Sunday, September 10, 2006

Exit Poppy, the loud red flower. Enter a goldfish.

Last June I auditioned for a choir, and amazingly enough, I got in. Maybe I should have just accepted this as a boost to the ego and forgotten all about it. Because yesterday I spent over four hours in a cathedral singing a bunch of music I've never seen before.

For the non-musicians out there, let me explain what this is like. Imagine that you have flown into a city and have rented a car. You get in the car and start to drive. You have directions, but you have to be on the lookout for signs and lights and must-exit lanes and left-turn-only lanes and one way streets in the wrong direction and why don't they have any street signs around here? (Let's imagine you're driving a rental car in Boston, where they don't believe in identifying roads.) And you have to do it at highway speed, or, in the case of Boston, much faster.

Now you have a decent idea of what, in musician lingo, is called "sight reading." Now, most of the "sightreading" I was doing was at what we call "performance tempo," which is musician lingo for "110 miles per hour."

Now usually, I can sightread just fine, but this group is mostly professional singers, as in they went to college and majored in voice. I did not. I majored in blogging English. So with these types I pretty much feel--and act--like a mouse amongst elephants.

Tomorrow we're singing a world premiere piece for the fifth anniversary of September 11th. The music is very beautiful, and I think it will be very moving. And to keep from making some kind of embarrassing musical flub that will destroy the effect, I'll be the one in the front row, silently opening and closing her mouth like a goldfish.


  1. I thought elephants were afraid of mice...


  2. i loooove singing in a choir. i'm trying to figure out how i can fit that into my schedule just now.

  3. That sounds like something that could happen to me. I don't sing, but believe me, it happens, especially the last part: "And to keep from making some kind of embarrassing musical flub that will destroy the effect, I'll be the one in the front row, silently opening and closing her mouth like a goldfish."


  4. Is there a blogging major? If so, despite the fact I'm supposed to graduate in May, I'd like to switch to that RIGHT now.

  5. Yeah! I finally made it on your site AND in to your comments (don't laugh it hasn't been that easy for me). At least I can access your site though it took awhile. I cant access mine at all.:(

    As for September 11th, I felt so bad bc yesterday in school there was no time left to talk about it. Unfortunately sometimes the schedule just dont allow for it. So I figured for third graders, learning about it the next morning isnt the worst thing in the world. So I gave them a very brief overview and then we wrote good deeds we could do for others on index cards. With back to school night tomorrow and 9/11 yesterday, I figured I killed two birds with one stone with that lesson.:)

  6. Welcome, Janet! Thanks for hosting me.

    As for September 11th, it seems to me you handled it just right. Third grade is a little early to have to deal with atrocities.

    I distinctly remember not telling my kids a word about it, based on advice given by the school. They said anyone 7 and under probably wouldn't be able to deal with the information. Mine were 7 and 5, so I didn't tell them. My husband was out of town and was supposed to fly home that day. (He and his colleagues ended up driving from Delaware to Illinois.) I didn't want my kids to worry about their father flying. Because I was busy with them, I didn't watch television until they had gone to bed that night, so I missed most of the television coverage everyone else saw.


Gentle Readers:

For the time being, I've turned off comment moderation. Please don't spam; it's not nice.

xxx, Poppy.