Blah Blah Two More To Go

In order to make up for those two times I didn’t blog, I should, in theory, blog three times today. We’ll see if that happens.

I’m going to have an entry about food. Later.

For now I would like to supplement that last entry some to NOT complain about my degree recital, and instead just state that I’ve been feeling very free and on-top-of-the-world since it’s it finished up. I guess the main reason for this is that…I don’t really have to stress out about cello-playing, and am free to use my time to pursue other creative endeavors that I feel have been getting the shaft more recently.

Additionally, this whole “figuring out what to do next” thing seems less like my impending doom, and more of an adventure, which is pretty much how it’s supposed to have felt this whole time. Right? RIGHT??

I spend too much time worrying on the importance of things. The importance of a recital. The importance of a masters degree. The importance of finding something to do with myself in the future that will fulfill my creative and impulsive-need-to-help-people desires. I hate this about myself, because when something as seemingly big as a recital does come up, I lose myself in the importance of that ONE THING and fail to do anything else or even be able to appreciate life. Being done, I feel like so much of that worry has melted away and left me able to function and think normally without that colossal weight of the world on my shoulders.

Yay for that.

Some Schtuff.

Oh, I know. I missed another day. I promise all days will be made up before December 1st, though somebody out there DOES need to give me points for effort. This is definitely the most consistently I’ve blogged in at least a year and a half.

Not much is happening. Lots of sleep is happening. Eating way too much food is happening. Working on my Theory paper is not yet happening, but give it time. I’m supposed to meet with my professor on Wednesday to discuss my “outline,” and since he was all “super-great proposal” and such, I feel this need to work on this shit.

I don’t know. I should also bring up that I keep having dreams in which I’m preparing for or about to go give a recital. And it’s really upsetting and bad for a lot of reasons, but mostly because I wake up and feel stressed out before I go “wait a sec, I already DID that.”

I don’t know what it is, or why my brain won’t leave this recital alone. But recitals stress me out. Period. No matter how much I hem and haw with my own brain and try to convince myself that nobody’s going to judge me and that people are there to support me, the bottom line is that I don’t like playing for people — just me, by myself. No matter how much I love what I’m playing and how excited I am to at least share with listeners the music that I love, I do not love feeling like it’s my responsibility to entertain and host and be engaging to a group of people for THAT LONG. I know, again, that I would probably really benefit from being able to play a bunch of recitals all in a row. But again, this is not a luxury that I have.

I mentioned that I’m really not sure how I feel about the way I played my recital. It’s still true. I was too involved in what I was doing and trying to fight away nerves and higher-than-average levels of brain activity to really understand how I played. But I think based on how raging and stupid my nerves were, my brain is just assuming I didn’t play very well. And I dunno, that’s a crappy feeling. To be finished with this recital and STILL THINKING ABOUT IT.

I’ve done a lot of freaking out in the last 1.5 years about what I want to do in the future and how I don’t want to be in performance or maybe I DO want to be in performance. I think the bottom line, and the thing I’ve always suspected, is that I don’t want to be a solo performer. And I don’t want to be an orchestral musician. So where does that leave me in terms of performing on the cello? Chamber music, or not at all.

The. End.


Here is my half-assed blog entry for the day. ‘Cause it’s my break. And stuff.

Today I ate food. Lots and lots of food. That’s about it.


Alright, Okay, We’re Gonna Play Catch-Up

I sort of did not blog yesterday, meaning I owe an extra entry. Which is okay. It happens. I don’t think anybody’s feelings are too hurt.

I am up on Starr Hill, with Tim, and good god, we almost didn’t find the place amidst all the fog.

We just watched Mongol, which was pretty awesome.

I am eating copious amounts of STUFF, which is good, but I’m definitely going to be feeling it in about a week.

Also, not to jinx everything, but I keep doing kind of awesomely well in my music theory class, which, if you’re me, is weird. Especially because I feel like I’m always doing the work last-minute and am not putting ridiculous amounts of time or energy into the things I do. I guess the thing about analysis, at this point in time, is that it’s pretty much just being really observant in a methodical if not excessively OCD way. Which, well. I excel in being OCD. So I guess this is working for me.

It’s always a surprisingly nice WTF to get a response back from the professor about a paper proposal which says “you have a great proposal [exclamation point]” followed by detailed points as to why it’s great, plus some about how I should proceed with the paper. Yeah. WTF. In an awesome way. It’s just odd to think about how much stupid busy-work has been required in music theory classes prior to this one and how it never really paid off, compared to now, where I do moderate amounts of work and am rewarded well just for like…you know. Having a brain that works.


I am going to force Tim to make me watch more Mad Men. Because he’s like, right over there.

