Michael Droz - Bay Area Blog

Michael Droz with Layne Droz in Enumclaw, WA. Enumclaw Hornets football tryouts, 2014. 

Michael Droz with his Whistler/Blackcomb crew Anakin and Layne Droz. 

Michael Droz’s Nautica sweater  - hand-washing process in pictures.  

Michael Droz’s  Tommy Hilfiger sweater -  hand-washing process in pictures. 

Martha Stewart and Michael Droz washing sweaters. This is what I am doing today! 

The Sound and the Fury ~ a Thesis by Michael Droz

In William Faulkner’s masterpiece “The Sound and the Fury”, the author paints a poignant picture of how the sound “foreshadows” the fury in life and through his idiot character, Benji, gives sound to the unhearable horrors, shocks and agonies that often excite the human soul into fury.

  — Working thesis by Michael Droz 

A snippet from page 20…

    Following the scene after Ms. Quentin has fled the Compson estate with Jason’s money and Mrs. Compson, Jason and Dilsey have wrapped up their Keystone Kops antics through which they’ve come to understand that Ms. Quentin is gone we get Faulkner playing out the pain of their stoic souls through Benji again (285):

         “Suddenly he wept, a slow bellowing sound, meaningless and sustained”

    What we are hearing now is exactly what we haven’t heard through the dialog of the characters during this dramatic and quixotic scene. There is a lot that has happened in the few ticks of the clock that have gone by during this scene. Ms. Quentin is gone from the house forever. She will never return and may have even committed suicide, and every soul in that house knows it, but none have expressed any of their real feelings or thoughts on the issue nor have they expressed any desire to fight for an alternate end to the conflict. They have decided to internalize all of these thoughts and ideas and suffer the please of the soul furiously inside themselves - and through this avoid conflict and accept the miserable repercussions for all eternity. In describing this internal repression in the name of avoiding conflict the philosopher, Kierkegaard had this to say:

    This levelling is a silent, mathematical, abstract process which avoids upheavals….Leveling at its maximum is like the stillness of death, where one can hear one’s own heartbeat, a stillness like death, into which nothing can penetrate, in which everything sinks, powerless.

     Thus, by leveling they have reduced what they stand for to “nothingness” which renders the bellowing sounds of their screaming souls as “meaningless” and unintelligible.

    As Faulkner wraps up his symphony of sounds he pulls back the curtains and in surprising fashion reveal Benji as his secret instrument of the soul with the following passage “But he bellowed slowly, abjectly, without tears; the grave hopeless sound of all voiceless misery under the sun.”. Not only do we get Benji’s reveal but we also feel Faulkner’s disappointment as he predicts that no one will hear Benji’s instrument - that the sounds of the souls of men will remain unhearable and that their salvation is hopeless.

Layne Droz versus Michael Droz in a downhill skiing race for the ages. 

Giselle Ballet Review - by Michael Droz

Last week I attended the San Francisco Ballet’s 2014 presentation of the French ballet, Giselle. Giselle was written by Jules-Henri Vernony de Saint-Georges and Theophile Gautier taking their inspiration from a poem about a girl who dies after an all-night ball called “Fantomes” in Les Orientales by Victor Hugo. 

ACT I: 

The first act starts out promising with a spectacular visual presentation of a small French village. As usual the props created by the San Francisco Ballet are first rate - creating an almost dream like feeling. Things quickly start to go down hill for the first act as the cast comes out in sub-par costumes that looked more Orphan Anne than French villager. The cast gives a lethargic performance punctuated by their inability to stay synchronized with the symphony orchestra. The music was like lightening and the dance moves like delayed sound waves washing the fun out of the entire performance. 

ACT II: 

The second act is so delightful that I would have sat through six reruns of the first act to see it again! The act opens to a dark forest punctuated by a shinning moon and elevated to a persistent crescendo by a roaring fog. Then a tiny dancer screams across the forest and again zigzagging back and forth until she finally takes flight taking your heart along with her.  

Here’s a link to buy your own tickets: 

http://www.sfballet.org/tickets/production/overview/giselle-2014

Check my blog monthly for reviews of ballet and opera performances in San Francisco, San Carols, Seattle and San Mateo. My name is Michael Droz and I have a kink in my neck for the high arts. Some would even say that I would cheat my own father to get a ticket to a sold out show.

Week 14 NFL Picks by Michael Droz

Kansas City @ Washington: Kansas City -3

Minnesota @ Baltimore: Baltimore -6.5

Cleveland @ New England: Cleveland +10

Oakland @ NY Jets: Oakland +3

Indianapolis @ Cincinnati: Indianapolis +7

Carolina @ New Orleans: Carolina +3

Detroit @ Philadelphia: Detroit +2.5

Miami @ Pittsburgh: Pittsburgh -3.5

Seattle @ San Francisco: Seattle +2

Don’t bet: 

Buffalo @ Tampa Bay

Tennessee @ Denver

St. Louis @ Arizona 

NY Giants @ San Diego

Atlanta @ Green Bay

NFL Parlay Bet Week 12 - by Michael Droz

Saints at Falcons: Saints -7

Chargers at Chiefs: Chiefs -4.5

Bears at Rams: Bears +1

Colts at Cardinals: Colts +2

49ers at Redskins: 49ers +5

Broncos at Patriots: Patriots +2.5

Cowboys at Giants: Cowboys +2.5

Titans at Oakland: Titans -1

Jets at Ravens: Ravens -3

Carolina at Miami: Carolina -4.5

Saints at Falcons: Saints -7

Chargers at Chiefs: Chiefs -4.5

Bears at Rams: Rams -1

Colts at Cardinals: Colts +2

49ers at Redskins: 49ers +5

Broncos at Patriots: Patriots +2.5

Cowboys at Giants: Cowboys +2.5

Titans at Oakland: Oakland +1

Jets at Ravens: Ravens -3

Carolina at Miami: Carolina -4.5

Layne takes Miami +4.5