newest entry 2001-08-05 1:29 p.m.

Now playing: the new Barbara Manning CD, a pure delight from start to finish. Barb understands the connection between 60s pop melodicism and 70s punk spleen. And she is prolific, sensitive, a great lyricist and a very sweet and humble person. This record is in my top ten for the year, somewhere behind Guided by Voices.

This morning was the first free Sunday morning I've had in a while, so I decided to devote myself to something spiritual-that-wasn't-yoga. A.M.A. agreed to check out the Zen center in Brooklyn, where they teach meditation on Sunday mornings, but when we woke up, we were both too tired to make the 8:45 class. Instead we caromed up to Avery Fisher Hall and heard a lecture by the wonderful Les Brownabout the 23d Psalm. Had I tissues and privacy, I'm sure I would have wept with relief and joy, as I always do in these situations, but as it is I was quietly moved by Les's talk. A.M.A. was a little bored, but he's a good sport. Unity Church functions are old-school intriguing mixture of staid protestantism and sweaty baptist enthusiasm and glitzy theatrical Broadwayosity. I love the Unity Church and the Church of Religious Science, and Avery Fisher Hall is a nice place to be on a hot Sunday morning.

The basic message of Unity and R.S. is that we are one with God, and we create our lives with God's help. It's a belief full of hope and spirit and joy and communion, and that is such a rare commodity in this world. That simple message of faith and love is one I need to hear every so often.

"Aquaplane, what are you reading?" Well the book I chose to "cleanse my palate" after Bruno Maddox (Kate Ross's Whom the Gods Love) turned out to be a wonderful read in and of itself. Not just a mystery, but a vivid period story and character study, with rich prose and memorable characters. I couldn't put it down, and read it straight through, and now I'm bereft and reading a much lesser historical mystery in order to get over the Ross book. It's called Free Love by...someone...I forget and it's set in 1920's Greenwich Village. Goofy but fun and good subway readin'.

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