. I too love those baroque Italians. While I lived in Italy I kept searching for a baroque Italian but only met rich ones. It was a small tragedy that I so love the baroque. The snow, not so much.

KELSO'S NUTS said...

@ GRAVES: Whuzzup with ADULT SWIM? My son watches it in Spanish when he's here? How are you involved in it?

Beach Bum said...

Up until I was assigned to Fort Carson, Colorado in 1986 while in the army I had seen snow about three times in my life. The first snow at Fort Carson that year came in October and I was like a kid standing outside watching the heavy snow fall. About two feet was already on the ground with forecasts of at least another foot.
By February I was almost ready to go AWOL and return home to the south were if we did have a freak heavy snow fall of about one inch accumulation it had the good manners to melt by the next day.

David G said...

Lived in Canada for three years. Eight months of snow. Beautiful but restrictive.

Had six weeks of forty below zero once. That finished me off!


Dean Wormer said...

What's cool about where I live is it's only a half hour drive up the mountain the historic Timberline lodge built by FDR.

If visitors want to see snow we take them up there. We're not big skiers but we will take people snowtubing. It's much cheaper and kid friendly.

Beautiful tunes.

Border Explorer said...

Dean, when can I visit?!?!

Randal, love the vid. (Closing my eyes and visualizing swirling snow.) I've managed to avoid any accumulations here. I leave for warmer climes tomorrow. See ya in TX.

pissed off patricia said...

Um, since we seldom if ever have snow down here, the only way we can tell when winter comes is all the snow bird retirees who return each year. I'll keep the rest of my thoughts to myself regarding these folks.

Übermilf said...

It's cupcake-baking weather!

Randal Graves said...

mauigirl, the weather's been real shifty the last few years. Supposed to hit 40° on turkey day, but I'm sure 20° is right around the corner. And since you guys are in NY, you almost always get a lot o' snow.

okjimm, but then everything will have that Doublemint Gum flavor and who wants that?

sal, I concur.

kelso, you'd take that weather over here? And people think I'm crazy!

6/1 on that? The lunatics in the audience shouting racist crap wasn't all that surprising, but even a notoriously hot-tempered yokel would've had to make the faux pas of all faux pas.

As for that last one, I would've put a buck down on that. ;-)

susan, of those three, shovels are by far the least evil, so go with the snow. Sure, you'll have to haul some off of your driveway, but you'll have the other benefits, plus snow looks real purty outside the window.

dcap, of course not! Why, it's snowing right now!

tom, I wouldn't say that. Just think how many Nazi douchebags got a tan in South America after the war.

dcup, some of my best work. Merci!

SWA, ha! Drive or drive not. There is no off-road.

LBR, well that was quite a nightmare inducer. Survive? Longjohns, parkas and sliced-open Tauntauns.

OJL, whenever it gets extra chilly, just tell yourself you're not in Normandy and there isn't a vile wind off La Manche to freeze you even further.

Want some of our snow?

kelso, vous êtes l'homme. My fucking internets went out yet again this weekend; I'm dreading checking out the google reader.

suzan, I think you were the 85th - I exaggerate slightly - person who had a birthday this weekend. So bonne anniversaire!

I understand that NC might not get the same amounts as us, but 1/4" is doable, even if you aren't driving a tank. Étrange !

utah, I think if you wanted to find a baroque Italian who was also rich, you might have to find a cardinal.

kelso, I think they show the animated Clerks series, the origin of my avatar.

BB, it's so ubiquitous for us, but I can imagine that encountering it for the first time has to be quite an eye-opener. That's one good thing about being where we're at, we get the entire cycle of weather.

david g, that would be a deal breaker. I actually enjoy the cold, but if it would take me hours to start the damn car, well, forget it.

dean, FDR? I think you take people up there for socialist indoctrination.

BE, have a safe trip!

POP, oh come on, entertain us with vulgar stories of bitterness and hatred.

übermilf, yes it is, so make sure you bake some extra ones for all your internets pals!

Anonymous said...

Next time just lay down some snow melt and save the fancy music for when the white stuff really comes down.