I have a liking for many things, dogs, flowers, water, music. But penchant is hard to describe. I have a penchant for what, or whom. I guess I’d have to say deep interesting conversations. Those are hard to find, harder as I get older. I love theology, the art of argument. Now let me explain what I mean by argument. I mean a discussion of opposing ideas between two friendly people who don’t have to agree to be friends. That is also hard to find these days. It’s “us” vs “them”, and I don’t mean huge ants. Pity we can’t be more open to differing ideas and feel less threatened.

I also have a penchant for all kinds of music. Classical, Brahms is wonderful, Beethoven too, and Shulamit Ran as well. Her violin concerto, on the inevitability of loss, I heard live in New York in 2003, I think. That was amazingly wonderful.

I heard Simon Rattle talking today on the BBC about classical music and how “elite” should leave the vocabulary and I have to say I agree. Music should be for all people. Mr. Rattle related something he witnessed after 9/11, how during the noon hour the museums were all filled, and how art, culture, was important in times of struggle, how we need art.

Other kinds of music I love are, jazz, folk, children’s, Queen, Green Day, Irish traditional, and the times that people just decide to sing together, for no reason other than to sing. One elder Irishman once said to me that “where there is song, there is no wrong.” So create something not necessarily to be seen, but to be created, sing a song with a friend, watch the changing sky how the colors dance, and enjoy life while you can.


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