Because You So Wanted To Know About This Stuff

listening to: elliott smith – sweet adeline

I decided yesterday that, after 4 semesters of participation and the need to keep some open time for myself to do whatever it is I need to do (practice, math homework, durrrr), I should maybe not do conducting seminar this semester. I made this decision right in time for my UTERUS TO HATE ME OH MY GOD OW.

Ibuprofin is now helping, as I am able to sit up and type and not die. But this did kind of ruin my masterplan to practice this afternoon away until orchestra. Dammit.

My sister recently informed me that she had the same problem around the time she was my age, but that ACUPUNCTURE seems to have fixed it. ACUPUNCTURE. I will SO get acupuncture if I alleviate even some of the pain and not have to screw around with my body by taking hormones (ie, birth control).

It would be especially awesome if my school health insurance covered acupuncture. It’s quiet possible. Maybe. I hope. So I think I’m going to call some doctor-type people to have them check me out and such.

So hooray.

I have been having the most ridiculous dreams possible. I don’t know what it is. I am somehow sleeping more than usual, so that helps. But maybe it’s also school and my brain being more active than usual, but DANG.

The most notable dream clearly had to do with three things that may frequently be on my mind, as of 1.5 weeks ago, being A) Orchestra B) Food and C) Losing Things (as in, why the hell do I?). It was a college edition of Iron Chef, and I was one of the participants. And Schleicher was the judge. I don’t think there was ever any sort of special ingredient. They just gave us these baskets for us to collect food. So I was getting a bunch of fresh produce for whatever the hell it was I was going to make, and I put it down right in front of me and looked away for 1.5 seconds, and then it was GONE. And I spent the rest of my designated food gathering/cooking time looking for it.

And then I woke up.

I’ve also been going to bed ridiculously early. Like, 10:30pm early. I think this has something to do with having an 8am class. One that is math-inclusive. My sleep schedule in general has been kind of effed up since Heifetz, so whatever. I think a little part of me is still on Eastern time.

Sigh. I miss Heifetz.

I mean, shut up. I hate you.

No Effort

listening to: why? – dirty glass

So for the past like…month, I’ve had these red itchy bumps on my legs. And they seem to not only not want to go away, but migrate. And they really itch. And I’ve been pretty certain they weren’t bug bites. But now I KNOW. I KNOW what they are. They’re POISON IVY. From like a MONTH AGO. Now that I think about it, I know the exact patch, just off of Brewster campus property to the road where I would run. And it’s probably on my running shoes. And I should really burn my running shoes.

In other things, this 365 project on Flickr has reached all new kinds of lame.

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It’s like…I saw a potentially interesting shot, STUCK MY HAND into the frame thinking “oh hey, if I stick my hand in, it counts!” and then shot the photo with very little care. Go me!

Seriously. I mean, there are 365 of these things so I realize I don’t need to try and do something awesome or even interesting every day. But it’s just like…where is the effort? Did that require any thought? Did I even really try? It doesn’t even really feature my whole hand!

On a not really related note…remember how I said that I am a different person than I was a year ago and that I will now YELL AT YOU? Well it turns out I will still yell at you! Yess!! Test me. I dare you.

R.I.P. Pete

Got the news about our beloved pet of 10+ years last night. He was 17 years old. He was also green and soft and fuzzy and the sweetest bird in the universe when he wasn’t chewing the buttons off of remote controls and screaming bloody murder.

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Sigh.

In other things, one day I will design a layout with a main text body that will fit these freakin’ photos.

Waste Of Time, Sitting Still

listening to: the high llamas – at the chime of a city clock

It only took 5.5 years, but I am apparently ALL BLOGGED OUT.

It’s difficult when there becomes even a slight rift in keeping things up-to-date. Because you want to catch up and then one of two things will happen: 1) You take the time, sit your rear-end down and catch up and all will be well again or 2) Keep putting it off and before you know it you’re overwhelmed with how behind you are and continue to do nothing.

I like blogging a lot, and I want to keep doing it. However, I think my perspectives about blogging have changed a lot, particularly how I feel about audience. Half the reason I blogged before this summer was because I knew people read it and I knew there was always a possibility that more people would read it and the things I would say would be…read! My people-pleasing needs have typically been a good way to motivate myself to get things done.

