I like the bull but not the fuzz

So, every Monday or thereabouts, my teensy tinsey team of two meets with Amazon Woman to catch up on what we’re doing and if we need her to “poke” anyone for more information or whatever. We usually start out gossiping about our lives and today Amazon Woman had had a rather rough start, given that westbound I94 was hosed by two (count ’em) accidents. That is her current route to work from over in Megalopolis and about the best she had to say was that her day hadn’t gotten any worse. I know how she feels although today, I floated over to work via my Zen Route and picked away at the nerdy details surrounding a couple complicated pieces of functionality that I was tasked with turning into functional specifications. I love my job. I am a nerd.

Anyway, somehow we got onto ultra-smart people with large vocabularies and the fact that they were usually prolific readers from an early age. I floated along talking about how both of my children fit that category. I was NOT bragging, I HATE when parents brag about their kids. But then, I remembered my own childhood. I did read books. I liked to read books. I was more or less a prolific reader. I didn’t read as many books as my cousin The Grand Poohbah by a long shot. But I read books.

But what I probably spent *more* of my time doing — hours and hours and hours and hours and and and — was playing music. I mean playing the flute, which was my main instrument, and the piano, which was my first *real* instrument and one that EVERY musician should learn how to play if it is at all possible.

I loved playing the piano and I was not bad at it but the flute? Oh. My. God. I got assigned probably the crappiest of the three crappy old flutes available to us fifth graders. I think I was the first to get a sound out of it and by about a week later, I had been pretty much through the whole beginner method book. Fingering charts were my friend and I already knew about staffs and clefs and notes and rhythm because I had taught myself piano (until The Commander forced me to take lessons — a GOOD THING!). My parents supported my musical habit and I practiced diligently because I LOVED IT! Scales and arpeggios and tone exercises and etudes and every single blasted piece of repertoire I could get my hands on. I spent hours and hours and hours (and hours) practicing and I was very focused, with a set procedure through my exercises and pieces every day. And I was a HUGE music theory nerd.

I didn’t end up pursuing a music career (it would take umpteen gazillion blahg entries to talk about that but I’m not doing it tonight, for one thing because I don’t really have it all sorted out yet) but let me repeat the old adage that musicians are usually also good mathematicians (I am) and a lot of the skills acquired via music translate well to the IT industry. Especially for us music theory nerds.

This entry does NOT represent me bragging about myself. It is a glimpse into my childhood and young adulthood and what makes me tick. It’s been a loooooong time since I practiced my flute in the driven way I did when I was young. Children and jobs-that-helped-pay-the-mortgage intervened. Maybe one of these days if I ever become The Pensioness, I will dredge out my beautiful Haynes flute and reinstate my regimented childhood practice routine. Or maybe I will just play for the joy of playing. I still have the chops and the fingers, although Titanium Pinky may need a bit of retraining.

Oh yeah. That posture in the pic is TERRIBLE!!!! The best posture for playing the flute is standing up. When I was at college, I practiced standing up. At the moomincabin, I slouched on the couch.

P.S. Congratulations to my long-time internet buddy Agate Gal, on her new GRANDSON! He is absolutely gorgeous!

2 Responses to “I like the bull but not the fuzz”

  1. Margaret Says:

    He is adorable, isn’t he? And red hair, which I adore!! Music is very mathematical, so no wonder. So is language. I often taught French as a series of formulas. 🙂

  2. Tonya Watkins Says:

    Awwww! :o) I am so blown away with what a tiny human he is!

    My clarinet is displayed as part of the house decor these days (it’s in too bad of condition to play), and I do take comfort in seeing it every day. I was pretty darned good, but I wasn’t a master by any stretch. (And I hated to practice!) {{Runs and hides…}}