As the Count would say, "Greetings! Ah, ah, aahhh..." I am back from an unintentional hiatus -- I spent Friday morning at the Brazilian consulate in Boston, on behalf of my boss, and by the time I got back to Somerville on the T a) the roads were slick with slush and snow, and b) the power had gone out at my office, so I was offline for the rest of the day. Bureaucratic institutions being what they are, I had to return to the consulate this morning...sigh. But now I know how to say "window three" in Portuguese, very helpful.

The theme of my weekend was rock music -- Nathaniel convinced me to watch the Grammy Awards last night, and I have to say the show was really entertaining. I don't think I've ever watched them -- I think I'm expecting lots of long rambling speeches. Au contraire -- it was packed with slightly odd but successful performances, like Beyonce and Prince, Justin Timberlake and Arturo Sandoval, Sting and Dave Matthews pretending to be the Beatles, Foo Fighters and Chick Corea, and two mindboggling numbers with Outkast, including a "Universal Church of Funk" segment emceed by Samuel L. Jackson, and featuring Earth, Wind and Fire and George Clinton too -- yeow! Overall the most electrifying bit of the evening had to be The White Stripes -- and I'm not just saying that because I dressed up as (half of) them on Saturday night for Marc & Sharon's "Pairs Party." They were introduced by Beck (Beck!), who gave a spacey monologue about their music "resonating across America with the sound of empty school buses" or something...woah.

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