I’m Out Tonight

listening to: voltaire – out of reach

It’s true. I’m headed to the library. The engineering library, in fact. And I may not be coming back. Ever (ie, a while).

See, I’d study here. But that doesn’t work for me. I would get distracted by the internet or Buffy the Vampire Slayer, or really just my bed. Yes, I am that student. The one who compulsively gives up and goes to bed. But if my bed is a mile away, PROBLEM SOLVED. Hopefully.

This has been the worst week ever. Or, one of them, anyway. Every year has a “worst academic week ever.” This qualifies.

My computer’s battery is at 86% power. I get this feeling I could actually use it this way for up to a month before I reach the battery red-zone. Buuuuut, I should probably get it fixed sooner rather than later, anyway. Because one of these days I’m going to want to travel with it or something, and then I’ll just be screwed.

Oooooooooh boy. Here I go.

I Got Three Hours Of Sleep, But At Least I Know This!

listening to: cocteau twins – bluebeard

Oh thank you, God and Apple, for extending your warranty on Macbook batteries for an extra year. Thankyouthankyouthankyou! My warranty ran out in September and I am an idiot and not on the extended Apple Care plan. I should fix that.

Seriously. According to the system profiler, the AC adapter is plugged in but NOT CHARGING even though the power level is clearly at 87%, far below where it should be charging. The cycle count, which should be over 300, is 87.

So……..starting next week, I might be computerless for a while. Sigh.

Awaiting My Doom

listening to: my brain

So…I think my computer is dying. The battery isn’t charging, and is very very very slowly draining while the adapter is plugged in. I’ve had problems with the battery in this laptop before, and it’s something that is apparently a problem with Macbooks in general. But…could this come at a worse time?! If this is all true, I think I have something like 5 days of computer-use left. I had SO BETTER FUCKING FINISH applying and studying things before then. ARRRGH.


listening to: me, playing lots of out of tune things

If I were NEC, I would not give me an audition based solely on one spot in my Bach Prelude. But based on everything else? I would give me an audition.

BUT HEY!!!! We’re in a HAPPY place.

Dude. Applications suck. But I have working internet again, all thanks to Eric, who is continually saving my butt this semester. I did some reading, and it turns out that the particular modem I have has this problem where the A/C adapter for the modem is the wrong voltage for most power supplies, and thus fries after about 18 months (22, in my case). And Eric had an extra 2wire power supply. Thus, life-saving. Sadly, though, I inadvertently broke his disc-drive. Crap.

But seriously. Applications suck. My goal was to get them sent out by tomorrow morning, but now it’s looking to be more like tomorrow afternoon? Or Wednesday morning? Yaaaai. Actually, all I have left to do is finish up my personal statement, and then the rest is just paperwork and pain.


Also, for the record, the episode “Conversations with Dead People” in Season 7 of Buffy is freaking terrifying. Even while sitting with my laptop filling out applications. Even with commentary on. Actually, no. Not with commentary on. It’s too silly. Hee.

It’s 3:28am and I’m really hungry.

Also maybe screwed.

Hardy Har!!!

Alright! My modem died! I’m stealing internet! It’s fun and hilarious and exactly the kind of thing that I KNEW would happen while I’m filling out applications!

A Kind Of Reluctant Post

Stupid mom.

Huh? What? Nothing.

I know I’ve mentioned before how the musical episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer is really damn cool, but I think it has become my number one favorite TV thing, ever. It is my desert island TV episode, even over particular episodes of The Office and MST3k. Barely.

And…yeah. I really like funny. Funny is great, and essential. But there are so many more components and references to this episode besides the funny that truly dominate. Joss Whedon, you are good. Like, really good. And you wrote all the music yourself? Oh. Oh.

I really like the music. It’s produced well in a way that is not excess or too much or simply cheesy. Also, I love weird sonorities over chords that are maybe not completely expected by the ear (see songs: I’m Under Your Spell, Standing, probably some other song).

There’s also a generally combination of funny with dark and heart-on-the-sleeve and Disney. Nothing beats that combo.


Tony Head, you rock, and I kind of want your solo album.

I feel I also need to mention that one of my favorite cast members from Buffy is definitely Amber Benson, who plays Tara. I have a small list of female figures I idolize and want to be that I can count on one hand, and she might add to the list to make it two hands. So awesome.

Tony Head + Amber Benson singing = not a bad thing.

I’m also a big fan of how they stuck the writers into this episode (Mustard Guy = David Fury, Parking Meter Lady = Marti Noxon).

Also, I need to be shot.

