Thursday, November 29, 2012

Rehearsal Poem

We tittered at first when sweet Mack chose to spell                      

“H-E-Double-Toothpick” instead of saying “Hell”.                             

We giggled out loud when Mack thought the word “Breast”       

Was too vivid to say, so he changed it to “bless’d”.                          

But tonight our director dear as can be,                                          

Was faced with two words not in his repertoire-y.                     

Endearing shy nature was tested by fire                                                               

Introducing a specialist visiting choir.                                                                                      
And that singing doctor, without knowing Mack                                     

Gave to our director a “pronounced” heart attack.                          

From the tips of his toes to top of his head,                                        

Our Dearest Darling Mack turned the best shade of red.                              

Oh Beloved Mack, if it happens again,                                           

Don’t try to pronounce it, say “O-B-G-Y-N”.

*I sincerely hope that this poem is general and non-searchable enough that the choir powers-that-be don't demand that I remove it. If they feel I must, then I will.  I just was so delighted by rehearsal tonight that I had to get it all down on paper.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

sell out.

Hmmm. It seems I have earned $1.58 in "advertising" from putting ads at the bottom of my blog for the past two years.  Unfortunately they don't send a check unless my revenue is over $100. Hey, only $98.42 to go!  This says I can advertise specific products within my blog posts too, so in the spirit of commericalism, I'm going to experiment with things that I like. For example. I like shoes. And so now if you click on that word, you should be taken to a webiste that sells shoes. unfortunately, I don't see a picture of what shoes they are, and I so hope they aren't ugly shoes. Let's try again. I also like books.  Did it work?  I chose a book about granny squares.  Which I've always wanted to learn how to make. It says I can put images and ads in here too, as opposed to just hyperlinking the text.  Let's continue the experiment.  How about an ad for something kitchen-y, since I love kitchen-y things?
Did it work? I think I chose a butter dish. Nope. So far none of this is working.  So much for my get rich quick schemes.  I guess I'll have to resort to the all-american pasttime for getting unneccessary stuff and extra resources. Asking Santa for them.

vain confession

Sometimes I listen to the practice recordings for choir with the intent to hear all the tonal and rhythmic corrections Mack and Ryan are telling us to make, but when I hit play I am in so much awe over what the choir does that I have to pinch myself.  "He sole on high exalted reigns" in baroque counterpoint, sight-read by 370 people, rehearsed for 20 minutes and then performed at recording-quality level.  Sure there is improvement to be made.  But even our first take is not shabby, better than merely listenable, its good. And I was there, singing along, not just because I like to sing along, but because I belong there. Not even my own insecurities can argue with that. They gave me a folder of music and a closet of dresses and a seat to sit in. I'm sorry if sometimes I forget to hear the flaws in the face of the awesomeness of what we are doing.  I'm more sorry if there are people who only hear the flaws. I am a member of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and there is no group in the world that does what we do, let alone does it well. My life rocks.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012


Well that was a fun ride, now wasn't it.  The thing is, after I posted yesterday, I went to class and learned about how when we are under stress we tend to revert to our infant selves.  There you have it.  Honestly, when I'm feeling good, I mostly love hearing about your kids.  And when I'm feeling self-sufficient and healthy, I am just fine with surviving on my own.  But for some reason I had to spend part of yesterday morning listening to someone whine about their children and then another part of the morning trying to convince that classmate that I'm not "acing everything without even having to read the textbook".  Why do people pin stuff like that on others?  No one has it easy, and to declare so is to insult the efforts they have and do make.  SO just stop it.  I'm not entirely better, but I'm well enough to see that I need to pull up my bootstraps and keep plugging forward.  And I suppose I could be embarassed about the whine-fest, but there is a part of me that wants it known.  I'm not proud of the tantrum, but I still want someone out there to know that I have struggles, and maybe even care.  So rather than delete it or apologize for it, I'm leaving it up for the world to see.  Some days suck. And on those days, the tiny things that our grown up selves are able to endure, brush off, or make the best of become the huge things that seem insurmountable.  Please don't resent me, take it personally, or judge my entire self based on the rotten days.

