Peachy Keen

listening to: the high llamas – the walworth river

I am feeling peachy with a side of keen.

By which I really mean “I am no longer unable to swallow or eat due to a painfully swollen throat and am able to move around without walking into things, so hoorah.”

So I’m not actually all that peachy. I coughed through most of the night and had weird dreams about running through large cities in Europe when I wasn’t doing that. But I do feel better. Antibiotics are good for something, I guess.

Michael, Michael Michael, This Is Not Your Saw Tooth Wave

listening to: broadcast – michael a grammar

If someone wants to cut off my head, or something, I wouldn’t be totally opposed to that. This flu thing is REALLY starting to bum me out. I would just like to be able to at least eat normally and practice and possibly attempt to do productive things or just NORMAL things like run. Dagnabit.

In other junk, I really wish we had a wi-fi connection in this house. For various reasons. LOTS of various reasons, least of all because my Dad thinks I “do things” to this computer, with all those YouTube things, and mp3s of mine. I’m such a troublesome youth.

Sometimes it’s actually startling when I realize how big a generation and age gap there is between myself and my parents. I know some kids out there have older parents, but. I don’t know. It’s like, now that I’ve actually started doing things on my own like traveling and organizing important life-things, I get a little tired with…ways that aren’t mine. Especially when I get looked at funny for doing things my way. I think it’s made me a little restless, what with all this traveling and spending time with parents, recently.

My Dad and I actually had a really weird discussion during our Rochester journey about music and classical music and how these things are going to survive and how people are going to get jobs and…it was very very weird, how different the opinions were. I wish I had a bit more of a nerve to speak up about how I feel about the things I’m going to have to do to survive and actually make money in the future. I feel very strongly about the fact that I’m going to have to do more than just play well. And that classical music isn’t just going to carry itself onward forever. And how the government is NOT conspiring specifically against orchestra music. I mean. They have better things to do in their spare time. Right?

More on my strong opinions about where music is going in the future, later.

I should also mention that tonight I was kidnapped, in my sickitude, and taken to a Memorial Day cookout. It was awful. I mean awesome. Actually, it was both. I really wish my health were more optimal at this time in the year.

Hooray For Things

listening to: the high llamas – put yourself down

Dear readers of my blog,

Have I recently mentioned how much I love Sean O’Hagan and The High Llamas? No? Well I just did. And here’s a moderate audio reminder in case you, too, have forgotten your love for Sean O’Hagan.

Today I played my first ever wedding gig for someone who graduated in my high school class. It was bound to happen eventually. For the record, I also played the longest Canon in D of my entire life. Whoopee. My life is so exciting.

Man, I do not enjoy being sick. I mean, it could be worse. A lot. And I definitely somehow managed to not pick up some kind of malady during the last semester. Which is great. So I shouldn’t complain. Much. I just kind of miss eating things. Whatever this bug is, it leaves me with that weird in-between queasy feeling in my stomach, the kind where my stomach doesn’t want to be full because that feels bad, and it doesn’t want to feel empty, because it feels equally as bad. So I’ve been ingesting very little, very frequently. Also, the aches. Yaaai.

Finally, though, I do solemnly swear that I am going to practice this week. I mean, and every week from now on. Forever. That Dvorak isn’t just going to learn itself, incessant neverending etude-of-a-concerto soul-eating bitch it tries to be. I know how to work on it, for sure. Same as Haydn D. Slowly, for a very long time. But there’s so much to work on, for so many pages. It’s going to be an very ongoing process, I think, and one I should start sometime before Colorado College.

Hooray for things.

Sibling Mistypery

Further proof that my sister and I are related, despite our bizarre polar-opposite pigmentation and lack of shared familiar facial features: MISTYPING.

As many of you know, I suck at the typing. This can be noted here, here, and from that one time when I mistyped oatmeal as “oatmeanl” and “owmatl” and subsequently died of laughter a lot and made my neighbors think I was being robbed, apparently.

So anyway. This just happened in gmail chat, in a discussion of food:

Erica: Great.
Erica:What are your feelings regarding mangos and ovicados?
Erica: avicados
Erica: acacados
Erica: shit!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Me: i love avacados!!!
Me: YES!
Erica: I have a recipe for mango avacado pizza
Me: and mongos!! mmm!
Me: *mangos

Also note the similarity in extraneous letters, all caps, and excessive use of punctuation marks.

In other news, I feel like crap! Hooray!


Is it true?? Could it really be?? That Dan Beahm and the Invisible Three is back in town and playing a show at Mike’n Molly’s tonight at 8pm for $3??! Why yes, it is so very true.

Yeah. I’m pretty excited. It’s been almost a year since the last time I played with DBi3. Hopefully I still remember stuff. I’ll also be joining Daniel for a few gigs in early July around the Denver area, so you Colorado-dwellers out there should make a note. All one of you who read my blog.


listening to: neoangin – i want you

First and foremost, I want to say that it was one of the weirdest and most surreal experiences of my life to walk through the Galleria mall in Buffalo and HEAR THIS SONG, yes, by NEOANGIN, yes, this guy, sometimes known in Berlin and Russia or that one place my sister saw him play in Germany, playing overhead. The world is smaller than I thought. I tried to exclaim to my Mom how crazy this was, but I don’t think she cared.

