Departure

Sep. 18th, 2017 10:38 pm
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[personal profile] liv
I've never left a job before. I spent my 20s as a contract researcher, and when my project came to an end, I just... didn't work in that lab any more. So I didn't know how to give notice, how to do the tax paperwork, it was all completely new to me. Also, the people I've been working closely with for the past eight years were all actually sad to see me go and wanted to mark the rite of passage. That was new to me too, in a mostly touching but slightly bittersweet way.

last days )

I started my new job the following Monday. I need to work out how much I should talk about that in detail here; for one thing it's looking to involve somewhat more blogging and social media presence as my professional persona than the old job did. Also I am still adjusting to living in Cambridge full time, which is probably another post, and I'm up to my eyes preparing for the High Holy Days beginning on Wednesday, so I am going to stick with posting about leaving rather than about arriving for now.

15. The Metamorphosis (Kafka)

Sep. 15th, 2017 05:22 pm
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[personal profile] mrs_leroy_brown
I thought I'd read this again whilst on holiday in Prague. I had read it many years ago and couldn't remember anything about it apart from the beginning. Upon reflection I could have picked cheerier holiday reading, though this was nothing compared to reading The Jungle by Upton Sinclair on the beach (protip: don't do this). Alienation is your cliff/spark notes theme: discuss.

If I'm completely honest though, immediately upon finishing I thought of this scene with Universe 1 and Universe A Farnsworth:

koganbot: (Default)
[personal profile] koganbot
Andy Benoit on Friday September 1st posting at the Sports Illustrated/MMQB Website:

K.C. will occasionally send a back on a deep downfield route out of the backfield. This is so unusual that most defenses don't have a response for it — they've never needed one.


Thursday September 6, Kansas City versus New England Patriots, rookie running back Kareem Hunt on a deep downfield route.



Here's the clip again (in case YouTube kills the embed), plus a replay that shows defensive end Cassius Marsh forced by the play design into deep coverage. A defense would want a cornerback or safety, not an end, defending a deep route:

https://youtu.be/lhk1tV3BVVg?t=1m34s

And Sports Illustrated provides X's and 0's here:

http://gamestream.si.com/d436a68a-88d4-44c7-bc9f-86c79c391685

Benoit's postgame analysis:

The play began with a patented Chiefs misdirection fake to [Tyreek] Hill, which widened the defense. It ended with Hunt finishing a wheel route out of the backfield, where the only man who could defend him was Cassius Marsh, a longtime 4–3 defensive end in Seattle who was acquired by the Patriots just five days earlier. Presumably, Marsh has not practiced downfield man coverage much. Worse yet, it was one-on-one coverage with no deep safety — a consequence of free safety Duron Harmon reacting to Hill and Eric Rowe double-teaming Travis Kelce instead of replacing Harmon in centerfield. As expected, they'd homed in on those two all night, and [K.C. coach] Andy Reid made them pay.


Andy Benoit is my favorite writer on current football. His MMQB archive is here. And here I am a couple of months ago recommending his and Gary Gramling's 10 Things podcast to Dave:

http://koganbot.tumblr.com/post/162664727279/podcast-update-before-bed

Did they change me? (Troy Gentry)

Sep. 9th, 2017 01:51 am
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[personal profile] koganbot
Just read that Troy Gentry of Montgomery Gentry died in a helicopter crash.

There was a deeply unsettled push and pull in Montgomery Gentry between rejection and rapprochement, standing their ground and reaching beyond it. Their sound gave an appealing glisten to outlaw country, what I inarticulately describe as "adding a lot of color." Of course "color," as in black and white, as in potential racism, is what scared me in them but it also seemed to scare them, in complex ways. Obviously I'm not exactly the "hip-hop mess" they were trying to brush off in "She Couldn't Change Me," but inexactly I kind of am and so are you.* When the woman returns at the end of the song, how much from the outside does she bring with her? Are they merely winning her over or are they genuinely taking her in? In any event, it was this song of theirs that pulled me in, not just to their music but to the country genre itself. I'd listened before but never really tried to grapple, never was willing to feel it so much.

Troy had the gentler voice and the gentler look. Even though "She Couldn't Change Me" uses Eddie's dark and apparently implacable singing, Troy is the face of the video, so becomes the face of acceptance. The ending is sweet, where he embellishes her colors rather than trying to paint them over.



And of course a few years after "She Couldn't Change Me" was "Some People Change," which may seem only a gesture, but gestures matter. Anyway, there's always the longing for something more, elder wisdom, God, something more feminine, rejected parents. They never sat easy.



That said, as I let my country listening drift away in the '10s I let Montgomery Gentry drift away too. I'm not really on Facebook, but I do check in to see what Dave is up to. I once posted 6 or 7 music favorites, including Montgomery Gentry, so the Facebook algorithm puts Montgomery Gentry up on my news feed.** The duo (on Facebook, anyway) treated the election as if it didn't exist, no mention of Charlottesville, and so on. Probably just playing it safe, but one can always imagine they didn't talk up Trump because they actually couldn't stomach Trump's racism, despite their being the kind of people he was claiming to stand for. —Well, one can do some research, too, which I haven't. Perhaps I'll catch up someday, if I'm not too scared. They made the most reliably good music of the country '00s, the deepest social-emotional poetry, and I put their album Carrying On number two on my albums of the decade list (all genres). Notice the double meaning of "carrying on," which is both holding on, persevering, on the one hand, and causing a ruckus, creating a scene, continuing on in a disruptive or improper manner, on the other.

This is where I wrote about them in the Voice, sliding around, trying to find and lose my own feet:

https://www.villagevoice.com/2001/07/17/d-dang-a-dang-me

https://www.villagevoice.com/2002/12/24/the-onslaught (Ctrl-f "c&w whiners")

*Notice how narrow I expect the readership for this post to be, my saying "so are you" with such confidence.

**The Kinks too. So Dave Davies and Ray Davies and Dave Moore and Montgomery Gentry are my window into the Facebook world.