Writer, Christian, bibliophile, musician, generalist.



1. I need to run somewhere soon. A good run, too.

2. Not feeling 100%. Hopefully I’ll start feeling even better tomorrow after a good night’s sleep.

3. What a wonderful evening back in Missouri. I could get used to this.


1. Back in Missouri for a time. Hoping my allergies are magically gone upon my awakening.


"Your words were found, and I ate them,
and your words became to me a joy
and the delight of my heart,
for I am called by your name,
O Lord, God of hosts.

3. I need to play more piano.


1. My allergies acted up for about a week in June-July. I thought I was home free.

I look forward to breathing through my nose again.

Although I shouldn’t complain; this isn’t nearly as bad as it was.

2. Going to grab a beer with my friends after rehearsal was a great decision. I need to do more things like that.

3. Sleep is coming in hot.


1. Had a great time at Wicker Mic with my friends in the Local Historians.

2. Fantastic Russian coaching today. I feel as though I sang well, even if I didn’t feel I was in the best voice.

3. Margaritas: what a wonderful Friday night, summer weather, drinking on a patio sort of deal.


1. My word for 2014 has been patience. This has not been a very patient year. Or perhaps it as. Here’s hoping it gets a little more patient.

2. Had a great rehearsal with some folks playing folk. I love tight harmony.

3. Email inbox is once again through to critical. Drastic measures need to be taken, and soon.


1. I had planned on going to bed a little more on the earlier side tonight, but Étienne Davodeau’s bande dessinée Les Ignorants (read in English as The Initiates). I have begun to fall in love with the Franco-Belgian comic world. I’ve been a fan for a while of Boulet’s work and just generally enjoy the idioms. They’re very frequently profound in ways you don’t normally find in American graphic novels. The American counterparts all seem to be wanting to make some sort of statement about life and philosophy, whereas les bandes dessinées seem to content themselves with making more thoughtful points here and there. 

In the book, the author teams up with his vintner friend Richard Leroy in order that they might better educate each other (and be educated in reciprocation) on what they each do. Some beautiful discourse ensues and they find themselves truly invested in each other’s fields.

The greatest moments for me happened as Davodeau educated Leroy on comics. It likely has something to do with a stronger voice and connection to subtext, but there’s something in the way he writes these sections that really connects with me. One anecdote had him going to Marc-Antoine Mathieu’s house.

Leroy: Does it bother you if I tell you that your drawing jars me, that I have trouble getting into it?

Mathieu: Ha ha! No! Our books can’t please everybody. I even think that they mustn’t do so!

Leroy: Oh yeah?

Mathieu: What’s important to me above all else is for them to be coherent with the vision of the world I’m developing in them. Then whoever wishes to, may enter.

I also really loved this quote:

That’s the good fortune of living books….Those that occupy their author as much after their publication as before….Those that don’t leave you intact….Those that let your meal get cold.

What a wonderful evening spent reading.

2. I think black-and-white is my preferred comic environment. So much can be done with just these two colors and blends thereof. For me, the mark of the true comic artist is being able to work well in neutral colors. Bone, this, all of Craig Thompson’s work (except for Goodbye Chunky Rice!).

That said, my favorite graphic novel is in color.

3. I have my new dresser set up now, and I’ve got to say: creating an aesthetically beautiful space in my room improves life. I think an overhaul is in order.


1. Annie and I spent this evening putting together an IKEA dresser. Thoughts:

- Use your words, IKEA. Sometimes the vague pictures aren’t specific enough.
- It turned out a lot sturdier than I thought it would.
- This maybe shouldn’t have taken 5 hours, but I feel accomplished.

2. I have more things left to do today, but sleep needs to come first.

3. The rest of this summer is going by so quickly!


1. I have too many things in my room. I need to pare down, I think. I’ve started to accumulate too much stuff in general, and it’s strange how too much makes less happy than not enough. Yearning isn’t such a bad emotion when separated from insecurity, but feeling bloated and weighed down is objectively awful from all angles.

I still seek balance.

2. There is nothing to be compared to the feeling of being loved, save that of loving.

3. Sometimes my brain doesn’t want to shut off when it should and I end up brainstorming wedding venues.


1. Well, the cat is officially out of the bag.

On August 16th, I asked Anne Lisbet Goetz if she wanted to become my wife, and she said she did.

I was beyond excited, to tell the truth.

It was the most beautiful afternoon on the lake; sunny, calm, and with that lovely golden-hour sunlight that I love. I had suggested we’d go down to the deck by the water to read for a while and drink our afternoon iced coffee. She went down ahead of me, so I went and got the ring from my bag and walked down the deck. I told her that I love her and asked her if she would like to read something different. When she said she wouldn’t mind, I gave her a letter and a sonnet I’d written for her.

I won’t print either here, but suffice it to say, the intent of those things were to ask her to marry me. I got down on one knee and pulled the ring box out of my pocket and presented her with it. And the ring. That was in there, too.

