Here are 10 things I thought were worth sharing this week:
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- I’ve started thinking about my son’s stutter as “Our Stutter,” because it’s something we share. And thinking about stuttering has made me think a lot about silence: Silence as ear cleaning, silence and street sweeping, silence as a space for something to happen.
- Books: I’m making my way through Gaston Bachelard’s The Poetics of Space. For the bookshelf, I wrote about David Epstein’s instant classic, Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World. Edward Carey’s The Swallowed Man is out now — it was one of my favorite books I read last year.
- PBS’s American Masters released 1000+ hours of never-before-seen interviews.
- It’s been a year since Jason Polan died. I’m still thinking about him.
- Geeta Dayal on composer Harold Budd.
- Ear candy: I’m learning Debussy’s “Deux Arabesques” on piano, so I was reading a bit about him in Alex Ross’s The Rest is Noise and “The Velvet Revolution of Claude Debussy.” (John Cage: “Somebody asked Debussy how he wrote music. ‘I take all the tones there are, leave out the ones I don't want, and use all the others.” Me: “You sure left a heck of a lot in, Claude.”)
- Eye candy: Nina Katchadourian’s new art show and a 10 billion pixel scan of Vermeer’s masterpiece Girl with a Pearl Earring.
- Thank you to my friends who told me to watch Derek DelGaudio’s In and Of Itself without reading anything about it beforehand. (I suggest you do the same!)
- I’m honored to be on this excellent list of newsletters my friend Alan Jacobs reads, and after reading Robin Rendle on newsletters and about the stupid Instagram algorithm, I am very grateful to own this piece of my own turf online.
- RIP actress Cicely Tyson. Her memoir, Just As I Am, came out just a few days ago. Her advice to the young? “I always try to be true to myself.”
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PS. We expect too much from January and not enough from February!