So right, Rochester. I do this thing where I’m really crazily aware of my surroundings, particularly the city in which I live, and I make it into a big psychological and sometimes emotional mess when I have to relocate. I have like, weird nostalgic attachments to locations. Some of you who have been reading my blog for eons remember that whole moving-from-Iowa City-to-Champaign business. Not fun. For anyone. So I kind of went a little quietly nuts when I first realized that I would have to be living in Rochester for the next two years. Everyone I know who lives in or goes to school there says it’s a crappy town.

But you know something I discovered? ROCHESTER IS AWESOME.

Honestly. I’m going to refer to Rochester as the Paris of Western New York from now on. Maybe it was the weather while we were there, or something, but seriously. I had only visited Rochester during my audition last February, and all I did was think “man this weather sucks” and walk from our hotel downtown to Eastman School of Music, and many years back when we were stranded there due to extreme weather. I had somehow thought that Rochester was just going to be a bigger, crappier version of Rome or Utica. But it’s most definitely not. Aside from the crime and the Western part of town that’s really not all that nice, it’s a cool and very aesthetically pleasing place. Much of this can be owed to George Eastman, who was rich and did a lot. Other companies which helped in the building of extravagant houses and buildings and neighborhoods would be Bausch and Lomb and Xerox. And something else. I can’t remember what.

The main reason for my going to Rochester was to find a place to live, which I did. I saw some not-so-great places, and a one fairly okay one. But I ended up settling on a really really nice apartment, modified into a 2-bedroom dealie inside this 3-story gigantic, beautiful house (or “mansion”), I guess. It’s located about 3 blocks outside the main downtown area, 15 minutes tops from Eastman walking, and on the edge of this insane huge-house neighborhood. I’m serious, these houses are ridiculous. I’ve never seen anything like them. They make the older, fancier houses in Bloomington around Washington and Grove St. look plain and small.

Plus, not even a mile down the main street by our house is a Wegman’s! If you are ever in Central-Western NY or PA, visit Wegman’s and go look at their fancy cheeses. I’m serious. Just do it. I never ever ever thought I would say this, but having a Wegman’s to shop at very nearly makes up for the lack of Trader Joe’s. I KNOW, RIGHT? Never thought I would say that, did you.

(sidenote: I have a roommate next year. And it’s Anne!! And so when I refer to “our house” or “our place,” that is who is included in my referall)

And really, I love Upstate New York. I’ve spent a lot of my summers and small parts of my winters up there. I like the openness and the wind of the midwest, but I like the trees and hills and water and HIKING! YES! HIKING of the North-Easterly area. Rochester and the surrounding area has much of this.

After Rochester we headed to Ithaca and then Adirondack-foothills territory. I want to add that after being surprised by how cool Rochester is, I was equally as surprised by how not-great some of Ithaca is. I think I remember it to be a lot more glorified in retrospect, after my 3 weeks there 7 years ago. We did however go to the Cornell Plantations, though while not in bloom, were lovely. I also only just discovered that Cornell has an Ornithology lab that I absolutely must go to during my stay in Upstate New York.

The whole trip was quite nice. I got to spend time with family and see my Granddad. And ride in a car a lot. And be surrounded by way too many double-reed players in a small amount of time than anyone should, ever, in history. I know far too much about bassoon reeds and Fox Products than any non-bassoonist ever should.

The trip made me realize a lot more, though, how while parents are great and supportive, too much time around them can be tiring and stressful. One of my close friends shared similar sentiments with me when she came back from Harvard during her first semester there. It’s funny to me how it’s only taken 5 years for me to really start to experience feelings like this. I have honestly been pretty okay with how much time I’ve spent with my parents over the last five or six years, with an exception here or there. I guess that in the last year I’ve also traveled a great deal by myself. When it comes to things like traveling, I have my own effective ways of coping and dealing and navigating, and having to go back to ways I may somehow view as “old” and “outdated” probably does not help.

Um. But I’m tired.

I think the bottom line is….Rochester = good.

There are probably many grammar/typing errors in this country. I mean entry. What? And I don’t care.

Compulsive About-To-Leave Entry….Go!

I woke up this morning and came downstairs to see my Dad printing off the exact same maps of these places I’m looking at in Rochester that I did last night. CHIP OFF THE OLD BLOCK!

Man. I’m tired of people posting unflattering photos of me on Facebook. Not like inappropriate ones, or anything. Just…photos that prove that I make no effort to look nice. Ever. But I suppose that’s my fault.

Aaaaaaand we’re leaving.

Graduated! Yeah!

I just realized that I’m going to miss the season finale of The Office because I’ll be on the road. Dammit.

