8 min read | 1739 words
It’s been a while! Here’s a new piano recording. Maurice Ravel’s Ondine, a beautiful oneiric piece about a water nymph attempting to seduce you to the bottom of a lake…
(It begins ppp – those glistening pianississimo waters – you may need to turn up the volume. Cell phone speakers not recommended.)
It’s one of my all-time favorite pieces in solo piano repertoire. There’s a few things to explore in this entry, from the music of this specific piece to bigger picture questions – such as why do I do any of this?
As a computer-scientist-turned-pianist roaming the planet interacting with other humans with as varied backgrounds, it turns out not everyone I encounter appreciates or understands classical music, or cares to. However, if you’re curious enough to ask why someone would devote her life to the art of piano playing, or want to discover how to enrich your existence in this universe via an old art but just don’t know how, I’ll unpack that below.
3 min read | 692 words
In which I’m regularly accused of being Martha Argerich, Sviatoslav Richter, Mitsuko Uchida, Rudolf Sirkin, Claudio Arrau, Nobuyuki Tsujii, and other incredible, famous, and historical pianists.
9 min read | 1899 words
The Universe unfolded over 13.7 billion years to create you and I.
In that time, the Universe also created the device you are reading this on, and all the context which enables this reading to occur. Early in the first galactic cycle, primordial stars forged lighter elements into ever heavier elements via stellar nucleosynthesis. Upon the death bursts of those stars, gravitational localization pulled those heavier elements – lanthanides, actinides, metals – into systems of matter with sufficiently complex interaction repertoire. These cultivated ecosystems capable of supporting a lineage of entangled carbon based lifeforms spanning eons on this particular planet. Evolutionary incentive structures eventually led to the ascension of homo sapiens sapiens.
Humans are lovely and often complicated, and the Universe continues to unfold.
9 min read | 1916 words
Once upon a time, I nearly sank a boat.
10 min read | 2022 words
Clearly, the most reasonable way to move from NYC to SF is via Ninja 500
3 min read | 736 words
Sometime last October, I began running.
Apparently, aerobic activity can promote neuroplasticity, which seems helpful and relevant. (However, broken feet are less helpful, though more relevant in the moment.)
3 min read | 612 words
I was asked to prepare video recordings. Here’s some of them:
4 min read | 877 words
2015 was the best year of my life so far – even more so than 2012.
At the beginning of this year, I lived on a sailboat in NYC and typed code for Google Ideas, but felt the need to push my piano mastery and other other aspects of life forward.
So I left, lived in Thailand with Nicole for three months, sold the boat, rode my motorcycle across North America, and became a concert pianist.
3 min read | 701 words
It is advisable to avoid falling into the drink.
3 min read | 779 words
Learning piano is remarkably similar to writing and debugging code, except instead of git repos, you work in muscle memory and mindfulness. Instead of merge conflicts, resolve contradicting interpretations. Instead of commits, apply a solid night of sleep.
0 min read | 66 words
When I was 21, I began living on a rickety old sailboat in NYC. Over the next two years, many excellent adventures occurred. They were so excellent that I must now write a post-mortem.
5 min read | 1074 words
Despite the world, let’s assume agency is a basic human right.
Once we’ve achieved such radical optimism, a most riveting concern must be: How do we maximize human agency?
1 min read | 248 words
The vast majority of dwellings in New York City are overpriced boxes. These boxes are typically stacked with other boxes within a brick-and-mortar box, which are jam-packed with other brick-and-mortar boxes upon a grid lined with sometimes motile but mostly-just-emitting four-wheeled boxes. For the privilege of being within a box, humans exchange significant life energy for pieces of paper, which may require daily transportation (via locomotion boxes such as underground boxes, or angry yellow boxes) to a highly-specialized productivity box.