Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Dreams Under a New Moon

Picture the scene: A bedroom. Tan walls, blue ceiling, with a cluster of glow-in-the dark stars in the corner. A window, blinds drawn. Crickets chirping outside. A lamp lit on a bedside table casts its glow onto a floor scattered with clothes, a few books, and a stack of boxes shoved in the corner, awaiting the day that their contents will be shipped to a new home, along with their owner. Their owner, a 19-year-old boy, is lying on the bed, covers drawn up, with his laptop perched against the soft green mountain his legs have made of the blanket.

That's right, we got wireless internet working in my house, and I can get on the internet in my room. Who's excited? I'm excited.
___________

I raised my voice to my little brother today. I had been watching the Planet Earth documentaries with him, but he'd been acting difficult every time I tried to get him to watch one. He always prefers to continue doing whatever he's doing at the time: playing a computer game, watching some TV show on Cartoon Network, whatever. That's fine. I'd like to watch it with him, but ultimately I just want to watch the thing, and if he doesn't want to join me, he doesn't have to.

BUT he always gets irritated when he finds out that I'm watching them without him. Even though I give him ample opportunity to join me.

Well, the scene plays out today per usual. I want to watch one, he's watching TV. He says when his show is over, we'll watch it. I go to practice for a half hour: I start up again on Debussy's Jardins Sous la Pluie, which I had been working on this past semester, but took a break from after the term ended.


Dad calls, he needs us to do something. I'm putting my shoes on, so is he, but he goes into the room I'd been watching the documentary in, and because his shoes aren't in there, I get suspicious. I mean, he's 11. I was irritating when I was 11, so I know how it works. I go back in after him to see what he was up to, and he'd turned off the BluRay player.

So I told him that he had been a brat, and that I was done trying to watch it with him. If he wants to watch them, he's going to have to do it on his own time.

He became upset. And then he said that I was getting him in trouble, trying to make it my fault.
I'm not the biggest fan of the pre-teen age zone.
__________

I went over to my friend J's house to watch Castle with him. On the way back, I saw two deer, and a little blue light in a cemetery. I'm not sure what a person would put at a grave that would have a little blue light, but whatever. It kind of creeped me out, honestly. For some reason it reminded me of this story Dad told me a few years back when we were driving back from somewhere. Evidently this guy kind of hung out at a stop sign, and when people would stop at the stop sign, he would shoot them in the head. It was particularly creepy at the time because we were AT the stop sign in question... he conveniently forgot to tell me that this had happened like 12 years before.

Thanks, Dad.

Dad reads my blog. He jokes about he has more subscribers than I do, because he runs a newspaper. Technically, I suppose he's right... rawr. I don't like it when he's right.

Love you, Dad.

Title of the post is the name of the music I'm listening to right now, by the way. It's the second movement from Frank Ticheli's second symphony.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Harry Potter World

I really want to go to Universal Studio's The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, which I have affectionately been calling Harry Potter World. I want to have a butterbeer at the Three Broomsticks, and pumpkin juice, and have strawberry-peanut-butter ice cream.
I want to get a Zonko's tshirt, and see what other pranksterish items they might have...
I want to get Gryffindor clothes, because I would so be in Gryffindor if I went to Hogwarts.
But more than all of that, I want to go to Honeydukes. Chocolate Frogs, Cauldron Cakes, Exploding Bonbons, Acid Pops, Fizzing Whizzbees, Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Beans...

I'm rereading the Harry Potter series this summer. I'm on number 3, which is my favorite.
This is only fueling my longing to go there.

One of the occupational hazards of being a gay man, I have found, is seeing romantic same-sex couples EVERYWHERE. Like... where they aren't actually there. (Or maybe that's just an occupational hazard of being me...) This manifests itself in several places, but the two most prominent examples are: Detectives Javier Esposito and Kevin Ryan, from the ABC series Castle, and Sirius Black and Remus Lupin from Harry Potter. I swear it's there, subtext.

Maybe that's the reason Prisoner of Azkaban was always my favorite...

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Wal Mart Parking Lot

It just occurred to me how strange it is that there's a game devoted to wiping out humanity with a plague.
Madagascar is the most irritating island. I wish it had an airport or something.
Then my diseases could get there.

I am talking, of course, about Pandemic 2.

I live in a county where people have this idea that "fun" means "hanging out in WalMart parking lots."
Tonight I went to go see Toy Story 3 with some friends. What did we do afterwards?
We hung out in a WalMart parking lot. We're in a different county, full of exciting opportunities for fun and adventure... but no.
WalMart parking lot.
*sigh* I want to go back to school.

Toy Story 3 was a very good movie. You should go see it.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Voice

I keep having these moments in which I listen to some fabulous singer, like...
  • Lorraine Hunt Lieberson
  • Gerald Finley
  • Renee Fleming
  • Gavin Creel
  • Jerry Hadley
  • Jessye Norman
  • Hila Plitmann
...and then I have this sudden desire to sing. Onstage. With an orchestra.