Monday, November 19, 2012


I'm sick. Whine. Honestly, normally when I'm sick I just push through, get over it make do, or rest until I'm functional again, get back up and get to work. Most people won't hear about it or notice, and those that do hear about it are far enough away that it's not like I'm putting pressure on them to fix it for me. I always feel like I'm entirely pathetic and needy, but those people usually tell me that I was neither, just quieter than usual. Well this time, I'm speaking up. Whine. In one of my classes we learned about something called projective identification, where people tend to pin whatever they are feeling onto the people around them. Quiet people particularly end up getting pinned with whatever everyone else is feeling, because they are more of a blank slate than someone who is particularly vocal. Well I certainly wouldn't want to mislead any of you into believing that I am feeling whatever it is you are trying to suppress, so I'm speaking up. Whine. I don't feel good. And when I don't feel good I don't want to hear about your children, your issues, your perfect whatever, your spouse, your job, or whatever else it is in your life that seems like such a trial. Seriously, do you know how much it sucks for a single girl to listen to your complaints about your children? Has anyone ever pointed out to you a "first world problem"? Whine. It must be so sad for you when you don't feel good and your husband has to go to work instead of taking care of you. Read sarcasm. News flash. I got dizzy when I went to get myself a bowl of cereal, I ran out of breath when I tried to get dressed, and I couldn't figure out how to answer my own phone this morning because my head was so fuzzy from being awake most of the night in a fever. Whine. Nobody is going to show up and take care of me, not before, after, or during work. And no, I don't have to worry about taking care of the kids while I don't feel good. Do you realize what a small consolation prize that is? The only way anyone is even going to know I was sick is from me posting it on the blog. Whine. And I hate that I feel good enough to feel guilty about laying around while I'm laying down, but if I sit up or try to move, it takes an extra 15 minutes to catch my breath. Which means I can probably manage to make my own ramen for lunch, but then I will have to take a nap to recover from stirring it and it will be cold by the time I get to eat it. Whine. Also, some girl from school keeps texting me for help with some paper and to ask if I'll make another kid a birthday cake for class. I'm not sure why she thinks I have anything in life together enough to do either of those things, but I wish someone would make her stop. Whine. Reality is, this is a hard semester, I'm barely hanging on, and I have considered dropping out on a nearly weekly basis. I've talked to professors about it, but I wasn't planning on dumping it on others because frankly, it's not your problem, it's mine. Whine. There that projection. People often believe that if a person doesn't talk about their problems, they must not have any. Then again, we've all had that friend that burns us out with their drama. Someone on your Facebook is doing it right now. They are posting sad song lyrics and rants about how their dog died and no one loves them and how awful their situation is with accusatory overtones of demand. I don't want to be that person. Whine. But today I'm sick, and I consider that my pass to whine for a while longer. Except I have to go to class, and I'm not sure how that's going to work. If I take enough medication to bring the fever down and stop coughing, I'm pretty sure I can't legally drive. Then again, without meds, I'm dizzy and out of breath. Whine. Then I have to finish a midterm and work on some papers. Whine. Seriously, why couldn't I have gotten sick 2 days from now, when I have a long weekend clear of obligations and plans? whine. Maybe its best if I close this down now. Check back tomorrow. Maybe I'll feel like being nicer.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

I wonder.

Facebook makes for some fascinating political watching.  The elections bring out the absolute worst in people.  Seriously, I'm not sure why people that I find to be kind, reasonable, and intelligent people in real life go and post inane, ill-thought out statements in a feed that all of their "friends" will see.  I make no secret as to my political stance.  I also have been very clear about our responsibility to be balanced and kind.  That being said, there are a few things I wonder that perhaps the cybersphere could clear up for me. 

I wonder if my culturally LDS friends really believe that President Obama is a great evil, and that his re-election will really speed up the second coming.  I'm fairly certain that the scriptures have been clear, no man can know, speed it up, or slow it down.  I wonder, every time they post something like this, if they realize they are engaging in the hype and rhetoric rather than thinking about the doctrines they love.  I wonder if they truly believe this is something they need to worry about, or if they can have faith that their personal covenants and choices are what truly protect them from negative eternal consequences, regardless of the timing of the second coming.  I would ask my friends who truly believe this election was a "sign of the times" examine their scriptures and read the true revelations, know that the signs are and have been present regardless of political climate, and choose to be grounded in their faith and covenants based on priciples that are true across all political platforms.

I wonder if I really am friends with people who can see no good whatsoever in a man that has led our nation for 4 years, and can see only good in a man they hardly know but share a faith with.  I wonder if they recognize that they are being fed biased information from a biased media, or if they truly believe everything the news stations say.  I know that (particularly in Utah) we are constantly fed skewed data that needs to be weighed and balanced.  Along with this wonder, I am concerned that people I love do not realize or consider the fact that half the nation sees things differently from them, and that it is mighty difficult to completely hoodwink so many people to vote for what they are declaring to be "pure evil".  I would ask that they not allow the lies of the media to bind their agency, but that they rise above the misinformation and make a choice that includes acknowledgement that these men are both good men, that their policies differ only slightly, and that their friends who choose differenlty are not evil by association.