…Though I Would Still Prefer A Trader Joe’s…

FYI, my new goal in going to grad school is either to end up in a place with waterfalls in the downtown area, or a place with a Trader Joe’s. Fortunately, there is a 100% chance that I will get either one of those things, minus the chances that I end up deciding to become a bum or screwing grad school in the first place, or not being accepted anywhere. Hmm.

I’m working on one big entry on Boston, but it’s hard when I’m home and eating a lot and frankly, really bummed out. I don’t even know why I’m bummed out. Maybe it’s the weather, or needing some serious space that I haven’t gotten in about a week, or a lack of city stimulation, or issues having to do with living and inevitably moving someplace pretty damn far away when I’ve never really lived that far from home before. Awesome.

A Word Or Maybe Three

listening to: pizzicato five – my baby portable player sound

Transcripts: ordered ($15 per transcript from my former university of attendance? word of advice to the world: never transfer)

Math work: almost completely ambivalent in regards to, but done

Applications: nowhere close to being done, but I’ll worry about that after Tuesday

Episodes of Buffy watched in the process of doing all the above: too many.

Break: officially begun

Today will be my first run through an airport since the end of the YOA tour in summer ’06. The best thing about this airport experience will be that there is NO possible way it could be worse than the last. I’m completely confident in this. I mean, for one thing, I don’t have mono and have procured more than 5 hours sleep in the last 48 hours.

And of course, today through Tuesday I’ll be in Boston! Yay! I’m really excited to visit the Longy school. NEC, I’ve been to before and vaguely know its deal. But Longy I’ve only heard fairly ridiculously awesome things about via two people, and I have a list of questions so…awesome.

Also, in general, I like taking lessons. A lot. So here I go.

Accomplishing Little

listening to: shiina ringo – la salle de bain


Arrrrrgh, I am busy but procrastinating.

But I’m over my random wikipedia-related hypochondria-streak. I don’t think I’m dying. I think I just have issues.

As of last night, my prelim recordings are done. And I’m really really glad they’re done. Really really glad. I can finally not worry about the act of playing and having people record me and not sucking and all that, and finally move on to worry about the other stupid stuff, like my resume. And repertoire list. And the applications themselves. And TRANSCRIPTS (shit. dear self. order transcripts tomorrow or death).

The recording went alright. Bach was splendid. Haydn? Well, it turns out that having played such a bitching first movement in studio class those couple weeks back, I had nowhere to go but down. This means that whatever ends up being sent to the schools that require the tapes will be mostly good, but random tension and spontaneously-missed-note inclusive. If that’s all that’s problematic about it, though, then I shouldn’t complain.

After our intense session of audio fun, Eric and I went to Jupiter’s and took advantage of their Tuesday-night half-off a large pizza. $8!!! One pizza!!! I highly recommend this. Their pizza is one of the best thin-crusts I’ve encountered, and they also have a bit more flare to their toppings menu (I will just say PROSCIUTTO and be quiet).

Yesterday I was informed by Brad that my “where the hell are we in this Ravel piece” faces made him actually laugh out loud in orchestra. I love indirectly wreaking havoc. I wish I had a poker face, but I just don’t. I think that’s why I have this compulsive need to always be as honest with people as possible. Because if I lie, my sardonic and pained expression will give me away.

Car oil change at 7:30am. Arrrgh.

Things That Are Disturbing

listening to: shiina ringo – kuki

Laurel, Eric and Janet were all sitting outside Manolo’s today (right outside the school of music) while I was on my way to school, so I walked over to say hi. And then Brandon walked out of Manolo’s the moment I got to the entrance where Laurel, Eric and Janet were sitting. And then Sibbi walked by on his way back from Espresso. And then Bergonzi walked into Manolo’s. And it was confusing. Manolo’s is the epicenter of…something. And, I’ve been here too long. Officially. When that happens.

In other breaking news, my sister saw the Pacifica give a masterclass in Chicago on Saturday. She’d never met them before, but she went up and introduced herself to Brandon, and they chatted, and all was well. But today during studio when I told Brandon that Erica had informed of her meeting them, he first asked “does she dye her hair?” And it made me laugh.

Frame of reference: Erica. Talia. HOW?

My mom and I were talking about this tonight, because…HOW?! How did I end up with Goldy Locks genes? There have been others in my family who started off with blonde hair, but their hair all turned brown by the time they were my age. If anything, my hair has only become more blonde in the last four years. My youngest cousin has the same hair color I do right now, but I’m almost willing to bet in 7 years, he’ll end up like the rest of them. …Not…blond…

Seriously. Where does it come from? I want to know. Maybe I really was brought by aliens.

