Monthly Archives: May 2010

Memorable Day

It is a good day to remember those we must thank for the freedoms we take for granted today. I know that sounds terribly cliché, but it’s no less true.

I wanted to check my facts on something, and turns out I was right. From the US Dept. of Veterans Affairs FAQ page, answering the question, “What is the difference between Veterans Day and Memorial Day?”:

A. Many people confuse Memorial Day and Veterans Day. Memorial Day is a day for remembering and honoring military personnel who died in the service of their country, particularly those who died in battle or as a result of wounds sustained in battle. While those who died are also remembered, Veterans Day is the day set aside to thank and honor ALL those who served honorably in the military – in wartime or peacetime. In fact, Veterans Day is largely intended to thank LIVING veterans for their service, to acknowledge that their contributions to our national security are appreciated, and to underscore the fact that all those who served – not only those who died – have sacrificed and done their duty.

You all probably knew that already, but it bears mentioning. Still, I say that today we honor everyone who served in a foreign war. Dad, Grandpa J., Uncle Fred, nephew Jeremy. I’m sure you have names in your head, too.

The other good part about Memorial Day weekend: all choir gigs are over. Nothing but cleanup, filing, hanging with some students, and checking out.


Happy holiday! Hope the rain stays away from your area of Finkville.


So what does it mean when you wake up at 3:30 with your head feeling like it’s been crashed against a rock, and your stomach doing the high jump? Is it the rockin’ pneumonia? The boogie woogie flu? I just hope it’s not the ruin-your-weekend-with-Justin-and-Jake sickness.

Maybe it’s One School Gig Left Syndrome. Whatever it is, it’s nasty. I’m banking on it being the result of something I et last night, although I’m not sure what kind of damage a grilled cheezer, some fruit and a bowl of popcorn can do.

We’ll wait it out; decide this afternoon. As long as I don’t barf at graduation, I’m good. Fortunately, the choir stands close to an exit. Mavis, what’s that stuff you take for nausea? Phlegmogram? Pheromone?

Back to the hot tea.


Finkday fun

And it’s finally here.

I’m getting ready for school to start, so I will be brief today (the boss reads the blog, ya know).

  1. Auditions for our fall musical were held last night. It’s going to be a great cast, fun show. Yay for talented kids from Hooterville.
  2. Tonight is movie night with my fantastic fiend Marcia. We’re watching It’s Complicated. I will love watching it a second time.
  3. I am done with all my high school classes for the year. It was a good ride.
  4. Something just made a scratching noise behind my printer desk. Oh dear.
  5. Two more gigs. Two.
  6. One last weekend of craziness, then I’m full time Grammie.

What’s your “Yay” list for today?


Holy Facebook posts, Batman.

I’ve had some lively discussions (or at least I’ve read them) on Facebook before, but nothing like right now on my profile. So I’m late to the RtB dance for this morning.

The topic of discussion: my middle school choir concert last night. The kids were wonderful; the crowd, not so much. I felt really terrible for my students and for the members of the audience who were subjected to adults yapping at full volume (think basketball or volleyball game), showing little or no respect for five months of work being presented onstage. It was tragic.

Back in 1999, when I started at my school, concerts were held in the same place they are currently held, except no lighting was used (the main “cafetorium” fluorescents were left on), the choir risers were set up on the floor, not on the stage, and people sat at cafeteria tables instead of on chairs. I thought that was disrespectful to our audiences. I wanted them to have more of an actual concert experience. So I asked my principal if I could set up chairs, unplug the vending machines, use the recessed lights on dimmer switches, and use the Fresnels already in place above the stage. Roger on all of that, and yay, instant concert atmosphere. I think it helped the kids, too.

Though we had some issues with “training” the audience, things basically smoothed out within two concerts. However, last night showed some major regression. It was the first time in my career that I have had to turn to an audience and ask for quiet. No joke. I had to shut a crowd up. I was nice about it (I really wanted to launch into a diatribe, but…), and it helped until I turned around and the choir began performing. Then it was back to business as usual.

And I’m not talking parents not shushing their kids or taking them out in the hall if they got restless (although they didn’t do that, either). I’m talking adults gabbing full-bore like they were at a ball game. I was like, “Wow, some of these people couldn’t care less about what’s going on onstage.” It was quite the disappointment on a night when my kids really came through musically. Bummer.

Oh well…I am determined to deal with it. All suggestions welcome! (But they can’t be felonious.)


Two May gigs down — two to go.

And then there’s hating stuff.

More and more things to hate this morning. Sometimes a good dose of “Aw, get off it!” is good. As PK once suggested, maybe I need puppy therapy. Or how about vacation? How about that, hm? (Greg and Suzanne really got involved on that post, too — it was dandy.)

So I have a shiny, new, fresh list of aversions this day. I haven’t hated since January, so I’m entitled. Behold:

I Hate…

  1. late May. Our bosses tell us, “School is still going on; education still needs to happen,” but I think sometimes they forget what it was like to have 90% of your students mentally check out three weeks ago.
  2. giving the annual award for my department, because there is always more than one worthy candidate. Splitting hairs: seems like it’s all I do lately, and I will do more tomorrow at auditions for next fall’s musical.
  3. when I try to make a serious point to one of my choirs and end up saying something really stupid and inappropriate (I swear, it was an accident yesterday — it just came out really wrong).
  4. taking my students’ actions personally.
  5. politics — of all kinds.
  6. having control of all facets of my life, except that one.
  7. that LOST ended just when I was starting to get into it.
  8. the twelve hours leading up to a performance.
  9. knowing I’ve forgotten something, but not knowing what.
  10. feeling there are things I did not accomplish this year.

But tomorrow’s list is going to include things I love, so no worries. Yin and yang are in balance; feng shui is preserved. The wish is granted. Long live Jambi.