The Quarantine Tapes
First, let me direct you to the Blood-Red Pencil blog where I’ve posted about The Quarantine Tapes, a series of podcasts of special interest for Black History Month and to inform about how some celebrated writers are dealing with the pandemic. Walter Mosley served as guest interviewer for a couple of the podcasts I listened to. You get snippets of history along with words of wisdom about life today in the U.S.
I’ve been watching the PBS series on the history of Jazz and the amazing musicians who grew the music genre over the years. Once thing that caught my interest was the energetic dancers who frequented sites like Roseland and Harlem’s Savoy Ballroom. That led to thoughts of dance venues from big band swing to high school sock hops, discos in the 70s, line dancing in cowboy bars, and on and on.
My paternal grandmother even played piano (though she couldn’t read music) with a country group led by Tommy Knott (on the fiddle) while my grandfather was in demand on the dance floor. They were farmers, so I’m not sure how they had enough energy to get out there and party. But, you know, dancing.
Dancing is a socially accepted way to get crazy. When people can gather again in larger groups, even if it needs to be outside, dancing will return with a vengeance. Bring back the Charleston. The Lindy Hop. The Hustle. Yes!
Atomic Habits and Other Books
I just started reading Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones. by James Clear. I want to build a couple of new work habits and break a couple of bad habits so I’m taking this read very seriously.
Also from the library, I have Begin Again: James Baldwin’s America and Its Urgent Lessons for Our Own by Eddie S. Glaude Jr.
And then I need to dig into the piles of fiction on my coffee table. I just finished Six Weeks to Live by Catherine McKenzie. I won the book in a Goodreads giveaway and will review it soon. For now, I’ll just say it has a bunch of satisfying twists and turns to the plot.
American Idol etc.
There are a few of those “reality” shows I love, and American Idol is one of them. It returns on Sunday, February 14th. Looks like the judges will be properly socially-distanced. I also like Big Brother, Survivor, and Alone. It looks like Survivor is not happening for a while, however. That makes me sad. The people who put themselves out there on these shows are fascinating (and often acting as someone they really aren’t in real life). Yes, I know those shows are highly edited. I like them anyway.
Tell me what you’re reading this month. What are you doing for fun while the pandemic restrictions are still in place? Do you like to dance?