I wonder if anyone recognizes that the biases in the media, the judgements and name-calling between friends, and the attitude that "I will just move to _____" (or otherwise generally not support our nation's president) are in fact the most un-American stances to take.  I wonder if those who make such ridiculous and inflammatory statements can see how unintelligent they look, how cruel they sound, and how much more "socialist" it is to manipulate and hate those who disagree than it is to offer welfare and healthcare to those in need. I would hope that we can come together to honor a constitution and land that has in place checks and balances, that we can participate in a process that many people in the world do not have the priveledge of enjoying, and most of all, that we can move forward doing good in our own lives without the judgement so callously tossed around in the name of politics.

I wonder if anyone else is even a little bit excited about the good that an incumbant president can do without the worry of re-election politics.  I honestly believe that politicians (while they do lie and manipulate to gain the offices of power) have a certain passion for doing well.  They can't all be into it for the money and power, because let's face it, the money's not great and the power is checked and balanced.  More than a few of those men and women truly love this nation and the people that they serve.  More than a few of them are spending their lives and their earnings to be in a position to do what they honestly believe is best for their families and friends.  While it admittedly takes a measure of narcissism to run for president, both candidates were evenly matched in that arena, (and incidentally on much of their policy), there is no way they simply acted out of desire for "phneomenal cosmic power".  I would hope that we can see the potential for real action and truth in 4 years unburdened by the possibility of re-election.

Finally, I wonder if people will eventually come to "see things as they truly are" (myself included) and find some good in the people they have vilified and ostracized.  I have Republican friends that seem to have forgotten that "Obamacare" is based on "Romneycare" and I have Democrat friends that seem to have forgotten how the birth control debate is as much about freedom of religion as it is about women's rights.  I wonder if the polarized platforms will eventually reveal themselves as the actual evil in this process. I hope that as we educate ourselves beyond media biases and dangerous rhetoric we will rediscover our friendships and learn to value the common grounds that brought us together in the first place. 

There you have it.  My political musings, my questions for the world, and my hopes for my friends.  This is not an attempt to sway people towards my way of thinking, it is an invitation to think, to study, and to say things that reflect truth rather than hysteria.  If you would like to comment, please know that if you say things that continue the thoughtless hysteria, I will delete you. But if you have some insight, or some perspective beyond doomsday or delight, I am happy to hear it.

On my end, I like healthcare legislation because insurance companies are wholly evil (see, I have my unreasonable perspectives too!) and they needed to be told that pre-existing conditions were a dishonest cop-out.  I like welfare legislation because it helps many of the people that I know and love out of the rough parts of life, and those people have all become functioning and contributing citizens as a result of the welfare they recieved. That's right, they used it, and now they pay it forward.  I like platforms that support healing and rehabilitation rather than punishment, because ever dollar spent on mental health saves us $36 dollars in the proson system.  I like pro-choice platforms and I like birth control that comes through insurance companies, because the two are statistically healthier for the population.  Pro-choice does not mean pro-abortion.  (And while we are on it, my faith declares that agency is as integral a gift as life itself, so I do not see how one can claim religious reasons for being more one than the other.) I don't believe that government should define marriage AT ALL, regardless of the definition being debated, but I believe that civil rights of every individual should be protected by the government.  This means that gay couples should have the same financial and legal rights as straight couples, but religions should not be forced to adopt a definition of marriage that does not reflect their belief system.  Finally, I believe that Kristen Stewart should be banned from acting, Stephanie Meyer should be banned from publishing novels marketed for teens, and and the CIA should use their top secret erasey-tools to obliterate the Twilight franchise from our minds and culture.

Sigh. Now you know.

Monday, November 5, 2012

How it turned out...

See how my little "36" post was sort of depressing?  I need to remedy that by saying how it actually went. 

