I’ve been having flashbacks to my college days this week. The last week or so of the term was always the worst. I’d be staying up late, getting up early, forgetting lunch, and desperately fending off the inevitable cold as I pushed myself to write my essays, study for my exams, and practice for my juries, all while holding down my part-time job, accompanying the chamber choir and a few soloists, and attempting not to completely neglect my friends, family, and boyfriend. And I’d ask myself, Why do you this? Why the overloaded academic schedule, the double major, the two principal instruments, the added accompanying work, the internship, the extra recitals, and the impossibly high standards for all of it? Why, why, why? And the answer was always that there was nothing I was willing to give up. I was too afraid to close a door.
I like to think that I’m better than that now, that I’ve chosen what I want and devoted myself to that without piling on a heap of this-too distractions. But occasionally I still manage to overcommit myself terribly, and this is one of those times. In retrospect, choosing to teach a ten-week copyediting class might have been a bad decision (particularly this year), and choosing to take on a freelance assignment in the middle of that was definitely a bad decision.
When I look over the pitiful past month of my blog, I’m sick at how little I’ve written and—worse—what little I’ve had to write about because I’ve been doing nothing but work. But I can see the light at the end of the tunnel now. I turn in my freelance job on Monday, and I’m more than halfway done with my class, and I actually have plans to do things and go places over the next month. And so I solemnly swear—more to myself than anyone else—that I’ll soon have more to post than links. But for now, yeah, it’s links of the week!
- I don’t know why I find literary feuds so fascinating even when I’m only superficially familiar with the players, but Maria Bustillos’s essay examining novelist Jonathan Lethem’s attack on critic James Woods—and the eight-year-old Woods review of Lethem’s Fortress of Solitude that somehow prompted this lasted dust-up—is probably more thoughtful and empathetic than either of them deserve.
- This Likely Impossiblities post—boldly titled “Opera Isn’t Theater”—beautifully analyzes a scene from La Traviata and uses that to articulate what makes opera so special and dramatically unique.
- Linda Holmes offers a wonderful antidote to all the stupid hyperventilating over Kim Kardashian, who wasn’t worth worrying about before she filed for divorce and certainly isn’t worth it now.
- I’ve only seen a few David Lynch movies, so most of the “Greatest Musical Moments” from his films that Slate highlights are new to me. But I knew as soon as I saw the title that they would have to mention Mulholland Drive, and they do—complete with clip—which is as it should be. Mulholland is crazy and gorgeous and passionate and heartrending, and the “Llorando” scene is one of the most breathtaking passages in the whole thing.
- Arthur Recreates Scenes from Classic Movies is a one-joke blog, but as Arthur is an adorable baby, it’s a lot funnier than it has any right to be. (Via Jezebel.)