Tuesday, September 17, 2019

reviews and events

1. Went off to the California Symphony on Sunday, to produce this review. Which doesn't say anything about how the program book proclaimed we would hear not Lieder by Mahler but his Leider, which probably captures more of my feeling about Mahler; and advertised a forthcoming Symphony-sponsored cruise starting in Amsterdam and then going down the Rhine to Basel. That's right, down. The convention that south is down overcomes a rise in actual elevation of nearly a thousand feet.

2. The slow closing of the area's old-line Chinese restaurants, the ones designed to appeal to Western tastes, has been going on for at least twenty years (there were a lot of them), but two more notable ones have bit it. Both for the same reason: the owner decided to retire. (There was nobody to pass it on to? What do the employees think?) The one where my mother and I used to go weekly closed last month; and another, the ghost of the also-gone restaurant where I took my visitors in the year 2000 for a festive lunch, has announced its closing at the end of this month. I decided to go there for lunch today, and so did a lot of other people. This may have flummoxed them. I had a bowl of soup, and after the busser took the empty bowl away, a server arrived with another one. I had to say I'd already had mine, so the server hustled it off and consulted with another; apparently somebody else had also ordered the same soup.

3. In addition to curling up in my arms to cuddle, something no previous cat I've had ever wanted to do, licking my hair, and vocalizing loudly when he's bored and wants some cat-toy action, Tybalt has developed a hankering to sleep with me. I'm lying on the bed and he curls up next to me and "makes bread" on me. If you don't know this, it's a cat comfort habit, akin to human children sucking their thumbs and for much the same reason. Kittens knead the mother's breast to expel milk, and grown cats will still mimic the motion as a comfort thing. Usually they do it on blankets, but Tybalt does it on me. This would be cute except that when I'm not wearing something thick, which I'm usually not (and I don't sleep under blankets unless I'm very cold), the fact that he never entirely retracts his front claws becomes apparent. Ouch, cat, ouch.

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