But for whatever reason now, it doesn’t matter to me. I’m not sure what happened. I’ll have to think about it and get back to you.

In case you’re wondering, the other half of why I blog is my need to create content. Fortunately, my content-creating needs are still there, or I might actually be a bum by now. So that’s good.

But I’m a bum in a lot of other ways now, too. I need to call people. YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE. Megan the Red, I’m sorry I have not called you. I keep thinking about it when it is least convenient and then either being asleep or a crazy insomniac. I will call you very soon.

In other things, I already tire of school. I tire of the politics. I tire of the talk. There is so much talk. The politics and the talk. They turn that which is meaningless into something bitter and looming. I was spoiled by being in a setting with minimal talk and politics over the summer, and maximum support. Sort of. At least from my experience.

Somehow, though, the politics and the talk aren’t making me more stressed out or worried anymore. They’re just making me tired. Maybe it’s that it’s my fifth year, fourth year at this school.

I also think a lot of my perspectives were changed this summer. I’m seeing everything differently now.

See, now is the part where I wish I had actually blogged more during the summer. So that all this crazy-talk would be relevant to any actual readers that remain. Also as a reference for myself. Oh well.

Can’t Sleep Audition Will Eat Me

listening to: why? – whispers into the others

It is 1:23am, I cannot sleep, and I have a class at 8am. WHAT THE HELL?!

But at least I’m blogging.

This is kind of allergies again.

I joined a stupid Flickr thing. It’s called 365 days. You take a photo of yourself every day for a year, in some way or another. And you post it to the group and your photostream.

Oh. Oh. Did I mention that my symphony audition is TOMORROW? As in, NOT THURSDAY? That’s okay, because somehow, I’m ready.

This year I’m throwing caution to the wind. I mean, not caution. I guess I’m throwing excessive caring to the wind. I don’t care where I sit. I just want to play. I have more important things to think about than bowings for 11 other people. Bah, bowings.

Gaaaaaah. Want sleep.

My Sinuses! They Burn!

listening to: montag – hands off, creature!

*crashes through doorway and collapses* Honey, I’m……..home. Again.

I was pleasantly surprised to find that everything about my apartment when I got in last night was basically clean except for the kitchen. Usually it’s the opposite. I was okay with this arrangement.

I was not so pleasantly surprised by a severe allergy attack last night right before I was hoping to go to bed. Ragweed, baby. Amongst other things that irritate the senses, mold probably being another of those things. So basically I didn’t really sleep. But I did finish Buffy. So I’m not as broken up about the whole loss of sleep thing as I might be. That didn’t change the fact that around 3am I very nearly drove to the nearest 24 hour place to procure SOME kind of allergy relieving drugs.

I also registered for my classes around 2:30am. Which –I know, shut up– I should have done about three months ago. Turns out registering for classes the day before they begin is a crappy idea. Don’t do it.

It’s my fault. I was fishing and FISHING for my last gen-ed before the end of last semester and couldn’t find anything I wanted that also fit into my schedule and got fed up and gave up. And then forgot about the whole thing until after Heifetz. So it’s my own damn fault that my last gen-ed is at 8am on MWF. I accept this (to be honest, though, my inner morning person is fairly excited about this arrangement. Don’t tell anyone).

In completely awesome things: zucchini cake is delicious and I have some. Also? I got fancy olive-oil for my birthday.

Rock.

Making It Happen, Finally

listening to: hymie’s basement – 21st century pop song

Still the best song ever.

It’s ragweed season! Yay!! That’s probably why I’ve been feeling slightly craptastic in the last couple days. Yesterday was very cool and not too wet, so when the humidity flared back up again today and I broke out in consecutive sneezes and sauntered around the house in an itchy-eyed haze, I considered this possibility.

I haven’t been blogging. I haven’t really been talking to anybody, either. It’s good, actually, I think I’ve needed a serious repose for a while that mostly just involves letting my brain and imagination run wild without constant people-interaction needs getting in the way. That sounds awfully misanthropic. HUZZAH FOR INTROVERSION.

