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Wednesday, March 23, 2022

The more I read about Urban Meyer, the worse he is as both a coach and a human being. Still, he managed to beat the Dolphins, which has to rank among Miami’s biggest humiliation. ——————————— However, Meyer is of no consequence compared to Republican Senator Mike Braun of Indiana. He is truly scary, thinking each State should be to able to decide just about every issue by itself. Essentially, he wants to get rid of the Fourteenth Amendment although it is impossible. Braun would really roll back all civil rights.

Two more really scary, beyond right winger wackos, if there is such a thing, are Senator Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee and Senator John Cronyn of Texes. Wonder how Clarence Thomas, a Black man married to a White woman, feels about Senators who want the States to bar interracial marriage. I feel like we are in a time machine hurdles backwards. —————————- I have not watched the confirmation hearings from here in Italy, but all reports are that the Republicans are being total assholes with medals going to Hawley and Cruz. No surprise there. —————————. One has to really be ornery, maybe downright dumb, not to recognized that Biden is doing a masterful job managing our NATO allies while trying to help Ukraine. Biden has a game plan. We need to give him a chance to implement it. No Plan is perfect, but it is like blood pressure medicine: it has to be taken regularly and not just when you don’t feel good.

There will come a time when things can be tweaked, but as lawyers often say, “time is of the essence”. Woman and children are needlessly dying and Ukraine needs all the help possible immediately, not after our elected officials get in their grandstanding media sound bites. Our country should be 100% United on the Ukraine issue even though we have the uncertainty of facing Putin, who is mad as a hatter. ——————————- Eating home all week even though the restaurants in Florence are thriving and the food and drink are great. I am still fiddling with all the pills my doctors have given me, and until I am satisfied, the only way I can control my sodium intake is to eat only what Barbara cooks. For this reason, I am not writing a lot about my Italian dining experiences, because other than Sunday brunch, there have been none.

I will have some blood tests tomorrow at a really outstanding clinic in Florence. It took four or five days in Florida to get the results. I am interested in seeing how long it will take in Florence. —————————— We arrived in Florence late Saturday afternoon. It will probably be another day before we are completely settled in. Barbara goes to the dentist today just for a cleaning. As I previously mentioned, our dentists, twin brothers, are both also MD’s and world class professional people. I will go with Barbara hoping to get the doctors’ take on the world situation.

It is important to keep in mind that most European countries do not have the same military resources we do. They cannot have a world where every dispute is settled with missiles and where one country can attack another unprovoked. The world is in a very delicate situation and it is impossible, in my view, to properly assess our current situation without a great deal of historical knowledge and keeping an open mind. This is why I am so thankful that Trump, who thinks he knows more than anyone else, never admitted anything he did was less than perfect, and is from the “ready, fire, aim” school, is not now calling the shots. ——————————- In deference to my friend Marc’s preference for Beethoven’s Piano Concerto 5, over my favorite, Beethoven’s Violin Concerto, yesterday I listened to all of Beethoven’s Piano Concertos, but they did not get a fair hearing. The phone kept ringing and emails interrupted my ability to concentrate on the music. Just like in a concert hall, I am a serious listener.

To me, great music, no matter what kind, should be listened to with full concentration. It is not background music while I do other things. I will listen again more carefully to the Piano Concertos.

I love it when I have people listening with me who really, really listen. More often than not, they are professional musicians or professional writers about music. —————————— See you tomorrow.

Go Ukraine.

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