Detail from Velazquez's Queen Doña Mariana of Austria (from Web Gallery of Art

I apologize for the erratic nature of this blog of late, but in my defense, I seem to have gotten quite ill. Nothing serious of course, but persistent. A month-long cold is not a fun thing and does horrid things to the powers of concentration and motivation.

So this will be more of an abstract than a post.

I finished Magic Mountain the other day and am still reeling in its immensity. I feel like I know it more fully though-- I can feel the pulse of this book now, or at least I'm closer to it. I need to write it out by hand first though--collect the thoughts or something like that.

I'm also re-reading George MacDonald's Phantastes (did I mention that already?) More as a balm for my brain than anything else. Who else? I have an Amy Cutler book which I'm trying to read, but finding myself more interested in peering at the images with a magnifying glass and an invigorated imagination.

I picked up a copy of Robert Musil's Man Without Qualities (as recommended by
Waggish), and am trying to work up the courage to begin.

I have also started researching the PhD thing in earnest: browsing faculty profiles, checking rankings, admission requirements, etc. In
the past, this whole massive process has felt quite disillusioning and tedious, but I'm keeping myself excited about the end goal. I think.

Tomorrow will be about going to the Guggenheim bright and early to catch the
Spanish exhibit they've had up for a while. Then hopefully down to the library to work on some notes on Magic Mountain, as well as some fun time with two issues of FMR that I just picked up at the Strand. Otherwise, I plan to do little--perhaps make the soup Maud Newton recommended the other day, catch on sleep, and learn the two new albums that just came in the mail: Laura Gibson's If You Come to Greet Me and Call It Sleep by The Places.

C'est tout.