But wait. With the letting the brain run wild thing? I’ve been letting it run loose with Buffy. It’s ridiculous, but quite satisfying. But also ridiculous. Two things I don’t know how I feel about admitting:

1) The musical episode in season six? I loved it. I mean, I didn’t just love itI loooved it. I don’t like musicals. I don’t like the poppish kind of music that lives in contemporary musicals of our time. But I LOVED the musical episode. Everything about it. So there. I admitted it.

2) Spike? Is really hot. When did that happen? There’s apparently some sort transitive Spike-hotness property. It states that the longer Spike hangs around, the hotter he gets. Because somewhere into the fifth season, you’ve got to stop and go “whoa. what happened?” I don’t think this is just me. I remember various people from high school who were obsessed with Buffy saying similar things about Spike, but I completely ignored these cries of hotness, if not just let them add to the reasons that I would never watch Buffy. But somehow here I am, anyway.

So that’s that.

I saw Ratatouille yesterday. It was AWESOME. I want to see it again.

I also want to see Stardust.

My new camera came. Not much has happened with it, yet. The weather has been too weird and I’ve been too distracted. But what I have done with it so far has been fun.
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Oh yes. Let’s hear it for Ommegang.

Sorry Guys!

Can’t. Blog. Must. Watch Buffy. BUFFY.

And also feel sick. I feel sick. It sucks.

And also wait for my new digital camera to arrive in the mail. YEEHAW.

Blarn.

Whiny Rambling, Kind Of

listening to: hymie’s basement – 21st century pop song

Hello, this song, with which I am obsessed! I cannot go without listening to you for longer than an hour it seems, you are so awesome.

It is a week later and I am LOSING MY BRAIN.

Guys. I miss Heifetz. And New Hampshire. And the East in general.

It’s so flat here. So flat and so freaking humid.

And I can’t figure out if I’m really super glad that I’m no longer in Chicago or if I really miss Chicago. I have such a love-hate relationship with that city, and try as I might, I can’t make up my mind. I think part of me hates it because I always try imagining living in certain places that I visit, and no matter how hard I try, I can’t ever comfortably imagine living there even though I have in fact had fun visiting the city. Why do I have to take the places I visit so seriously? It’s not like I’m going to end up living there. I mean, because I’m not! But anyway.

So yeah. I am in fact longing for the atmosphere and the faculty and the people from Heifetz. And I feel like I’m losing important things that I experienced while I was there. Such as…

Having a teacher tell me stuff twice a week. Now I’m just ambling along, doing whatever, and practicing, and forgetting stuff I’ve been told, and really not holding onto everything I learned in black and white. Which…you know, is actually probably better. It’s funny, but there are like a solid ten things from different teachers that I’ve managed to hold on to and work my way into practicing, and those things are helping a LOT. But I guess I’m still not comfortable with the fact that I’m in charge of my own playing. Which is kind of hilarious when I think about it. But also frustrating. Gotta take charge. I’m sure I’ll get better at that. I think I already am, even if the realization is still sketchy in my brain.

I’ve also lost my definite independent feeling of “SCREW EVERYBODY.” That was an awesome feeling, and I miss it. I was getting to be pretty good at making decisions and choices based on how I felt instead of how it would effect other people, as well as putting the friendships-turned-crappy aside and not wasting energy on those. But BAM!! People give me an inch and then I’m the human door-mat, making phone-calls not to be returned and waiting for the next opportunity to be walked all over. Clearly I suck.

But whatever.

I think life would be helped if I could just make up some lame excuse to wander around. Why is it so hard in my own neighborhood, the place in which I grew up? Maybe because I lack a real destination and I worry that my parents will think I’m kind of crazy.

But on the bright side, I’m losing my ice-cream gut. There is in fact a noticeable difference in how certain things fit me today as compared to a week ago.

Also, my sister has enlightened me of an amazing Japanese red-rice beer, which contains no wheat, which is good because wheat and I have a weird relationship in terms of how my stomach handles it.

Also, I have a plethora of weird music to listen to.

So life ain’t so bad. I think I’m just bored. And in Illinois. Both of which I’ll get used to, eventually.

Jiggidy Jig

listening to: why? – 21st century pop song

Honey, I’m hooome!

First in the news, another installment of Sad or Awesome.

Sad or Awesome?: that while I was driving out of Chicago on I-55, a partially tree-obscured sign read that the next exit was to Boingboing, but then turned out to be to Bolingbrook. I think that’s more sad.

