When I'm feeling tired, sick or frustrated, or, as is the situation tonight, a combiination of all three the solution is often to play some music. I sit down at my Yamaha PSR-400 electronic keyboard and play. A real piano would be better, but the PSR-400 has lasted me for 14 years now as a substitute. I'm not a great pianist by any account, but it doesn't matter, because I am a selfish pianist. I play for me, for the memories and emotions inside my mind.
Tonight I began with Trevor Jones's main theme to the Last of the Mohicans, followed by some of John Williams' themes from Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back. I felt the urge to recall my university studies in Canberra, the purity of mathematics and physics, with more of Williams' music to Always, Far and Away and JFK. The latter two pieces were included in the John Williams' Greatest Hits 1969 - 1999 songbook which I picked up during our trip to London. The Greatest Hits CD has superb sound quality and is probably the best overview of his music available.
More memories of Canberra and dreams of the stars were to be found in Dennis McCarthy's main theme from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, which rises to a dramatically loud creshendo. To end off, something gentle, with Michael Kamen and Bryan Adams' Everything I Do, I Do It For You from Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.
I really put my shoulders into the music tonight and it felt good to fly off into a different reality from the one which so frustrates me now. The music took me back to a time when I dreamed of understanding the universe rather than just trying to understand the irrational thinking of my superiors. In music, as in mathematics, lies elegance and purity.