A Brightening Edge

How beautiful the Queen of Night, on high
Her way pursuing among scattered clouds,
Where, ever and anon, her head she shrouds
Hidden from view in dense obscurity.
But look, and to the watchful eye
A brightening edge will indicate that soon
We shall behold the struggling Moon
Break forth,–again to walk the clear blue sky.

– William Wordsworth, 1846

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Mozart, Die Zauberflöte
Natalie Dessay, Paris, 2001

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Published in: on May 27, 2009 at 21:14  Comments Off on A Brightening Edge  
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Tough When Things Get Wooly

Are you tough?  Adaptable?  Do you persevere?  Or do you endure?

Scottish Sheep (Small)

These are questions that the Cowboy has been pondering about himself lately.  What is the difference between perseverance, endurance and tenacity?  If you are tenacious, can you endure?

What?  Do you want more than that?  Hey.  It’s a Sunday night, and the Cowboy has been chasing cattle all day.  You’re lucky you got me to even look at you and ask a few probing questions.  Now let me get back to my view.

Published in: on May 24, 2009 at 21:50  Comments Off on Tough When Things Get Wooly  
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Bon Week-end…

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It may seem a mystery, but sometimes you just have to go where life takes you.

Published in: on May 23, 2009 at 22:53  Comments Off on Bon Week-end…  
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Life Is A Cabaret, Old Chum

It’s been a busy week.  Time to go to the cabaret.

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Published in: on May 22, 2009 at 22:24  Comments Off on Life Is A Cabaret, Old Chum  
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Have Horse, Will Travel

“The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of the Conservatives is to prevent the mistakes from being corrected.”

– G. K. Chesterton

A horse with wings?

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Published in: on May 21, 2009 at 21:54  Comments Off on Have Horse, Will Travel  
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Finale: Orgullosa

Part 3

Christian soldiersAlthough by 1921 the revolution had mostly ended, Mexico was still a simmering cauldron of animosities, particularly relating to the role of the church.  In 1926, during the presidency of Plutarco Elías Calles, a popular uprising broke out against the government and in support of the church.  The rebels, known as Cristeros, were protesting against the various restrictions that had been placed on the church and its clergy.  The conflict, which lasted until 1929, became known as the Cristero War.

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Published in: on May 20, 2009 at 22:11  Comments Off on Finale: Orgullosa  
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Preciosa

Part 2

Unlike its neighbor to the north, Mexico had at least three revolutions, with the church-state divide playing a strong part in all three.  The first revolution (1810-1821) was to throw off the colonial yoke of Spain.  It is formally known as the War of Independence and established the First Mexican Empire (1821) followed by the First Mexican Republic (1823).  The conflict was mired in the complexities of land ownership, birth (in Spain or in Mexico), miscegenation, and the church.

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Published in: on May 19, 2009 at 22:15  Comments Off on Preciosa  
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Altanera

Part 1

One of the Cowboy’s favorite songs was written by a man named Rubén Fuentes, a composer, arranger, producer and director of that most famous of Mexican folk music ensembles – Mariachi Vargas de Tecalitlán.  Fuentes composed many of the most famous songs that one associates with mariachi music.  If you question the pedigree of a mariachi group, take note of the fact that Mariachi Vargas was formed in 1897, and Fuentes joined the group in 1944.  Fuentes is still artistic director.

José Luis Castillejos did a nice write-up on the song and its unusual history.  I’ll give you the link to his site later.  The first story goes like this:

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Published in: on May 18, 2009 at 20:36  Comments Off on Altanera  
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191

Like so many intellectuals and pseudo-intellectuals (the Cowboy being firmly in the latter category), the Cowboy is slowly plowing his way through 2666.  Tonight, frustrated after trying unsuccessfully to complete a long post that he has been working on for more than a few days, he sat down to read a few pages of the “labyrinth”, as Eliza Honey at the New Yorker Book Blog calls it, before going to bed.

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Published in: on May 15, 2009 at 23:30  Comments Off on 191  
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Holy Zhao! 趙紫陽

This is the most astounding news the Cowboy has heard in a while. 

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Published in: on May 14, 2009 at 20:56  Comments Off on Holy Zhao! 趙紫陽  
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