Friday, November 7, 2014



I was NOT as impressed by the Walt Disney Concert Hall organ as I thought I'd be. I'd heard stuff like "...the finest organ in the world," but when I attended an organ concert there I just couldn't wrap my mind around the idea that the giant "bag of french fries" before me in the Hall would live up to that level of hype. It didn't.

I mean, I was MUCH more impressed by the organ in the nearby Roman Catholic Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, and even by the much smaller instrument in my own church, the Episcopal Pro-Cathedral of St. John. Of course, to be honest, I'll have to admit that part of the reason the St. John's organ seems to be so fine is the extraordinary skill of our organist, the Canon for Music Ministry, Ned Tipton, whom we hired from The American Cathedral in Paris, France. 

I'm not sure I know what I expected at Disney, but it was not to be dazzled by bells and whistles and flashing colored lights.

On the other hand, I live very close to the First Congregational Church of Los Angeles, which boasts the world's largest church pipe organ, and I've heard it in recitals as well as during services. It has always surpassed my expectations, and maybe that was because my expectations were lower; what I expected to hear was not what I'd allowed myself to expect from the Disney organ. Sure, First Congregational has a huge, beautiful English Gothic building, but I have never been impressed by organ pipes seemingly crammed into every available space in that building. I mean, come ON.

I have never been left unmoved and unimpressed by the organ at First Congregational --- maybe, as I suggested above, because I really hadn't expected much. I have to say that The First Congregational organ delivered what it promised, and much more.

Which brings me to the real subject of this post:

The movie, "Interstellar," which I'm going to see later today.

There has been so much advance hype about "Interstellar" that I just have to see it. I love science fiction and dystopia, and I really am looking forward to seeing this movie. The fact that it's coming out the day after my birthday just makes it all the more impressive and memorable for me.

I hope I'm not setting myself up for frustration and disappointment. I've tried and tried not to expect too much of this movie, but just about every time I've turned on my TV set recently, there's been McConaughey or Nolan or somebody hyping it. I'll admit that seeing "Avatar" in IMAX and 3-D at the theater where I'll see "Interstellar" was quite an experience --- in fact, quite THE experience (!), and I've tried, unsuccessfully, to keep myself from expected from this new movie what I experienced in the older one.

I was mightily moved by "Avatar." I hope I'll be at least as moved by "Interstellar."

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