Monday, September 06, 2010

U.S. Department of Justice: Serious Law Enforcement Concerns

On Friday January 15, 2010 two officers from the U.S. Department of Justice interviewed me at my home about a law enforcement matter.  The officers wanted to know whether I had attended the opera recently.  I stated that I had attended the opera on Sunday afternoon November 15, 2009.  In fact, I had attended a performance of Wagner's Gotterdammerung at the Kennedy Center Opera House.

At the beginning of the Ring, in Das Rheingold, the Rhine Maidens are distraught that Alberich, the evil dwarf, steals the Rhine gold.

Sixteen hours later, in Gotterdammerung, the Rhine Maidens are still lamenting the theft of their gold. Some people never stop kvetching!

At the Justice Department interview on January 15 a Deputy U.S. Marshal said to me, "I understand that you have a need to write about these things [even after 20 years]."

(As I said, some people never stop kvetching!)

Incidentally, in The Waste Land T.S. Eliot took the lament of the Rhine Maidens from Gotterdammerung (see above) and wrote an English-language parody employing the identical meter used by Wagner:  He called it the Song of the Thames Daughters.

Be that as it may.

About the U.S. Marshals I am reminded of a line from the Seinfeld episode, "The Cheever Letters":

JERRY: I don't know, they're working on a whole other level.


Gary Freedman said...

Meanwhile, terrorists are building bombs, fugitives are on the loose, etc. And the Justice Dept. is concerned about Gotterdammerung!

I guess that's what happens when the DOJ is run from 1333 New Hampshire Avenue!

Gary Freedman said...

The video is a Bayreuth production from 1991 conducted by Daniel Barenboim.