jmc_bks: (Imperfect 2 by LJ Ase)
Want to own a Lucille-model guitar signed by BB King?  Then go to WRNR's eBay auction.  All proceeds are part of the Sanity Cause, which benefits a local Arts-in-Education non-profit, Young Audiences of Maryland/Arts for Learning.

Disclaimer:  I'm on the board of said NP. 
jmc_bks: (Adulthood)
My post is up over at Readers Gab. It pretty much sucks; I was feeling quite blank all week (hence the dearth of posting here) and felt particularly so last night when trying to come up with something to say.

Saturday was a busy day. )
jmc_bks: (title)
Tis Monday again.  Time to opine.  Then go tell Beth about it.

I don't have any bitchiness.  And very litle smartness.  But I have an opinion.

At Saturday's panel (From Classical to Hip-Hop -- Music Education in the 21st Century), Warren Zanes said something that clicked for me.  Talk about what you love.  Take it seriously.  He was talking about popular music and popular culture, and the divide between so-called high and low culture in the art world and in the approaches to teaching music.  But it really resonated with me in terms of the genre fiction that I read.  Made me feel kind of guilty.  Because outside of the online community, I don't talk about the books that I love best.  I talk about the nonfiction I read; I talk about the classics I read; I talk about literary fiction (what little I read).  But I don't really talk about the fantasy/SF that I read, except to those who I know also read F/SF.  I only talk about romance with other romance readers.  

I'm just slow. The parallels between the high-low debate in the art community and the publishing world never occured to me.  ::shrugs:: Sometimes it takes a sledgehammer.

I guess the cool thing is that there are people who do take what they love about romance seriously, as you can see at Teach Me Tonight and other blogs.  Who see it as a piece of popular culture and modern literature worth studying.  Cool.

And that's all the smartness I have this evening.  It wasn't much, was it?
jmc_bks: (Forward momentum)

Does Cleveland count as Middle America?  Or is it too far east for that?  The city seemed a lot like Pittsburgh or Baltimore:  former industrial cities devasted by the loss of industry, struggling to change its economy to something else.  Why was I in the land of Drew Carey (a show I didn't watch)?  For an Arts-Education conference.  

Read on if you're interested. Or not. )

jmc_bks: (TDS)
While I like the idea of behind the scenes cooking stories and the idea behind his odyssey, I'm less enchanted with Bourdain's over-testosteroned voice and style. I suppose the camo shirt he's wearing on the cover should've warned me, shouldn't it? [Talk about the stereotyping and conclusion jumping I just did. Whew! I should be ashamed of myself.] Plus, travelogues are hit or miss for me. I like the idea of them much more than the execution...at least for the few I've read, like A Year in Provence and Under the Tuscan Sun.

Anyone wondering about that Third Space book in my Currently Reading field on the side bar? Yes, I'm stuck. It's nonfiction about arts-in-education written by a name in the local education and AIE scene. I'm supposed to be reading it in preparation for my next full board meeting. Somehow, I keep finding more fun stuff to read. You know I'll be up all night before the meeting finishing it. Ah, procrastination.
jmc_bks: (blue)
I've mentioned before that I serve on the board of an arts-in-education non-profit. I've been corresponding secretary, veep, prez, and treasurer. It's no secret that the organization was on a downhill slide a few years ago, with a executvie director who was too tired and not really prepared to make the changes that are needed in the changing field of arts-integrated education, and a board used to letting the long-term ED run things, trusting her judgment. The old ED retired not so amicably and we hired a new ED who is energetic and enthusiastic and amazing. Part of her job has been to rebrand the organization and improve our status in the arts communtiy, to re-establish old relationships that had fallen by the wayside, and to basically reorganize the NP. The board participated, of course, working on a new strategic plan, building the board, raising money, re-establishing committees, etc. Read more... )
jmc_bks: (meninas)
Tonight (last night since it is after midnight?) was Young Audiences' fundraiser/gala, A Taste of the Arts. There were five stations set up in a theater, with decorations, a performing artist and food from a different country/region: Africa, India, Europe, America, China. When you entered, you got a "passport" that you could get stamps in. Silent auction, live auction, artist and student performance, dessert and champagne. It was well attended, better than past fundraisers, in part because our honoree is active in the arts community but also the business community, and lots of people on his rolodex attended. Plus, two of the people on the committee were just awesome.

