I received some excellent gifts this holiday season, and what better venue to share them than here.
The best is Seymour Chwast’s original design for my new fully optimized walking assistant, “Steve’s Cane.” Although Chwast is not certain it’ll work, with some time on his hands, he is willing to take the R&D plunge (as long as it won’t take too long).
From my son, New York Nico, came an Oculus, which Stefan Sagmeister suggests will help with necessary movement exercises. Since I have little patience reading instructions (which were not included in any case), I’m improvising. I’ve only tried VR once before in its earlier incarnation and was not impressed. The one program I tried with this Oculus, however, was impressive, and now I randomly search for others that will test my physical acumen. I did stumble on a surprisingly serene oasis, which I think I can live in peacefully for hours for as long as the electrical charge lasts. By the way, my companion, Toby, the otherwise calming Doxie, is not included.
Speaking of mellow. George Harrison has always been my favorite Beatle for his music (“Here Comes the Sun”), soothing wit (“I’m quite prepared for that eventuality” is my fave glib in A Hard Day’s Night), the most perfect hair of any rocker, his total commitment to humanitarian causes (Concert for Bangladesh), and comforting Liverpudlian nasal voice. George Harrison: The Reluctant Beatle by Philip Norman immediately became the fastest page-turner I’ve read in the latter half of 2023 (although I have a few more chapters to read in 2024). Norman’s prose is detail-oriented and easy flowing, as long as one keeps track of all the people and other working parts. Many facts of George’s life are already well known, but the private life and inner secrets offer fascinating revelations. In short, as a Beatles fan tired of reading (and hearing) Paul, and having learned all there is to know about John, this book is most welcome and fresh. (Now, if only Ringo’s life would get the Norman touch.)
This song “Ding Dong, Ding Dong” is also my fave of 2024 so far (all without AI, too).