Graduation was good. One of the alumni speakers was…wow. Great. Talked about all sorts of media and “future-of-the-arts” stuff that got me wanting to jump out of my seat and yell “YES.” However, it led me to realize the rift between my father and I in terms of The Arts and how to do more than just play music to other musicians within the music field. Which is….what I want to do less of.

But anyway. Off to a party and Rochester and places. And things. Oh, you know. I’ll blog obsessively if I find wi-fi anywhere.

Colin: THANKS!! YAY! And yeah. I think about that Jens Lekman gig I should have taken all the time. Sigh. Oh well. I have a degree, at least. Or will, once they send it out in July.

Of Beer Snobbery

listening to: john vanderslice – trance manual

Yesterday I became a real college student. Not just another boring 5th year undergraduate student, a real college student.

I drank a Bud Light.

It’s true. Never before yesterday had I ever had any kind of beer that wasn’t fancier, or at least of better quality than a Bud Light. So now I know what I’ve been missing. And it turns out I’ve been missing what to me just tasted like dirty carbonated water. Man. This is kind of like the story of how I came to appreciate beer in the first place (ie, trying a Maltzbier (or Malt Beer, aka, non-alcoholic beer) somewhere in Germany. Gross, man).

Fortunately, I drank other, better things that weren’t crappy beer. So all is well.

And today? I used parentheses within parentheses. Boy oh boy.

Today I’m graduating. Tomorrow I’m driving to Rochester (and later Remsen) with my parents. I really hope I find a place to live out there. I also really hope I’m not forgetting something important regarding the graduation ceremony. I came very very close to not walking in the ceremony, at all. Due to laziness and an ambivalence toward certain Rites of Passage.

Progress, My Friends, And Obsession

listening to: bela fleck & the fleck tones – way up high

I am very slowly making progress in the area of productivity. As in, I’m making very vague and half-hearted but actual attempts at being productive in things other than looking for places to live for next year.

This morning I ran my first 5 mile run in a very long time that was easy. I’ve been doing a full five miles since right after my recital, but it’s been rough and sometimes even painful. But oh, man, today it was so easy. It was like sitting and reading a book. Or wandering. It was like breezing. Of course, this just means I need to pick up the pace, be more hardcore with timing, run further. And keep it up. Thaaat’s likely.

I also practiced today, for the first time in kind of a while. It wasn’t like real practicing, though. It was more like playing in the “5th grade recess” sense. I went through some old rep from previous recitals and laughed my ass off when I figured out about 50 better fingerings on my own. It’s funny how time occasionally makes people less stupid. Or I guess I could just say that I can handle my thirds and double-stops way better than I once could.

On an interesting note, I think my arms and hands are actually sore from not playing the cello. Hilarious.

And hey. Perhaps you remember this day, once upon a time, where I was fairly obsessed with the first Britten unaccompanied suite. So maybe you won’t be surprised to hear that, second Britten unaccompanied suite? Holy crap on Mom’s shoes.

It’s so good. It’s shorter and more succinct than the first suite. No excessive cantos, or canti? Whatever. Just 5 movements. All referencing Baroque dances. I mean, really, you could get up and dance to these works. With a limp, anyway. These are good dances for people who having balance issues, or are drunk and good at randomly having groups of 5 thrown into their counting.

In other news, I hate iPhoto. Sure, it works. Sure, you enhance photos in a somewhat simple manner. But if you’re going to take and seriously organize more than 500 photos, total, ever, in your life, find something better. Something that doesn’t run so much damn memory. There must be a better way.

I guess I could always mention that people are major doofs. But what good would that do? Very little.

A Weird Day

listening to: they might be giants – ape cycle

It’s a weird day when I confuse They Might Be Giants for Scott Walker when iTunes is set to random and I’m not paying attention. Just saying.

How Did You Spend Your First Moments Of Summer Freedom, Talia?

Oh, wait, you’re asking me what I did my first free day after my last semester of undergrad course-work ended? Hmm….let’s see….I think I slept in until like…8:30…and went for a run…and I finished it all up by laying on my couch writhing in PAIN for hours. THANKS A LOT, FEMALE REPRODUCTIVE SYSTEM.

Yesterday happened to be Laurel’s birthday. And there was celebrating. And I guess I’m really lucky that for about three hours in the evening during the dinner outing, I felt fine and ibuprofen seemed to be doing the job. But right around 9pm, bad things resumed, and I spent the evening either pacing around or laying horizontal, wishing it would stop. Things let up again right around the time I was going to bed, but then worsened. AGAIN. About a half hour later. Lucky for me I saved the vicoden they gave me when I had my wisdom teeth out, whenever that was. So I did sleep. And well, I might ad. With weird dreams.

Man. I can’t take this anymore. I’m going to McKinley before my health care coverage runs out there and having them give me whatever. I feel like I’ve tried every possible natural goddamn method of lessening these cramps and nothing has changed. So I guess I’m giving in. I’ll do what I probably should have done like a year ago, and let them put me on oral contraceptives. Even if I don’t like the idea of messing with my body and its balance of hormones, etc. Whatever.

So…stuff. Now ends the entry of stuff you probably didn’t need to hear. Yeehaw. The End.