Okay. Byenow.

Another One Down

My days have been rather action-packed recently, thus the ABSURD lack of decent updates. You know. Recitals. Entire packs of relatives raiding my apartment. Eating lots of food. Wandering around Rochester on foot for what totals a good 3 hours. Seeing A Serious Man (the more I think about it the more I realize that this movie is entirely a movie about guilt and questioning the mightyness and mercilessness of God, within Judaism. And interestingly enough, it resounds a lot within me despite my lack of actual Jewish upbringing. Stupid, stupid Jewish-Catholic inherent guilt).

The recital went well. I guess. I don’t know. What goes on in my head is occasionally so different from what actually goes on that I have no idea how it went.

Mostly, it’s over, and that’s an amazing feeling. All that stands between me and a degree is a jury! And a history class! And a bunch of elective credits. So yeah. About another 5 months. That’s what stands between me and a degree.


Oh. God. Too many family members were just in my livingroom. It didn’t help my nerves. And today is BENJAMIN BRITTEN’S BIRTHDAY.

It’ll be nice to get this over with.


Goat-cheese and spinach pizza, weird steam-punky computer-games and MST3k. I’m not sure there’s been a better Saturday night in recent history.

I dunno. Updating is hard right now. It will be much, much easier after tomorrow, I suspect.

Woo to the hoo.

Also, this is worth watching:


I didn’t…forget…to blog, or anything. Seriously. Did not.

So, Tim’s here. Which is awesome. And we ate at Sticky Lip’s. Which is awesome. And the heat in my apartment is busted. Which is not awesome, but will maybe be fixed tomorrow.

Look! I blogged! About stuff!



No, I didn’t forget. Yes, I did spend most of the night cleaning and freaking out (a little. here and there. more freaking out about cleaning than other things).

I realize that this half-assery is completely unacceptable for NaNoBloMo, or whatever (even though I don’t think I’m actually technically participating because I guess I should have registered, or something. Oh, and also be numbering days somewhere (heeey, this is day 19!). Tomorrow will be a better day. I will blog a real entry tomorrow.

Bear With Me For The Next Five Days

Sigh. Recitals.

I think I’ve mentioned this before, but I’m pretty solidly feeling two parts excitement and one part terror. That’s probably pretty normal for a recital, or so every other person I’ve mentioned this to has affirmed.

I don’t know. I had my dress rehearsal this morning and it was FINE. Not great. And I think I’ve pretty much pinpointed the ultimate problem I have, and it’s that I just can’t relax into the music in a big fancy space while people are watching.

This is probably a fairly basic problem. But what frustrates me is that I sound awesome (really! I’ve worked pretty hard on that in the past year or so), and I can play the characters I want and there are just so many different sounds I can achieve, but that veil of nervousness and self-awareness kills it. Unlike the other problems I’ve had in learning my current repertoire, I don’t think this is something I can put even the slightest dent in in the next four days or so. I’m pretty sure the only way to get over this crap is to play lots of recitals. In a row. Which is not a luxury I have.

I shouldn’t be so hard on myself, though. Everyone always says that if your dress rehearsal isn’t the greatest, it means the recital will be much better. I hope so. Or else everyone in the audience is going to go “man! she’s loud! but stiff.”

Aside from that, I’m usually pretty pedantic about what I eat and how I treat myself before I perform (or have a dress rehearsal). I’ve been taking some herbal extracts to help some of the panicky nerve-y feelings of playing in studio class, and I think they’ve actually been really helping. But for some idiotic and stupid reason unbeknowest to me, I didn’t today. I also didn’t go for the protein. As I’ve said before, protein fixes everything for me. Damn me.

Also. Schelomo. I’m not playing it for memory. I don’t care. My teachers told me I should go for it, but keep the music on a stand so I can refer to the music whenever I need to or make sure counting goes right, but for the life of me, that just does not work. Two people in one week have said at some point, not to me directly, that you either have it memorized or you don’t, and that playing “almost memorized” with music in front of you and sometimes looking at it and sometimes not is confusing and un-helpful. After today, I agree completely. Especially in a piece like Schelomo where there is just SO much weird stuff going on in all parts. So. Whatever. I don’t care. Maybe I’m not a memory whiz. Maybe people will think I’m lazy. TOO BAD.


Thought I was going to forget, didn’t you.

Meteor-shower partying is, as it turns out, pretty fun. If you don’t count loss of feeling in feet. Or lack of sleep.

And with that, I go to bed.

Less crappy entry tomorrow.

The Goings On.

So……..I’m going to go watch the Leonid Meteor Shower 2009 at 1am?! Even though I just read it’s not going to peak in EST until 4am??!?