Also…I am going to Boston on Friday!! How freakin’ exciting is that?

The Beginnings Of A List

listening to: morphine – candy

Ooooooooh jeeze.

In five days: I leave for Boston. Holy crap. I think I’m staying with Vince. Which is awesome and ridiculous and again awesome. I am going to resist the urge to want to walk the Freedom Trail. Because I’ve done that before. Twice. There are better things to do in Boston if you’ve walked the Freedom Trail. Twice. God. But it’s just so cool! And the stuff is so old! And full of history! Sigh.

In two days: I record my prelim tape material. It would be so awesome if I weren’t all congested in the head and unable to hear anything pitch-wise in the cello range of sound. Damn.

For now, I sleep.

Filled With Food

listening to: corey dargel – 10 frames per second

I didn’t think it was possible for me to wake up this morning feeling even more like ass than I did yesterday, but here I am.

I can sum up a lot more with a list. *ahem* or rather *hack cough die*

Things that are maybe not awesome to do in my current state, as it might turn out:

-in general, talk to people
-specifically, talk to important people about letters of recommendation

Things that I should definitely do more of while I’m sick:

-go out to extremely good Chinese restaurants with Taiwanese students who know food
-Math, apparently (seriously. I have no idea what happened. I got these assignments back that I actually didn’t do hopelessly on. And then I totally pulled a decent quiz out of my ass today. What.)
-sit on my ass and attach myself indefinitely to a box of kleenex. darrrr.
-I guess I’m also good at taking random unintended hour-long naps and waking up very confused when the sun is in the process of setting.

This has actually been a great week of food. I’ve basically been cooking for myself and diligently planning non-bad meals since the beginning of the semester. While I’m certainly saving money and eating better, this takes a lot of time, effort, weekly hours of scrubbing things in the kitchen. Especially if you, like myself, do not have a dishwasher (like, the machine. Not the person. I wouldn’t want a person in my kitchen washing dishes. That would be kind of awkward). So now that I’m consumed by application-work, cello-things, math-homework and whatever virus has done this to me, I really just don’t wanna. And so, way more-so than usual, I’ve been eating out. As in, I’ve actually been eating out. Oh well. Here is my week in food review.

Wednesday: I got Thai, with Anne. This was mostly a good move, except the Thai place around the corner from the music building is not 100% my favorite. I didn’t know this until eating completely fabulous thai elsewhere, though, so it wasn’t until earlier this year that I realized how oily some of the noodle dishes can be. Also, Lad Nar is my favorite thing to order, ever, and for some reason it’s just not what it should be from this place, so I never get it, and something in my heart is just never happy if I’m eating thai but not Lad Nar. But I did get Pad See Ewe. And I’ll say it: plus points for tasty, minus points for oily.

Thursday: I felt like such crap. I was so not going to put an ounce of kitchen-effort into my dinner. So I ordered out from Seaboat, the local hole-in-the-wall with amazing fish sandwiches. It was the perfect sort of comfort-food type thing I could have gotten for myself. Of course, with awesome fries. And let me tell you. You do not mess with their special sauce.

Today (Friday): Tzushan and I went to this place in Mahomet, The Wok, which was completely fabulous. It helps to go to a Chinese (specifically Taiwanese) restaurant with someone who knows a thing or two about Taiwanese food, and shares the language with the people who run the place. I like the standard Chinese dishes one sees in any old Chinese-American restaurant, yes, but I am always looking to try new things (as in new things that do not try to crawl off my plate). So this was good. More than good. Excellent. Unfortunately, I can’t even tell you what the dishes were, only that one was a noodle dish with crispy chicken, another was a sweet pork in a great sauce, and the third was some unidentifiable vegetable (related to celery?) that Tzushan couldn’t seem to connect to anything in English. They were all very good. The vegetable dish had massive chunks of ginger in them, and I kind of didn’t realize that until I almost died upon eating one. But still. I like that kind of near-death experience.

Also, I have leftovers until forever.

The one dinner I did make myself this week was kind of mediocre. Just a chicken dish that goes with Couscous and really just didn’t do much for me. Maybe now that I’ve found a repertoire of about 3 dishes I make really well, I should just stop trying and never make anything else.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go drug myself up and go play an opera.

Hate It

listening to: the high llamas – nomads

Oh my god! I get it! I get Affine Ciphers and inverse…mod…things (I hate math).

And…oh my god. I feel like ass.

Yeah. Thanks, virus/bacteria/whatever.