36 started with a phone call from Jim and a call from Lucie, both while I was eating leftover chicken burritos from dinner the night before.  You may not know this about me, but I love leftover dinner boxes for breakfast.  Weird? Maybe.  But here's the deal.  That way the leftovers are fresh, you reheat minimally and there is not as much gross dried edge stuff.  Also, then you start the day with fresh memories of good times with firends.  Its a win-win.  So I chatted with my dear friends while I ate, and just as I finished, my friend Christine showed up for our hike.  We loaded our pockets with leftover halloween candy and took the same trail we have been taking all summer.  After the hike, we checked movie times and scheduled to meet up with Kim for a little "Wreck-it Ralph".  While waiting, Christine and I used my Disney princess temporary sparkle tattoo kit to give ourselves tattoos. At the movie we ate popcorn and laughed our butts off.  Disney has a good history of releasing delightful cartoons on my birthday weekend.  After the movie, we had to say goodbye to Christine and Kim and I headed to California Pizza Kitchen.  At some point in here, my phone battery died.  We shared my two favorites and topped it off with chocolate souffle, found out another friend of mine saw us there and paid for our food, and decided to do a little shopping.  I drooled over a fiat, we bought some cute things, and then said goodbye for the evening.  On my way home, I stopped at Barnes and Noble to check on a new book by Lois Lowry, and I read for about an hour before they closed up and I went home. 

So: (I sum up)
Temporary glitter tattoo (princess crown)
More good wishes than my phone could keep up with

These are a few of my favorite things.  Sometimes I worry that I am losing my sense of adventure, but in reality, I'm becoming someone who knows what I like, and I'm oh so happy with that.

Oh yeah, and the time change.  This is the second time I've gotten a 25 hour birthday.  I only feel a little sad for those people with spring birthdays who lose an hour. 

So well-played 36.  You have potential.  Let's see what we can do with this.

Friday, November 2, 2012


I'm sitting here at an obscene hour enjoying the last few minutes of being 35. I'm also struggling with writing some papers.  I need to write lots, but I can't write the stuff I'm actually accountable for until I write the stuff that my brain is obsessing over.

Don't people usually make a big deal out of those big round numbers?  Why do I care about 36? I'll tell you why.  Because 36 is closer to 40 than it is to 30.  I struggled with 30.  I struggled with it because I was in a pretty lousy place at the time, and because I didn't believe much would change from there out.  36 isn't that kind of a struggle.  36 is frankly easier because things did change, and because I feel like I have accomplished some things I really wanted in life. Its also easier because I am still accomplishing things, and so life is moving forward, changing and shifting. 

So really, as of right now (minutes before the official change) 36 feels like a new haircut, leftover mexican food from an evening with dear friends, and a few avoided research papers.  Not a bad sum. I've grown to love the feeling of having something to do, just becuase I know that left to my own devices I will get into trouble. 

But there are bits of it that feel unfinished. Like I lost a few years in there.  Shouldn't I still be 32? People in choir keep assuming I'm one of those 28-29 year olds.  Lovely, thank you, oh how I wish!

The nice thing is, 36 will have some interesting stuff. The choir will go on tour to Minnesota (and some other places that don't matter as much), I will do a practicum and then start an internship (weird to think that when I hit 37 I will be a practicing intern- yikes), and probably lots of other stuff that comes along the road.  The nice thing is, I don't worry about whats coming anymore, because the days fly by so full of stuff that I hardly have time to realize its happening let alone record it.  I know I won't be bored. The real problem is taking charge enough to choose which things happen and try and make the time feel less lost.

And 36 just sounds so much more grown up than I feel.  Part of me wants to rebel by going to wal-mart and having shopping cart races or eating a ridiculous amount of candy.  Then another part of me recognizes that its cute for kids to act like kids and its cute for 80 and 90 year olds to act like kids.  During the in-between years, its just plain irritating.  There is something serious about being 36. Its a sedan-or-min-van-driving, desk-job-sitting, responsible citizen sounding age. 

Maybe I'm truly backwards.  You know how most people have some sort of a midlife crisis and they flip out and do something fun?  Or they buy a sports car or quit their job to chase their dreams or something.... Maybe I'm opposite-girl.  Maybe instead of having a fun mid-life crisis, I'm am going to suddenly start being all serious.  Next time you see me sitting reverently through church or quietly managing paperwork in the corner, or reading non-fiction, do me a favor and give me a smack.  Tell me to snap out of it.  Remind me that this is not who I am.  I will not be 36.  Hand me some Harry Potter and make me jump in some leaves or throw a snowball. 

36 is a technicality.  A passing fad.  Something that must be passed through in order to acheive 37, a delightfully prime number.  36 won't take me down and turn me into an accountant.  Do you hear me, 36? You better.