Students from the ACCE (don't remember what this stands for, but it's an afterschool program in the inner city) performed with Ssuuna, an African dance and drum artist (he's a master teacher, amazing, you can check out one of his songs on iTunes if you search by his name). The kids were incredible and got a standing ovation.

I bid on two things that I was interested in during the silent auction -- a gorgeous bead necklace and a goodie bag from Trader Joe's, but didn't win either. I put a starting bid on a big pot with a bunch of "gourmet" kitchen utensils, thinking someone else would pick it up. Nope. So I now have a bunch of stuf that I'll probably never use. Although a couple of things, like the wine saver and the exopat baking sheet will probably see some use.

There was a ring toss, too, onto empty wine bottles. I managed to toss a ring around the neck of a bottle, so I won a bottle of wine :)

For Beth, who likes to know what people ate, I had samples of: strawberry salad (yum), seared tuna, a meat pie/tart made of ground lamb and beef with beer, honey, nutmeg and other good stuff (also yum), a Senegalese dish of chicken and onions, and chocolate cake with cream cheese icing. The cake tasted good, but the best part of it was the decoration -- the decorator took one of the invitations and reproduced it in icing. The place that made the Senegalese dish is a new place in my neighborhood -- gotta check it out.

Deja vu

May. 10th, 2006 08:58 am
jmc_bks: (seagull)
Is that spelled correctly? Well, even if it isn't, you know what I mean, right?

I was watching a repeat of The West Wing the other night (the boring episode focused on transition, instead of wrapping up the stories of characters that viewers actually, well, cared about). Anyway, the new prez and his wife were checking out schools and went to a DC public school. And when the principal/tour guide spoke, I recognized her voice. It was bothering me, because I couldn't figure out where I recognized her from. She wasn't a returning/repeating character. Where would I have seen her before?

Duh, jmc. That was Maria Broom, an artist on YAMd's roster, doing storytelling and dance. She is absolutely excellent in the school programs, but I had never seen her in a role outside of our programming. I knew from her bio that she had been in episodes of The Wire and The Corner, but I didn't connect the two professional pieces until after I saw the cast credit online.

Unrelated to my deja vu experience, my eBookwise arrived yesterday. I spent the evening fiddling with it. The only thing I didn't like was that the downloading of my bookshelf was a little bumpy. One book downloaded, then there were server problems and I couldn't reconnect. The other book downloaded fine this morning, but I was a little irritated to have to disconnect and attempt to reconnect last night. Eh. It's a minor thing, and I'll get over it. Brought the e-book reader with me on the train today. I like it, although I'm worried about dropping it or something spilling on it. I'll get over that, I'm sure.
jmc_bks: (star fort kinsale)
Gayle Danley, a slam poet on our roster, was nominated by our director as the YA Artist of the Year...and the national committee has selected her as Artist of the Year. Woo hoo! Gayle is absolutely amazing, and her performances have brought tears to my eyes.

And our president and long time board member is being given an award by the state arts council for his company's contributions to the arts. They haven't made the announcement yet, so I can't give the details. Another woo hoo! And yay to EP!
jmc_bks: (Default)
It's 65 freaking degrees out today! In Balmer! In January! I think this means that there will be snow in July. This morning (until noonish, actually) there was extremely dense fog downtown. In fact, as I drove down Hanover Street toward Brooklyn, it was strangely bright, almost blinding, despite the fact that I couldn't see more than 100 yards ahead of me.

Decided not to post a review of Memory in Death, since multiple reviews can be found on a variety of reader blogs. Finished two Julie Kenner chick lit suspense books and am working on their reviews, plus I've got a comparison of two Robyn Donald Harlequin Presents to post. I posted a comment about them in response to a question P.Devi asked a few weeks ago, but I've never fleshed out my review, so I worked on that over the weekend.

Bad news: no one is interested in going to Miami so far, so I might be stuck with the trip. Stuck with Miami? Well, yeah, because I don't really have $1000 to spare right now for a conference that I'm not all that interested in attending. Yes, it is tax deductible, but that's not the same as keeping the money in my savings account.

More board stuff: I'm on the fundraiser committee. I don't know how it happened, I think I was randomly assigned because I wasn't present at the board meeting when committee selections were made. And I don't mind being on the committee, but I don't really have anything to bring to it.

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