And I’m just realizing that I am so behind on posting photos for 365…yiiee. I’m actually up-to-date on taking the photos. Just not posting them.

That is all.

I hate math.

Okay, now that is all.


listening to: the cranberries – electric blue

I got a total of one hour sleep last night. I do not recommend this plan.

I also do not recommend opera + cold + no sleep. Or cold and no sleep. I think any combinations of those three are bad.

You know when you get up in the middle of the night and you’re kind of groggy and you turn on the light and it hurts and you just want it to go away? That’s been the last three hours. I’m amazed I made it through the opera and home without passing out someplace in-between.

Watch me not remember a lot of tonight when I wake up tomorrow.

Bad Bad Bad

listening to: number girl – super young

It turns out that playing an opera drugged up on cold medicine is almost fun. Almost.

But really, the point of this entry is to own up to the fact that I am giving up. I am defeated. Math has defeated me. I never wanted to be this student, the one who gives up, but I am sick and I have so much other stuff to do and then I don’t even want to touch on the fact that I have no idea what. Going to bed isn’t going to make math go away, but it will give my body and brain a fighting chance to recover from life and bacteria. I just can’t do this tonight. I can’t. I hate myself for it. I hate myself for it so much that I am openly admitting it right here in my blog and pretty much wallowing in a pool of my own guilt. Nobody’s perfect, but that doesn’t stop me from beating myself up every time do something not-awesome.

But for the love of God, I am a freaking MUSIC STUDENT. It’s what I do. Music. So why do I have to know or care about modular arithmetic or its interplay with cryptography? I really really can’t do this tonight.

Scholarly people who read my blog, don’t hate me like I hate myself right now. Or maybe do. I am motivated through guilt.

In other things, I am mentally preparing myself for the fact that the remainder of Season 4 of The Office has basically just gone right down the tubes for the entire world, not just me. And so with that, I bid farewell to all my current television obsessions, not just The Office. I need to reconnect with my other, more out-door and literature-based obsessions anyway, and I think this will be the perfect opportunity to do so.

For the next 10+ months. Oh my god. I’m gonna die.

Crushes I Have That I Don’t All Like To Admit To

listening to: modest mouse – lives

Four crushes I am admitting to (or just restating), despite how much I hate that some of them have their own Gap Ads and have been known to be actors and write screen-plays for really whacked-out books by David Foster Wallace. Bleh, actors.

1. John Krasinski – Yeah, that’s right. I openly admit it. Even though I hate myself for it just a little.

2. Ze Frank

3. Sean O’Hagan

4. Joss Whedon

Oh, give me a break. I’m dealing with opera week and grad-school applications. I’m allowed to have inane and stupid thoughts.


Ohmygod. I forgot David Tennant. Sorry about that.

Inner Conflict

You know how when you claim to hate someone when you really secretly love them, despite their recent borderline obnoxious popularity and the wearing of MAN-CARDIGANS?!

I love you, John Krasinski.

I mean I hate you! I mean…I don’t know!

Admittedly, I am a sucker for storytelling.


listening to: anne-sophie mutter – tzigane

Hi, how are you?–I don’t care. Because I’m BITTER.

Yes, still! I am still bitter! Hah! How about that.

But why are you bitter, Talia? Why? You just had a pleasant weekend of going home and sleeping a lot and not practicing because your hand totally needed a break and hanging out with MICHELLE of all people and, true, having a momentary 4-hour freak-out about prelim-tape recordings but that’s all TAKEN CARE OF NOW. So why bitter?

Oh, I don’t know, question-asking entity of this entry. Lots of reasons. Maybe because I am still sick and tired of losing and forgetting important things, especially when they make me drive lots of miles and I stuff and I really don’t want to detail that. Maybe because I am a nostalgic schmo. Maybe because I just randomly can be. I am so talking around the issue. Sorry guys. Very scant, few guys. Sorry.

Also, it comes to bite you in the ass when you least expect it.

Not Just Talking About Doing Things

listening to: morphine – honey white


I have officially started to freak out over grad-school applications. Some part of my brain thinks this is completely hilarious. Why does it think that?

Reason the first: I am one big freaking procrastinator. It is a problem. A big one. I have actually contemplated going into counseling for that reason alone and I only wish I were joking. I just…can’t motivate myself to do things! And it’s better now than it was five years ago when I was in high school and applying for things then. Now it’s like I have this sense of a frantic need to get things done and guilt for what will happen if I don’t get things done (guilt is a fantastic motivator, as it turns out). But anyway. Because I’m normally such a procrastinator, and I’m currently being extra stressful and hard on myself, to the point where I think I’m overshooting my need to be stressed out and plan stuff and show people that I’m capable of being responsible. I’ve gotten better at looking a situation through a removed perspective and not my own, and when I do that it’s pretty effing funny.

