Crafting the “Soundtrack” to my Interrogating Memory book

In 2005, Rupert Holmes published his second novel, a murder mystery called Swing. Being, well, Rupert Holmes, he also wrote and recorded an accompanying seven-track CD of swing-inflected music; both are well worth finding. The combination, meanwhile, led him to quip, “I’ve been singing songs from my new book.” In the past month, I received … Continue reading Crafting the “Soundtrack” to my Interrogating Memory book

Measuring the Unmeasurable: Ranking One’s Favorite Music, Part 1

I recently updated a data-based discussion of my cinematic “guilty pleasures,” adding a comparison of “most-acclaimed” and “my favorite” films from a given year or years. In so doing, though, I side-stepped the question of determining with something approaching academic rigor just what my favorite films are, relying solely on my gut to select a … Continue reading Measuring the Unmeasurable: Ranking One’s Favorite Music, Part 1

Stranger Things…about me?

Let us start with the easy one. ********** But first, if you have not watched—and still plan to watch—all 25 episodes of the gobsmackingly-excellent Stranger Things, then I strongly advise you not to read further until after you have done so. ********** In Episode 2 of Season 2, “Trick or Treat, Freak”, Nancy Wheeler (Natalia … Continue reading Stranger Things…about me?

Organizing by themes V: Popular music

This site benefits/suffers/both from consisting of posts about a wide range of topics, all linked under the amorphous heading "data-driven storytelling." In an attempt to impose some coherent structure, I am organizing related posts both chronologically and thematically. While I have told many stories from my life (and those of my ancestors), I rarely discuss … Continue reading Organizing by themes V: Popular music

A Musical Mosaic

When I enrolled at Yale in the fall of 1984, I was undecided between majoring in political science or mathematics. A less-than-stellar experience in Math 230—required for freshman mathematics major—quickly decided me: political science, it would be. Luckily, two courses I took sophomore year taught by Professor Edward Tufte—Data Analysis for Politics and Policy and … Continue reading A Musical Mosaic