Did you know that we’re in the midst of a performance of a song that will take over six centuries to play?

It’s been happening in Halberstadt, Germany since 2001, and will keep going until the year 2640.

It’s a piece from the experimental composer John Cage.

He wrote out an eight-page score with no specific instructions on tempo, other than saying the piece should be played as slow as possible.

In fact, “As Slow As Possible” is part of the title of the piece.

Human performances have lasted as little as 27 minutes or as long as 14 hours. Pretty slow.

But the performance in Halberstadt is going to outlast them all.

It’s taking place there, by the way, because Halberstadt was home to the first permanent installation of an organ using the modern keyboard arrangement, 639 years earlier.

The organizers decided the next 639 years would feature Cage’s music, though the first 17 months or so were technically a pause, as prescribed by the score.

A specially designed organ plays the notes, with a compressor system in place to make sure it can play for years at a time.

And it needs human help to change notes.

Over the weekend two musicians added sand bags to change the chord the organ was playing.

It was the first change in seven years.

There was a relatively smaller crowd on hand for the chord change, as you might expect for this year.

But mark your calendar now for the next one, which takes place in February 2022.

Sometimes life needs to slow down, but other times you have to move fast.

YouTuber William Osman just released a video in which he trained his cat to put out fires – well, kind of.

Let’s just say that if I saw a fire, I would not turn to the cat and say “deal with this.”

John Cage musical work changes chord for first time in seven years (BBC)

I Trained My Cat To Put Out Fires (William Osman on YouTube)

Joining our community of backers on Patreon is quick and easy and won’t take 639 years