Tchaikovsky: 1812 Overture

This post is in the theme “A Long Waltz Through Nerddom”. Read the first.

July 26, New York: It’s hard to find a good time in which to play the 1812 Overture on speakers. You could do so if you were beginning to bombard an enemy’s fort with your mighty cannons. You could do so if you were marching your victorious calvary through the city streets before your cheering citizens. You could do so if you were alone in the bathtub with an entire navy of plastic ships and towels on the floor to protect against all the splashing.

Jill and I decided to listen to the 1812 Overture while we played Twilight Struggle. Thankfully the Thirty-Three Project does not prevent me from playing new *board games*, and this one is a doozy. In Twilight Struggle two players play the US and the USSR over the course of the Cold War, projecting influence across the globe and competing in their deployment of the events of history. Our game lasted about five hours, including a location change break in the middle and roughly an hour’s explanation of the rules. Then, deep into the game… TCHAIKOVSKY. And it was perfect. (But for the fact that Jill, who was playing Russia, won shortly after we put this music on.)


It is no wonder that in my youth I spent much time thinking martial thoughts, if this was the only classic music I let into my repertoire. It set the tone not only for my imagination in those days, but in my taste for classical for the rest of my life— mopey Russians making dramatic music, that’s what I like. And this: over-dramatic and ostentatious, a piece of music that only fits into my current life as the soundtrack to a game of global domination.

Draw a bath, get out the plastic navy, and put this sucker on the Jawbone Jambox. Then splash away, my friend.

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