Once she’d agreed, the flood gates were loosed, and all previous conversation topics which were formerly danced around were decidedly danced with. I don’t think I’d realized, before really talking at length with her about it, how very much I want kids. Specifically kids with her. That’s going to be awesome.

I am so incredibly excited to have Anne as my wife. The next year, I have a feeling, is either going to creep by or go so quickly I won’t know what hit me. But either way, I come out of it married to one dearer to me than my next breath.

And for that I am thankful beyond words.

2. I really rocked my knee on my bass today. The corner dug into the bone and partially displaced my patella. It has since swollen and bruised a bit above the knee. I almost passed out from the pain.

We’ll see how it is tomorrow. I will not be running.

3. I should probably go to bed before 1 at some point this week.

4. I have come to love the imperfect moments in a church service. The moment where things almost fall apart.

As my mom has said many times, “Man plans, and God laughs.” What an apt phrase.


1. Dear companies like Dell,

It does very little good to make your printers Mac-capable if you are not going to display the ease of use that should be inherent in technology today. Your interface should be designed to aid in use rather than to create a maze of sorts. Also, it wouldn’t hurt to make your website easier to navigate/look like it had been designed recently. The fact that OS 10.6 was the last reflected in your driver (Windows terminology) is not encouraging.

But it’s okay. I figured it out without you.

Man triumphs over technology.

2. I need to stop demonizing myself to make things easier. I tend to do this thing where I take blame in order to make things black and white rather than gray. But it never really works that well.

3. I was struck by something tonight at worship during the communion portion of the liturgy. During the prayer of thanksgiving, we prayed that the eucharist might give us mercy in our given vocations. I do believe that’s something I need to cultivate. Mercy is hard for me, because bitterness and finger-pointing come easy.

I had a pretty awkward day today. I’m hoping tomorrow is better. Statistically, it would almost have to be. It was one of those weird days where I was just continually placing myself in uncomfortable situations.

4. Tomorrow should be awesome. I am really looking forward to this.


1. I really love to sing. And I love that I am now more frequently taking the time to work on technique and vocal theory/pedagogy. Richard Miller makes me feel like a great voice teacher.

2. Annie and I watched Amélie tonight, she for a subsequent time and me for the first. What a great movie. I used to have mixed feelings about any film that tied up its ending, but Amélie just called for it.

3. I am going to be going to sleep with heartburn tonight. Not awesome, especially for a day of singing tomorrow.

4. It is very warm here; but at the same time, I have been dealing with it better as of late. For one, I am just accepting the sweat. Also, I feel as though my time in Europe spent without air conditioning has allowed me perseverance in matters such as this.

5. I am excited for life to calm down a little so I can write a little less observationally and a little more critically.


1. Hearing the rain come on slowly but suddenly is one of life’s great experiences. It really has a sort of calming effect.

2. I have come to very much enjoy cooking for people. i think it’s something I want to pursue throughout life.

3. I am about to crash, which is odd considering I did largely nothing today. Hmm.


1. I have returned from my week away. This has actually been a nice week away from everything. My email account is horrifying, my room is in disarray, but I am overall more than overjoyed to have spent such a wonderful week away with the love of my life, Annie, and her family. I quite good about life right now, other than the fact that I’m very tired after such a long drive and week.


- sauna/swim/reading/eating/sleeping/playing board games is a great way to pass a week. I have not done so much substantial nothing in such a long time.

- we began to live somewhat of a 28-hour day. Breakfast usually didn’t end until at least 11. One day (Sunday, I think) we looked up and realized that as we were just finishing lunch, the clock said 5:20pm. That was an eye-opening discovery. It’s interesting noting how the body doesn’t run as much on a clock as I think it does.

- learned a new word: chiefy.

- and others!

2. Reticence is a great thing.

3. I need a nice run tomorrow.

4. I wrote every night over the past week, but I think I’m going to wait until I can flesh some of these ideas out before posting them all. It’ll probably be out of order, though.


1. There is no way I am getting adequate sleep tonight.

2. Driving 9 hours to northern Minnesota tomorrow!

3. Will be out of town for the coming days. Likely will write when I get back. Who knows!

4. Love

MCCX- Current Events, Writing and the Brain, High Range, Chicken, and Today

1. There are times when I want to post statuses and links pertaining to current and relevant topics. And then there are times when I do so and instantly remember why I don’t often do so.

2. I have been writing more lately, and thus have been thinking more poetically on a day-to-day basis. But this has also made me a little scattered and more than a little absent-minded. I’m glad I don’t do this professionally.

3. My high range is doing strange things lately. It’s there one moment, and the next is unstable. I think it’s the fact that I have less now to support against. I’m having a hard time adjusting to that in a physical sense.

4. I have a ton of fried chicken left over from small group last night that I need to do something with when suddenly, it hit me that I’m going to make an awesome chicken sandwich tomorrow. I hope future Derek looks back on this sandwich with pride. Because I really want one right now.

5. Today was pretty productive, overall. Cleaned, organized, bought insurance, saw a movie with Annie, and read some material on early baroque performance practice. Martha Eliot’s book Singing in Style to be precise. Excellent read.