And then I recall my experience with voice lessons this past semester, and how negative it was.
I'm going to take lessons again next year from a J, a grad student (second semester). I hope they go better. I'm pretty sure they will, because I've accompanied one of his students (my big brother S) in his lessons, and I like the dynamic they have.

I've heard several stories of celebrated singers who started comparatively late in life. Kim Josephson started on the Tuba, and was going to be a band director. Lorraine Hunt Lieberson started as a violist, and even had a chair in the San Jose Symphony before she started focusing on voice. My flute teacher in high school told me about her friend who started on the clarinet but switched to voice and now sings opera in Europe.

Maybe there's still hope. I love to sing, there's no doubt of that. I think I just had a poorly matched professor.

I hope things go well with J. I really want it to go well.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

By the way, I apologize for the rant earlier. Ordinarily I'm very good about ignoring her, but when she makes personal comments about me (completely unfounded comments, since we haven't talked in years), I become especially irritated.

Stupid scroll.
Today at work, I was going through the process of labeling papers, and T said that I sound like my dad. I gave her a questioning look, and she said that he goes around humming to himself... like I evidently was doing.
I didn't even notice that I was doing it.
I know it's a habit of mind, but it's not something I do consciously. I enjoy it, though.
Maybe it's genetic.

I'm re-reading the Harry Potter series this summer. I love Rowling's tone in the first novel. When I was reading chapter 15, I suddenly remembered my first time reading the book. Grandmommy read that particular chapter to me. I could hear her voice in my head, reading the words in her way.

It's funny how that works, how you can imagine how certain people would say things, and hear it as if their own voice were speaking.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Schools and Techno Music

If you like Techno music, you should go check out my brother's album at the following link.
It's quite good, in my opinion. Of course, I'm biased in his favor, so I guess you'll just have to go form your own opinion now, won't you?

My hometown has been arguing about the same subject for ten years, and no progress has been made. Forgive my vagueness on the details of the matter, but I have not followed the story very diligently... for multiple reasons, not least of which is the fact that I'm damn tired of listening to people argue about it.
Just about everyone agrees that the high school needs improvement. The problem is getting anybody to agree on how to go about doing anything about it. Two attempts have been made to pass a bond referendum to raise taxes for a new school. They both were shot down, and created divisions in the community. Recently, people in charge approached some board in Raleigh to get money from them, and were shot down.
In a recent issue of the local newspaper (which my father is the editor of), a story ran on the front page suggesting that one of the middle schools be converted into a new high school. I think that is a terrible idea for the following reason: we just built a new middle school to solve an overcrowding problem there, and converting one of the middle schools into a new high school would simply reinstate that problem. Instead of solving a problem, we would simply be shifting it to another hand.
Which is just silly.
It seems to me that the arguments have become less about the quality of education for our children, and more about whiny adults wanting their way and throwing temper tantrums whenever they find out they can't have it. Instead of moving towards a solution to the problem, they would rather sabotage each other to the point where nothing gets done and tempers are frayed.
To make things worse, (according to a number of sources including my father... who isn't the least biased opinion on the matter, but he's also not the most biased. Hi Dad. Love you.) many people are being rather classist, and not wanting their children to associate with "the riffraff on the other side of town."
My dear friend K suggests that the sentiment might go both ways.
I can't speak for the rest of the public, but I for one am sick and tired of adults refusing to act like adults.
Get over your super-inflated egos.
This isn't about you.
This is about the educational needs of the children in our county.
All of them. Not just yours.
Come up with a plan. A plan that the majority of the population likes.
And then go with it.
This should not be as hard as you're making it.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Dinu Lipatti playing Mozart's 21st piano concerto, "Elvira Madigan"


I will play this one day.
Dear Lord, he plays it well.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

My little brother was in his school's talent show today. I didn't get to go, which was disappointing, but he sang his song for me later this afternoon and he did a great job!

Evidently one of the acts that auditioned at the same time as him was this little kid who played two recorders simultaneously.

Through his nostrils.

New summer project? I think so.

I've been weighing the pros and cons of working at various locations in Norman for when I go back to college.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Shiva- By Josef K.

I just read this story, and it is magnificent.
I strongly suggest you read it as well.
The music he has in the playlist at the top is good, too. You should have it playing while you read.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Underwear

Why do people care about what their underwear looks like? For single people, at least, most people will go throughout their day with very few people seeing what their underwear looks like, so I don't understand why people need to have a cute bra, or a cute pair of panties or boxers.
And I do it, too. I saw a pair of boxers on the Express website a little while ago, and my immediate thought was "I really want a pair of pirate boxers." They had little skull and crossbones all over them. It was awesome.

It makes no sense, though.