In other things, my sister and I discovered Squid.us earlier today. That one actually borders on terrifying and awesome. Please please please check out stop-time animation They Might Be Giants video. Or I could just link you to it. Oh, what the hell: With The Dark.

And lastly…my phone:
-where is it?
-where is my phone?

An Observation

listening to: stereolab – double rocker

If this isn’t teetering on the edge of “sad or awesome,” I don’t know what is.

Cory and I were talking, and we vaguely realized that our summer institute ice-cream habits were not completely dissimilar to a lot of other people’s alcohol habits.

I think this photo says it all.

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Seriously, though. We ate ice-cream almost nightly. And it was especially necessary every time we were stressed or frustrated. It was also necessary if ever we did something worth celebrating. After somebody calculated the probable total cost (I honestly stopped thinking about it because I knew it would make me feel guilty…and rotund), we figured out that it would be almost as expensive (ice-cream would be slightly less, is what I’m guessing, but it still ads up).

And after those “we climbed Mount Washington so we celebrate with ice-cream” sundaes, we felt pretty awful. The next morning, I did in fact feel horrible. Not the hungover kind of horrible, but perhaps more a stomach-related horrible.

So there you have it.

Goodbyes are weird. I know I’ll be seeing a lot of these people again. This doesn’t change the fact that goodbyes are weird.

I feel so opposingly sad and happy right now that I don’t know what to do with myself. I don’t want to leave and yet I’m excited to finally be done and have lived to see the end of six weeks. We’ve been through this before, though, so I’ll spare you.

I think the wonderful world of modern communication will help. This will especially come in handy when I absolutely need to just…yell or be weird at someone who understands my weird, even through the phone. Yes, Erik, I mean you.

Tomorrow I’m heading to Upstate NY. Unlike my pre-Heifetz stay in NY, I will have no internet. I’ll be back in Normal next Thursday.

So…bye. Blog. Heifetz. People. … *sob*

Insane, But Awesome

listening to: r.e.m. – don’t go back to rockville

Holy crap. I had my last lesson today. Holy crap! I love Amit. It was really good. I’m going to miss him. And it’s funny how sometimes the really good lessons are when I discover something or have a breakthrough or when I feel like I play well and a teacher just says something nice about me. But these lessons? It’s like…the sheer “I am now going to teach you how to do this ridiculous and extremely useful thing that will help your playing so much, but it’s completely ridiculous and you might hate it”-ness of it all is just…I don’t know what it is. I love it. Who knew cello-playing mechanics could be so much fun?

(Spoken by the girl who has hit her head on stuff repeatedly throughout parts of the summer by being completely overwhelmed by things).

Anyway. Just a few notes about said lesson:

In Haydn, lifting on upbows. Keeping thumb over two strings in thumb position. Keeping placement of thumb relevent to the rest of the fingers. Practicing everything (EVERYTHING!!) in double-stops (EVERYTHING!!). Doing completely insane double-stop “say both notes as you play them” exercise five minutes every day. I mean, and also just figuring out what the hell notes I’m playing. Transposing double-stop passages to other keys. Sliding my fingers from one double-stop position tot he next.

In Bach, getting the “C” part of the arm working. Feeling like there are puppet strings attached to my elbows, and getting the damn things working. Speaking each beat aloud in a number. And then later phrases. Same with Haydn.

Highlights of lesson: when Amit had me doing afore-mentioned insane talking-out-loud double stop exercise and laughing at me when my brain froze, because yeah, it must have been funny.

Also, when he was describing how scary it is to come in with the exposition of Haydn D: “The orchestra finishes playing, and then you come in and go ‘oh shit!'”

Other than that, it is freaking hot as hell out. It’s at least 95 out, and while it’s not quite as unbearable without humidity, it still sucks.

So…I leave tomorrow. And now I’m starting to be really sad. I mean, still glad to go. But…! I’m just going to miss a lot of things, is all.

I never thought I’d be admitting that about any summer program, ever. I’m not sure if hell has frozen over, or I’ve just been in all the wrong places. I’m banking on the second one…

The End Is Near

listening to: jill sobule – don’t drop dead

The end is near.