Which, yeah. I know I just whined about me and not getting sleep, but….eh!

Also, I’m now officially getting extreme cramps DURING PMS in addition to when I normally experience them.

Not. Cool.

Dear People,

Things you do NOT ask someone the week of their recital: are you still feeling okay about your recital?

Just, no. Unacceptable. While I know this question is perfectly well-intentioned, and I really appreciate the positivity and encouragement behind it, on paper those words might as well read “Are you really sure your recital going to be okay? Because my timid inquisition is going to make you feel not so sure.” Seriously. People who are about to play a recital need a damn squad of cheerleaders jumping around to pump them up (or a stiff drink. OR BOTH), not a Sad Sally question like that. Seriously. Did I not already say “seriously”? Oh, right, I did. BECAUSE I MEANT IT.



On to the sane but extremely mundane part of the entry: I’ve been practicing and cleaning and organizing like a crazy person. And it’s kind of fun. Except for part where I clean out my fridge. Though to be fair, my fridge stays pretty clean. I am for the most part good about using things and getting rid of stuff (surprisingly so for a person who lives alone). But there’s always that one that container with leftover rice or something that’s itself gotten shoved behind stuff and completely forgotten about. That thing that I don’t want to open for fear of WHAT’S GOING TO JUMP OUT AT ME. Obviously slugs, right?

Also, I’m a much happier person than I was yesterday, so….hooray for sleep!

The End.

Pale Power!

Twilight via Rifftrax is helping to neutralize my crappy mood. View the following to understand why, even though it doesn’t fit in my stupid, tiny-freakin’ blog text-area.

I don’t know. Sometimes I sleep really well for weeks at a time. Other times I don’t and then it sucks for everyone. The End.

Various Forms Of Freaking Out

Much crazy is occurring in the Dicker Apartment for One.

Tim is arriving next Friday (oh god yaaaaay), immediate family arriving Saturday and not-so immediate family-members Sunday, so next Friday is pretty much the day for having NON-recital-playing things totally handled. Which is kind of *headdesk*.

Yeah, that’s right, MY ENTIRE FREAKIN’ FAMILY IS COMING. Which is awesome. And ridiculous. I guess it’s one of the cool things about being located closer to most of my family, the fact that they can do things like come to my recital. So, awesome. But still. List of things to accomplish before then:

-Figure out what to wear for recital
-Figure out how to pin hair back for recital (uuuuugh, short hair!)
-Wash kitchen floor
-Clean out fridge
-Clean/rearrange damn room
-Replace lightbulbs in main bedroom lamp (both went out within 5 days of one another, and the fixture is so hiiiiiigh)
-Clean bathroom (I would say “clean entire apartment” but then I’d be discouraged by the volume of things needing cleaning and somehow put it off even further)
-Get end-pin sharpened
-Turn in order form for recital recording/DVD
-Wash car
-Figure out how to repay my amazingly awesome pianists for their Schelomo-learning time
-Not freak out

I played in studio class AGAIN last night for what will probably be the last time EVER for a while. That in itself is a good, goooood feeling.

And I should clarify (probably again). Studio class is not the pure torture that I make it out to be. But compared to past studios I’ve been in, Holy God, that is one tough audience. It’s not that I find anybody intimidating — on the contrary, all awesome and nice people. I feel like I get along with and appreciate all of my studio-mates. But they’re all so friggin’ good, and I respect each one of them extreeeemely. And when you get them all together in a room and then decide to play for them? It’s just kind of terrifying, is all.

So yeah.

But I can stop whining about it because I did it LOTS of times and lived each and every one of those times.

So now how about I freak out about my actual recital? YAAAAAAY.

There’s A Kimchi Season??

Oh, shit! Right. Gotta blog.

Yeah, it’s hard when all I can seem to do at this moment in time is WATCH COOKING WITH DOG. AAAAAAH.

Also, for those on board the Online Asian Cook-ery show bandwagon, there’s this slightly trippy guide on how to make kimchi! This is the first episode of the show Nyam Nyam, and honestly? I’m pretty excited for more. Via Serious Eats.

Nari Kye’s Nyam Nyam Episode 1: Buried Treasure, Kimchi! from Nari Kye on Vimeo.

In other things, my fingertips feel as though they could actually fall off, if that is at all possible.

Yeah, Sue Me.

To continue today’s trend of “links to articles of a more political nature than I might post otherwise,” everyone should read this: why everyone should have pre-marital sex. This isn’t just to randomly affirm my liberal-ness (again today, because man, I hate Glenn Beck) and alienate readers who might not agree. I’d like to think that non-agree-ers would at least read it to acknowledge a different viewpoint and let it roll around in their brains. Because honestly? I don’t like the idea that people out there think myself and others are bad people/sluts/lascivious in character simply because of engaging in pre-marital sex or even just for APPROVING OF THE CONCEPT OF PRE-MARITAL SEX. Nobody’s character should be judged in such a way.

