The same table, five years later

Not long ago, I had the opportunity to spend the evening reading at the big table in Bucer’s Coffeehouse Pub. It’s one of my favorites places and it’s difficult not to eavesdrop.

Many of the student’s at New Saint Andrews classical college study here in the evenings. This night was pretty typical I believe. To my left were two young men who spoke at length about how this Easter came very early this year because of the complicated formula used to determine what Sunday it should fall on. It was noted that the Orthodox church (and the Jews) still have Easter (or Passover) coming later this year due to the fact that their calendar isn’t accurate. Apparently it doesn’t have leap-years frequent enough to keep the equinox lined up correctly.

Across the table from me was a young man working on translating a cryptic Hebrew text for one of his classes. He occasionally joined in to the discussion about the church calendar with comments about how he had recently visited an Orthodox church on his trip to the Balkans where the daily scripture reading was recited in 10 different languages to cover all the people that might be attending.

To my right was a guy reading Peter Leithart’s new book Solomon Among the Postmoderns. Well, at least he started on it. He ended up spending most of the hour surfing Facebook.

About this time, I realized that exactly 5 years ago, it was me sitting in the same chair with my sheet music spread all over the huge table. I was analyzing a Miles Davis solo transcription as the final project for Theoretical Basis of Jazz at the university. My professor at the time, Dan Bukvich, recently marked his 30th year at the music school. My wife and I contributed a story to a memory book that was being compiled for him.  Wow, what a wonderful time. I miss school. Part of me envied all the guys around the table that evening.