I won a bet last night. It was the final Stars of Tomorrow concert (student concert), and it was supposedly going to last from 7pm until forever, there were that many people playing. So anyway. Cory and I made bets on when the concert would end. She said 9:30 and I said 10, which translated to Cory winning if the end-time was anywhere up until 9:44, and me winning anywhere from 9:45 onward. The winner would have to buy the loser jimmies at Bailey’s after the concert (that’s $.25, so you know. Huge freaking deal).

We kept pretty consistent track of time through the whole concert, but by about the last two numbers on the program, it was clear it could go either way.

So the last group gets on-stage and they’re playing the last movement of the Brahms Piano Quartet, and of course every group has to have an opening speech before they play, and it is mentioned during the speech that the movement is exactly 9 minutes and 33 seconds when they play it, and based on that, it seems like Cory is just going to pull in as the winner. So they finish, and everyone is applauding, and it’s 9:43!! And it seems like it’s over, until the head of the institute has to get up and make a final “thanks for coming and come to our final concert tomorrow” speech, which still technically counts as part of the concert. And we’re peering obsessively at Erik’s cell-phone, which is the official time-keeper and has already hit 9:44. And every time Danny says “um” into the mic or uses some unnecessarily long word, I am pretty sure I can see Cory dying a little inside, because the second he says “goodnight,” the clock hits 9:45. Everyone in the audience applauds and we yell (and throw your hands up, if you’re me).

So I won jimmies last night. They tasted like victory.

(note: Jimmies are Sprinkles, in case you’re from somewhere not around here)

Honestly, I am both a mix of very sad and somewhat happy to be leaving.

The sad is in that…I can’t believe what a positive, productive and simply happy environment this has been. It is exactly what I needed, considering how miserable things were towards the middle and end of school and how I basically spent the first part of summer moping by myself going “musicians are ass-holes and I’ll never find a place to fit in, in this crazy, stupid, political, competitive field.” Of course, it’s still crazy and stupid and political and competitive, but I’m just…I’m something. I’m really comforted and just happy to find that there are so many people out there who are supportive and energetic and positive through it all.

I’m also sad to leave the learning atmosphere. It is intense, and sometimes overwhelming with so many faculty having so much to share. Honestly, the prospect of the learning atmosphere is part of why I was here in the first place, and it did not disappoint. While I did not learn HALF the music I wanted to during the last six weeks, my brain is full of all kinds of thoughts related to how to play the cello and I think it’s going to change a lot of things about how I learn music and how I play and all that jazz.

Also, my friends. After last year, I somehow also had the idea that I just wasn’t meant to make friends, or something. Or that I was just kind of the least desirable friend in the world. And I’ve made some really awesome friends. People who I am quite positive I will stay in touch with and likely see again in this ridiculously small world. And not just them, but everybody I worked with. The people in my communications class. Everybody was just so damn nice. You nice people, you!

Also, the location. Hello, New England, and mountains and bodies of water.

But there are also reasons I’ll be glad to leave.

Heading back to school is not one of those reasons. But enough about that for now.

I’ll be glad to leave to have some introverted shut-in time to myself. A repose. I’ll be glad to leave just so I can stop anticipating the act of traveling back home. Movement and travel is extremely important, and even with the mountain-climbing trips, it’s nothing compared to anticipating a big freakin’ roadtrip.

I’ll be glad to get back to my teacher. I have a lot to share with him. A lot of questions. I also miss just one person telling me how to go about playing, as enlightening as the four teachers of the past six weeks have been. The learning aspect is great, but I tend to be easily overwhelmed by technical junk. I actually mean to ask Amit about that in my lesson tomorrow, how not to end up hitting your head on a wall repeatedly when a lot of technical things are on the agenda. That was in fact the reason that I didn’t learn much music this summer.

I’ll be glad to hang out with my sister. I have some questions I want to ask her, as well as junk to share.

I’ll be super-glad to read the new HP book. My copy is waiting for me in Keene, NH along Route 9. God help me in my internet-less state starting this Saturday, after I finish.

I’ll be absurdly glad to go home and watch the rest of Buffy.

I’ll be especially glad to hang out with people in Normal and also go see Nickel Creek. Did I mention that anytime recently? No. Because I haven’t been blogging. HAH.

I’ll also be glad to get out of here and think. I have a lot to think about. Regarding my future. I hate future crap. Oh well.