Reason the second: Related to reason the first, I need to show people I’m doing things and getting stuff done. And to overshoot the effort going into things. And then I tend to call people and say stuff. Like…example, I called Eric, who is doing the recording stuff. And I basically started talking about how I need to get the recording done and asking him when he’s free but then just saying a lot of unnecessary stuff that probably just doesn’t matter, realizing this and going “this is a pointless phone call, isn’t it.” And THEN I had to call Brandon and kind of do the same with him, rambling on until somewhere about two minutes into a voicemail message, I ask myself “why is this necessary?” and then some part of me answers with “it’s not.” and I laugh at myself. When I realized I was probably freaking out unnecessarily, I called someone who has nothing to do with cello or prelim recordings (Cory) and told her that I was freaking out unnecessarily at people and it must be funny but that most urgently of all, I must be stopped.

I think I’ll be okay. Prelim recordings are honestly the worst part of having to apply for schools, and I think I’ve actually just had a lucky break in that I figured out I could probably use the DVD recordings of Debussy that I played at Heifetz for the sonata requirement N.E.C. puts out. That would be awesome.

So…yeah. I can do this. I just need to be…extremely mindful of doing things and not just talking about doing things. That is my tendency.

Mo Money Mo Problems

listening to: morphine – candy

$5 to the person who can tell me WHERE THE HELL I PUT MY JACKET.

$10 to the person who can get me to stop eating bad things. This has been a bad week. It has resulted in eating of ridiculous and bad things. All around bad.

Sadly, it’s the very extreme honest truth that I would not have lived through our 3 hour sitzeprobe (opera rehearsal of doom) without that Twix bar I bought at break. I guess it’s my own damn fault I didn’t get more than 4 hours of sleep last night.

Also, The Office: Poor Jim!!

Also, the Writer’s Guild Strike: FUKC!! You read me right.

Technical Jury Nuuuuu!

listening to: morphine – candy

Morphine is an example of one of very very few bands that comes out of nowhere (no connections to other things, no recommendation) and consumes my soul in a good way. Nothing beats slide bass. Moving in fifths! FIFTHS!!

Yesterday was utterly ridiculous.

In the positive: I am pwning Haydn D major concerto. Actually. I want to revise this statement. I am just another of hundreds of servants to a dead composer. Haydn and I are co-pwning this concerto.

Except. During my rehearsal with an accompanist yesterday, one four-measure passage of repeated notes sounded decidedly raunchy for absolutely no reason. I was playing clearly in tune and clearly according to the score, but the piano part was also right. Turns out I LEARNED WRONG NOTES. FOUR MEASURES OF THEM. FUCK. ME.

I do that at least once for every major concerto I learn, and it never ceased to infuriate me. With my own stupidity of course. Especially when it’s like these two notes held simultaneously that I’ve only been playing off by a whole-step for about 8 weeks now. Darrrrrrr.

Also, in my lesson I jokingly suggested that I should come up with three simple symbols to insert into my music to indicate that I need to do the following
a) lift my left arm up so I can reach notes with my third finger
b) not arbitrarily accent notes that don’t deserve to be accented
c) extend my freaking left hand

I really should do that. Just invent symbols. Those are certainly the biggest problems I have these days.

Opera was also extremely long. And it’s painful to think that we only have…*counts*…7 more 3+ hour sessions before we’re done. But I guess I shouldn’t complain. I keep myself entertained.

Director to flutist: Sure, if you can hold that note all in one breath. You must have a good set of lungs.
Me, thinking to myself and stroking my chin: Hmm…that doesn’t quite sound…right…
Joe, sharing a look of “wtf” and mouthing across the orchestra: That’s what she said!

I have no idea. You probably had to be….there. And me. Or at least in my brain.

Whatever. I’m just rambling. And typing. Stuff.

HOLY GOD I HAVE MY TECHNICAL JURY TOMORROW. Where the hell did that come from, anyway…

Also: Joss Whedon is directing tonight’s episode of The Office. Yes. Oh yes.

Also: I joined Flickr Group Roulette, wherein you try to infiltrate random groups with 365 Days project photos, based on a specific group every day. Here is my first contribution, to the “Monday Music Advice” group.

365.070 In The Town...Where I Was Born...
Yeehaw for inspiration and only vague laziness.

*edit* Oh boy. Today’s Flickr Group Roulette challenge is Turn On Your Asslight. Rock.