Tomorrow is my sixty-second birthday. At such an age, people are apt to reply coquettishly to questions such as “If you could be born over again, would you live your sixty-two years in the same way?” “Yes,” they say, “not everything was perfect of course, there were some disappointments, but on the whole I would do much the same again.”
If I were ever to be asked this question, my reply would be: “No! A thousand times no!”
–Dmitri Shostakovich in a letter to Isaak Glikman, September 24, 1968
Many happy returns of the day, the 104th anniversary of the composer’s birth.