December 20, 2002

Thoughts on hearing the Columbus Holiday Strings*
It seems somehow odd to see grown men and women in suits playing instruments, working so hard towards the questionable utility of pleasing us - we twenty or thirty in the small auditorium. But what a treat - an audio massage! I felt similarly when I received a "therapeutic" massage, via a gift certificate. Here was someone whose job it was to provide something of no greater utility than pleasure. Ditto about baseball players - all that time, effort and energy rolled into doing something no more important than hitting a round object with a 30-odd ounce stick. Amazing. And yet these are good things. The constant temptation is to imagine that everything must be for utility - even books! Some will not read fiction or poetry unless there be something self-improving in it; some fact or knowledge imparted. Jansenism be dead!
* - a free concert provided yearly; an audio Christmas card for us.

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