Also, have you been in any way noticing divorce rates? And the extremely high number of news stories regarding adulterous acts committed by MARRIED PEOPLE (particularly men in higher political positions) within the last year? Just saying.

And I have officially been listening to way too much of Dan Savage’s podcast.

Oh, and in case you were wondering, since this is my blog and it doesn’t seem right for there to NOT be a constant stream of whining — my day was lousy and tiring and all I want to do is crawl up in bed and stay there until it is a) Spring or b) Sunny and above 60 degrees. Whichever comes first.

Whiiiiine whine whine whine whine.

Aaah, Good Day.

The best (and most hilarious) part of my day was definitely after a friend’s recital tonight, when everyone visiting the greenroom to congratulate her, and a bunch of Korean girls were standing in the adjacent hallway where most of the administrative offices are located. As luck would have it, there was a mouse that started darting around in the hallway between office doors, which caused about fifteen Korean girls to shriek and dance around simultaneously, and it was just…awesome (except for the part where for a split-second I thought the mouse was a big, hairy cockroach with a tail. That was in no no way awesome OR funny).

I Am Vampire. Hear Me Twinkle!

Um, so one of my good pals hereabouts just made me watch Twilight. And it was really…something something. Possibly bad.

I mean. There’s nothing wrong with liking Twilight. For reals. Fandom works in mysterious ways. I know this as well as the next person, and I’m not going to judge anyone for their fandom loves unless of course maybe they’re writing Jerry Springer fanfic or something like that. And I’m not saying the movie was ALL bad, but…

Bad. Very bad. Serious bad-itude. The kind of movie I don’t think I’ll be able to watch in the future if it’s not being MSTed.


*edit* Oh, and for a good time, call Movies in 15 Minutes for some more Twilight S.O.S.

For All The Internet Curmudgeons Out There

I often struggle with social networking, for all kinds of weird reasons I try to keep more internal lest other people look at me funny. I think it’s equal parts excessive-ness and inadvertent voyeurism that take the fun out of it for me, because there are times when I feel that social networking is just a really, really, REALLY poor substitute for actual human interaction. I mean, can I even emphasize how excessive some of that social networking stuff can be?? So much information I don’t really need to know about people or would maybe rather find out about them from an actual face-to-face conversation. And I guess that ties in with voyeurism. It is way too easy to know what people are doing and when they’re doing it. Sometimes I see what so many people are actually doing and then I become overwhelmed and sit around being overwhelmed and doing nothing. If that makes any sense. It’s just really easy to get lost in a sea of information I really would rather acquire about people through real interaction.

But I can never bring myself to leave Facebook, because as much as I would prefer to exchange all this damn information with a real person instead of two computers talking over some kind of connection, Facebook has allowed me to connect with people I haven’t talked to/seen in a really long time, and easily stay in contact with those that I might otherwise not, which is something I truly value. Also, if I weren’t on Facebook I wouldn’t be able to keep track of when any of these damn Eastman recitals were happening. True story: I have 20 studiomates and also a lot of musician friends.

It’s hard to find that balance, though. Between using things like Facebook for occasional link-sharing, status-updating, contact-initiating usefulness and wanting to pull my hair out.

All that said, the application TweetDeck has substantially minimized my social networking rage, and I would recommend it to anybody that is occasionally swamped by all the various ways one can seriously, counter-productively waste some damn time with things like Facebook. Pretty much, TweetDeck a very customizable application that brings all updates from Twitter, Facebook and Myspace to this one very neat and shiny desktop program. This means that I can follow what’s going on but never actually have to visit Facebook or Twitter and then get stalky and overwhelmed. And boy oh boy, does a little bit of aesthetically pleasing interface make life just that much happier. I am perhaps for the first time, EVER, enjoying following stuff on Twitter and perhaps am even contributing a bit more myself (note: I can be found here on Twitter), and it is because of TweetDeck.

So anyway. I recommend TweetDeck for use of any of these stupid social networky things if they easily make you into a curmudgeonly person.

In other news, my latest goal is to start a band that writes songs in all Bartok-ian manner. Octatonics. Inverting of lots of stuff. Pitch centricity. Major serious mother-fucking symmetry. You name it (note: I am simply regurgitating terms and technique names from the Bartok analysis that kept me up until about 2:30 in the am this mroning. Not trying to be a pretentious jerkface. You jerkfaces).

Who’s in?!?